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How to Eat Vegetarian & Vegan in Malaysia

If you have ever traveled to Southeast Asia, you'll understand how difficult it can be to eat vegetarian or vegan, especially in smaller towns and villages.

Generally, a good rule of thumb is to stick to Indian food. This is going to be the easiest way to guarantee a meal is vegetarian. So, if you are in Kuala Lumpur, stick with Indian restaurants and you will be easily a-okay.

However, once you leave Kuala Lumpur, Indian food may be harder to come by and you'll more likely find yourself in a Malay warung (small, local, family-owned eatery) where explaining vegetarianism or veganism may be a challenge.

Luckily, after 6 months of navigating menus all over Malaysia, I have compiled a list of delicious local cuisines which are totally vegetarian (and don't require much explanation about what you can or can not eat)!

Quick side note: be wary of veggie soups, the broth may not be vegetarian :)

Veggie Meals:

  • Nasi Campur (Mixed Rice)

  • Nasi Lemak (steamed coconut rice)

  • Laksa (spicy noodle soup with tofu puffs)

  • Tahu Sumbat (stuffed tofu)

  • Popiah (indian spring rolls)

  • Keripik Tempe

  • Nasi Goreng (fried rice)

  • Oseng-Oseng Wortel (stir fried carrots)

  • Terong Balado (eggplant)

  • Asinan (cucumber salad)

  • Keredok (salad with peanut sauce)

  • Gudeg Putih (white curry jackfruit)

  • Pepes Jamur Kuping (steamed mushroom wraps)

  • Semur Terong (sweet eggplant stew)

Some Helpful Translations You May Need:

Nasi - Rice

Sayuran - Vegetables

Buah - Fruit

Mi - Noodles

Tauhu - Tofu

Enjoy and Good Luck!

xx Liza

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