But what DO vegans eat? | Viva! - The Vegan Charity

But what DO vegans eat?


An easy way to remember is:
◗ vegans eat/use nothing from living or dead animals
◗ vegetarians eat nothing from slaughtered animals


But that still leaves a lot to eat and drink! 




Vegans eat a huge array of foods from many food groups - more than the average meat-eater, in fact. 









Vegan YES!






◗ Pulses: peas, beans, lentils: think dahl, falafels, mixed bean stew, hummus, bean burgers and hundreds more ways to cook this protein rich family

◗ Fruit and vegetables - fresh, seasonal, herbed and spiced or lightly seasoned, baked, roasted, stuffed, curried, stir-fried, raw, sauces, soups...

◗ Nuts and seeds, including `butters', eg peanut, cashew, almond, pumpkin. tahini: sauces, cream alternatives, cheese alternatives...

◗ Vegan meats:

  • tofu (assorted flavours and firmness) - plain, deep fried, smoked, basil, sundried tomato, marinated, firm, medium, silken...

  • tempeh - fermented soya bean 'cake' used to make vegan rashers etc

  • seitan - traditional 'wheatmeat' or gluten (used in Eastern Asia for over a thousand years) - easy to make from scratch or use tins/jars

  • commercial meat analogues - Quorn Vegan Chicken Pieces; TVP-based such as soya mince or chunks, Fries or VBites Chicken-style pieces and many more




◗Vegan dairy: plant milks (soya, almond, rice etc); soya or coconut milk yoghurt; vegan ice cream and margarine



◗ Wheat protein – seitan/gluten - works well in roasts, pies, meatballs, slices, sausages... 


◗ Grains – wholegrain or white: rice; quinoa; barley; couscous; millet; bulghur: risottos, pilafs, biryanis, paellas...

◗ Sweeteners - many sugars; syrups, eg: agave, date, brown rice or maple

Vegans DON'T EAT any animal products or their by-products


  • Meat, fish, seafood and poultry: eg beef, pork, lamb, duck, chicken, goose, fish (including anchovies), lobster, crab, shellfish

  • Animal by-products, land and sea: eg gelatine, animal rennet, aspic, lard, crushed seashells, cochineal (insects), shellac, beeswax

  • Dairy products: cheese; yoghurt; cream; milk; crème fraiche; condensed milk; butter

  • Dairy by-products: eg dried milk; whey; lactose of animal origin (most lactic acid is vegan but check)

  • Eggs, dried egg, albumen etc

  • Meat-free alternatives that contain animal products, eg some Quorn products (look for the 'vegan' on the packs and avoid the rest); Some Cauldron products, again, check packets for vegan items

  • Honey, royal jelly, beeswax etc 

  • Alcohol fined (clarified) with animal by-products, eg isinglass, albumen, milk (many beers and wines are vegan-friendly but not all. Most spirits are fine).