When going vegan it is important to not just cut out food, but to replace it also. If you just cut out meat, dairy and eggs and don’t replace them with alternatives you will feel restricted and the vegan lifestyle change most likely won’t be long term. If you want to go vegan my best advice is to do your research about the meat and dairy industry, watch documentaries and read books… all of this so that you make the connection and know WHY you want to go vegan. If you’re just going vegan for the trend then it might not last, but if you make the ethical connection as to why you should go more vegan it will be a change that lasts. And second, change your diet over time… make the replacements over time, unless you think going vegan overnight will work, then do that. But for most people, change over time works best. So here are some tips for replacements!
Of course, what brands are available to you depends on what country you live in. Some countries have a wide range of vegan products and alternatives, while others have very little. I’ve noticed that Oatly, which is a swedish company has begun to sell more internationally, so if you see their vegan alternative products i would recommend them!
I’ll start off with meat replacement: First off, vegan alternatives won’t taste like meat and have a different texture, but add some sauces and spices and try different ways to cook and eat them and try different brands, maybe you will find one you like! Brands: Gardein, Oumph, Anamma, Frys, Beyond meat, Tzay, Quorn (Make sure it says vegan on the package and not lacto-ovo) etc etc And then there is tofu, soy protein, tempeh, seitan which are all meat alternatives you can use in different dishes. There are so many different brands and alternatives so you can recreate pretty much any meat dish and make it vegan! And note, you can make your own sausages, meatballs, burgers, mince from lentils, beans, potatoes etc so you don’t actually have to buy fake meat.
Milk replacement: The list for milk replacement is endless, or so it feels like. So the best thing is to try different brands and types to find which you like the taste of best as well as which works best in your coffee or tea or cereal etc My best suggestion for mylk in your coffee is Ikaffe by oatly or Alpro for professionals. Some non dairy milk doesn’t work so well in hot drinks and separates making the drink almost undrinkable! For cereal and oats, it’s mostly flavour that counts 🙂 There is oat mylk, soya mylk, different nut mylk such as cashew, almond, hazelnut, hemp mylk, there is coconut mylk and rice mylk and the list goes on. As mentioned, oat and soya work best in coffee and in oats, but i like almond or coconut milk in smoothies! Also note, you can make your own milk rather easy and if you make your own almond milk you get both the milk and almond flour you can use in baking 🙂
Yoghurt replacement: The altneratives for vegan yoghurt are growing so once again, it’s mostly just finding the flavour and texture of yoghurt you like! You can even make your own yoghurt if you buy a “Kit” with activited bacteria – or something like that!! My favourite yoghurt is just a natural Aplro soya yoghurt but i like Planti natural yoghurt as well! If you don’t want to buy flavoured yoghurt you can flavour plain yoghurt with berries, fruit, nut butter, cacao etc Or you can even make nice cream or smoothies in replacement of yoghurt.
Cheese replacement: If you like cheese, i am sorry to inform you that finding vegan cheese that tastes like cheese made from cows milk will be hard. It just isn’t the same thing. But try different brands and be open to the alternative!! I also hate to inform you that most vegan cheeses don’t melt so well… but there are more and more vegan cheese brands coming out and it seems like the melting quality is getting better! Now a days you can buy vegan cream cheese, shredded cheese, mozarella cheese, pizza cheese, block cheese, sliced cheese etc etc My favourite is from Violife, but i have heard that Daiya cheese is very good 🙂 And Oatly cream cheese is also my favourite! Also, you can make your own cheese rather easy using ingredients such as nutritional yeast and agar agar! Also i have seen that vegan cheese alternative for brie and dessert cheese are available in the delicassy area of stores.
Egg replacement: When it comes to egg there are some alternatives, but if you are someone who likes a runny egg yolk it will be harder to recreate that texture and taste. However you can make scrambled tofu or chickpea omelette and add Kala namak (i.e., black salt with an egg-like sulfuric taste). And i have seen some restaurants making vegan egg replacements.
What about eggs when baking? When baking you can use appelsauce, mashed banana, chia eggs, flax eggs, “no egg” egg replacer and sometimes even flour works as a binding agent and instead of egg!
This is part 1 of vegan replacement alternatives, and a part 2 will be up soon! 🙂
Let me know if you have any vegan post ideas or questions and i will try my best to answer!