Replacing animal products is quite simple. From vegan ice-cream to cream cheese and cheatin’ meats (great for beginners), there is quite literally nothing that you can’t find a vegan replacement for!

It’s true, not everyone likes the idea of ‘substitutes’ for animal products – and honestly, they are completely unnecessary in terms of providing all the nutrients your body needs – but no one can deny the fact that they do taste good, and can be especially helpful for new vegans with old cravings.

Here comes some helpful alternatives to animal products:

Chocolate Replacement

Lot’s of company’s produce a perfect vegan ‘milk’ chocolate, and even white chocolate. There are also chocolate truffles, cakes and sweets available, mainly from health food shops. You can even get a vegan chocolate easter egg!

Cheese Replacement

Vegan cheese is now widely available in health food shops. Some of the hard ones do not melt but can be used in sauces, pies, and sandwiches. Vegan cream cheese is also available, while nutritional yeast flakes give a fantastic cheesy flavor and can be used in sauces, lasagna and pizza. Both are available from health food shops.

Milk Replacement

Soya milk and a whole host of other milks like oat and rice milk can be used to replace cow’s milk. Soya milk is the most popular and can be bought from most supermarkets and health food shops. A great introduction to soya milk is the soya milk shakes that are available in several flavors including chocolate, vanilla, strawberry and banana.
Pouring and whipped soya cream is also available, and delicious vegan yogurts and soya desserts. Try soya yoghurt on top of cereals.

Ice Cream Replacement

Dairy-free ice cream (made from oats or soya) is so good many people will not notice the difference. Just try it and you won’t need any further convincing! It is available practically all health food stores stock it.

Honey Replacement

There’s a whole range of syrups that can be used as sweeteners. Give maple syrup, agave syrup, date syrup, molasses, dried fruit or fruit jams a try.

Egg Replacement

Most people think that a cake cannot be made without eggs, but nothing could be further from the truth. Great cakes can be made without eggs. Some like to use a tablespoon of soya flour in place of each egg or use egg¬-replacer products (found in most wholefood shops).
Even mayonnaise is available without eggs, and it is easy to make vegan quiche and mousse. To replace scrambled egg, try scrambled tofu.

Butter Replacement

The easy availability of vegan margarines means that butter is easily replaced. In place of animal fats you can use vegetable oil, solid vegetable fat or vegetable suet; and in place of animal stock use vegetable stock or yeast extract.

Meat Replacement

There are many false or cheatin’ meats available in health food shops and some supermarkets. For example, if you are looking for hamburgers, there are many different varieties of vegan burgers and sausages available. To accompany them choose from vegan mayo, ketchup, HP sauce, mustard, sauerkraut, gherkins, red onions and of course salad.

Mince Replacement

Use soya mince. Most frozen soya mince is vegan and tastes great in dishes like chilli and shepherd’s pie. If you use dried soya mince try soaking it in vegetable stock first. Alternatively try marinated tofu for a more healthy option.

Bacon Replacement

Vegan Rashers are now available from health food shops.

Jello replacement

There are also alternatives to gelatin, and vegan jelly crystals can be found in your local health food shop and some supermarkets.

Treat yourself! As you can see there are a huge variety of vegan treats out there but you may find that you need to slightly change your shopping routine. As well as a few treats in the supermarket you will find many of the compassionate alternatives outlined above in your local health food shop. If you don’t have a health food shop nearby it is well worth making a special trip once a week to stock up on foods that are not available in your local shops.

Sources: Vegan Society

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