Going vegan is about more than removing animal products from your diet. It’s an entire movement centered around eliminating animal products from daily life. If it’s good enough for celebs like Ava DuVernay and Benedict Cumberbatch, why not give it a whirl?
Celebrate World Vegan Day
Here’s a round-up of vegan meal boxes, cookbooks, and clothing companies to help jumpstart your plant-based lifestyle.
Purple Carrot is the 100% vegan alternative to meal box subscription services like Blue Apron and Hello Fresh. They have several different meal plans depending on your budget and how many meals you’d like to receive each week. Recipes are listed on their site up to 4 weeks in advance and you can easily skip a week if need be. A recipe booklet comes with each box, which is far more convenient than individual recipe cards. Purple Carrot does more than just dinner! They’ve got your whole day covered with breakfast, lunch, and snack options too. The meals take inspiration from cuisines from around the globe, including coconut and ginger congee (a traditional Chinese breakfast), Mexican chilaquiles, or falafel hash with grapefruit-arugula tabbouleh. Some of the meals do require a bit of finesse, but it’s a great way to get more comfortable in the kitchen.
If cooking isn’t your thing, let Splendid Spoon do the work for you. Every single one of their meals is vegan, soy and gluten-free, and low in sugar. There are four different meal plans depending on how many meals subscribers want to have over to Splendid Spoon each day. The most basic plan supplies only breakfasts and the most robust plan sends enough for 4 square meals a day. They have more than 50 menu offerings, so subscribers can choose their boxes after check out or wait and be surprised. Skipping weeks or canceling is easy and can be done at any time. Each meal is intended to be enjoyed cold, even the noodles and soups, so you don’t even have to turn on the stove (but you can heat them up if you so desire). Tuck into an aloo gobi quinoa bowl, creamy butternut squash noodles, or a pumpkin pear bisque with hempseeds and cardamom.
If anyone ever told you not to play with your food, they clearly never read Dustin Harder’s Epic Vegan: Wild and Over-the-Top Plant-Based Recipes. Harder, creator and host of the vegan culinary travel show The Vegan Roadie, takes classic fast-food staples and turns them into crave-able vegan treats. His recipes shatter the stereotypes about vegan food. Don’t expect tame tofu scrambles with plenty of sprouts. Be ready for messy, saucy meals like crab rangoon pizza, the bacon macaroni and blue cheese burger, or his fried chicken and waffles benedict sandwich. Don’t let the meats in the titles fool you! It’s all plant-based goodness. This cookbook is appropriate for all culinary skill levels.
Sweet Potato Soul
What could be more comforting on a chilly autumn night than a plate full of soul food? Jenné Claiborne’s cookbook Sweet Potato Soul: 100 Easy Vegan Recipes for the Southern Flavors of Smoke, Sugar, Spice, and Soul offers creative, plant-based reimaginings of classic Southern staples. After she went vegan, Claiborne missed her Nana’s cooking and made it her mission to recreate it all without animal products. Delicious recipes include coconut collard salad, jalapeño hush puppies, and sweet potato cinnamon rolls. The book is more than just recipes. Claiborne’s narrative about the origins of soul food, the health benefits of certain ingredients, and her sense of memories associated with specific foods is captivating. The food photography is stunning and will get your mouth-watering before the oven is even on.
One of the trickiest vegan clothing items to find is shoes. Even if you avoid leather and suede, sometimes the glue is still made with animal byproducts. MooShoes carries more than 40 brands that make cruelty-free, vegan footwear, apparel, and accessories for all genders. They even have plant-based, reusable home goods like cleaning cloths, produce bags, candles, food stashers, utensils, and greeting cards. MooShoes was created in 2001 by sisters from Queens, NY. Their original store was housed in, ironically, a defunct butcher shop. Their flagship NYC location is now on Orchard Street, but nationwide shipping of all of their animal-friendly products is available on their website.