Coming up with a range of good vegan-friendly meals can be a daunting proposition. Not to fret! With a little bit of planning and a well thought out shopping list at your disposal, you can fill your pantry with a diverse set of foods. We've got you covered with a list of a few staples that you'll always want to keep on hand.
You'll first want to stock your pantry with your starches. These can include bread, rice, udon noodles, quinoa, potatoes, popcorn, and pasta. There is a common misconception that bread and pasta are not vegan-friendly.
In nearly all cases, this is not true, but you should check the list of ingredients if you want to be absolutely sure. Look for a vegan logo that shows the product is certified so you know it’s truly vegan.
You'll want a source of soy protein such as tofu, tempeh, and edamame. These are a great way to ingest essential amino acids and are also a flexible cooking agent.
Consider also keeping some lentils, beans, and chickpeas on hand. They can be included in salads and soups and, in addition to protein, they are also a useful source of carbs.
For a delicious snack, keep some hummus, which can be made from chickpeas or pine nuts, as it is great for both dipping and spreading.
You'll want a selection of your favorite fruits and vegetables. It can be anything you choose, but as a suggestion, include vegetables such as eggplant, cucumber, broccoli, and nori, which is a lightly roasted seaweed.
Nori is great because it can be rolled with rice to create sushi. Fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, and bananas are a great source of vitamins and natural sugars for a quick energy boost throughout the day. You may also want to keep some frozen fruits and veggies on hand, as they are fantastic for making smoothies.
Another useful fruit product to keep around is tomato. Keep both full tomatoes and tomato-based sauce on hand to combine with pasta for a balanced, easy to make an Italian dish.
Nutritional yeast is a great cheese substitute containing both protein and fiber. It can be mixed with mashed potatoes, scrambled tofu, or even sprinkled on top of pasta or popcorn. It is also an excellent source for your B-vitamins.
Next, you'll want a few spices in your cabinet to add flavor to your dishes. It's always a good idea to have some garlic, and on top of that, you may want to pick up some cumin, turmeric, coriander, paprika, and some crushed red pepper.
You'll want to expand your spice cabinet as time goes on, but a few of these in your cabinet will make all the difference in taking your food to a whole new level of deliciousness.
Keeping a well-stocked pantry vegan-friendly is easier than you think, and as long as you make your list ahead of time, you won't get overwhelmed by the vast selection of products in the supermarket… Good luck, and good eating!