More and more people are trying out the plant-based diet. It’s easy to see why. Aside from the ethical concerns over eating our fellow living creatures, the environmental impact is enough to make anyone give it some thought. On top of all that, there are extensive of health benefits to adopting a plant-based diet. Longer lifespans, lower rates of cancer and organ failure, and improved gut and heart health are just a few of the reasons for going plant based.

All too often, people who try going plant-based have a tough time sticking with it. Many plant based eaters who give up on the diet cite the difficulty of ‘going cold turkey’ as  reason for their replase. This is one reason why finding substitutes for the foods you used to enjoy is so important.

As much as some people want to dip their toes into a plant-based diet, it’s not as simple as one might think. If you’re thinking of going plant-based, one of the biggest concerns is what you’re going to eat and drink for your meal staples. As someone who may have grown up eating meat for every meal or milk and eggs every morning, the thought of giving up animal products may seem a daunting prospect.

If you or someone you know is considering a plant-based diet, there are a multitude of replacements for first-timers to make sure they stay tried and true! Going plant-based is a big undertaking, and there’s no reason not to give yourself all the support you need!

Meat Substitutes

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For many, giving up the taste of meat is the most unthinkable part of going plant-based. Luckily, you don’t have to! Delicious plant protein replacements abound. Whether you’re looking to replace your barbeque burger or chicken nuggets with Beyond Meat or Gardien, or substitute your sandwich meat with Lightlife, there has never been a better time to try plant-based meat alternatives. Jackfruit has been considered an excellent meat-replacer lately as well, and scientist are working around the clock to make better and better meat substitutes.

Not only are plant-based proteins not only taste delicious, they are far, far better for the environment.

That said, there’s no need for meat substitutes to get your protein. You can find all the protein you need in the plants you eat, so don’t steer clear of the lentil and bean aisle at the grocery store. Of course there’s no reason to ignore all the delicious meat proteins on the market either!

Egg Replacers

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Replacing meat is easy enough. The texture can be replicated much easier than our next contestant: Eggs! For anyone who loves runny eggs benedict and fluffy scrambles, it can be hard letting go. Thankfully, Just Egg Replacer goes nationwide next year. Bob’s Red Mill has its own brand of egg replacer, as does Ener-G Foods, Follow Your Heart VeganEgg, Orgran (also gluten-free!) and The Vegg.

Non-Dairy Milk 

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For many, non-dairy milk was the gateway to animal-product replacements. The silky, fulfilling taste of milk is one of our first comfort foods, perhaps why it’s often the first animal product we start to miss. Pea-Based milk is high in protein and lacks gluten and soy, like Bolthouse Farms. If you’re more interested in whole grains, flax milk , like the Good Karma brand may have what you need. Oat milk provides a thick rich flavor, and is manufactured by brands such as Pacific Foods and Oatly. For Almond milk, one of the less caloric of the milk substitutes, you can find what you need from Califia Farms, Almond Breeze, and Silk. For Soy, your options don’t end, with Soy Dream, Silk, and Pacific Foods all offering their own flavors.

Plant-Based Mayonnaise

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Mayonnaise has, at least for a while, been the best-selling condiment in the United States. Your burgers, fries, and onion rings just aren’t the same without it’s rich, faty flavor. If you can’t get over the tangy taste of mayo, try Chosen Foods Vegan MayoFollow Your Heart Original Veganaise, or Sir Kensington’s Fabanaise to give your food that tasty, delicious spread.

Love plant-based eating? Check out the Food Monster App, which is available for both Android and iPhone, and can also be found on Instagram and Facebook. The app has more than 10,000 plant-based, allergy-friendly recipes, and subscribers gain access to new recipes every day. Check it out!

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