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Making Vegan Substitutes: Tips for Swapping Meat, Dairy, and Eggs

Making the transition to a vegan diet can be challenging, especially if you’re used to regularly consuming animal products. But, finding vegan substitutes for meat, dairy, and eggs could be easier than you think. Here are just some of our favorite ones.

Meat Substitutes

Let’s start with the meat. There are so many amazing meat substitutes available in grocery stores nowadays, that it’s hard to pick our favorite ones. However, to keep things simple and accessible, we will stick to the classics. 


Tofu is a fantastic meat substitute that can be used in a variety of dishes. It’s high in protein and can be seasoned to mimic the flavor of the meat. Try crumbling it and using it as a substitute for ground meat in dishes like tacos, spaghetti sauce, lasagna, or chili.


This alternative is made from fermented soybeans, which means that it’s rich in fiber and protein. Tempeh has a nutty flavor and firm texture, which means that it’s a great substitute for chicken in dishes like stir-fry or sandwiches.

Dairy Substitutes

So many people are giving up on dairy, even if they aren’t following a vegan lifestyle. They have noticed a reduction in bloating, acne, and other digestive issues. Here are just some of our favorite substitutes.

Non-dairy milk 

This is a no-brainer! And they are SO MANY to choose from — almond, soy, oat, or even potato milk! They will work great for cooking, but also in coffee or tea.  

Vegan cheese 

Who says that vegans have to give up on cheese? There are plenty of vegan cheese alternatives to choose from. Most of them are made from healthy and nutritious ingredients such as nuts, soy, or coconut oil. There are also many different types of vegan cheese, including mozzarella, cheddar, and cream cheese. You can use them in sandwiches, on pizza, or in casseroles.

Egg Substitutes

Even if you aren’t a vegan, these recent egg prices may be pushing you to find a good replacement. And luckily — there are plenty of them out there. Here are just some of our favorite vegan options. 


If you’re a lover of hummus or falafel, you probably already know that aquafaba is the liquid from a can of chickpeas. While this liquid is great to add to any hummus recipe to make it creamier, it can also be used as an egg white substitute in baking recipes.

Silken tofu

Another great way to use tofu is as an egg replacement. However, not any tofu will do. You will have to opt for the smoother version of it. Silken tofu can be blended and used as an egg substitute in recipes like quiches or custards.

Don’t Forget About Spices and Flavorings

The secret to making vegan alternatives taste good and amazing is by using different spices and flavorings. In fact, this is the secret to making any dish taste a thousand times better. For example, if you want to give meat alternatives a smokey flavor, you can try adding liquid smoke, smoked paprika, or soy sauce. Basil, thyme, and oregano are just some of the herbs that can give vegan sauces and dressings a richer flavor. Don’t be shy to experiment to find the best combinations that suit your taste buds. 

Choosing the Right Substitute

Last but not least — different substitutes will work for different meals. For instance, silken tofu can work much better in a stew where you want a smoother texture as opposed to tofu or tempeh in a meal like a stir-fry where you want a firmer consistency. Similar to how certain alternatives could taste better than others, you might need to change the kind or quantity of spices and seasonings you use. It will take some time to get used to it, but trust me when I tell you that it will be so well worth it in the long run.


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