How to go vegan without sacrificing taste

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If you're trying to live a healthier or more eco-conscious lifestyle, you might want to...

If you're trying to live a healthier or more eco-conscious lifestyle, you might want to consider going vegan. A veggie-only diet can be healthy and nutritious, and you can find hundreds of tasty recipes to put together a wholesome, animal-free menu.

Here are some tips for going vegan without sacrificing taste:

  1. Start learning about different vegetables. You'll discover dozens even hundreds of vegetables you didn't even realize existed when you start to review vegan menus. Certain vegetables, such as eggplant, avocado and portobello mushrooms, are great substitutes for meat in sandwiches and entrees because they are denser than other vegetables and have texture. Shop the Atlanta farmers markets to stock up on in-season produce. Expand your cooking knowledge and start learning about different vegetables and their uses to create those mouthwatering recipes.
  2. Use spices, herbs and sprouted grass in your recipes. Since you won't be relying on meats or dairy products to flavor your meals, you'll need to be creative with spices and herbs. Explore the Asian market or learn about exotic spices you can use to add some flavor to your foods. Use freshly grown herbs in everyday recipes to add some distinctive flavors to your meals. Use ingredients like wheat grass in smoothies and snacks for a nutritional boost.
  3. Learn to use coconut milk as a base. Coconut milk is a common ingredient in many animal-free recipes and can be used in place of milk to help you make rich sauces and toppings for a variety of dishes. Learn how to cook with coconut milk to create a variety of delicious recipes.
  4. Add plenty of healthy fats to your meal. Many meatless recipes can seem very light to the former meat eater, so make those meatless dishes a little more satisfying by adding some healthy fats to your recipes. Coconut oil, nut butters and olive oil are just a few sources of healthy fats.
  5. Shop the organic food aisle for tasty alternatives. While you want to stick with a diet comprised mostly of fresh and wholesome foods, you can make some meatless, dairy-free versions of favorite dishes, such as pizza and hamburgers, using tofu, seitan and vegetarian chicken. Shop the organic food section at the grocery store for vegan-friendly ingredients as a meat substitute in your favorite recipes.

Always talk to your physician before making any major changes to your diet. Your doctor can review your medical history and make sure you are healthy enough to support a vegan diet.

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