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Our Guide to Eating More Plants this Veganuary

To celebrate Veganuary we are here to inspire everyone to try eating a more plant-centric diet, explore the incredible health benefits, and provide you with plenty of tips, tricks, and delicious vegan recipes to make this journey both exciting and achievable. After all, the single change we can all make that will make the biggest change to our health IS to eat more plants! So why not start that journey now?

Why Choose Veganuary?

  • Boost Your Health: Eating more plants has been shown to reduce the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers. Plants are rich in essential nutrients and antioxidants that nourish your body and support overall well-being.
  • Sustain the Planet: Plant-based diets are kinder to the environment. By reducing animal agriculture, you're helping combat climate change, conserve water, and protect natural habitats.
  • Animal Welfare: Veganuary is a great opportunity to align your values with your food choices. Choosing plant-based options means supporting ethical and compassionate practices.

Here's an easy recipe that we featured in our Veganuary Challenge booklet a couple of years ago. It's an example of a highly nutritious meal that is ready in under 30 minutes and is an ideal mid-week lunch or  supper for one or two people. It allows you to make use of lots of store cupboard jarred ingredients with minimal prep like the butterbeans and sun-dried tomatoes. It's also easy to make simple swaps- choose any bean you like, use frozen spinach instead of kale, or jarred red peppers instead of sun-dried tomatoes. You can use sourdough or whole-meal bread instead of thinly sliced sweet potato if you're strapped for time.

 

 

Tofu Scramble with Sun- Dried Tomatoes, Crispy kale and Butterbeans on Sweet Potato 'Toast' 

Ingredients:

1 pack of Smoked Firm Tofu

1 tsp turmeric

80g Sun-dried Tomatoes, chopped*

100g Kale, de-stemmed and roughly torn

1 garlic clove finely sliced (or garlic powder if you're short on time)

1 Pimento Piquillo pepper from a jar, sliced into strips

1 tsp onion granules (massively saving you time if you’re after a quick lunch)

1 jar (drained weight 205g) of butterbeans- we like to use the organic Monjardin brand

Zest and juice of half a lemon

A handful of pumpkin seeds (toasted if you have time for even more great flavour)

Pinch of Nutmeg

Salt to taste

A handful of grated vegan parmesan or nutritional yeast flakes

*If you can get hold of quality winter fresh tomatoes then they would be excellent here too and add some nice fresh juiciness and acidity to the dish. We used sundried tomatoes because we had them in our store cupboard and we couldn’t find good quality tomatoes locally. We are not a fan of supermarket out of season watery tomatoes!

Method:

1.For the sweet potato toast, simply slice a large long sweet potato into 5 mm thick strips, drizzle with oil, season with salt, pepper and spices of your choosing (we love Garam masala on pretty much everything as it immediately adds so much flavour.) Place on a parchment lined baking tray and put in the oven at 170C (fan) for around 20 mins. When finished place the sweet potato toast onto plates for serving later.

2. For the scramble, break apart the tofu with a fork and then use your hands to crumble it, add the turmeric and leave to marinate.

3.Whilst that’s happening, fry a tablespoon of oil in a pan and add the butterbeans, cook on a high heat until they start to get brown and crispy, for a few minutes turning them half-way.

4. Add the kale leaves and a pinch of salt. Fry until the leaves start to go nice and crispy.

5. Add the sliced garlic or garlic granules and cook for another minute or so.


6. Add the lemon zest, pumpkin seeds, lemon juice and nutmeg.


7. Lastly, grate over the vegan parmesan. Remove from the pan and set aside to cool

8. Then gently fry the scrambled tofu and add the chopped sun-dried tomatoes.

9.Spoon both the scramble and the kale butterbean mix onto the sweet potato toast and garnish with plenty of fresh herbs- whatever you have to hand and season with salt and pepper. ENJOY!

 

Here are some easy tips for incorporating more plants into your everyday diet:

  • Start with one meal a day: Begin by making one meal a day completely plant-based. Breakfast or lunch is often the easiest place to begin.
  • Make Your Plate Colorful: Aim for a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables in every meal. Different colors indicate different nutrients! I winter we recommend purple cabbage and beetroots.
  • Batch Cooking: Prepare big batches of vegan staples like grains, legumes, and roasted vegetables to simplify meal prep during the week
  • Sprinkle nuts and seeds on your fruit and yoghurt or porridge
  • Make the most of dips and spreads- they are easy and cheap to make at home- you don’t have to just use chickpeas, butterbeans, black beans and cannellini beans are all great blended and turned into hummus.
  • Mix it up! Don't just eat the same vegetables- keep a seasonal food calendar on your fridge and then rotate according to the seasons and see what’s available locally to you.
  • Bulk up your meals with beans- they are filling and seriously tasty

Here are some easy complementary protein options:

  • Black beans and brown rice
  • Pasta and peas
  • Whole-wheat bread and nut butter

Nuts & seeds combined with legumes:

  • Hummus (chickpeas and tahini)
  • Lentils and almonds

 Here is a list of other complete or nearly complete proteins to incorporate into your diet:

  • Edamame is another easy source of soy protein and great in a Bhudda bowl 
  • Quinoa- you can easily add to salads to bulk them up
  • Hemp seed- add to your morning porridge
  • Chia- add to a smoothie or pancake mix
  • Buckwheat- toast and add to granola or cereal
  • Spirulina- add to a nourishing green smoothie