Eating a vegan diet has never been so easy or delicious!
Whether you do it for animal welfare or environmental concerns, being a vegan shouldn’t ever mean you miss out on your favourite foods. Discover new vegan meals like tasty plant-based curries, scrambled tofu, chia seed pudding, pulled jackfruit burgers and so much more with the help of Holland and Barrett’s extensive range of vegan-friendly products.
What is a vegan?
The vegan society states that: veganism is a way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose.
This means that meat, fish, dairy, eggs, honey, gelatine and other animal-derived products are off the table, replaced by products like plant milks, mock meats, wholegrains, legumes, beans and lots of fruit and veg.
What do vegans eat?
At first glance, vegan diets can seem pretty restrictive: no meat, no fish, no dairy, no eggs, no honey, no gelatine (the stuff that makes sweets gummy). However, with the rapidly expanding meat-free market and the countless other foods that are naturally vegan, there really is no need to feel like a vegan diet will hold you back. If anything, it could open your eyes to a new, fun, interesting and animal cruelty-free way of eating.
A list of vegan foods: fruit, vegetables, nuts, nut butters, legumes, hemp seed, flax seeds, chia seeds, tofu, processed meat substitutes, plant milks, dairy-free yogurt, seaweed, rice, bread, pasta, oats, and beans – to name a few!
What can I eat as a vegan?
In a word: lots! Nowadays, the world really is your oyster when it comes to eating a vegan diet.
Here at Holland and Barrett we stock all sorts of foods for vegans and alternatives to your favourite animal products:
Soy milk – goes well in tea and coffee, is tasty poured over cereal, and is a good cow’s milk alternative for a making a lot of foods, including white sauces and pancake batter.
Chocolate – a lot of dark chocolate is naturally vegan as its main ingredients are cocoa butter and cocoa solids and milk isn’t often added, like in the production of milk chocolate. However, if you really like the smooth, creamy taste of milk chocolate, you don’t have to go without as a vegan. Brands like Vego and Nomo make delicious dairy-free ‘milk’ chocolate – and trust us, you won’t be disappointed! Why not use them to make a batch of vegan chocolate chip cookies?
Nutritional yeast – this vegan food cupboard staple gives foods a rich, cheesy, nutty flavour (think parmesan), just without any of the dairy. Use it to make a cheesy sauce for vegan mac and cheese, stir into béchamel sauce, or simply sprinkle over beans on toast! It is packed full of nutrients that are important for vegans like B12, and is one of the highest protein vegan foods.
Lentils – from tasty taco fillings to meat-free mince for spaghetti bolognese, lentils are a great substitute for meat. Another example of high protein vegan foods, lentils are packed with plant-based vegan protein, flavour, iron, folate and dietary fibre. They pretty much soak up whatever flavour you put them in, so get experimenting!
Jackfruit – you might have seen a jackfruit before and wondered what on earth the weird spiky fruit was and how you eat it. You can just tuck into the fruit’s sweet flesh if it’s ripe, or you can use a young jackfruit as a meat alternative. As they’re quite hard to come by in this part of the world, you can get young jackfruit in a tin. Fry it up and simmer in a barbeque sauce to make a pulled pork alterative – mmm!
Agave nectar – a plant-based refined sugar alternative just like honey but with no bee labour involved. Its sweetness comes from inulin, a fructose that occurs in fruits and vegetables.
Nut butters – almond, peanut, hazelnut, cashew, whatever your favourite nut is, you can replace dairy butter with one of these sweet alternatives. Slather them over toast for a yummy protein-packed and fibre-rich vegan breakfast. You can also incorporate nut butters into vegan recipes for porridge, pancakes and biscuits.
Beans - another natural food high up on the list of high protein foods for vegans is beans.
Black beans have a dense, meaty texture that works great in vegan burgers. Kidney beans are delicious in chillis and butter beans are super tasty in a curry.