It is easy to see why some people could find the idea of going vegan to be daunting and restrictive. But there are many simple food swaps that anyone can choose to begin their journey to going 100% plant-based.
Vegan food is far from boring or bland, as many influencers, blogs and chefs have shown. It does not have to be complicated either, simply swapping some foods out for vegan alternatives can set you up for a great start in your new plant-based life.
Spread it on toast, scoop it into cake batter, dollop it into curries. Butter is an essential part of so many dishes and a staple in kitchens across the globe, but unfortunately it is not the best option out there for health or animals. Butter is high in calories and saturated fat, so it is not great for heart health. Butter is made from cream, which comes from cows meaning that butter is not the best option for those who care about animals and their welfare.
Instead, use: Plant based spreads
Spread the dairy-free love with a 100% vegan butter alternative. Flora Spread is just one of many plant-based spreads on the market, this particular one is full of Vitamin A, Omega 3 and Omega 6 and of course, packed with flavour.
There are many different varieties of cheese, from mozzarella and parmesan to Stilton and feta – all with their distinctive flavours and smells. It is easy to assume that these cheeses cannot be replicated into dairy-free forms but there are hundreds of plant alternatives that are just as flavoursome.
Instead, use: Plant-based faux-cheese
BBC Good Food have blind taste-tested various dairy-free cheeses that are on the market. They have whittled the best of the best to reveal a line up of plant-based cheeses that rival their dairy counterparts.
Best vegan cheddar ‘cheese’ – Asda free from mature cheddar alternative (£2),
Best vegan mozzarella alternative for eating uncooked – Green Vie with mozzarella flavour (£2.99)
Best vegan mozzarella alternative for melting/eating cooked – Violife mozzarella grated non-dairy cheese alternative (£2.50)
Best vegan parmesan – Follow Your Heart dairy free Italian-style shredded hard cheese alternative (£5.09)
Best vegan feta – Sainsbury’s deliciously free from Greek style alternative to cheese (£2.25)
Best vegan soft ‘cheese’ – Sheese creamy 100% dairy free original (£2.48)
Just as breast milk is for human babies, cow’s milk is for calves, not for humans. Not only does milk production harm cows but consuming the product might be harmful to human health too. In multiple studies, a link has been found between drinking milk and developing acne. As well as this, a single serving of milk can contain as much as 24 mg of cholesterol – a fatty substance that, if consumed in excess can clog arteries. No plant food contains any cholesterol, meaning that it is kinder to cows and human health.
Instead, use: Dairy-free alternative (Soya/Oat/Rice/Coconut milk)
There is a plant-based option for everyone with soya, rice, oat and coconut milk just some of the dairy-free alternatives on the market. With so many milks to choose from, it is down to personal choice and preferred taste – it is important to look at the label for certain ingredients. Good House Keeping has created a list of the things to look for when purchasing plant-based milk, according to dietician, Jaclyn London. According to Jaclyn, keep an eye out for at least 7-8g protein per serving, as few ingredients as possible, the words “unsweetened” and “0g added sugar” and less than 140mg of sodium per cup.
Tip: Follow The Vegan Review for up-to-date news and tips on veganism.