a green + a bean + a grain
saying goodbye to meat and two veg
veganism is considered to be a radical approach to eating, but it can actually be quite simple to adopt with access to the right knowledge and a little planning. the only special equipment i recommend is a
blender. ALL of your favourite meat and dairy based dishes can be veganised and often elevated with a plant-based twist.
as a starting off point, aim for your plate to always have:
a bean + a green + a grain
any vegetable, the more colourful the better!
any plant based protein e.g beans, pulses, meat substitutes, tempeh etc.
(preferably whole) grains e.g. rice, pasta, bread or starches e.g. (sweet) potatoes, yams etc.
fruit is perfect for breakfast, snacks or in smoothies and fresh juices.
a plant-based whole food diet is aspirational, but it is also not a realistic
or accessible diet for all, 100% of the time. as the (non vegan, for now...) queen ruby tandoh says, a balanced diet isn't balanced if it takes
up all your time. being able to follow a vegan lifestyle is inherently a privilege, because veganism assumes that you have choice and agency about what you eat, how it is prepared and where it comes from.
in the racist, capitalist, ablest society that we live in, (with poor food education, food deserts, austerity, and consumerism), this is simply
- and deliberately - not possible for all people.
if you're privileged enough to already be vegan, lend your time to other community and food education projects. support other, inter-connected social justice groups and share resources. instead of shaming non-vegans, set up a community garden, give cooking classes to local schools and the list goes on.
non-vegans aren't quite off the hook! use this as a guide rather than a definitive list and remember that your journey is your own! can't change your diet? share articles to encourage others, speak to vegan activists and find other ways to help spread the message. trying to transition? have meat free mondays, experiment with some meat alternatives, try out some new recipes like these, replace white with whole grains, take part in veganuary, and most importantly, move at your own pace and do your own research. i'm still learning, same as you. can't give up cheese? don't. remove all other non-vegan foods and do what you can.
check out your local markets, shop around to find deals and look at buying dry goods in bulk (it's much cheaper, although they are more time consuming to prepare than tinned).
please feel free to message with any questions or for a printable pdf (but remember i'm a chef not a nutritionist, with a personal approach
that focuses on flavour, compassion and food justice rather than 'clean eating').
beans and pulses
if you can, buy dried beans and soak before cooking, but tinned is quick and easy
chickpeas, black turtle beans, black eyed peas, butter beans, haricot
beans, kidney beans, gungo peas,
pinto beans, split peas, lentils, chickpeas, mung beans etc.
aim for whole grains where possible! look out for pastas, flours, noodles and other forms
kamut, quinoa, rye, spelt, teff, rice,
buckwheat, amaranth, millet, barley, bulgur wheat, oats, corn etc.
nuts and seeds
sprinkle on dishes or blend for creamy sauces and dressings
sunflower, pumpkin, sesame, flax, chia, hemp, brazil nuts, almonds, cashews and walnuts, tahini etc.
oils and vinegars
use for frying and in dressings, sauces and glazes
olive oil, coconut oil, grapeseed oil, sesame oil, hempseed oil, avocado oil, balsamic vinegar, rice wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar etc.
vegan pantry essentials
extra flavours to level up your dishes!
chickpea flour, nutritional yeast, passata, coconut milk, nut butters (peanut, almond etc), plant based milks (oat, almond, cashew etc), miso, tamari (wheat free soy sauce) or coconut aminos (soy free), stock cubes, rice paper, seaweed flakes, molasses,hot pepper sauce, maple syrup, coconut sugar, dark chocolate etc.
spices and seasonings
you have no business cooking without herbs or spices. it is wise to limit salt though, (aim to use sea salt or himalayan pink salt instead of iodised/table salt). find your favourite spice and herb blends and sprinkle until the ancestors tell you to stop
tumeric, black pepper, oregano, allspice, basil, bay leaves, cardamom, chillies, coriander, cinnamon, cloves, cumin, fenugreek, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, smoked and sweet paprika, cayenne pepper, scotch bonnets, parsley, black salt, sage, rosemary, thyme, onion, celery, mustard, lemon and lime juice etc.
fruit and veg
aim to buy seasonal/local and organic/gmo free where possible. check out your local markets for cheap fresh veg, but frozen also works!
the possibilities are endless. dark leafy greens, spinach, callaloo, breadfruit, jackfruit, sweet potatoes, yams, cassava, carrots, squash, peppers, courgette, aubergine, avocado, cabbage, mushrooms (experiment with different kinds, oyster, portobello, chestnut etc.), apples, bananas, green bananas, plantain, berries, pears, plums, peaches, grapefruit etc.
most people don’t think about the fact they’re eating animals. when they’re eating a steak or eating chicken, most people don’t think about the tremendous suffering that those animals endure simply to become food products to be consumed by human beings.
angela davis, 2014