Sunday, December 12, 2010

Vegan Dairy Conversion

I use a lot of cheese, and milk, and even eggs in my recipes. And I also recently noticed that my go-to meat substitutes (Quorn) have egg whites in them. So, for my vegan readers and for myself during lent (I give up dairy, or try to at least, on Fridays since everyone else gives up meat), I'll post the vegan substitutes to be used in my recipes. This list is thanks, in part to, Always check labels as several vegetarian meat substitutes have been known to change ingredients and become non-vegan without notice. If you aren't dairy-free or vegan, and just want to try to limit your dairy intake, it's hard to do...dairy and animal by-products are hidden everywhere.

  • Bacon can be replaced by soy-based bacon strips (e.g. Fakin Baconbrand or Stonewall's Cajun Bacon)
  • Beef Jerky can be replaced by a soy-based jerky (e.g. Stonewall's Jerquee)
  • Butter is easily replaced by dairy-free margarine. Any brand made with non-hydrogenated oils is recommended (e.g.. Earth Balance orSpectrum brands).
  • Cakes and Brownies can be made with dairy-free, egg-free mixes (e.g. Pamela's brand)
  • Cheese can be replaced by soy- or rice-based cheese. Unfortunately, many brands still contain casein (a milk protein). A couple of brands which don't are Soymage and VeganRella.
  • Chicken can be replaced by seitan chicken in several brands, or field roast, depending on use.
  • Chocolate Bars are available without dairy, usually in the form of dark chocolate (e.g. Tropical Source brand).
  • Cookies can be made without eggs or dairy products. Several brands typically are available in natural food stores (e.g. Sunflour Cookies orBoston Cookies)
  • Cream Cheese is replaced by delicious soy-based alternatives (e.g. Tofutti or Soya Kaas brands).
  • Deli Meats can be replaced by soy- or gluten-based sandwich slices. Yves and Tofurky brands are very good and widely available. Shelf-stable brands exist too, such as Dixie Diner.
  • Eggs can be replaced in frying, egg salad, and baking. Mashed tofu combined with a little turmeric or with a mix (e.g. Tofu Helper or Fantastic Foods brands) is a nice alternative to scrambled eggs. Tasty tofu mixes are also available for easy eggless "egg" salad. Eggs can be replaced in baking too. For each egg, substitute a heaping teaspoon of soy flour and a tablespoon of water, or slightly less than a 1/4 cup of applesauce or mashed banana. Prepackaged substitutes for eggs in baking are also available (e.g. EnerG Egg Replacer or Orgran No Egg).
  • Gelatin is a protein obtained by boiling animal bones, tendons, ligaments, hooves, and/or skin. It is a common ingredient in jellied candies, frosted toaster pastries and cereals, Jell-O, etc. Alternatives include carrageenan, agar-agar, fruit pectin, and locust bean gum.
  • Ground Beef can be replaced by healthy soy-based varieties (e.g.Yves or Lightlife brands).
  • Hamburgers are easily replaced by soy-, grain-, or vegetable-based burgers. Some taste very much like traditional burgers (e.g.Gardenburger Flame-Grilled), while others have an original taste of their own (e.g. Dr. Praeger's). Shelf-stable mixes are available too, such as Harvest Direct.
  • Hot Dogs can be replaced by soy/tofu dogs. Several brands are now widely available.
  • Ice Cream is replaced by soy- or rice-based frozen desserts. Try Tofutti Supreme or, for a low-fat variety, Soy Delicious. Also, sorbet is almost always dairy free.
  • Ice Cream Sandwiches and Cookie Sandwiches can be replaced by soy-based alternatives (e.g. Tofutti Cuties and TooToos).
  • Jell-O is replaced by a similar, gelatin-free dessert (e.g.Superfruits brand).
  • Macaroni and Cheese can be replaced by a nondairy alternative (e.g.Macaroni and chReese by Roads End Organics)
  • Mayonnaise is easily replaced by eggless or tofu-based alternatives (e.g. Hain or Nayonaise brands)
  • Milk is replaced by soy milk, rice milk, almond milk, or oat milk. These are excellent replacements in baking too. There are dozens of brands available and they all taste different, so find the one that's right for you and the recipe.
  • Parmesan Cheese can be replaced by a soy-based parmesan alternative (e.g. Soymage brand).
  • Pizza Pepperoni is replaced by the soy-based varieties. The flavor and texture is the same, but without the grease. Try Yves or Lightlife brands.
  • Sausage can be replaced by soy/tofu sausage (e.g. Lightlife).
  • Sour Cream is replaced by a soy-based alternative (e.g. Tofutti Sour Supreme).
  • Whey is a serum obtained from cow's milk. Soybean whey is a good alternative.
  • Whipped Cream/Topping is replaced by a soy-based whipped topping (e.g. Hip Whip by Now and Zen).
  • Yogurt can be replaced by soy yogurt. Several brands are now available.

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