Los Angeles has long been a vegan and vegetarian-friendly city. With a long history of early vegan and vegetarian-friendly restaurants and markets, a plant-based lifestyle has been mainstream in the city far longer than many other places in the U.S. Recently L.A. has kicked it up a notch, with a wave of exciting new plant-based options around the city. One of the most exciting of these restaurants comes to us courtesy of comedy superstar and healthy lifestyle enthusiast Kevin Hart.
Hart opened the first Hart House near LAX in 2022, and has already expanded to Monrovia. Hart House provides a variety of plant-based burgers and sandwiches, plus popular sides like chick’n nuggets, fries, vegan shakes, and a variety of sauces. In addition to its first two locations, Hart House has plans to open new shops in Hollywood and near USC campus later this year.
Inside the Menu: Delicious and Nutritious Vegan Fare
Hart House’s mission to provide delicious, healthy plant-based options at an affordable price point is reflected in every item on the menu. Mirroring popular fast-casual restaurants like Shake Shack and Five Guys, Hart House’s menu items stand out for not compromising in quality, price, or ethics. As has become increasingly evident in recent years, a plant-based diet is one of the best choices individuals can make, not only for their personal health, but also for the health of the environment.
Following a vegan diet used to mean compromising on flavor, but recent innovations have made that unnecessary. Hart House’s menu features favorites like single and double burgers, chick’n sandwiches, chick’n nuggets, fries, and shakes, all 100% plant-based and at a similar price point to non-vegan competitors.
Hart House Isn’t Compromising on Flavor
The delicious plant-based menu items are complemented by a variety of tasty vegan sauces. From creamy buffalo to “hunny” mustard, Hart House’s sauces rival the best fast casual sauce options in town, and are 100% sustainably plant-based.
Hart turned to Chef Michael Salem to find innovative ways to deliver heart-healthy, nutritious, and ethical takes on fast casual favorites. Salem emphasized that the goal was to compete with non-vegan options, not on the basis of being vegan, but based on taste and value. “Ultimately what we’re trying to accomplish is converting folks that have traditionally been carnivores and eating at other quick service fast food restaurants to come here, not because we’re vegan, but because we’re just better in terms of the flavor and the crave-ability,” Salem said to Secret Los Angeles. This philosophy shines through in each of the food items, which are as delicious as any meat-based competitor
The Story Behind Hart House
comedy, Hart also is avid about health, talking openly about his diet and posting workout-related videos to his social media.
A so-called “flexitarian,” Hart has long made efforts to eat plant-based foods, which he knows are healthier, more ethical, and more environmentally friendly.
“The option [of eating a plant-based diet] doesn’t exist for most,” Hart told James Corden on The Late Late Show. “The world of fast food is one that comes far few and in between for your plant-based lover.”
Hart House came from Hart’s desire to provide affordable, uncompromising fast casual food that is better for people’s health and for the environment. He assembled a highly regarded team in CEO Andy Hooper and head chef Michael Salem, with the aim of expanding quickly and strategically throughout Los Angeles.
The mission of Hart House extends beyond just the food it serves. A portion of the first day’s proceeds went to Inner City Arts, a non-profit that supports students in L.A.’s public schools.
A Look Inside: Touring Hart House’s Chic and Sustainable Space
Hart House’s uncompromising menu extends to the hospitality of its space. Sleek and modern, with a fast-casual California vibe, the atmosphere is reminiscent of other fast casual powerhouses like Shake Shack. It’s bright color scheme—with a prominent green palate that dovetails nicely with the environmental aspect of its mission—welcomes customers to feel that they’re dining at an ‘it’ place in Los Angeles.
Everything about the Hart House experience comes back to sustainability. The overall vibe of each location is that you’ve entered a place where you are welcome, where you won’t have to compromise on flavor or value, and where you can feel better about what’s going into your body and the effect that it’s having on the world.
The Future of Veganism and Dining in LA
Hart House is just one of the exciting vegan restaurants in Los Angeles taking over the city’s vegan food scene in recent years. With high-profile local chains like Monty’s Good Burger to high-end Venice wellness shop Den Mother, Los Angeles’s vegan scene is more vibrant than ever.
Last year alone, a study by WalletHub found that Los Angeles was the third-most vegan and vegetarian-friendly city in the United States. The Los Angeles City Council also made L.A.’s love for all things “plant-based” official by voting to endorse the “Plant-Based Treaty,” a grassroots movement calling to put a plant-based diet at the center of worldwide environmental efforts.
Festivals like VegFest and the Vegan Street Fair are another popular part of L.A.’s expanding vegan scene. Whether you’re looking for high end restaurants or a quick bite to eat in the neighborhood, you’re sure to find a vegan-friendly option in the City of Angels.
Breaking Bread and Building Community at Hart House
With two thriving shops in Westchester and Monrovia, and new locations in Hollywood and near USC coming soon, Kevin Hart has made good on his vision of providing delicious, uncompromising, healthy, and sustainable fast casual available to neighborhoods across L.A. With such a rapid expansion, there is sure to be a Hart House coming to a neighborhood near you in the coming months. Because of Kevin Hart’s mission to provide healthy, sustainable plant-based alternatives, you can go ahead and “eat your hart out”—and feel good about doing so.