Over the years, more people have chosen to adopt a vegan lifestyle due to its health and environmental benefits. Among them are many notable black celebrities, activists, and influencers who have embraced a plant-based diet and actively promoted veganism.
Here are some famous black vegans and their journey towards a cruelty-free and sustainable lifestyle.
Black Female Vegans
We’ll start with black female vegans, who have been at the forefront of promoting veganism as a lifestyle choice that benefits both personal health and the environment.
Lizzo is an incredibly popular and charismatic singer, rapper, and flutist who has gained global recognition for her body-positive anthems and infectious beats.
In addition to Lizzo’s music career, she’s been a vocal advocate for veganism, crediting her plant-based diet for her health and well-being.
She often shares her vegan meals and recipes on social media, encouraging her followers to try veganism and showing that it is possible to eat delicious food while following a compassionate and sustainable lifestyle.
2. Angela Davis
Angela Davis is a renowned author, scholar, and political activist who has been a prominent figure in the Black Liberation Movement since the 1960s.
In addition to her work in social justice and human rights, Davis has been an outspoken vegan for many years, citing ethical and environmental reasons for her choice to adopt a vegan lifestyle and considering animal abuse as another form of exploitation and oppression.
Davis is a powerful voice for veganism and continues to inspire others to embrace a more compassionate and sustainable way of living.
3. Venus Williams
Venus Williams is a legendary tennis player who has won numerous Grand Slam titles throughout her career. Along with her success on the court, Venus has also advocated for various topics, including equal pay for women and plant-based diets.
Given her diagnosis of Sjogren’s syndrome, an autoimmune disease, she switched to a vegan diet to help manage her symptoms.
Venus has since become an ambassador for veganism, often sharing her favorite vegan meals and promoting the benefits of a plant-based diet for overall wellness.
4. Erykah Badu
Erykah Badu is a world-renowned, Grammy-winning singer, songwriter, and actress known for her soulful music and iconic style. Beyond her music career, Badu is also a dedicated vegan who has advocated for a plant-based diet for almost two decades.
Badu has spoken out about the importance of eating a plant-based diet when feeling energetic, centered, and vivacious.
Badu’s commitment to a vegan lifestyle is a reflection of her holistic approach to health and well-being and serves as an inspiration to many of her fans.
5. Aisha “Pinky” Cole
Pinky Cole is a creative, lively entrepreneur and founder of Slutty Vegan, a restaurant chain from Atlanta.
Since its founding in 2018, Slutty Vegan has gained a massive following, and Cole has been recognized for her contributions to the vegan food industry. She was even listed in Forbes’s “The Next 1000.”
Cole’s commitment to veganism extends beyond her restaurant, as she has also been involved in vegan activism and charity work, including providing free meals to those in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.
6. Charity Morgan
Charity Morgan is a celebrity chef and author of Unbelievably Vegan. She was featured on a plant-based-eating documentary called “The Game Changers” and has worked with various high-profile clients, including the Tennessee Titans.
This Bleu-trained chef promotes veganism and provides plant-based meals, advocating for the health benefits of a vegan diet, particularly for athletes. The Tennessee Titans players even credited her for improved performance on the field.
7. Haile Thomas
Another cookbook author is Haile Thomas, who published her first cookbook – Living Lively: 80 Plant-Based Recipes to Activate Your Power and Feed Your Potential – at the tender age of 19. She’s also opened a vegan tea cafe called Matcha Thomas.
This inspiring youth activist and compassion advocate is the founder and CEO of the nonprofit HAPPY (Healthy Active Positive Purposeful Youth) Org.
She’s a dedicated vegan and promotes plant-based eating as a way to improve health and reduce the impact of animal agriculture on the environment.
8. Genesis Butler
Another young health and wellness activist with a healthier vision for the future is Genesis Butler, who made a Ted Talk speech about healing the planet at just ten years old, making headlines for being the youngest speaker at the time.
In 2019, Genesis Butler received the title of PETA’s Young Animal Activist of the Year due to her efforts in educating people about animal rights problems. She’s also been featured in several media outlets, including the BBC and Forbes.
As the founder of Genesis for Animals, a nonprofit organization that promotes veganism, she’s spoken about how eating animals is also about the climate, environmental racism, human rights, and social justice.
9. Jenné Claiborne
Jenné Claiborne is a vegan chef, blogger, and YouTube personality. She is the founder of Sweet Potato Soul, a popular vegan food blog and YouTube channel that features healthy and delicious plant-based recipes.
Claiborne has authored two cookbooks and has been featured in various media outlets, including The New York Times and Forbes. She is a passionate advocate for veganism and promotes a holistic, colorful, and flavor-packed approach to health and wellness.
Claiborne’s recipes and philosophy have inspired many to embrace a vegan lifestyle and explore the benefits of plant-based eating.
10. Tabitha Brown
Tabitha Brown is a social media personality, actress, and vegan influencer, known by some as “America’s Mom.” Her infectious personality has earned her millions of followers on TikTok and Instagram, where she shares vegan recipes, lifestyle tips, and words of encouragement.
Brown has been a vegan for over three years and credits the lifestyle change with helping to manage her chronic illness. She inspires others to embrace a plant-based lifestyle and promotes veganism to improve health and protect animals and the environment.
11. Kimberly Elise
Kimberly Elise is an award-winning actress, producer, and vegan advocate. She has appeared in several popular films and television series, including “For Colored Girls,” “Beloved,” “John Q,” and “Grey’s Anatomy.”
Elise has been a vegan for over a decade and promotes plant-based eating as a way to improve health and protect animals and the environment.
Elise has also worked with Peta, and her dedication to animal welfare and advocacy for veganism has made her a respected voice in the plant-based community.
12. Queen Afua
Queen Afua is a renowned herbalist, author, and spiritual teacher. She’s well-known for her holistic approach to health and wellness, which incorporates plant-based eating, meditation, and other natural healing practices.
Queen Afua has written several books, including “Sacred Woman” and “Heal Thyself for Health and Longevity,” which promote the importance of a vegan lifestyle for physical, mental, and spiritual health.
She advocates for using food as medicine and encourages people to embrace a plant-based diet to heal their bodies and connect with nature.
13. Tracye McQuirter
The late activist Dick Gregory inspired Tracye McQuirter to become vegan around 30 years ago and has been a vocal advocate for veganism ever since.
McQuirter is a public health nutritionist and bestselling author of “By Any Greens Necessary” and “Ageless Vegan,” which promote the benefits of a plant-based diet for health, the environment, and animal welfare.
She founded the By Any Greens Necessary brand and has been featured in numerous media outlets for her work promoting a plant-based lifestyle.
14. Ava DuVernay
Ava DuVernay is a filmmaker, director, and producer known for her work on award-winning films such as “Selma,” “13th,” and “When They See Us.” In addition to her successful career in the film industry, DuVernay is also a vegan activist.
In 2018, PETA listed her as one of the “Most Beautiful Vegan Celebrities,” and she’s been open about her plant-based lifestyle on social media, through her work, and through collaborations with vegan brands.
15. Rachel Ama
Rachel Ama is a British vegan chef, author, and social media influencer known for her popular YouTube channel and her cookbook, “Rachel Ama’s Vegan Eats: Tasty plant-based recipes for every day.”
Ama’s recipes and cooking style combine her West Indian and African roots with a vegan twist, showcasing the versatility and flavors of plant-based cuisine.
Ama has been featured in various media outlets like BBC and The Times for her work promoting veganism and creating accessible, delicious vegan recipes for people of all backgrounds.
16. Cynthia Erivo
Cynthia Erivo is a Nigerian-British actress and singer known for her powerful performances on screen and stage, including her Tony-winning role in “The Color Purple” on Broadway and her star role in the film “Harriet.”
As a committed vegan, Erivo has been outspoken about the benefits of a plant-based lifestyle, both for personal health and the environment.
Erivo has been vocal in the animal rights movement, promoting compassion and ethical treatment for all living beings.
17. Persia White
Persia White is an actress, singer, and animal rights activist. She is best known for her role as Lynn Searcy on the TV series “Girlfriends.”
She has been a vegan for many years and has been actively involved in animal rights advocacy. Her dedication to veganism is a testament to the power of dietary changes to improve one’s quality of life.
18. Taraji P. Henson
Taraji P. Henson is a famous actress best known for her roles in “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” “Empire,” and “Hidden Figures.”
Henson has been vocal about her commitment to a plant-based diet and has said that going vegan has helped her feel healthier and, more specifically, avoid stomach cancer after an alarming doctor visit in 2018. She’s mentioned feeling so much better after making the switch.
Black Male Vegans
Now we’ll move on to famous black male vegans, starting with:
19. Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder is a world-renowned, well-loved musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer. He’s made significant contributions to R&B, soul, funk, and pop music, has won 25 Grammy Awards, and has sold over 100 million records worldwide.
In recent years, Wonder has embraced a vegan lifestyle, citing health and environmental reasons as his motivation for making the switch. He has also been an advocate for animal rights, speaking out against animal cruelty in the entertainment industry.
20. Cam Newton
Cam Newton is a professional American football quarterback who played for the NFL’s Carolina Panthers and the New England Patriots. He is a three-time Pro Bowl selection and won the NFL MVP award in 2015.
He started a vegan diet in 2019 to heal from some bodily injuries, planning on switching his diet only temporarily. But after a year, he made it a permanent switch, stating that his body made such a remarkable change.
Newton credits his improved recovery time and performance on the field to his vegan lifestyle. In addition, he has teamed up with PETA to promote the benefits of a vegan diet, especially for athletes.
Will.i.am is a singer-songwriter, producer, entrepreneur, and philanthropist most known for being the frontman of The Black Eyed Peas. He has won seven Grammy Awards, performed with some of the greatest names in the industry, and produced hits for over a decade.
Will.i.am has been a vegan for over a decade and refers to himself as an “eco-warrior.” He’s spoken publicly about his belief that veganism is the key to both personal health and environmental sustainability.
22. Jermaine Dupri
Jermaine Dupri is a long-time rapper, songwriter, and record producer who has worked with various artists such as Mariah Carey, Usher, and Nelly.
Dupri has been vegan since 2006 after a 25-day cleanse. He now advocates for plant-based eating and has spoken about the benefits of a vegan lifestyle in interviews and on social media.
He’s also talked to PETA about how veganism has helped with his energy levels, as well as feeling more focused and sharp.
23. Waka Flocka Flame
Juaquin James Malphurs, a.k.a. Waka Flocka Flame, is an American rapper and hip-hop artist known for club-banging hits such as “No Hands,” “O Let’s Do It,” and “Hard in da Paint.”
Flame has had a quick rise to fame and has collaborated with big industry names such as Drake, French Montana, and Lil Wayne.
He has been open about his vegan lifestyle since 2014 when he decided to switch to a plant-based diet to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Rapper, producer, actor, and filmmaker RZA, or Robert Diggs, care about animals just as he cares about humans.
RZA is best known as the founder of the hip-hop group Wu-Tang Clan, and he’s also a prominent advocate of a vegan lifestyle, citing health, ethical, and environmental reasons.
He has appeared in various campaigns promoting veganism, is a co-founder of the lifestyle brand 36 Chambers that released vegan wallets and has also collaborated with PETA.
25. Cory Booker
Cory Booker became New Jersey’s first black Senator in 2013 and speaks out confidently about his conscious decision to be vegan and promote animal rights in general.
He has been a vegan for almost 30 years, and during his time in office, Booker has not only spoken about the need to reduce animal products in our diets but has also introduced legislation to phase out cruel animal testing.
26. Dexter Scott King
Dexter Scott King is the son of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. and an advocate for human, animal, and environmental rights.
King has been vegan since 1992 and is a co-founder of the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change. He is a vocal vegan advocate, believing that the way we treat animals is a reflection of our humanity.
27. Colin Kaepernick
Colin Kaepernick is a former NFL quarterback who is now a civil rights activist. He made headlines in 2016 for kneeling during the National Anthem to protest police brutality.
In addition to his civil rights activism, Kaepernick is a vegan and has used his platform to advocate for animal rights.
He has partnered with PETA and has spoken out against factory farming, which he believes is inhumane. He also follows a vegan diet for health and performance purposes.
28. Kyrie Irving
Kyrie Irving is an NBA basketball player who has played for the Brooklyn Nets, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Dallas Mavericks. He was the first draft pick from the Cavaliers in 2011, who saw great promise in him from his performance at Duke University.
He’s known for speaking up about veganism, even collaborating with Nike to create a subtle yet clear plant-based commercial. He’s stated that it’s made his body feel energized and amazing.
29. Malcolm Jenkins
Another vegan athlete is Malcolm Jenkins, a former professional football player who played for New Orleans Saints and Philadelphia Eagles.
He’s mentioned being “clowned” or made fun of at first for his switch to a plant-based diet, which is a fear for many people. But people stopped laughing when they realized how it improved his athletic performance.
30. John Salley
John Salley, former NBA player and the first one to win championships with three different franchises, is a long-time vegan, practicing this diet for over 30 years.
He’s now shy about his veganism, either. He’s worked with the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine to ask Congress for more veggie meal options in schools, and he also founded The Vegan Vine, a sustainable vegan wine company.
YG is a famous rapper, best known for his hit “Go Loko,” featuring Tyga and Jon Z. YG spoke on the Breakfast Club radio show about his veganism.
He mentioned that he went vegan after seeing multiple people dying from cancer and gradually learning that it’s the food we eat that’s causing it. So he eats clean, unprocessed, fully organic plant-based food.
Famous Black Vegans, Final Thoughts
From musicians and athletes to authors and chefs, black vegans have made significant contributions in their respective fields while raising awareness about the positive impact of a vegan lifestyle.