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Bodhi Tree Vegetarian Cafe

  • Vegan
    ( 23 reviews )
Contact 714-969-9500
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501 Main St Ste E, Huntington Beach, California, USA, 92648

Vegan restaurant about 1/2 mile from the pier. Offers an extensive menu including a range of Asian dishes using mockmeats.

Category: Vegan, Chinese, Raw, Take-out, Asian, Vietnamese

Reviews (23)

First Review by juliotnunes

Not my fave - Edit

This place could definitely step it up a notch or two. The spring rolls are pretty good but so far that's the only thing I've ordered that I've really liked. However my boyfriend did order the laarb which was pretty good. The food is just a little too heavy and too fried for me. I would like something just a bit lighter. The mochi is great as well and the green tea muffin was super different and cool.

Pros: good location, spring rolls

Cons: hit or miss food, not too friendly service


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A little sanity in DT HB - Edit


First off I love the location. Located in downtown HB but not in the middle of all the BS that is downtown HB. That translates to a reasonably fair chance of finding parking and not having any encounters with an idiot in a "Tap Out" shirt.

The restaurant itself is very quiet and has a calming effect, so nice when your coming in from the crowded sidewalks outside.

The food is great, they have a selection of both cooked and raw vegan foods.

I am not so much of a fan of raw food but I like their raw soups and entree's better than other places. The Raw Pad Thai is really very good.

Pho and the mango sticky rice is delicious.


Pros: Quiet, Fresh

Cons: slow service


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Great Vegan Asian Food! - Edit

We recently tried this place for the first time and really loved it! The prices are very reasonable and the portions are generous. The atmosphere is very relaxed and their is plenty of space.

We ordered the following:

Thai Iced Tea - Flavor was pretty good though not as sweet as I prefer, enjoyed the addition of whipped cream.

Hot & Sour Soup - This was the best hot and sour soup I have had, hands-down! I enjoyed that it was spicy :)

Chicken Satay Skewers - These were pretty good, loved the coconut sauce concoction it was plated on and the pickled cucumber paired with it was on point. The meat was a bit tough for my taste though.

Spring Rolls - The peanut sauce paired with these are amazing and the spring rolls are large in size! I didn't care for the red colored meat in them though, it was a little tough.

Kung Pao Nuggets - Great choice, generous with the nuggets and lots of veggies as well.

Chicken Katsu - My husband really liked this but I did not care for it as much. I felt like the sauce was bland and didn't remind me of the sauce chicken katsu is usually covered in, it was more like a light curry sauce. The meat patties were nice and thick.

Overall good trip, I think we will stick with the hit and sour for sure but try different dishes next time around.
Updated from previous review on Friday December 11, 2015

Pros: Atmosphere, Prices


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Won't Let me Put 1 Star - Edit

Terrible greasy unflavorful lemon chicken. Bland pho. Dirty restaurant. Don't adhere to the prices they list on their very bad website. Overpriced.

Pros: Nothing

Cons: Overpriced, Dirty, Bad Food


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Good Food, nice atmosphere, big portions - Edit

We really liked this restaurant. They had a wide choice of dishes. I had the lemon chicken and liked it very much, although I would only recommend it if you really like mock meat. Portion was really big and prices are OK. Server was also nice. Menu is a little irritating since it doesn't say vegan, but either nothing or 'vegetarian', although everything on the menu really is vegan. We had a nice evening there, would eat there again.

Pros: Big portions, Parking in the front

Cons: Menu slightly unclear


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terrible pad thai - Edit

I had the worst pad thai ever. The noodles were so overlooked they are sticky and falling apart, like the Ly had been reheated over and over again. I had two bites and shared with my waiter and they neither offered to bring another dish nor take it off of my bill. Had they done that, I would be willing to give them a second chance. Save your money, there are much better options for vegan Asian cuisine in Orange County.

Cons: bad food, bad service, expensive


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Great Food! - Edit

I ate there last wednesday and the food is great, the "fake" meat was very cool. Also the fact that it is completly VEGAN really satisified me! definatly returning!

Pros: fast service, yummy food, friendly

Cons: bathroom


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Really good food - Edit

I've been coming here for years, the food is delicious and very nice service. The desserts are good like the bread pudding. Noodle soups very large and satisfyIng.

Pros: Vegan, Relatively fast service, Varied menu Choices

Cons: None , None, None


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Lunch by the Beach - Edit

The waitress was friendly, but a little hard to understand. I ordered fried rice with tofu and sesame walnut sauce and a jackfruit smoothie. The bathroom was in a hallway shared with other businesses. You need a key to open the bathroom, but another person with a key can open the door after you're inside.

Pros: all vegan, good location

Cons: shared bathroom


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fresh veggies, so-so mock meat - Edit

The fresh spring rolls are light and delicous though the rice paper wrapper is a bit thick and tough. Comes with a tasty dipping sauce. I ordered a salad topped with "chicken". While the salad veggies were crisp and fresh the mock meat was dry and bland. The chicken didn't add anything to the salad in fact it was more of a detractor. The prices are moderate. My appetizer and salad were less than $20 for lunch.

Pros: good variety

Cons: too much fake meat, repetitous flavors/ingredients


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Pretty Good - Edit

I haven't been here very much, so keep that in mind. I've had the spring rolls appetizer, the spicy chicken baguette sandwich, and--i forget the exact name-- but some grilled fish wraps that's like $15 or something, a big dish i split with someone else. Oh, also the pineapple smoothie with boba :) And that drink has whipped cream on it that is the best vegan whipped cream I've ever had. So, those things are all really, really good. Like, really good. I've had part of some pork dish that wasn't that good-- I think most vegan dishes are better with "chicken," seems the easiest to pull off. Though those grilled fish wraps here are REALLY good too.

So, I think there's probably a number of things here that aren't super good, but the items I listed above are definitely good and worthwhile. Oh, and cheap :) The sandwhich is like $5.50, and it's quite enough food, I think. And you can split those grilled fish wraps with someone so that's like $7.50. Really, really good food for the price.

As for the place itself, the restaurant is nothing that special, just kind of a room with some tables, but the whole front of it is windows, so at least there's a lot of light. And it's in downtown Huntington Beach, right by the pier, so you can go be social outside on weekends or walk to the beach/pier. Pretty nice location for a little vegan place.

Though, some of the drinks in the drinks case are not completely vegan, so... I'm not 100% sure if they're more on top of that as far as cooking ingredients go. I have not inquired.

Pros: food mostly cheap, the good items are very good, location good

Cons: atmosphere inside not that great


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good place - Edit

I tried bodhi tree a few years back when i was working in lab on the weekend and i got someone to bring me back food from here and it was really good.....unfortunately it took me like 2 years to actually make it to the restaurant itself and have dinner there a few weeks back with two of my friends. The food itself is very very good, i started with a roll appetizer and it was delicious...but i have to say that when i got my main dish, it was literally the size of my appetizer...again i wasnt expecting a huge plate but i think for the prize its definitely a bit small. But then again they are in dowtown HB and im sure its what they have to do to survive. In terms of the food it was definitely delicious and both my friends enjoyed it as well. Give it a try if you are around and if you can find parking.

Pros: good food, relaxed environment

Cons: prize/portion, parking


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Winner winner - Edit

Why go anywhere else?! Variety, service, desserts... The shrip rolls. The lunch specials! The ginger candy!! The dishes are all good, I've had almost all.

A word of caution...this place is popular. Service can be slow at busy times so plan accordingly. Also, due to location, parking is a you-know-what. If you're not a local and don't know where to park...become a local or order to go.

Pros: price, variety, menu

Cons: location, service, slow


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Delicious, authentic, and 100% vegan - Edit

I had dinner here a little while ago and I was very surprised at how good everything was. I have been to one other Vietnamese Vegetarian restaurant but this place is much better in my opinion. Most of the food here is Vietnamese (and it is all very authentic). My only complaint was that it was kind of expensive (for dinner at least), but next time I come here it's going to be at lunch so I can get the $6 lunch special.

Normally I don't like faux meats (and they usually give me a stomach ache), but I saw a lot of positive reviews on the lemon "chicken" so I decided to try it, and it was amazing. The "beef" pho was very good, too.

Oh and everything here is 100% vegan (it clearly says so on the back of the menu).

Pros: 100% vegan, big menu, nice atmosphere

Cons: somewhat expensive (for dinner)


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Fabulous - Edit

The food was excellent, delicious, home made and very fresh. Friendly staff. It was an amazing value. I will go back whenever we're in the neighborhood.

Pros: Delicious, Friendly staff, 100% vegan


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Lemon Chicken - Edit

I used to have to wait until I went to San Francisco to have lemon chicken at Golden Era. The lemon chicken here is deep fried and not exactly healthy, but sooo good! I have been here several times and have liked everything I tried, with the exception of the pad thai, which was very different than what I am used to pad thai being like.

I too have been overcharged on the bill. I have had them charge more than what it says on the menu then argue with me when I pointed out the price on the menu! But besides that, it's a good place to go. Their lunch special is a good deal. Just look closely at your bill. I don't usually, but I know I have to when I eat here.

Pros: lemon chicken

Cons: overcharging, parking


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Good vegan restaurant, but beware .... - Edit

I love the Bodhi Tree Cafe. Their food is VEGAN not just vegetarian. No animal products are used in any of their foods. My favorite dish is the Fried Fish with lemongrass. They also have a delicious sizzling pot of mixed vegetables, tofu and rice (I forget the exact name). Their thai iced teas are yummy too, and if you like boba, the boba thai iced tea is good too. The only thing I didn't like was the wontons (appetizer) that looked nothing like wontons, but tasted really good. I guess I was expecting it to look a little like wontons. Their fried calamari is unbelievably "calamari-like" but totally guilt free as no animal was harmed in making that dish!

Update: I wrote the above review a couple months ago. Since then I've been to the Bodhi Tree several times, and I've noticed one thing every single time: They hand write their bill and frequently make "mistakes". They've either overcharged me for drinks I didn't order or double portions of rice that I didn't order. This has happened several times. When I point out that there are more items on the bill than what I ordered, they say that it was a mistake and remove the item but the tax remains the same. I know it sounds like I'm being petty but when it happens a few times in a row, it makes me wonder if they are doing it on purpose. I'll still go there for now because the food is good, but I don't know if I will keep on going if they keep billing me for food I didn't order.

Pros: Good vegan food, Reasonable prices, Good location

Cons: Woman server is unpleasant, Over billed for food several times, Is their whipped cream vegan ?


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Lemon Chicken! - Edit

Every time I go to the Beach, or am remotely close to HB, I come here. They have a huge menu and everything is delicious. I highly recommend their Lemon Chicken. They have great desserts as well.

Pros: Big Menu, Decent Priced, Iced Tea

Cons: not a lot of seating


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My favorite vegan place - Edit

Everything on the menu is delicious. No joke. I have become quite the regular at Bodhi tree because their prices are great and the food is amazing.

If you are cautious, go during lunch for their lunch special, which includes soup, rice, noodles and a dish of your choice for $6.

The service is outstanding, they are very friendly and knowledgeable about their food.

Pros: great prices, great food, great service

Cons: it's downtown HB


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just ok - Edit

i got the yellow noodles when i went there, and the food was ok. i didn't really like the soy meats. the service was not so good. our waitress only really seemed to be attentive to the men who went into the restaurant..

Pros: cheap

Cons: service, so so food


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