This post contains gifted items from allplants and affiliate links, both of which have been marked in line with my policy.
Let’s put this out there nice and early: I’m not vegan.
In fact, I even refer to myself as a “bad vegetarian” because I still totally get cravings for meat products. Namely those found on the top of pizzas or in the shape of burgers!
So I can promise you before you start reading these tips that I won’t be telling you that eating a more plant-based diet is an easy transition to make. However, after watching many a documentary and reading up on the use of animal products, their impact on the environment and, of course, the treatment of the animals, I do know that it’s an industry I want to distance myself from as much as possible.
A few years ago, I dedicated myself to becoming vegetarian. After my fair share of slip ups and drunken trips to McDonald’s, I can now say that I’ve achieved that goal. High fives all round! Although, okay, I still do make mistakes every now and then.
With that finally under my belt, I decided this year that I wanted to try and incorporate more plant-based meals into my diet, too. No, that’s not a promise that I will one day be entirely vegan. But it is a promise that I’m trying to do better.
Here’s how how I’m making it slightly easier on myself.
[AD – affiliate] – Rigatoni Carbonara from allplants
No strict rules
First things first, it’s important for me not to set myself restrictive rules when it comes to food, simply because my instinct is to then rebel again them.
For example, whilst I’ve never particularly liked meat, as soon as I labelled myself “vegetarian”, I suddenly got cravings for all of the Big Macs. Typical, right?
Even though I’m trying to incorporate more plant-based food into my diet, I know that it won’t be best for me to call myself “vegan” anytime soon. For now, I’m just trying to enjoy the process of exploring more food that is animal product-free, without the need to label.
Starting with vegan breakfasts
Breakfast is just ridiculously simple to make vegan.
I mean, unless you eat bacon sarnies every day. In that case, it could prove a little bit more difficult.
But as someone who almost exclusively dines on cereal, porridge or toast before 12pm, it seemed the right place to start for me. For the most part, it’s just been a case of using plant milks (which I already did, anyway) and avoiding Nutella (definitely the harder of the two).
My most recent addiction has been using the Alpro vanilla soya milk on any cereal. It can make even bran flakes taste like pudding, so it’s definitely doing something right.
Having meals in the freezer with the help of allplants
Listen, as much as I may go into a day with nothing but good intentions, sometimes by the time 7pm comes around, the chances of me cooking a hearty plant-based meal are slim to none.
That’s where my new saviour, allplants [AD – affiliate], come in.
As you probably guessed, allplants [AD- Affiliate] create meals that are 100% plant-based. But the most incredible thing is that all of them come delivered straight to your door, frozen and ready for you to chuck in the microwave.
However, all of that convenience doesn’t come at the cost of damaging the planet: The company are dedicated to their “zero-waste mission”. That’s why their packaging is recyclable inside and out, some of it is compostable, and they offer a box return system that means the packaging can be reused, too. Did someone say, “circular economy”?
And trust me when I say that the connivence doesn’t come at the cost of taste, either. They were lovely enough to send me three of their meals to test out. I tried the rigatoni carbonara (my absolute favourite), the bhaji dahl and the rigatoni bolognese. Each of them massively exceeded my expectations and, from now on, I’m going to be using allplants as a freezer insurance policy: Whenever I’m feeling too lazy to cook, or haven’t got any food in the fridge, I’ll just pull out one of these bad boys.
If you want to try the service out [AD- Affiliate], you can use the code AUSTIN10 to get £10 off your first order!
Vegan food ideas on Pinterest
Thank god for Pinterest because, honestly, I’m not sure I would’ve got out of uni alive if it wasn’t for all of the incredible recipes it gave me.
The truth of the matter is that most people grow up in families where meat is a huge part of our meals. As children and young people, we’re taught how to cook meat, rarely how to cook veggie meals and most certainly not how to cook vegan ones. So, having such a huge resource for searching for plant-based meal inspo when I am feeling motivated to cook is a total blessing.
I have two boards: One called “Veggie Meal Inspo” which I created when I started university and has served me well over the last three and a half years, and one called “Vegan Meal Ideas” that I’m hoping will help me out in 2019.
As you can see, I’m totally not an expert when it comes to plant-based eating, so I would love to know your tips and tricks. You can share them on Twitter and Instagram through #EverydayEco – Let’s get the conversation rolling!