Written by: Lauren Durso | Managing Director at Coconut Cloud
This is our second year participating in ‘Veganuary’ – a challenge in which you go vegan (not eating or using animal products) for the month of January. Veganuary has actually become it’s own established non-profit organization, encouraging people worldwide to try vegan for January and beyond. Throughout the year, this organization also encourages and supports people and businesses alike to move to a plant-based diet as a way of protecting the environment, preventing animal suffering, and improving the health of millions of people.
We love their mission statement and as a brand producing a full collection of vegan friendly drink mixes, we’re on board!
Going vegan for 31 days can be a drastic challenge and change for some, or just a minor tweak/change for others who already follow a mostly plant-based diet.
For those of us who found the struggle to be real (my hand is up!), we found 5 handy hacks that made it a little easier to commit to going vegan, AND that made plant-focused shopping and meal prep just a little easier. Check out our tips and tricks below and try some out for yourself. We think you’ll find these clever hacks useful even in your non-vegan moments!
1. Follow the “Clean 15” and “Dirty Dozen”
You might have heard that loading up on Organic fruits and veggies is best practice (if available to you) when trying to make healthier choices and improve overall nutrient consumption. But going Organic on everything can get real expensive, real quick! By following these produce cheat sheets, the Clean 15 and Dirty Dozen, you can easily pick and choose which items make the most sense to buy in Organic, and which ones you can go conventional on. Happy shopping!
2. Staying vegan while traveling or on-the-go
Giving vegan a go for 31 days doesn’t mean you have to eat every mean at home, and, we know that people’s lives must go on – which means traveling, eating out, etc. If you still want to stick to vegan when you are traveling or eating out, this Happy Cow app is just what you need. This website/app lets you enter any zip code and it will pull up all the vegan restaurants/vegan eats in your area. And the best part is..it doesn’t even take up space in your suitcase.
3. Give international dishes/cuisine a try
Let’s face it, cooking 31 days worth of vegan-only meals, 3x a day, can feel daunting if it’s not in your normal wheelhouse; not to mention running out of creative meal ideas after week one! Instead of only sticking to the traditional weeknight classic meal ideas, give international dishes/cuisine a try. Indian cuisine especially lends itself to some delicious, flavor-forward options that are inherently vegan by already being veggie and grain forward by nature. This list from Rainbow Plant Life gives an awesome collection of 40 vegan Indian recipes that are worth a try. Additionally, this blog from Vegan On Board also gives 50+ vegan recipes from around the world.
4. Mug cake mix, in bulk!
Just because you’re going plant-based for a month doesn’t mean you have to give up some of those sweet treats that you’re craving. There are TONS of amazing vegan dessert recipes that will hit the spot and one to check out ASAP is our recipe for this bulk vegan chocolate mug cake mix. What’s extra awesome about this recipe is that you make the mix ahead of time and always have it on hand when that chocolate craving hits. Instead of reaching for something laden with bad fats and refined sugars, you can whip up a healthier single serve chocolate mug cake in a matter of minutes! If you aren’t in the mood for mug cake, try one our Coconut Cloud Frappe drinks instead. These indulgent delights are creamy, frosty and oh-so vegan!
5. Ice cube tray hack to save you time
Put that extra $0.99 cent plastic ice cube tray in your cupboard to good use! To make flavorful, vegan cooking fast and easy, spend a few extra minutes at the beginning of the month prepping these herb and olive oil cubes. Simply chop up some your favorite fresh herbs (we like basil, parsley, garlic, and rosemary) and place them each in their own ice cube tray well. Cover/submerge with good quality olive oil and place in the freezer. When you want to sauté up some veggies or make a tasty sauce, simply pop out a cube into the hot pan and voila! instant flavor. You can also do this with nut milk for quick shortcuts to smoothies – simply freeze a tray of nut milk/plant milk cubes and throw a few into your next smoothie; no ice needed!