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Veganize your family recipes

Veganism has seen a popularity
boost in recent years, since
Oprah Winfrey launched her
vegan challenge in 2011 and
former U.S. President Bill
Clinton and CBC’s George
Stroumboulopoulos made the
switch to an animal-free diet.
Many Canadians are seeking
alternatives to meat, cheese
and dairy products – or ways
to eat less of those foods – be it
to improve their health or the
environment. What do you
do when you have a houseful
to feed, or one vegan amongst
a family of omnivores? We
enlisted Evan, Amelia and
Natalie to help us veganize a few
family-friendly recipes, from
breakfast to dinner and dessert.

Now cut
that out!

If you’re new to
the vegan lifestyle
and looking to
adapt your favourite
recipes, here are
some tips on

Cheese: There are several
varieties of vegan cheese on
the market; some cooks use
nutritional yeast flakes, which
have a cheesy flavour, to top
pasta and other dishes.

Butter: Non-dairy margarine
works well in baked goods;
canola and mild olive oils are
great in cakes, muffins and
quickbreads, as well as in
everyday cooking.

Milk: Soy, almond, rice and
coconut milk make delicious
substitutions, although rice
milk tends to be watery and
is not the best option for
many applications. To make
buttermilk, stir 1 tbsp lemon
juice or vinegar into a cup of
any of these, and let sit for
five minutes, until it thickens
slightly. Alternatively, whisk 3
tbsp vegan yogurt into a cup
of any of the above.

Ground Beef: Try
vegan crumbles, such as Yves
Ground Round or similar
store-brand meat substitutes,
to use in pasta sauces, tacos,
chili, sloppy Joes and the like.

Eggs: This can be tricky.
Depending on the recipe
some have success with
mashed banana (1 banana per
2 eggs) or make an egg substitute
for baked goods out of
flax meal: bring 1 part ground
flaxseed to 2 parts water to
a simmer, remove from heat
and let cool. Use 3 tbsp for
every egg called for in a
recipe, but avoid recipes that
are particularly egg-heavy.

Beef or Chicken Stock: Use onion or vegetable stock.
For recipes visit

Mayonnaise: There are
several varieties of vegan
mayonnaise on the market,
or substitute soy yogurt.

Originally published in ParentsCanada magazine, April 2013.

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