Today is world vegan day – a day celebrating (and raising awareness about) a lifestyle that’s promotes looking after our bodies, animals and planet. Cutting out – or limiting – animal products is an easy way to eat healthily, reduce carbon footprint and help to end the suffering of millions of farmed animals. Win win!
But taking those first steps and switching to a new diet can seem daunting to begin with, especially when animal products appear to be in everything! But I’m sure people once thought going vegetarian was near impossible in a meat dominated world, and now vegetarian options are absolutely everywhere.
Whether you’re thinking about going completely vegan, or simply want to reduce your impact by cutting down on animal products, these great substitutes will help make it even easier:
Easy Animal-Free Food Swaps
This one is the easiest of all, as dairy-free milk is available in most shops, cafes and restaurants these days. In fact there’s so much choice, you can try out a selection to find your favourite. This handy wheel gives you the low down on what to expect from vegan milks:
You can also now get soy whipped, double and even spray cream!
Think going vegan means never having another slice of pizza or bowl of cheesy chilli again? Think again!! The vegan cheese market is on the rise, and alternatives are getting better and better. A few options include:
- Vegusto have a large range of vegan cheeses, from cheddar and mozzarella to walnut and stilton. They even have starter packs so you can try a couple out and find which ones you like the most.
- Bute Island is another great vegan cheese supplier, with the amazing Sheese (Soy-cheese). At first you won’t think they resemble the creaminess of cow cheese, but after a while you’ll be hooked! Their melty version is by far the best and great on toast 😛
- Make your own! Experiment and have the pleasure of making your own cheeses. Get inspired by these 10 great vegan cheese recipes or try my spicy cashew cheese.
A staple for most cooking (regardless of how naughty it is) butter isn’t as hard to replace as you’d think. Vegetable and soy based spreads are readily available and some Olive spreads are vegan too. Just check the label before buying, I’ve been caught out in the past by a soy spread which contained milk!
I’ve also found experimenting with using coconut oil in my cooking has meant I didn’t need to use processed fats at all.
Veganism isn’t all about kale, tofu and seeds; even cruelty free food has it’s treats! There’s a whole host of dairy free ice creams out there, from Bessant and Drurys and Booja Booja, to my favorite naughty treat; Swedish Glace.
But having that cool creamy treat does’t have to be costly. Here are a couple of foods which can easily be frozen and transformed into easy dairy free ice cream:
- Coconut Milk
- Pumpkin (try its its crazy good with cinnamon!)
- Cashew cream (cashews soaked overnight and whizzed up)
- Soy or Almond Milk
The above make amazing bases for home made vegan ice cream, you simply whizz them up with your flavour of choice (chocolate, peanut butter, raspberry etc) and freeze. Feast your eyes on these delicious vegan Ice cream recipes for inspiration.
These days you can buy packets of “no egg” powder which can easily substitute eggs when baking; they even make a mean pavlova! But I like to use natural ingredients where possible; swapping and changing depending on what tastes best with the recipe.
The below chart is an awesome resource to stick on your fridge to use less eggs!
You can even swap your scrambled egg for tofu, its surprisingly yummy and a great source of protein.