Whether you’re looking to eat vegan once or twice a week or wanting to fully convert to veganism, we have couple of tips on how to make your journey an easier one! Often the hardest part of changing your diet is starting and taking those first steps. Seeing as we’re in the midst of Veganuary what better time to share some tips that have helped us reduce our dairy and meat intake.
1. Make a start
Seems simple right? Start off by making one vegan meal and go from there. Often we are weighed down by other peoples opinions but you have to start somewhere! Slowly integrating vegan meals into your day to day life will all add up and you’ll have a range of meals and knowledge that you can pull from later. If you mess up and something has dairy in it, don’t get hung up on it - all you can do is learn from that!
The internet is your best friend when it comes to recipes! If you search “easy vegan recipes” into google you’re going to be inundated with inspiration. Collect a range of recipes that look the best for you whether that’s a salad or vegan burger; whatever your preference! If you have a chance to visit your library there will be vegan cook books that you can rent too! I’m currently loving Supergood by Chelsea Winter, Vegan 100 by Gaz Oakley, Thug Kitchen, I Can Cook Vegan by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and 28 Days Vegan: A Complete Guide for Beginners by Amelia Wasiliev and Lisa Butterworth. However, the pros of finding online recipes is that most blogs have a rating feature so you can get real life reviews of recipes from people like you! Don’t be discouraged if a recipe doesn’t work for you, there are soooo many more recipes out there that will be perfect for you.
3. Social Media
If you’re a fan of Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and just general blogging you might already be doing this. I am always on the lookout for inspiration especially on the Instagram platform because sometimes I just want to cook something new. Luckily in the world we are living in there are so many talented people cooking and sharing their love of food online. Instagram has a great feature where you can follow a hashtag my favourite is #veganfood - it’s so easy to discover different content creators and recipes that way.
Some of our favourite vegan Instagrammer's right now are: edenvegan, thislifeasjasmin, eatupvegan, teenyvegankitchen, elavegan, the.Korean.vegan, minimalistbaker, veganella.nz and radiquel.
4. Eating out
Going out for breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner - these are things that you most likely don’t want to give up when you start eating vegan. Fortunately in Wellington we are lucky to have a range of incredible vegan restaurants and most restaurants these days are catering to a plant based diet - yay! Our top tip is to look in advance at their website to see if there is an option that works for you and if they don’t, email them and ask if they have anything to offer - sometimes their online menus can differ and there are more options at the restaurant/cafe. Some of our favourite restaurants in Wellington that have vegan options are: Mockingbird, The Botanist, Chow, Duck Island Ice Cream, Sweet Release & Aunty Mena’s.
OUT & ABOUT IN WELLINGTON
This can often be the biggest deterrent when it comes to plant based/veganism. When you buy convenience foods like meat replacements and specialty packaged foods from the supermarket - it can really add up. That doesn’t have to be the case! Visit your local vege and fruit markets for cheap buys and stick to dry pulses like lentils and chickpeas. Rice, quinoa and bulgur wheat can be great bases for many creation too. Buy lower priced bases and buy the occasional higher priced items. Sticking to dry goods and fresh fruit and veg will bring down your plastic packaging waste down too!
We hope these five tips have helped start your journey! Even trying one of these steps is a great start but at the end of the day we understand that everyone is different and what might work for us might not work for you. Here at The Minimal Co. we are almost completely vegan so we have some work to do too! If you're ever curious about a product we sell and if it's vegan, don't hesitate in messaging us for more information.
Happy Veganuary everyone!