Focus on vegetables (and fruits)
“Many who claim to be vegetarian or vegan are really starch-atarians filling meat voids with pasta, fries, bread,” and other non-plant substitutes, says Ashayla Patterson of the bakery Sweet Artique. Try to eat more healthy, whole foods to give your body the vital nutrients and antioxidants it needs.
Going vegan doesn’t mean deprivation
“When you remove animal products, you lose a lot of the fat and salt, which is often what contributes to the can’t-put-it-down taste,” says Kroecher. He likes to add rich, complex flavors with walnuts, avocados, pine nuts, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, fresh basil, cold-pressed flax seed oil, and unrefined grey or pink sea salt. Other ingredients to consider include nuts, dried fruits, protein powder, chia or hemp seeds, and Spirulina, a protein-dense freshwater algae. Try these 11 tofu recipes even meat eaters will love.
Rethink how you shop for food
Many staples of a vegan diet like grains, beans, and nuts are cheap, and they usually store well if you buy them in bulk. Bechter also suggests you join a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture); shop at farmers’ markets an hour before closing for discounts; and visit vegancuts.com for daily deals and discounts on vegan food and lifestyle products. You can also find more grocery shopping tips in the book Eat Vegan on $4 a Day by Ellen Jaffe Jones or at the site Plant-Based on a Budget. These are the 10 best vegan foods to stock up on at Costco.