Hi, I'm New :)
Hi, I'm Emily. I'm new to the whole vegan eating thing. I've been studying and reading about it for months, and today I finally made my first all vegan grocery shopping trip! I'm open to any and all advice about recipes, the best staples, and anything that can help make this a smooth transition. I'm entering into the food realm of things for now, but also am interested in what OTHER things I can do to be completely vegan? Thank you for all the help!
For the Transition:
If you were omni, I'd say have emergency veggie burgers in your freezer and barbecue sauce in your refrigerator (the bbq sauce will cover the flavor) for cravings. If you're near a Trader Joe's or hfs, get Tofurky Italian Sausage. If you like cheese, invest in some Daiya cheese. It's salty, but the closest thing we have to dairy cheese in flavor and texture.
For Everyday Eating:
What do you like? Veggies, fruit, beans, grains? There are recipes for pretty much every preference.
Nice to meet you! All the best on your transition!
Shop veggie; read labels (carefully: they try to sneak animal junk in some *weird* shit!); play with recipes (!); taste quinoa, kale chips, nutritional yeast, agave nectar, falafel, cashew cheez (& other nut cheezes, recipes here & elsewhere), if you haven't already tried these wonderful things! Try at least a couple 'weird' new foods each week, like tempeh, seitan, jicama, starfruit, kale, kohlrabi, red lentils... explore! I was surprised to find that my diet *expanded* when I went veggie: there were *so* many yum things I'd never tried...
Learn about cooking tofu-- well seasoned/ well cooked tofu is superdelicious, and a staple for me... the 'Dine & Dish' forum here is great for info/ questions on stuff like that... as HH said, keep some 'emergency rations' around at first, as quick fixes for cravings; but try to move gradually toward a varied real food/ whole food paradigm, for optimal satisfaction as well as health: whole grain rice/ pasta/ breads, quinoa, seeds/ nuts (& sauces/ cheezes made therefrom), fruits, veggies, & healthy fats... use almond/ walnut/ olive/ coconut oil in hot dishes when you need something hearty & satisfying, or flax/ hemp oil for cold dishes (dressings & such). Supplement B12, for insurance, and read about vegan Omega3/ Omega 6 sources...
Don't be too hard on yourself if you aren't 'perfect' at it, at first; taste is habit, to large degree, and soon you'll be craving completely different stuff-- the old food will be blech, & the *falafel* (or whatever!) will make you go mmmmmmmmmm instead!
Read 'Eating Animals' or 'The China Study' or 'Animal Factory' or anything like this... The more you know about where the other stuff comes from, the less you'll wanna eat it!
Have fun on your food journey, & let us know if we can help... Welcome to VW!
Nice to meet you.
About the "other things I can do to be vegan" part....I transitioned by replacing products around my home as I used them up....such as when the soap ran out I switched to Veganu soap...when the toilet bowl cleaner ran out, I switched to a grean plant based one, etc. Now I can say I live in a vegan home, with vegan shoes, wallet, belts, toiletries and cleaning products, but it took almost an entire year.
All the best.