If you thought that going vegan would mean having to give up some of your favourite dairy items like cheese, eggs, and butter, think again – nowadays, there are so many wonderful alternatives available (all of which are stocked at Spinneys stores) that not only can you still enjoy these things, you may actually like them even more than the “real thing”. Much like plant milks, vegan cheese – also known as non-dairy or plant cheeses – can be made with anything from cashews, soybeans, rice, almonds, or other nuts, as well as seeds such as sesame or sunflower seeds, and are often given texture or flavoured with ingredients like coconut oil or nutritional yeast. Vegan eggs – which are shown to have less cholesterol than regular eggs – are another plant-based product that are made with a variety of ingredients such as algae protein or algal flour, or peas, beans, and other plants. While there have been plenty of egg substitutes within recipes that call for them as a binder or simply for texture over the years (such as banana, ground and soaked flax seed, applesauce, or tofu, for instance), the great thing about vegan eggs is that they also retain the structure and texture of eggs – so rather than simply incorporating them into traditional egg-involving recipes, you can actually really enjoy them on their own. Meanwhile, much like margarine, vegan butter is made from vegetable oils (and is often still labelled as such), and nowadays, they’re such great substitutes for traditional butter that if you’re trying not to consume dairy or animal-based products, you won’t even taste the difference.
How do you use it?
Vegan cheeses can come in a variety of textures and flavours, from bries and goudas to spreadable soft cheeses and more. As such, they can be used in a multitude of ways, just as you would with “normal” cheese. Spread them onto bread, enjoy them with crackers, whip them into omelettes and frittatas, or use them in pasta dishes, lasagne, and creamy cheesy bakes. You can also use them in desserts such as cheesecake and parfaits, and in sauces, dips, and more. The possibilities are endless. With vegan eggs, the same applies – especially if you’re using them in recipes where the egg is incorporated into the recipe, such as cakes or breads for instance – but the beauty of these is that they can be enjoyed on their own just as you would with an actual egg: Scrambled, fried, as Benedict, you name it! As for vegan butter? Well, that’s pretty straightforward, but let’s just say you won’t believe it’s not butter.
If you think pancakes, cakes, and breads are off-menu in a vegan diet due to their dairy content, think again – thanks to products like vegan eggs, vegan butter, and vegan cheese, they’re easier than ever to create a vegan version of. Here’s another surprise: There are actually a fair amount of popular snack products out there (such as Skittles and Oreos) that are, in fact, always vegan. You know what else is made easily possible thanks to ingredients like vegan dairy products? Vegan chocolate!