Hi, this is Sophie from Nutravita.
After being vegetarian for 3 years, I was gradually committing to becoming a full Vegan, but as is often the case, there was a transition period before I was able to fully cut out cheese, eggs, milk and butter.
I have now been vegan for just over 2 years and my diet does not feel restricted in any way. I do wish however, that I could go back in time and provide my pre-vegan self with a few tips and pointers, and hopefully what I have learned will help you on your journey.
Below are some of my recommendations for my top vegan food substitutes which can be found in most UK supermarkets: -
Nutritional yeast is best known for adding a cheesy flavour to vegan dishes. It is ideal for adding to sauces, or sprinkled over a dish and contains loads of essential vitamins like B12. I love to add it to my Vegan Macaroni Cheese recipe.
Koko’s vegan cheese is fortified with calcium and vitamins D2 and B12, making it a nutrient-boosting option. Go for the Dairy-Free Cheddar for an ideal addition to a cheeseboard, or opt for the Soft Cream Cheese as a smooth spread for your sandwich.
Violife is one of the most popular vegan cheese brands. I find their cheese great for melting so it is brilliant for cheese on toast or as a topping for pizza. Violife also has a wide range to choose from such as vegan parmesan, grated cheese, cheese slices and many more.
Vegan Meat Substitutes
There are so many meat-free options now available in supermarkets which taste delicious and can be incorporated into your regular dishes.
Below are some of my favourite go-to’s.
Quorn Chicken-style Nuggets
Quorn chicken-style nuggets are full of flavour and the texture is very similar to regular chicken nuggets. The first time I ate these I had to double-check the packaging - I actually thought they contained chicken!
Linda McCartney’s Chorizo & Pepper Sausages
These vegan sausages are made with rehydrated textured soya protein, red pepper, tomato puree and smoked paprika.
They are really tasty and I love to use them in a vegan sausage casserole or I add to a vegan cooked breakfast.
Linda McCartney Vegetarian Shred Hoisin Duck
This vegan shredded duck really does taste delicious. It is high in protein and low in saturated fat. I love to make vegan duck pancakes for friends and family that still eat meat. They cannot taste the difference!
Plant-based Milk & Eggs
The range of plant-based milk available in the supermarket is huge. You can choose from cashew, oat, almond, hemp, oat, soya, rice to name but a few.
My personal favourite is the ‘Oatly’ oat milk which I love in my coffee and on cereal. Try the Barista edition for extra creaminess.
I like to create a mock scrambled egg by replacing egg with tofu. I simply drain and chop up a block of tofu and use a fork to crumble it into bite-sized pieces. I then add oil to a frying pan, add tofu, a little salt and pepper and about a 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric. I stir until combined and cook on a medium heat for about 5-10 minutes. I serve over toasted bread and top with fresh chives or parsley.
Yoghurts and Ice Cream
Alpro Vegan Soya Vanilla plant-based Yoghurt
This vegan yoghurt tastes delicious with fruit. The texture is nicely thick and creamy and it is a fridge essential for me when I do my weekly food shopping.
Ben and Jerry’s Vegan Ice Cream
The day Ben and Jerry launched vegan ice cream, I literally jumped for joy - I think all vegans did! The ‘chunky monkey’ flavour is the best for me. It contains chocolatey chunks and walnuts and it is so tasty!
Try incorporating these substitutes in your diet, it's a simple change and once you have found the right way to utilise them in your favourite dishes, there is no going back!
Sophie from Nutravita x
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