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Veganism Part I: Starting your vegan journey

As many people shift to vegan and plant-based diets in an effort to live more sustainably, we bring you a three-part series to aid new or veteran vegans in the kitchen. First up: recipes!

by: Lisa Wallace | 01 Feb 2018

(image: The Kate Tin)

Over 50 billion land animals are killed every year for human use and consumption. Repeat: 50 billion, excluding fish and shellfish! There has never before been a more crucial time to start reducing and refusing animal and animal-based products – for the animals (imagine 50 billion sentient, innocent lives being slaughtered annually), for the environment (raising animals for food contributes to dangerous climate change, land environmental degradation, water pollution and water shortages), and for your health (multiple studies indicate that a diet rich in plant-based foods can help improve your health, especially chronic diseases like cholesterol, heart disease, cancer, diabetes and high blood pressure). 

According to The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, "animal agriculture is one of the top two or three most significant contributors to the most serious environmental problems, at every scale from local to global". Then why are we still farming, killing and eating animals? Replacing meat, milk and eggs benefits farm animals in South Africa, millions of whom spend their entire lives in cages or crates, where they are unable to exercise, engage in their natural behaviours, or even turn around due to lack of space.

ALSO READ: Eating green in 2018 has never been easier (or more crucial)

Plant-based is a diet that refuses animal products – zero meat, chicken, eggs, dairy and fish. Veganism is adopting not just a plant-based diet but also a way of life where no animal products are used at all – including cosmetics, cleaning supplies, clothing and even honey (or honey-based products).

Do you feel ready to become plant-based? Better yet, vegan? If so, we've drawn up a three-part plan to make it easy for you – recipes as well as helpful information to make the transition as easy as possible. 

ALSO READ: Veganism Part II & Part III: The ultimate vegan pantry and supplies

Breakfast, lunch and dinner ideas

You don't need to be a gourmet chef to be vegan, and contrary to popular belief, you don't need expensive substitutes either. Veganism works out significantly cheaper – and you can eat like everyone else.

You might find in the beginning you'll have to plan meals, but with time and as you become better acquainted with well-loved vegan staples it'll get easier. Adapt your favourite dishes by replacing animal products with a vegan alternative, like meat with lentils and chickpeas, cheese with vegan cheese, and remove animal products completely. Food24 has a host of vegan recipes that we've rounded up – the best and most popular – to give you inspiration and an idea of just how nourishing veganism is. 


Homemade almond milk (for your morning coffee)

Vegan's Breakfast bonanza

Vanilla French toast

Warm quinoa porridge with coconut milk

Vegan chocolate velvet smoothie bowls


Vegan nut butter granola with cacao nibs

Tuscan white bean pizza

Warm quinoa salad with roasted cauliflower and a spicy citrus dressing

Easy curried sweet potatoes

Quinoa and spinach falafel


Hearty spiced vegetable vegan curry

Beer battered tempeh
Vegan baked tofu with ratatouille vegetables

Chickpea curry with coconut rice

Mushroom and spinach quinoa with aubergine

Kale, turmeric and coconut soup


Chocolate and date caramel bars

Chocolate nut brittle cake

Roasted banana ice cream

Choc mint tart

Looking for gluten-free recipes? Head HERE

ALSO READ: 10 Recipes that will change your mind about veganism

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