20 bomb food you can still eat as a Vegan!

When you switch to a plant based diet it seems like there is so much focus on the things you CAN’T eat and not every much emphasis on the things that you CAN. There are so many awesome vegan options nowadays, and I have thought of so many more things even since writing this list. I tried not to include the obvious vegan substitutes (like vegan cheese, ice cream, meat, etc.) but I have found in our journey that you can alter almost every recipe to make it plant based.

I also want to warn you that even though everything on this list can be plant based, you unfortunately always have to double check before consuming products in an animal based culture. For example, guacamole may contain bacon, chili could contain meat, and french fries can be cooked in animal fat. I have tried to include warnings on the most vulnerable products, but just be aware of tricky traps.

  1. *Most* French fries- these are generally safe, but some restaurants (such as McDonalds) do cook their fries in animal fats. Either google beforehand or ask an employee before ordering.
  2. Peanut butter– the versatile best friend of vegans and meat lovers alike, peanut butter is a quick and easy way to get some protein. Slap it on a sandwich, apples, celery, crackers, bananas, noodles, the list is endless!
  3. Cashews/ all your favorite nuts- Cashews, almonds, walnuts, macadamia nuts, etc are great snacks (not to mention delicious!)
  4. Guacamole- We have found 101 ways to use avocados and guacamole. Burritos, sandwiches, veggie burgers, chips, rice bowls are all delicious ways to use this fruit (I know, right?!? Who knew avocados were a fruit?)
  5. Salsa and chips- Perfect snack or side dish.
  6. Oreos- Don’t skip on the dessert! If you love your cream filled cookies, you are in luck! These are not necessarily the most nutritious item on this list, but with the multitude of flavors there is something for everyone.
  7. Spaghetti and garlic bread- This is my husband’s all time favorite meal, so he lucked out that it is easily converted into a vegan dish. We substitute meat in our sauce for veggies like onion, zucchini, bell peppers, and sprinkle nutritional yeast over the top. Delicious.
  8. Many Indian foods- Indian food is not only an amazing burst of flavors in your mouth, it also contains so many meatless options! Chickpea vindaloo, Saag, Chickpea tikka masala, parathas, etc are all (mostly) vegan (always check- or buy some spices and make your own versions of your favorite dish).
  9. Chili- All you really need to make a great chili is a variety of beans, veggies, and some chili powder. No meat necessary!
  10. Smoothies (and Margaritas!)- Smoothies are not only great for you, they are as versatile as they are nutritious. We add chia seeds, protein powder, almond milk, spinach, flax seeds, oats, etc. to pack ours with goodness. And, bonus, tequila is generally a safe vegan alcohol! Hello, margarita hour.
  11. COFFEE.– All parents are thankful that this is on the list. Most coffee shops have dairy milk alternatives for your favorite drinks.
  12. Potato chips, hash browns, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes… all the potatoes– Thank goodness for this one! Beware of animal fats in potato chips or meat gravy on mashed potatoes, but potatoes are just flat out delicious in every form.
  13. YUMM sauce– If you are lucky enough to have a Cafe Yumm nearby you should definitely always have a jar/jug of this stuff on hand. Slather it on your own rice bowls, sandwiches, or veggie burgers.
  14. Thai peanut noodles- One of our favorite quick and easy dinners, rice noodles with peanut sauce are an amazing comfort food.
  15. Bagels- Try making your own! They are so easy and there is nothing better than eating a bagel fresh out of the oven. Seriously, nothing.
  16. Dark chocolate- Oreos are not your jam? Satisfy your sweet tooth with some dark chocolate delicacy. For added ethical bonus, find some Fair Trade chocolate at your local grocery store.
  17. Noodles- always have some pasta stored in your pantry for a stress free dinner. Throw them with some olive oil, garlic, salt and your favorite veggies. Yum!
  18. Popcorn– I will be honest here, sometimes we will have a popcorn, apple, and peanut butter dinner when we are being lazy parents. No shame. We pop our own popcorn to avoid the heavy oils. Our favorite way to eat it is with soy sauce and nutritional yeast (definitely try this).
  19. Bean burritos- Rice and beans are cheap, healthy, and make a complete protein. Wrap them up with some guacamole and salsa for a bangin’ burrito!
  20. Pop tarts- We eat these as sugary snacks or desserts more than breakfast foods, but you might be relieved to hear that this popular pastry contains no animal products.
  21. Coconut chips– These have become our new favorite snack. I am not a huge fan of coconut, but these are so crispy and tasty that I don’t even mind! We toss them with some nuts, dried fruit, and some dark chocolate chips to make a little snacky trail mix.

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