Vital Root: Vegan Fast Casual Done Right

The vegan/vegetarian restaurant has become a staple of Denver, Colorado restaurant culture, with many long-standing local favorites dominating the scene all across the metro area.

Credit to Westword Denver.
Outside Vital Root on Tennyson.

However, my personal favorite veggie-friendly spot in the mile-high city is Vital Root, a newer restaurant located in the Lower Highlands on picturesque Tennyson Street.

Vital Root is elevating fast casual dining to a beautiful, vegetable-centric experience with an urban vibe. The space sports an impressive vertical wall garden in an open-air part of the restaurant.  Further, the indoor area is just as lovely, with fun art and a unique architectural style.

Credit: Westword, Denver.
Outdoor vertical garden.
Credit: Westword, Denver.
Inside Vital Root.

Though their menu includes some non-vegan items, Vital Root takes an extra interest in respecting dietary restriction. You’ll be asked if you have any restrictions upon ordering food, and their menu states 99% of the items can be made vegan. Further, 100% are gluten free.

Credit to Westword, Denver.
Devils on Unicorns, made with a coconut “bacon.”

Vital Root has a variety of tasty vegan options and fun fake meats, like an edamame “pâté” and Korean BBQ veggie “wings.”

Credit to Denver Westword
Risotto and edamame.

Vital Root’s Asian infusions are some of the best on the menu. Items like the banh mi tacos, coconut dosa, and their selection of bowl items like pad thai and stir fry make for a tasty and flavorful meal.

Also, the restaurant is perfect for a fast casual lunch with a coworker or friend–not too expensive, but satisfying and always refreshing. You can enjoy the luxury of a good meal made meatless while being casual.

Credit to Denver Life Magazine.

Additionally, Vital Root is part of the restaurant group Edible Beats, responsible for other classic Denver foodie locales such as Ophelia’s and Linger. Locals know that the trendy group takes particular interest in environmental issues with their restaurants.

One way Edible Beats practices sustainable design is by repurposing unused space for their restaurants. For instance, their original hotspot Root Down is in a mid-century gas station, while Linger’s multiple rooms are in an old mortuary. Don’t worry, though–the space is transformed and the food totally beautiful.

Credit to Denver Eater.
Linger, an Edible Beats restaurant.

Another way Edible Beats does sustainability is in the way they source their food. Vital Root can boast that they buy food from 55 local farmers. Locality really helps to reduce the gas emissions from transporting produce. They also grow 40% of the produce for all six Edible Beats restaurants, and they run on 100% wind power.

You can bet when you eat at Vital Root, you’ll enjoy locally-sourced and delicious vegan food. From their “Legit Smoothies” to their unique veggie desserts, Vital Root is a vegan experience to have in Denver.


Learn more on their Facebook page and their website.

Katie Jeddeloh

Gastronomy Content Contributor

Katie Jeddeloh is a third year undergrad at St. Olaf College where she studies English and Women's and Gender Studies. Katie is an earth enthusiast and poet, and she loves growing, cooking, and talking about food.