Kitchen Staples for Healthy Vegans
Our ‘Go Vegan in 5 Steps’ article is proof that switching to a plant-based diet has gotten so much easier. And to help you sustain this lifestyle, we’ve also listed down what every healthy and fit vegan should have in their arsenal — from basic spices to essential appliances.
Herbs and spices
Vegans know that it’s not really meat that gives a dish flavor. Instead, an array of spices — from your basic salt and pepper, to more regional aromatics like cardamom and paprika — can elevate any type of dish.
A list of the healthiest cooking oils by Self Magazine highlights that you have several other options than the well-loved and oft-touted olive oil. These include canola oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, and other nut oils that provide a healthy dose of fat.
Nuts and seeds
Healthy fat can also be sourced from nuts and seeds. They can be eaten as snacks, as additives to desserts, and can even be turned into plant-based cheese and other “dairy” products.
Grains and pastas
Grains and pastas are full of fiber, carbohydrates, and even protein, especially with staples like brown rice, quinoa, and barley. You can cook a batch of your chosen base and create a wholesome bowl of sorts. Something like a brown rice base with satay tempeh and microgreens sounds like a perfect, healthy meal!
Legumes are a vegan’s go-to for protein, a macronutrient that’s important in muscle growth and recovery. Fortunately, there’s no shortage of legumes you can eat, including chickpeas, kidney beans, edamame, lentils, tempeh, soy, and pinto beans. They’re affordable and more sustainable for our planet than common grains like wheat, according to The Guardian. Plus, they’re also incredibly versatile. They can be turned into soups, salads, and mock meats — chickpea nuggets, anyone?
Except for honey, almost all sweeteners are vegan. You can use alternatives like maple syrup, agave, and coconut nectar for your baked desserts.
Non-dairy milk like soy, coconut, and almond are essential to making breakfast, dessert, and even savory dishes like curries.
Essential kitchen tools
An oven is a must-have for baking bread, making pastries, and roasting vegetables, amongst other things. You can do so much with even an oven toaster, and baking is a much healthier alternative to frying ingredients.
But if you’re really craving for something crispy, you can use an air fryer instead. It requires little to no oil to come up with dishes that are guiltlessly crispy — all it really needs is hot air! This type of kitchen tool is ideal for making comfort foods like cauliflower pops, french fries, and crispy plant-based bacon.
Multi-functional rice cooker
Given that grains are a staple for healthy vegan eating, you’ll need a rice cooker in your equipment list. There are so many rice cookers available today, which could make shopping for one overwhelming. To help you narrow down your choices, California-based review platform We Know Rice features different types of rice cookers with varying functions. Some can come with additional features like cooking plates that let you cook two dishes simultaneously — perfect for when you have limited time for meal prep. Looking for multi-functional appliances is key to making your kitchen life easier and saving precious countertop space.
Food processor and blender
Speaking of multi-functional, buying guide platform Wise Pick points out that a food processor and blender all in one is a kitchen must-have. Some of the things you can do with it include chopping ingredients, whipping up green smoothies, and making home-made nut cheese.
An assortment of jars is perfect for storing all your dry ingredients in one cupboard. Don’t forget to put labels on each, so you can get more inspired to cook more nourishing vegan meals!
For more on science-backed recipes and great tips for fostering a sustainable and healthy vegan lifestyle, do explore our site here at Crownhealth.