A vegan in the Lowveld

Whether you’re for it or not, plant based living has started to take the world by storm.

bowl of vegetable salads

As New Year’s resolutions start rolling in, the desire to live more healthily through a plant based lifestyle has drastically increased on South African’s #goals list. Whether it’s to lose weight, support animal welfare or just to live a healthier lifestyle, the surge in plant based alternatives has allowed for the transition into veganism to become a lot easier.

If you’re not familiar with the term, veganism is the practice of abstaining from the use of animal products, particularly in diet. This includes all dairy and meat products – yes, even eggs!

 So how does one survive in the Lowveld on a vegan diet in such a strong braai and boerewors community?

selective focus photography of hamburger with sliced tomatoes and vegetables

Eating out

As previously mentioned, the boom in plant-based living on social media and the likes has resulted in a more convenient way of accessing vegan alternatives; one such result is the addition of vegan menu items to a few, but not many restaurants.

Panarottis has introduced chicken, steak strips, mince, and mayo alternatives to their pizza and pasta menus. Dine on delicious Bolognese pasta or saucy chicken and mushroom pizza with the peace of mind that your meal is vegan-friendly.

Doppio Zero has a lovely selection of vegan options on their menu from breakfast straight through to their mains. You can even swop out dairy for an oat/almond milk alternative for a delicious latte, should you choose. Some of their vegan options include pizza, wraps, burgers and super yummy salads and veg.

Yoons Eatery in White River offers tofu alternatives to eggy breakfasts, delicious chickpea burgers and even has delectable vegan cakes for the sweeth tooth!

The Seedling Restaurant at Old Joe’s KAIA is the MECCA of vegan eating in the Lowveld. Marian Cottle prepares plant-based meals for visitors on appointment, sells dehydrated meals and offers vegan cooking classes to up your umami game!

chocolate cake with sliced lemon on top

Dining at home

If you’re like me, and prefer to cook up a storm in your very own kitchen then there are a few shops in and around town that could really help out with your vegan shopping list.

Ambassadors Food Factory Shop is a must-visit with a huge range of vegan alternatives including cheddar, feta, mozzarella and cream cheese as well as a variety of mushroom based meat alternatives. There is also a superb selection of nuts and seeds which are a huge part in a healthy vegan lifestyle, adding omega 3’s and protein to your diet.

Checkers has also completely upped their game with freezers dedicated to vegan and vegetarian products as well as their affordable and always fresh produce range.

Having the friends over for a braai? Look no further https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EHwFhsuYa5s

South African Braai (BBQ) - Your Mom's Favorite Channel - YouTube

Whether you would like to go meat-free if only for the month, or would seriously like to consider changing your lifestyle, the vegan lifestyle does not have to be a huge and uncomfortable transition. There are so many online platforms, apps, websites and more that can assist you on your journey.

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