I Recently Went Vegan, Here’s How

I Recently Went Vegan, Here’s How

In case you missed it, I recently posted a bit of a blog/life update. It was in that post I mentioned I’d recently made some lifestyle changes that might be fun to blog about. So, here goes nothing… I’m vegan now!

For those of you who aren’t aware, I’ve been vegetarian for about four years now and my boyfriend has been a veggie for over ten years. In the last couple of years, I have also been trying to live cruelty-free as well. We have always said we’d like to try going vegan when we live together. We’ve been living together for a year now, so there’s no more excuses.

A couple of months back, we started looking up vegan recipes and found a few we liked. I thought the best way to transition from vegetarian to vegan would be to ease ourselves in. A couple of nights a week we made a point of cooking a vegan meal for dinner. Fast-forward to a few months later and things are going really well! We’ve been vegan for roughly about three weeks now and I thought I’d share some steps we took.

First of all, forget everything you’ve heard about going vegan and just focus on you

I’ve been wanting to go vegan for quite some time now, but it’s other people’s perceptions that have kept me from trying. Sounds stupid, right? But it’s true. A lot of people say going vegan is restrictive, bad for your health, expensive, annoying & so on. Whilst this may be the case for some, it doesn’t mean it’s an accurate representation as a whole. Change can be overwhelming so ignore what everyone else says and do you. At the end of the day, I think it should be an enjoyable lifestyle change. I have been so surprised at how easy it’s been, I am so happy I decided to stop listening to others and just try it for myself.

I have a much more relaxed attitude this time round than I did when I first went veggie

When I first went vegetarian I would completely freak out if I ate something that wasn’t veggie-friendly. In fact, the first few months I was just stressed. It’s not just cutting out meat and fish, it’s checking ingredients as well. I definitely put a lot of pressure on myself to be perfect straight away. The truth is when it’s something you’ve never done before, it’s natural to have a few slip ups. It’s more about how you try move on from them. Every time I slipped up, it just made me want to do more research. I definitely think I’m a bit more relaxed about it all now. This may not be the right attitude to have but if I slip up now, it’s still not meat. Luckily enough, I have had no slip ups as of yet. I’m not a huge fan of dairy so I guess that’s an advantage.

Do your research

Obvious one, but it’s all part of the fun! I’m definitely doing a lot more research this time round and that’s probably why it’s been easier. When I first went veggie, I kind of just jumped into it. I’ve started following more vegans across social media platforms and asking people for recommendations. There are a ton of amazing free and cheap resources out there. For example: I made a point of ordering PETA’s vegan starter kit. Despite how problematic they can be, they’re a good resource!

Go shopping for some alternatives

I thought we’d struggle but this wasn’t the case at all. The first things we replaced were milk, butter and cheese. You’ll be surprised at how many alternatives are out there! I had no idea there were so many different milk options. Oat, rice, almond, soya…so many! I’m also really happy that vegan cheese isn’t terrible like everyone has you believe. So far I’ve tried: Vegusto, Tesco’s own, Violife and Follow Your Heart. All delicious!

Try ‘veganize’ your favourite meals

This is a tip I got from PETA’s starter kit and it’s pretty solid advice. If you’re limited for time or are overwhelmed by recipes, it’s definitely a simpler start. You will find so many vegan versions of recipes online and you can experiment yourself as well! It turns out most of the lunches I eat are already vegan friendly, so I guess that’s definitely helped.

Have fun with it!

I have really been enjoying the transition from veggie to vegan, I’m so glad we did it. We’ve been exploring the towns near us and managed to find some vegan restaurants we never knew existed!

 

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8 Comments

  1. April 22, 2017 / 12:48 am

    This is such a good starting guide! I’ve been vegetarian for about a year and a half and have replaced milk and butter with vegan alternatives. I don’t know if I ever see myself going full vegan just because there aren’t as many alternatives up in my neck of the woods, plus the fact I have pre diabetes makes it difficult to find anything low carb AND veggie when I eat out, never mind vegan. I still eat eggs, but only if they come from my friend Kerrie’s hens. I found I was sleepwalking around the supermarket so I’m going to keep my eyes open for different foods and keep making small changes!

  2. April 24, 2017 / 10:05 am

    As a veggie who has been considering going vegan for a while this was such an interesting read, thank you for sharing! I definitely agree about easing the pressure to be perfect right away, it can be so hard to catch everything when you’re always label checking. I’ll definitely be looking up some of the vegan cheese you mentioned, I’ve tried some pretty bad ones so I can see how people get put off. Have you tried the Sainsburys coconut ones? They’re the best ones I’ve had so far!

  3. April 30, 2017 / 11:15 am

    I did a honking guide to sustainable, inclusive, intersectional veganism in the UK that you might find handy: http://jenny-marie.co.uk/top-10-practical-tips-for-very-easy-sustainable-and-inclusive-veganism-in-the-uk

    Loads links to apps, resources, people to follow.

  4. May 4, 2017 / 6:59 pm

    I so want to go vegan (I’m not even veggie), I have a vegan Pinterest board full of recipes for when I do it. It’s an impossible task for me at the moment for various reasons.
    Hope you’re enjoying the vegan life! 🙂

  5. May 27, 2017 / 3:11 am

    One of the best ‘going vegan’ posts I’ve read. This post is super helpful and I have to say that I am guilty of freaking out over accidentally eating something non vegan and it stressed me so bad. Going to shard this ‘cos it’s super useful!

    • Tara | C&CO.
      July 18, 2017 / 12:16 pm

      Thank you so much!

  6. June 10, 2017 / 2:12 am

    As a lapsed veggie trying to find my way back and perhaps eat more vegan food (I’m lactose intolerant so the milk thing is already sorted) it can be quite overwhelmed and a bit put off by some vegans, but your reviews and recipes have really encouraged me. I’m looking for Jack fruit tomorrow.

    • Tara | C&CO.
      July 18, 2017 / 11:54 am

      Try not to be so hard on yourself! I’m glad they’re helping though 🙂

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