In May, I officially switched to a vegan lifestyle. I knew it would be a challenge because I ate a TON of dairy (especially cheese). But my body has healed so much in these last 2 months, I can’t wait to see what happens over the next 2.
For months before, I was having some really intense stomach pain. After seeing a naturopathic doctor and not really pin-pointing one issue, I started researching. I came across some vegan youtubers who really opened my eyes to the health and ethical side of veganism. I’ve even reached out to them and they’ve replied with advice and encouragement!
I researched and watched videos for about 2 weeks and then I made the switch overnight. The first two weeks were fantastic. I felt great. After those two weeks, the cravings hit me hard. I wanted dairy so badly, I was almost in tears. But I powered through and quite honestly, I’m really proud of myself. I’m now moving past the cravings and I’m becoming more comfortable cooking vegan and asking questions at restaurants making sure I can order vegan.
As I said, I’ve only been a vegan for about 2 months so I’m sure this post will be ever-changing with parts 2, 3, 4, and so on. But I thought I’d share some of the staples in my diet and some of my favorite foods that I’ve found.
I suppose this should go without saying in a vegan lifestyle, but veggies are just so so delicious! Avocados, squash, corn, zucchini, tomatoes, potatoes, onions, the list goes on and on. My absolute FAVORITE this summer is veggies on the grill. My parents have even fallen in love with grilled veggies when we cook out. (Seriously, try grilled corn, it’s incredible).
2) Rice, Quinoa and Couscous.
There is so much you can do with foods like rice, quinoa and couscous. Every time I’m at the grocery, I grab little packets like this that can cook in a microwave. You can eat it alone or add veggies or beans. It’s a quick meal.
Other times, I home make meals like rice and beans or a quinoa salad. But either way, it’s an staple in my diet that fills me with healthy calories and ENERGY!
3) Beanitos Hint of Lime Chips.
Yes. Chips. Made from white beans. When I walk down the grocery aisle and see these on the shelf I swear I can hear the hallelujah chorus. These babies are amazing. They’re a great snack.
4) Hummus and Pita Bread.
Hummus and pita bread have become absolute musts to keep around the house. (Here’s a pro-tip if you’re vegan and living in a house with people who aren’t eating vegan: keep plenty of snacks that vegan friendly around. If you get hungry and you only have foods that you have to cook, it’ll be easy to give in to your cravings). Hummus and pita are a sustainable, plant-based snack or a side to your meal!
5) Nutritional yeast.
Thank you God in Heaven for nutritional yeast seasoning. Holy moly, this stuff is a life changer. It is a seasoning that I add onto pastas or potatoes and it has a cheesy flavor. It also contains 100% of the vitamin B12 that I need daily in one teaspoon. It adds such good flavor to food and it’s super cheap in the seasoning aisle at any local grocery store.
Chipotle has become a HUGE part of my routine. I eat it at least 1-2 times a week.
Here’s what I order:
A bowl with white rice, black beans and corn salsa (they give me extra of everything since I don’t get meat). I also get a side of chips and guacamole (and the guacamole is FREE if you don’t get meat or tofu in your bowl)! It’s filling. It’s amazing. If you want to eat lunch with me theres a 95% chance I’ll suggest Chipotle. Chipotle makes me a happy herbivore.
7) Mellow Mushroom.
Mellow Mushroom is extremely vegan friendly, they even have a vegan menu. I don’t go here often, but when I’m craving a pizza, I know exactly where to go. Their crust is vegan and they carry vegan cheese so I can satisfy my inner pizza lover! If you’ve never been to a Mellow Mushroom, you’re missing out!
These past 2 months of my plant-based lifestyle have been more challenging and more incredible than I could have ever imagined. But I am SO thankful that I’ve made this switch.
This was just a tiny bit of information and some of my favorite things I wanted to share, but I would LOVE to share more.
Thanks for reading!