Siem Reap, Cambodia is a prime example of being constantly blown away by the accessibility of vegan options anywhere in the world. When I booked my flight to Siem Reap, I was not expecting to be overwhelmed with too many options of where and what I could eat next.
With a week in Cambodia, I had my days packed with food adventures.
I met fellow Vegan Travel Blogger Kristin (@vegannomad) for brunch at Vibe. I was so excited about this place after seeing the amazing photos on their Instragram page. The delicious and beautiful food creations had me excited after thinking I’d just be eating rice during my stay in Cambodia. From raw treats to an extensive savory menu, I had no idea what to get! Since I promised myself that I would come back another day, I just ordered one thing rather than 10.
The Native Bowl was so fresh and delicious, and I was able to have them dig out the fresh coconut and take it home with me to snack on later!
See what I mean? Kristin’s avocado smash toast and turmeric latte had my mouth watering, so I knew I had to return for something savory off of their lunch menu. These options are both on the breakfast menu, and there is a whole new world after they switch over to their lunch + dinner menu!
I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I think this was in my top three favorite dishes in seven months around the world. The incredible combination of flavors gave me a nostalgic flashback of my mum’s mexican casserole with the fanciest twist. I could have ordered this for every meal of every day and still wished I could fill my suitcase with Explorer Quesadillas.
Vegan gelato? You don’t even have to say that twice, my buns are booking it there so fast [not even because I need to burn off the calories I’m about to stuff my face with]. Fruit sorbets? Cool, but not cool enough. Chocolate? Lock me out because I will empty that whole bucket into my cheeks while crying with joy. It’s been a while since I’ve had vegan chocolate gelato, okay?
Can we also talk about how they had six vegan flavors? Nah, no time for talking, I have copious amounts of gelato to eat.
There is also an option to turn your gelatto into an affogato, which is a win-win.
What a little gem, let me tell ya. This clean white space has an amazing menu and such a friendly staff, I could have hung out here for hours. Their coffee had soy, cashew, and coconut milk options as well as a raw section on their menu, both hard to find elsewhere!
I loved seeing a vegetarian place in the middle of the hustle and bustle of Siem Reap. It was on the same alleyway as Gelato Lab [Alley W], so I recommend doing what I did and hit up one right after the other. I won’t judge you for choosing to have gelato first if you don’t judge me for eating gelato for breakfast while I waited for Chamkar to open. Although it is a vegetarian restaurant, about 90% of their items are labeled as vegan!
I ordered the Wedding Day Dip as per recommendation from Paul and Caryl from Vegan Food Quest, and listening to them was the best decision I could’ve made. The coconut, mushroom, peanut combination I could drown the baguette in didn’t compare to anything I’ve tasted. This is probably an appetizer to share, but you can bet I devoured the whole thing…. and ordered something else.
I wanted to try a traditional Cambodian dish, and the staff recommended the obvious Cambodian’s Favorite Salad with Green mango, Roasted peanuts and herbs. The texture was not my favorite, but I’m weird about that. It was a fun flavor to experience, and I’m happy I had the chance to try it and eat something so fresh after the heavier wedding dip.
I’ve heard really wonderful things about Sister Srey, from their delicious food to the amazing things they are doing for the community. Check out their “10 Reasons to <3 Sister Srey”
- Everything is prepared fresh daily
- They are a social enterprise with the desire to see change & the ability to do so
- Their produce is as organic & chemical free as possible
- Their suppliers are chosen as they support the local community
- They have a boutique clothing store upstairs
- 90% of waste is either composted or recycled
- They try to pop a smile on everyones faces
- They support their staff through university and further education
- There are ways to volunteer and be a responsible tourist at the cafe
- They are gluten free, vegan, vegetarian and food intolerant friendly
I went here pretty late at night and was the only person eating here, but I enjoyed the calm atmosphere to eat my raw vegan passion fruit cheesecake in peace. It also felt great to get some veggies in because for a split second I forgot that it isn’t smart to eat fresh vegetables in a third world country… leading to this being the last meal I had in Cambodia and the only one I got to experience twice thanks to food poisoning. Who knows if it was the glistening water on those spinach leaves that I’m now glaring at, but it was delicious the first time around.
On my walk from Sister Srey to Pub Street, I passed Rehash Trash. I couldn’t walk by without checking it out after hearing what an awesome thing they were doing. They take roadside rubbish and turn it into a variety of items with new uses while providing a safe place for disadvantaged women to learn a skill and earn an income. AKA- a pretty beautiful mess.
You can find rehashed plastic bags that have been turned into useable items such as floor mats, bags, kitchen items like bowls and plates, baskets, keychains, etc.
There is nothing like being welcomed into a town foreign to you by locals who know the in’s and out’s of vegan heaven all around. Paul and Caryl from Vegan Food Quest, whom I mentioned above, stayed in contact with us with the hopes that we’d end up in Siem Reap at some point. As soon as I made it into Cambodia, they invited myself and Kristin over for dinner at their Vegan Villa! If you’re ever in SR and are looking for a place to stay as well as amazing hosts, their place is a warm home away from home.
Caryl made us the most delicious chili dinner with everything homemade including guacamole, tortillas, tahini, another creamy sauce I couldn’t name, and salad. I hadn’t enjoyed a home cooked meal with amazing company and great conversation in months, and it felt so great. I left smiling, stuffed, and welcomed with open arms!
I would have eaten even more of the town if I didn’t get sick, but Cody and Giselle made up for what I missed out on, as well as Paul and Caryl on their blog. Don’t miss out on any of the places I shared or on their vegan insights!
Where have you been that took you by surprise??