I've been vegan now for a few years, and I know that I'm never going back to a non-vegan diet!
I love animals, and animal welfare is very close to my heart. After studying animal welfare at University and learning about the treatment of animals in the industry, I knew I could never eat animal products again.
As a vegan, there's something so great about knowing my meals won't harm any animals. I can enjoy my food and drinks with a completely clear conscience!
Veganism is also fantastic for the environment. I love to think that I am doing my bit to protect our beautiful environment by choosing sustainable food options.
Although I originally turned to veganism because of animal welfare, the food is also so delicious! I've tried out so many different vegan options over the past couple of years, including takeaways, meals out and supermarket dinners.
So, if you're thinking of becoming a vegan- you don't need to worry about your options eating in, or eating out.
This World Vegan Day, I've put together some important tips for new vegans. It can be daunting to start out as a vegan, but there are a few simple ways to make it as easy as possible for you.
I've also come up with a few simple vegan swaps for you to try out, including product ideas to replace your favourite animal products.
Starting Out as a Vegan
If you've chosen to follow a vegan lifestyle, there are a few ways to make the transition over to veganism as simple and stress-free as possible.
You could start off by reducing the animals products you eat, such as by cutting out meat first. This is what I did, and eventually I turned to veganism full-time. This can help you alter your diet bit by bit.
When you first start out as a vegan, make sure to stock up your cupboards and your fridge with food that you can eat. This will mean you always have food on hand to make your favourite vegan meals.
You could also make sure you don't have any non-vegan food in the house, as you will be less tempted to go back to your old diet and stay motivated to continue.
When you first start out on your vegan journey, it's important to think about your health and wellbeing. For example, you might need to take supplements or find ways to take in more vitamins and minerals, such as iron or B12.
These vitamins are mainly found in animal products, so you need to plan out your meals in a way that includes all the essential minerals you need to help your body function properly.
Simple Vegan Swaps
Although there are obviously some foods that you will not be able to eat as a vegan- there are lots of simple vegan swaps to help you replace your favourite non-vegan foods and enjoy your new diet.
From egg alternatives to meat substitutes, I've put together your ultimate guide to vegan swaps!
Tofu instead of eggs
Tofu is a great alternative as scrambled eggs for vegans! While you might have enjoyed tofu in stir-frys or burgers in the past, this food is also easily scrambled.
Team it with some tasty toast, avocado, vegan sausages and baked beans for a delicious breakfast or lunch meal!
Hummus instead of mayonnaise
I don't know about you, but I love hummus! It's a delicious, filling dressing- and it's super versatile, too. You can spread it on sandwiches or just use it as a dip.
Filled with chickpeas and seasoning, it is a tasty and healthy vegan alternative to mayonnaise.
You can also buy a vegan mayonnaise substitute, if you don't want to go without your favourite dressing!
Jackfruit instead of pulled pork
Jackfruit has become a popular swap for pulled pork. You can use jackfruit in any meals that you would normally eat pulled pork, such as in sandwiches, burgers or just on its own.
Jackfruit has a very similar texture to pulled pork, and many restaurants will add plenty of BBQ or spicy seasoning to it for a delicious vegan treat.
Nutritional yeast instead of cheese
I love nutritional yeast! Cheese is one of the most missed products by vegans, and its texture and taste is very hard to replicate.
Nutritional yeast is a fantastic vegan swap, as it tastes like cheese and you can easily sprinkle it over pasta, pizza or other dishes.
Nutritional yeast also contains plenty of protein, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants- making it a healthier alternative to normal, non-vegan cheese.
Lentils instead of mince meat
Lentils are very common in vegan cooking! They are packed full of protein and nutrients. Lentils also make a fantastic swap for mince meat.
For example, you could add lentils to a delicious vegan spaghetti bolognese, alongside lots of healthy mushrooms, carrots, peas, tomatoes and other vegetables.
I hope these simple vegan swaps can help you find delicious alternatives to your favourite non-vegan products- whether you're reducing the amount of animal products you eat, or you want to turn to veganism full-time.
My only regret about becoming a vegan? That I didn't do it sooner!
Do you have any simple vegan swaps or tips for new vegans this World Vegan Day? Let me know in the comments!
Love, Sarah xoxoxo