Beginning a plant-based lifestyle isn’t always easy. Whether you’ve lived plant-based for years or are transitioning your diet to focus more on plants, we can all agree that it’s a little overwhelming at first.
From what is and isn’t classified as plant-based or vegan to understanding what plants to combine to ensure you’re getting the essential nutrients, there’s a bit to know. But once you understand it, there’s no forgetting it.
Transition a bland and basic diet and become a confident plant-based warrior with these three key tips.
1. Get to know your spice cupboard
They say variety is the spice of life and that couldn’t be more true for plant-based eating.
Ask any chef, whether cooking vegan dishes or not, and they’ll tell you herbs and spices are a key element to making food taste insanely good.
Yes, most vegetables taste great on their own. But to lift a dish that’s based around whole foods, utilising fresh herbs and a range of spices is the.way.to.go in turning your meal into a masterpiece.
At Flave, these are some of our favourite herbs and spices we use to make our plant-based dishes out-of-this-world Flavoursome:
- Garlic, lime, chilli, coriander, dill and ginger pack a punch in the Mexican salsa in some of our dishes
- Parsley, dill and oregano merge perfectly in our Mou-Ssa-Ka-Ka
- Basil and parsley are an Italian match made in heaven in our plant-based pesto and Charcoal Spag Bol
- Smoked paprika and cumin has the jackfruit poppin’ in our Chili Mexi dish, and;
- Shallots, garlic, ginger, fresh turmeric, thyme, chilli flakes, lime, lemon and orange zest with light olive oil makes an insane Portuguese garlic purée, too.
Ok, that’s enough now, we can’t go giving away all our chef’s trade favours.
2. Ignorance isn’t always bliss
When eating plant-based, wading your way through cafe options to find decent vegan food that’s not just avocado on sourdough (although damn, we love a good avo’ smash) can be bloody hard!
Luckily, more and more eateries are realising that the whole-foods way of eating isn’t going away (yew, plants!).
But what about when you’re in a place that you’re not sure offers true vegan option? Or who may not take your way of eating seriously (hands up who’s pretended they’re dairy intolerant to ensure their meal’s vegan)?
This is where ignorance isn’t bliss. Feel confident in asking the waiter or waitress a few key questions about your meal preference to a) learn if it really is vegan or, b) ask for modifications (within reason) to make it so.
These are the top questions we ask when dining out to ensure our meal stays plant-based to the brim.
- “Are there animal products used in this dish?” Usually, it should be a straight-up answer, but if they seem unsure, follow-up with these next questions...
- “What oils are used in this dish?” If it’s lard or ghee, ask them to swap it for olive oil or another plant or seed oil.
- “What’s in the sauce?” If there’s butter, cream or dairy milk, ask if they can swap to coconut or olive oil, coconut milk or cream or plant-based milk.
- “Are eggs used in this dish?” If there is, ask if they can be removed.
- “Is stock used in this dish?” Ask if it can be changed to vegetable if it’s not already.
Like most changes, it’s hard to go cold turkey. So, go easy on yourself when transitioning to a plant-based lifestyle.
You’re now armed with key things that’ll have you on your way to a comfortable plant-based lifestyle. But don’t pressure yourself to be 100% perfect from day-dot.
If there are slip-ups, don’t beat yourself up - it happens! You’ll find in no time at all that you’re acing veganism and understand this way of eating like the back of your hand.
4. BONUS: Automate plant-based living!
We can’t end on an uneven number, so our fourth tip to making plant-based living easy is to automate your meals! Of course, with Flave World!
We’re all busier than ever and cooking decent plant-based dishes oftentimes slips down the list. A weekly meal delivery from Flave takes the stress away of wondering what’s for lunch and dinner.
Flave delivers freshly-made, macro and micronutrient-full and, of course, Flavoursome meals to doorsteps across Sydney every week.Get to know our menu here and choose next week’s plant-based mouthfuls!