Vegan for 17 days (so far!) for Veganuary 2018

Yes Starling | Miller Green Vegan Cottage Pie

I’ve now reached the mid-way point in January, so I thought it was a perfect moment to talk about how being vegan for Veganuary is going.

I’ve been very fortunate to have been sponsored by Miller Green for Veganuary. This means that my evening meal has been provided by Miller Green free of charge. My husband wanted to join in with my evening meals, so we have paid to join the MG Subscription Service for his meals.

It’s been wonderful not having to think about what we are going to have for dinner. We have a Miller Green delivery on a Saturday and on a Wednesday and that’s all our evening meals sorted. Due to having a tiny fridge, we’ve opted not to have the accompaniment (usually rice) and instead have cooked it when needed; hardly a hardship!

Without exception, the meals have been incredibly tasty and packed full of veg and goodness. It feels a really healthy way to eat, with still a nod to indulgences such as coconut milk in some dishes, and a creamy sauce made from cashews. One of the things I love is that there are no weird fake meats or cheeses. (I’ve tried so many and they’re all horrible!) Instead, Miller Green focus on using real ingredients which is so much tastier and the textures are better.

Having Miller Green meals in the evening has meant that I have found Veganuary really, really easy. I can count the number of times that I have wavered on one hand (I’m looking at you, chicken and gravy, and you too, salt caramel profiteroles…) but despite momentary wavering, not one morsel of animal product has passed my lips this year.

In terms of what else has seen me sailing easily through Veganuary, I’ve got some top product tips.

Oatly Barista – the best plant milk ever. I love it. It’s really creamy and delicious.

Rude Health Almond – the second best plant milk ever. It contains rice, so it’s naturally sweet.

M&S avocado spread – plant butters are all pretty rubbish. This one is the least rubbish. It has a very neutral taste, and doesn’t taste like avocado. I’ve mainly avoided eating things which need butter or cheese, but I do like a bagel on a Saturday, and it’s useful for that, and in baking.

Linda Mc ‘succulent’ sausages – I discovered these in February when I did Vegebruary. I prefer them to meaty sausages. They taste really similar but with no gristley bits. We have them on Saturday mornings in a toasted bagel.

Oat So Simple (with berries) – Apart from Saturday mornings, my breakfast is always the same. Golden Syrup Oat So Simple with frozen berries. Luckily, it’s vegan! It’s great made with any plant milk but with Oatly Barista it’s amazing – so creamy!!

Homemade biscuits – The first week of January, I made myself some gingerbread biscuits to take to work. I knew there’d be loads of treats left over from Christmas, and I knew having something vegan-friendly would make it easier to avoid temptation.

Vego – I am super fussy about chocolate and my only true love in the chocolate world is a Cadbury’s Twirl. That is until Vego came into my life. Most vegan chocolate is dark, which I really don’t like, but Vego is a creamy ‘milk’ chocolate full of whole hazelnuts. It’s incredible.

Redbush Tea – Rude Health tastes a bit weird in black tea, but really nice in Redbush, so we have both at home.

Waitrose Mint Creams/Elizabeth Shaw mints – until I discovered Vego, these were my go-to vegan chocolates – the mint makes the dark of the chocolate less bitter.

Hummus/Marmite – hummus in jacket potatoes means I don’t miss the butter, and if you put marmite on top of plant-based spread it hides the taste of the spread.

Sojade soy yoghurts – nicer than dairy!

We’re really lucky in Bristol that it’s really easy to eat out and stick to a vegan diet. Almost every place I went to had at least one vegan option. A lesson I’ve learnt though is that you learn to be less fussy about individual ingredients as a vegan, as you’re just happy there’s something for you to eat! For example, I’m not really a big lover of pastry, but if the vegan option is a pie, I’ll eat it happily.

Places I’ve eaten out/had hot drinks

Woky Ko (yaki soba with edamame beans)

Albatross (chai latte)

The Old Bookshop (vegan roast)

Spike Island (vegan soup)

Mokoko (vegan cake, chai latte, coffee)

Oowee (via Deliveroo, vegan burger and fries)

I am finding being vegan so much easier this time around. I think the main reason is the amazing food from Miller Green, but one other key thing that has been not eating vegan substitutes. Eating things like pizza but with vegan cheese last year just made me sad. Going ‘cold turkey’ has actually been way easier than eating rubbish imitations.

I’m really curious to see how I go for the second half of the month, and whether cravings start creeping in!

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