8 Easy Vegan Food Swaps That Will Improve Your Health!
Hi! I’m Sheena, the lady behind @healthyfoodlady on Instagram.
My account was started as a personal project to improve my eating habits; which is to include more greens and fibre into my diet. I still remember years ago, the only vegetables I used to eat were just spinach and broccoli.
Instagram has become my platform where I share the plant-based foods I made and ate. I wish to spread the importance of healthy balanced eating and help inspire others to nourish themselves with nutritious plant-based foods as I believe a large part of our overall health stems from the foods that we consume.
Today, I’m here to help anyone out there who would like to improve their eating habits by providing ideas and tips on how you can incorporate plant-based foods into your diet!
My 8 Easy Wholefoods Vegan food Swaps
- Tofu – I have friends who do not like tofu because they find it bland. But I actually like how versatile it is! You can steam it, fry it, bake it or even scramble it to make some scrambled tofu. To make tofu tasty, try marinating them overnight and then pan fry or bake them. I usually either marinade mine in maple tamari/peanut sauce or just have it with simple spices like pink salt, cayenne and paprika. Yum! Also, if you want crispy tofu, remember to choose a firm tofu and drain the excess water by sandwiching it between two plates.
Photo by Ella Olsson on Unsplash
- Tempeh – Another of my go to meat substitute! Tempeh has more texture than tofu and it’s a great probiotic. I think I started falling in love with this fermented soy bean when I first tried the tempeh burger from Nomvnom. Similar to tofu, I usually bake or pan fry my tempeh after marinating them in some maple teriyaki glaze. If you like spicy food, try making some sambal goreng tempeh (fried tempeh in sambal sauce). I had this when I was in Bali and it definitely packs a punch!
- Jackfruit – While most will think of this as the sweet fruit that we eat, I am actually referring to savoury Jackfruit dishes. I recently had this Rendang Jackfruit Puffs by RendangMamaVegan and it really blew my mind. The texture reminded me of pulled pork and it was tasty and flavourful. Better than the traditional sardine puffs in my opinion. I might possibly experiment with this ingredient more in the future 😉
- Mushrooms – I love mushrooms! With a variety of mushrooms to choose from – White/Brown Button, Portobello, Shimeji, Oyster, Enoki, Shitake, Porcini, Monkey Head Mushroom and more, there’s so much you can experiment with. I usually use white/brown button mushrooms when I cook pasta and shimeji mushrooms when I cook fried rice or soup noodles. I also enjoy having Monkey Head Mushroom when I dine out as it gives a really meaty texture. This will be a great meat substitute for anyone who wants to reduce their meat consumption 😊
- Beans – Not only are beans a good source of protein, it also keeps you satiated and is full of fibre. They are also really wallet-friendly! My favourite bean will be Chickpeas because I can experiment with different flavours of hummus and make roasted chickpeas with it. Be it hummus served with warm pita bread, or as a veggie dip, or even roasted spiced chickpeas for a healthy snack alternative, there’s so many things you can make with them. Also, I got to give a shout out to Andrea’s Cacao Fudge Squares, which is made using black beans to make it nutritious and wholesome for everyone. Please try it if you haven’t already, it’s really good!
- Avocado – For the Kaya Butter Toasts fans, why not try avocado instead of butter? I usually have them on toast with a sprinkle of pink salt and cayenne. Its creamy and full of healthy fat 😊 If you really dislike avocados, you can also opt for nut or seed butters.
- Soy, Oat or Almond Milk – Instead of dairy milk, switch it up with a plant-based alternative like soy or nut milk. If you prefer a milkier taste, go for oat or soy! If not, you can try almond milk, which is milder and nuttier. I usually have this with oatmeal or when I make my cacao/matcha latte at home. My usual brands are Tesco or Pacific Foods. Many cafes are also introducing plant milk into their menu so you could give it a go!
Photo credit: pamela_d_mcadams - Getty Images
- Nutritional Yeast – This is one essential ingredient when it comes to creating that cheesy flavour. Try making your own version of Mac and Cheese using Cashew nuts, soy or nut milk and nutritional yeast! It is also rich in Vitamin B12, which is essential for our red blood cell production and our nervous system.
- Vegan Cheese - For cheese lovers out there, there are even vegan cheese options now such as Daiya Foods or Kroodi (available at some Cold Storage outlets, or Redmart). If you don’t want to purchase a whole pack of cheese, you can easily try them at restaurants like PizzaExpress on their vegan pizzas, or Veganburg and Nomvnom in their burgers.
I hope sharing my favourite plant-based food swaps can help inspire you to incorporate more of these into your daily diet.
Wishing all of you the best of health! 😊
Thanks Sheena for your tips and please follow @HealthyFoodLady if you enjoyed her tips!.
Leave a comment below on which is YOUR favourite food swap that you'd like to try!
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