10 Companies You Didn’t Know were Vegan

Vegans avoid all animal products when possible. Part of being a vegan is avoiding non vegan brands in other products besides food. It can be easy to shop vegan. Though it may not be possible to use vegan products 100% of the time, people who are vegan may come up with personal items they avoid (e.g. they avoid leather, but still buy beauty products with beeswax). Here are some vegan alternatives to products other than food.

  1. Did you know glue sometimes isn’t vegan? EcoGlue is a completely vegan glue you can use for daily use or any of your craft projects. Animal glue is traditionally used in paper and wood processing, bookbinding, painting, conservation/restoration and for making musical instruments and furniture. Making your own items or buying handmade or vegan brands is one way to make sure the glue used is vegan.
  2. Do you use beeswax? Beeswax is used in bookbinding and some beauty products. I found a vegan beeswax called
  3. Poppy’s Cleaners
  4. Faux leather, sometimes caused pleather, is not too hard to find. Did you know that products that qualify as vegan or faux leather can be made from materials as varied as cork, barkcloth, glazed cotton, waxed cotton, paper, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), and polyurethane.
  5. Photos, both printed commercially and at-home, use paper that contains gelatin. Non-photo quality paper avoids gelatin.
  6. Bone fine china tableware can contain animal bones. Earthenware or porcelain that’s creamy white is usually vegan. Find china that’s origin is mineral.
  7. Many makeup brands are vegan if you check the labels. Urban Decay came out with a Vegan Palette that’s both vegan and uses vegan inspired colors. I have seen seen popular brands, like Bobbi Brown, carry vegan products. Looking for natural brands or handmade beauty products is always a good idea.
  8. Lush often has vegan bath products that use natural ingredients. I also love being soap on Etsy. Just search for “vegan” in the search bar and tag your items vegan if you carry vegan products in your shop.
  9. Vegan clothing is not hard to find. High end brands often carry vegan products. For example, Nine West carries some high end vegan products.
  10. Kat Mendenhall sells the first 100% vegan true Texas style cowboy boots on the market.
  11. Love shoes? Just type in the word vegan when searching for products on Zappos. vegan http://www.zappos.com/ Kat Mendenhall sells the first 100% vegan true Texas style cowboy boots on the market.

Want to find more vegan brands. Get my free printable with a list of vegan brands.

 

3 Vegan Cheese Sauces

Have you ever tried making vegan cheese sauces? I missed cheese when I became vegan and I am always looking for a good cheese alternative. These are three of my favorite cheese alternative recipes.

Basic Cheesy Nutritional Yeast Sauce 

The secret ingredient to this cheese sauce is the nutritional yeast which gives the sauce a cheesy flavor. You can find nutritional yeast at most grocery stores or health food stores.

Ingredients: 

  • 2 tablespoons Earth Balance or butter alternative
  • 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
  • 6 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 3/4 cup soymilk
  • 2 teaspoons mustard (I have also used mustard powder)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

1. Mix the flour and milk together in a medium bowl until all the flour clumps are gone.

2. In a large pot, melt the butter spread over medium heat.  Add soymilk and flour mixture and nutritional yeast to pot and stir.

3. Reduce heat to low-medium. Add additional ingredients and cook 5-10 minutes or until the sauce thickens. Add additional flour to thicken sauce if needed.

Potato Carrot Cheese Sauce

This is similar to the above recipe, but it uses vegetables.

Ingredients: 

  • 2 cups potatoes, peeled
  • 1 cup carrots, peeled
  • 1/3 cup melted Earth Balance or oil
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon lemon jioce
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

1. Chop the potatoes and carrots and boil them for about half hour or until tender.

2. Blend all ingredients together or combine or a large bowl.

Daiya Cheese Sauce

If you want to use a fake cheese alternative to make melted cheese sauce, I love the Daiya cheese brand,

Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup cooked white cannellini beans
  • 1/2 cup soymilk
  • 1/3 cup Daiya vegan cheese shreds
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon Earth Balance or olive oil
  • 1 teaspooon turmeric (to give it color)

Instructions:

1. Mash or blend the beans with the soymilk, Earth Balance, turmeric and salt and pepper.

2. Heat on low over medium heat. Add the cheese and cook, stirring, until the cheese is melted.

Let me know if you try any of these sauces out.

8 Popsicle Recipes to Try Out

Homemade popsicles are perfect for hot weather. While it is still summer, why not trying making your own popsicles? They are not too hard to make. These are some popsicle recipes I found on Pinterest that I would love to try out.

Yellow Popsicles

I love the bright yellow color and hint of chocolate on these Chocolate Passionfruit Popsicles.

Cookies and Cream Popsicles

These Cookies and Coconut Cream Popsicles are vegan and use coconut milk and Oreo cookies for a cookies and cream flavor.

These Blackberry Ombre Popsicles get their natural color from the blackberries.

For a breakfast treat, try these Easy Breakfast Yogurt Popsicles

Try making Thai Iced Tea Popsicles.

Carrot Cake Popsicles

For something unique, try this Carrot Cake Cream Cheese Pudding Pops recipe.

Mint Popsicles

I would love to try these Mint Chocolate Dip Popsicles that are also vegan.

Berry Popsicles

These Pitaya Rosewater Berry Popsicles use frozen strawberries to give them a berry taste.

Have you ever made your own popsicles?

Lucky Charms Inspiration

This post was inspired by the first color palette of Lucky Charms. Lucky Charms is a brand of cereal that includes toasted oat pieces and multi-colored marshmallow bits. Lucky Charms is the first cereal to include marshmallows in it.

Lucky Charms

Lucky Charms

Lucky Charms Recipes

Lucky Charms Recipes

Lucky Charms Recipes

Where do you find food inspiration?

 

Hello Fresh Review

Would you buy groceries online? I have been doing some of my grocery shopping at shops online lately.

Hello Fresh is a grocery delivery service that delivers fresh food to you to. You can chose to get weekly, biweekly or monthly deliveries.

Hello Fresh

Instead of picking out food, they send you three recipes to try out each week and all the ingredients that go in a recipe. I wanted to try out their Veggie Box. It is for vegetarians, not vegans, but I was able to make the food vegan by leaving out a couple ingredients.

Hello Fresh

These are some of the recipes I tried out. They were all delicious. My favorite sofar was the Greek Salad Flatbreads. Recipes give clear step by step instructions with pictures. I had to replace the mozzarella for the flatbreads with vegan mozzarella, which I got at Whole Foods (you could also just leave it out if you are vegan or have a food allergy).

The price is a little expensive at $60 if you want to save money. The meals can serve more than one person. Hello Fresh is kind of like a mix between cooking for yourself and take out. It was my first time trying out one of these services.

Want to try out Hello Fresh yourself? With my unique code ANNLEEH, you will receive $40 off your first box, and you will receive $20 off of your next box as well!

What food services do you use?

How to Sell Vegan Products

How to Make.Vegan Products

Want to make handmade products to sell that are also vegan to sell on Etsy or other paces? I always try to make sure my products are vegan and cruelty free o my Etsy shop. A vegans defined as someone who avoids all animal products including leather, fur, beeswax and other animal byproducts.These are some tips I use when making vegan products.

Source your materials.
When finding materials, check to make sure they are vegan. Do they use leather? Do they use beeswax or animal products? When bookbinding. I make sure not to use beeswax in my products. Beeswax is often used  on I Thread in bookbinding when using the Coptic story method to sew the pages together. You can find a vegan beeswax alternative, but usually I just do without it.

Check if an item is tested on animals.
Another thing to check whe sourcing materials is if a product is tested on animals. This is especially important for beauty products. You can also check for other details such as if the product is organic.

Ask if something is vegan.
If you are not sure if a product is vegan, ask the shop owner or email the company. It doesn’t hurt to ask or double check.

Can you sell food?
If you want to make vegan food products to sell, make sure it is okay in your state to sell food products and check for all the rules and regulations. It is generally okay to sell food on Etsy if you follow government regulations. Check this article on Etsy for more information on food products.

Consider packaging. 
Your packaging should also be vegan or eco friendly if possible. Will you use leftover materials to make your products more eco friendly? Is there a certain style you want for your packaging? Consider all these elements when designing your products.

Make a note that your products are vegan.
In your policies or about page, mention your products are vegan and don’t use animal products. Some customers may like to know details on a product and if it is a vegan.
Do you sell vegan products? Let me know your best tips in the comments.

Would You Buy Groceries Online?

Would you buy groceries online? I have been doing some of my grocery shopping at shops online lately.

Peapod is an online grocery store with a variety of products. Groceries are delivered right to your door which makes the the process quick and easy. These are some pros of Peapod:

  • Carry a variety of brand name products
  • Offer non food products such as beauty and pet products
  • Save money with exclusive discounts anff the opportunity to double manufacturer coupons up to $.99

These are the downsides:

  • Must be home when groceries are delivered to pick them up which could be an inconvience
  • Can be harder to find vegetarian or vegan products, though they offer some vegetarian/vegan brands
  • There a fee for delivery and minimum order must be $60

Some vegan brands I was able to find include Beanitos, Daiya and Earth Balance. I tried a new coconut spread from Earth Balance I had I liked. I also tried Peapod’s brand name pizza dough which was pretty good.

Want $20 off your first purchase? Just use my referral code here.

VitaCost is another service I have been trying out.  They are like Peapod, but focus more on health food than general grocery items. These are some things I liked most about VitaCost:

  • Vitacost.com carries over 45,000 different healthy products that include health foods, sports nutrition, home products and beauty
  • Products are up to 50% off retail price as well as exclusive discounts

These are the cons:

  • I found it was more for speciality packaged products than general grocery items I needed and you can’t find fresh food
  • I had a problem with delivery and they

I also tried out Hello Fresh, which is not exactly a grocery store, but a delivery services that sends you ingredients for meals you prepare. I am going to do a review on Hello Fresh next week along with some recipes I tried.

What grocery service do you like?

What’s On My Vegan Bookshelf

Vegan Bookshelf

Thinking of going vegan? These are some of my favorite vegan books with recipes or tips on going vegan.

  • Student’s Go Vegan Cookbook by Carole Raymond: This was one of the first cookbooks I picked up when I became vegetarian. I like these recipes because they are easy to make and don’t need a lot of complicated ingredients. It is a great book to start with if you are a new vegetarian or vegan or if you are a student going to college.
  • Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser: I read Fast Food Nation when I was younger when I first became vegetarian. I liked the information in this book and learning about the fast food industry. There is also a film version of this book.
  • The Kind Life by Alicia Silverstone: This book has tips for following a vegan diet. It was written by the actress, Alicia Silverstone. I like this book because it talks about the health benefits of a macrobiotic diet.
  • Color Me Vegan by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau: This author has a lot of good cookbooks. I found the author from listening to her Food for Thought program. This cookbook takes a different approach and breaks up recipes by color. It also talks about the nutritional value of different colors. I especially loved the avocado pudding.
  • The Complete Guide to Vegan Food Substitutions by Jonie Marie Newman: This book has a lot of helpful information about vegan substitutes with lots of recipes to try. I haven’t tried a lot of recipes in this cookbook myself, but I like to keep tr book for reference.
  • Food Rules by Michael Pollan: Not necessarily about being vegan, but this book has a lot of good tips about food and cooking in general. For examples, some tips are to eat slowly, eat mostly plants and don’t eat products with more than five ingredients when you can. I like the tips in this book because they are simple rules for eating well. The tips are organized as a manual so it is a good book to just keep in your kitchen or read a page a day. I actually met Michael Pollan because I heard him speak and got this book signed when I met him.
  • Vegan Stories: I picked up this book on a swap website. It has stories from vegans all around the world. It also has poems related to veganism. I haven’t read a lot of it to be honest, but I liked the concept of this book so I wanted to include it on the list too.
  • Skinny Bitch by Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin: This is a fun book about going vegan and starting a healthy lifestyle. It uses lots of swearing in its writing style. It talks about the food industry and the health benefits of going vegan. It also has a recipe plan for new vegans.
  • Cooking with Compassion: This cookbook is from Etsy and had vegan recipes from the members of Vegan Etsy, Cruelty Free Etsy and EtsyVeg teams. I actually have a recipe in this book from being part of the EtsyVeg team. It is a small, paper book that has recipes from other Etsy members. I do not know if this book is still for sale, but you can look on Etsy or similar places for vegan cookbooks or recipes.
  • Vegan Made Easy by Anna Leehey: I have my own vegan cookbook all about going vegan. It is a simple guide for new vegans. Check it out if you want to support me and are interested in veganism.

What are your favorite vegan books?

How to Make a Sushi Bowl

Have you ever wanted to make your own sushi bowl? This recipe is easy to make and you can use whatever ingredients you have.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sushi rice
  • Nori sheets
  • Carrots
  • Avocado, chopped
  • Salad greens (optional)
  • Soy sauce or other toppings

Instructions: 

1. To prepare the ingredients, chop the. vegetables how you like them. I sliced the carrots in to thin strips. You can add other vegetables you have. Cut the nori sheets in to thin strips lengthwise. I also cut my strips in half.

2. Cook the sushi rice. To cook 1 cup sushi rice, boil with 2 cups of water. Reduce the heat to low and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Let the rice sit for 10 minutes and fluff with a fork.

3. To prepare for serving, add the salad greens to a bowl if using greens. Add the nori sheets. Assemble the rest of the vegetables.

4. Top with additional nori sheets and about 2 tablespoons of soy sauce. Add your own favorite sauces or toppings. Enjoy!

My Favorite Foods are Already Vegan

In a journal entry, I wrote about the reasons why I went vegetarian and one of the things I wrote is that my favorite foods were already vegetarian. It is not as hard to go vegetarian or vegan as it sometimes seems. These are some processed products that are vegan without meaning to be.

  • Aunt Jemima Pancake/Waffle Mix (Original and Whole Wheat Blend)
  • Campbell’s Mushroom Gravy
  • Heinz Tomato Ketchup
  • Hershey’s Syrup (Chocolate, Strawberry, Lite, Sugar Free, +Calcium, and Special Dark)
  • Hunt’s Manwich Sloppy Joe Sauce (Original, Bold, Thick & Chunky)
  • Jell-O Instant Pudding & Pie Filling
  • Jolly Rancher Lollipops
  • Kellogg’s Mini-Wheats Unfrosted Bite Size
  • Lay’s Potsto Chips
  • Nabisco Saltine Crackers
  • Nestle Nesquik Chocolate Syrup
  • Old El Paso Taco Seasoning Mix
  • Ragu Pasta Sauce
  • Ritz Crackers
  • Tic Tac Mints
  • Wheat Thins

For a full list and more details, see PETA’s Accidentally Vegan list.