Smoky Mountain Eats: A Guide to Vegan and Vegetarian Restaurants in Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge & Aroun

Nestled amidst the stunning Great Smoky Mountains, Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge offer a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and sightseers alike. Beyond the breathtaking scenery and mountain charm, these towns are brimming with delicious dining options, but what if you're vegan or vegetarian?

While the area is known for its hearty Southern fare, there's also a growing scene dedicated to vegetarian and vegan cuisine. For those seeking a more plant-based approach to their Smoky Mountain dining experience, navigating menus can sometimes be tricky. Many restaurants in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge cater to a general audience, so having some local intel on great vegetarian and vegan options is key.

This guide will be your compass on your green culinary adventure! We've curated a list of the top spots in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge for vegetarian and vegan diets. Are you ready to embark on a delicious and eco-friendly culinary journey through the Smokies?

Vegan and Vegetarian-friendly restaurants in Pigeon Forge, TN

Mellow Mushroom

With locations all over the country, Mellow Mushroom is a favorite of vegans and vegetarians. They are said to have the best pizza in Pigeon Forge. Mellow Mushroom is an outdoorsy restaurant that's a favorite among locals in the area. Its dough is delicious, and it uses only high-quality ingredients to create unique flavors. Pizzas can easily be made gluten-free and vegan. They also offer a selection of 18 draft beers as well as cocktails.

Cute little icons indicate the vegetarian and vegan options on their menus. Options include vegan-friendly pretzels, salad dressings, sauces, and specialty pizzas. With any pizza, you can replace the regular cheese with dairy-free cheese, add toppings like tofu and tempeh, and they also have plant-based protein.

The staff is friendly, the service is good, and the decor is pretty funky and fun, with a retro touch. If you are on a special diet, this is definitely the place to go.

Local Goat

This "all-American restaurant" specializes in farm-to-table food with an array of options, from great salads to steaks and ribs. Now, we know that's not what you are here for, but the good news is that the staff is incredibly accommodating to dietary restrictions, and they'll go out of their way to offer you a delicious meal.

They offer plant-based burgers that are simply delicious, with vegan and gluten-free buns. If you want to pick something else, the staff will help you customize it. Oh, and bear in mind that portions are pretty large!

The decor inside is nice, and the wait staff is dressed in an old-fashioned style. This place locally sources its foods, supporting small farms, so the food is fresh and safer to eat. Whether you're a vegetarian, vegan, or just want to eat healthy and organic, this is a great pick!

Front Porch Cafe (Dollywood)

Here's a place to immerse yourself in the warmth of Southern hospitality, and right at Dollywood's! Front Porch Cafe is inspired by Dolly Parton's own down-home cooking, a family-friendly restaurant that offers classic American comfort food with a delightful Southern twist.

While the menu caters to a general audience, vegetarians will find some delightful options. You can easily skip the meat and savor the creamy pimento cheese with crostini, or try the vegetarian-friendly fried green tomatoes. They also offer a portobello panini for a heartier vegetarian option.

The inviting country-themed decor creates a welcoming atmosphere, perfect for a casual and satisfying meal during your Dollywood adventure. Whether you crave classic Southern comfort food or delicious vegetarian fare, the Front Porch Cafe is your go-to spot for a great dining experience at Dollywood.

Dinner Shows: Do Dinner Shows in Gatlinburg Have Vegan, Vegetarian, or Gluten-Free Options?

Entertainment in Pigeon Forge is synonymous with dinner shows. Just because you follow a special diet doesn't mean you can't enjoy a dinner show in the Smokies.

Most of the big dining show providers offer alternative menus for special diets. They only ask that you let their staff know in advance so that everything can be prepared for you.

  • Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Show: Offers a Southern feast while witnessing a lively theatrical showdown reenacting the legendary Hatfield and McCoy family feud. Special meals are available upon request: gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian, and vegan. Contact their box office for details.

  • Dolly Parton's Stampede: This is a dinner experience with Dolly Parton. Expect dazzling music, dance, and thrilling stunts that celebrate the spirit of the American West. They offer a four-course vegetarian feast and gluten-free options. Notify the staff of your dietary requirements when making the reservation.

  • Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show: A swashbuckling dinner adventure filled with acrobatic pirates, dazzling mermaids, and thrilling battles on a watery stage. Special four-course feast menus for vegetarians and gluten-free visitors are available. Specify your preferences when making a reservation.

Heads up: If you're interested in other shows, it's a great idea to get in touch a few days in advance to double-check if they accommodate special diets. Most do!

Vegan and Vegetarian-friendly restaurants in Gatlinburg, TN

Whole Earth Grocery Cafe

Here's a hidden gem – a locally owned and operated store and cafe that's been a community favorite for over 21 years. This haven caters to all dietary needs, offering a delightful selection of vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options. Their menu boasts delicious soups, salads, and sandwiches, perfect for a healthy and satisfying meal.

The goodness doesn't stop there! They also have a grocery shop with a focus on organic and natural foods, so you can stock up on healthy ingredients to take to your rental and cook. And if you're looking for a unique gift or some local décor, they have that covered too. This spot is truly a one-stop shop for delicious, healthy eating and feel-good shopping.


Voted one of Tennessee's best restaurants by The Tennessean, The Wild Plum Tea Room offers a unique Gatlinburg experience. This charming cabin-style tea room boasts a delightful deck for outdoor dining. They're known for their delicious Austrian-style teas, seafood specials, sandwiches, and chicken salad, but vegetarians and vegans can also enjoy a delightful meal there.

Just note that, while vegetarian and vegan options are available, special requests need to be made 48 hours in advance. Since reservations are required anyway (they tend to get busy!), head to their website to secure your spot and plan your plant-based feast.

The ambiance is captivating: a rustic cabin adorned with adorable touches. If you appreciate delicious food and gracious hospitality, then this one is a must-try on your Gatlinburg adventure.

Vegan and Vegetarian-friendly restaurants in Sevierville, TN

Healthy Balance Meals

In Sevierville, your top contender for a balanced and delicious meal is, as the name suggests, Healthy Balance Meals. This local favorite offers a variety of healthy options and you can dine in, grab takeout, or even stock up on frozen meals to cook at your rental. Their menu boasts fresh salads and sandwiches, hearty soups, and lean protein entrees.

The staff at Healthy Balance Meals are incredibly helpful, especially if you have allergies or are on a special diet. They can guide you toward the perfect option to accommodate vegetarian or vegan preferences. This is for sure a fantastic alternative to fast food, offering a guilt-free and satisfying dining experience.

Extra Tips for Vegetarian and Vegan Travelers in the Smokies

While major cities and tourist destinations offer more vegetarian and vegan options, navigating menus in the Smokies can still be tricky. Restaurants often have menus focused on meat-based dishes.

Here are some tips to smooth your travels:

  • Do your research: Before you go, research the area's food scene in blogs like this one. Look for vegetarian and vegan restaurants online.

  • Pack snacks and travel food: Bring non-perishable snacks for situations with limited options.

  • Be flexible: Prepare to adjust your expectations and have backup meal plans.

  • Embrace local cuisine: Explore vegetarian options in local dishes! Many traditional dishes can be adapted.

  • Explore Farmer's Markets: Visiting local farmers' markets is a great way to source ingredients for your dietary needs. Chat with local vendors and learn about their produce. Look out for regional specialties.

  • Cook at Home: If your rental has a nice kitchen, consider cooking at home. You can still enjoy your own homemade local meal with fresh produce from the farmer's market!

Overall, with some planning and an adventurous spirit, vegetarian and vegan travelers can have delicious and fulfilling experiences almost anywhere!

For more tips and recommendations on what to do in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, head to our destination blog. We've written about everything from the best restaurants in the region and the best breakfast spots in the area tofull guide to fishing and much more.

Are you wondering where to stay in Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and The Smoky Mountains?

Why not enhance your vacation with the stunning backdrop of the Smoky Mountains in a great rental property?

At Stony Brook, we offer an exceptional array of cabins and chalets in Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, Sevierville, and Cosby, ranging from one to 16 bedrooms. As a family-owned service, we guarantee you'll have the best experience in the Smokies!

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