To live our best plant-based life, we need to maintain a healthy, balanced diet. The NHS’ Eatwell Guide suggests that our diets are made up of:
- ⅓ fruits and vegetables
- ⅓ starchy carbohydrates
- Some protein
- Some dairy or dairy alternatives
- Small amounts of unsaturated oils and spreads
To help you make the right food choices, here’s our take on 15 of the most essential vegan products for your vegan grocery list!
Kicking off the list is bread, that great British staple. Us Brits use bread for just about every meal of the day! From toast and vegan jam… to a chunk of vegan-buttered bread for lunch… to a healthy vegan cheese sandwich for dinner, bread is on our daily menu! So it simply had to be must-have vegan product on our list of 15 Essentials.
The Heart of Nature - Pure Grain Bread White Quinoa
If you’re looking to up your bread game, why not check out this Pure Grain Bread White Quinoa by The Heart of Nature. This deliciously chewy bread is gluten-free, dairy-free, contains a multitude of nutrients AND has a shelf-life of 35 to 63 days! It’s definitely the next best thing since sliced bread!
Where would we be without vegan milk on our vegan grocery list? Plant-based milk is an important part of our diets, as they provide our bodies with protein, calcium and other vitamins. Plant-based milks vary in their nutrient content, so always check the label for the right one for you.
Nutty Bruce - Organic Activated Unsweetened Almond & Oat M*lk
This creamy, oaty, nutty plant milk is packed full of plant protein, healthy fats, calcium and other vitamins and minerals. It’s made with 4 simple ingredients: water, organic oats, activated organic almonds and a sprinkling of salt. Milk shouldn’t get much more complicated than that! With such a great mix of nutrients, plant-based lifestyle devotees can have their cereal and eat it!
Having a few cans of beans in the cupboard can be a great way to ensure that we include enough protein in our plant-based diets. Beans are a delicious and useful way to add bulk to a dish, as well as nutrients. And before you throw out the leftover aquafaba from the can, don’t forget that aquafaba can be used as an egg replacement in your baking! Waste not, want not!
Suma Wholefood – Organic Mixed Beans
If you can’t quite make up your mind about which bean to use in your dish, then we suggest adding Suma Wholefood’s Organic Mixed Beans to your vegan groceries list! One little can is packed full of organic chickpeas, borlotti beans, red kidney beans and cannellini beans. With such an awesome mix of beans, it’s perfect for stews, chillis and salads.
4. Nutritional Yeast
On the subject of protein, nutritional yeast is another essential vegan product to add to your vegan shopping list. Nutritional yeast, AKA “Nooch”, not only adds a savoury umami flavour to your food but also packs a nutritional punch. It’s an excellent addition to creamy sauces that need a little cheesiness. Nutritional yeast can be fortified with many different kinds of vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin D, B Vitamins, iron and zinc, which makes it a quick and simple way to ensure you meet your dietary needs.
Marigold – Engevita Nutritional Yeast
For a tonne of flavour and nutrients, use Marigolds Engevita Nutritional Yeast. It comes in a range of varieties, including Super Boost with Iron and Vitamin D and Savoury Super Engevita (Green), which is treated with UV light to naturally increase its Vitamin D content.
Dates are an essential vegan superfood as they are high in nutrients, vitamins, antioxidants and fibre. But the reason dates have made it onto our list of essential vegan products is because they are so versatile! Chop them up for extra texture and sweetness in your smoothies or porridge. They’re even perfect for naturally sweetening and binding pie crusts, ready for baking!
Gerasa – 100% Organic Medjool Dates
Soft, juicy dates are hand-picked to ensure maximum quality. They come in a handy packet that is just the right size for popping into your bag for a hike!
When you’ve got the munchies, having a packet of nuts nearby makes a great alternative to fatty crisps and sugary chocolate (of course, these have their place in the world!). Nuts are considered a bit of a super-food nowadays, as they’re full of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals and are high in mono-unsaturated and poly-unsaturated fats. They’re another versatile ingredient in the kitchen and can be used to add texture to dishes. Please don’t add these to your vegan grocery list if you have a nut allergy.
Erbology – Organic Raw Italian Almonds
Almonds make the perfect snack on the go as they’re naturally sweet and pocket-sized! These Almonds by Erbology are organic, raw and unpasteurised so they retain all of their natural nutrients.
7. Pasta (or Noodles!)
Whether you are vegan or not, another British kitchen staple is pasta! No vegan grocery list can be complete without pasta. It’s such a versatile food, has a long shelf-life, and is perfect for grabbing out of the cupboard to make a quick meal.
La Bio Idea – Whole Wheat Macaroni Elbows
Make sure you have a bag of La Bio Idea’s Whole Wheat Macaroni Elbows in your cupboard, so you can always make the ultimate comfort food – vegan mac ‘n’ cheese! If you’re short of recipe ideas, be sure to check out this delicious recipe by Hazel!
Biona – Organic Asia Noodles
Alternatively, if it’s a quick and easy meal you want to make, then why not keep a packet of Biona’s Organic Asia Noodles handy? Yes, we know it’s not quite pasta, but it’s pretty close AND super speedy to prepare! With a few other great vegan groceries that you can rustle up from your fridge or cupboards, you’ll get a delicious stir-fried noodle in minutes!
8. Vegan Cheese
To make that comforting mac ‘n’ cheese we mentioned, you’re going to need cheese. Cheese is often one of the things people miss when they make the switch to a plant-based lifestyle. However, with vegan cheeses, you don’t have to deny yourself.
Bute Island – Cheddar Style Sheese Blocks
These Chedder Style Sheese Blocks look like cheddar and taste like cheddar. They even come in mild and mature flavours, like real cheddar! However, they’re made from coconut oil, making them very vegan-friendly.
In recent years, jackfruit has been hailed as the holy grail of vegan cuisine! The fleshy texture helps to bulk up a recipe where meat may have traditionally been used, like curry, burrito or stew. Green jackfruit is a nutritionally important vegan grocery since it’s naturally high in fibre, antioxidants and other minerals and vitamins. The best part? This wholesome fruit grows straight from the ground and is minimally processed!
Nature’s Charm – Young Jackfruit in Water
Keep a can of Young Green Jackfruit in Water handy in your kitchen cupboard – you never know when you might need to bulk up a dish quickly!
Foods, like kimchi, were originally fermented for practical reasons – fermentation helped to preserve food for longer, which was vitally important in the days before refrigerators. However, eating fermented foods like kimchi and kombucha is becoming increasingly popular, as it’s believed that these foods are full of probiotics, which boost the “good bacteria” in our digestive system, helping to restore balance in our gut.
Biona – Organic Kimchi
Kimchi, like Biona’s Organic Kimchi, is an amazing vegan product since it adds texture and a hint of spiciness to dishes and has a relatively long shelf-life. Try adding some to your fried rice, scrambled tofu or even pancakes, for a little kick and a lot of nutrition.
Tofu is an essential product for vegans everywhere. It’s naturally gluten-free, low in calories and an important source of protein and calcium. There’s a wide variety of tofu products on the market, including flavoured tofu and tofu that’s been created to replace scrambled eggs. There’s even tempeh, tofu’s cousin, which has a firmer, chunkier texture that is often used as a vegan alternative to meat.
Clearspring – Organic Japanese Tofu
Clearspring’s Organic Japanese Tofu is a must-have vegan grocery item as it has a generous shelf-life and doesn’t need to be stored in the fridge. Perfect for grabbing out of the cupboard to fix up a last-minute meal!
12. Vegan Butter
Vegan butter is needed for so many things in the kitchen. A good quality vegan butter is needed for stir-frying vegetables, baking cakes and simply, spreading on your toast in the morning.
Mergulo – Cashew Nut-B*tter
If you’re looking for a great substitute for butter in a baking recipe, then look no further than Mergulo’s Cashew Nut-B*tter. It’s got all the smoothness of coconut oil, combined with the creaminess of cashew nut.
While we’re on the topic of baking, no vegan grocery list is complete without flaxseed. Known as a “functional food”, flaxseed is full of healthy fats, antioxidants and fibre. Beyond the nutritional benefit, flaxseed can also be mixed with water to make the infamous flax egg – the vegan baker’s go-to for egg replacement.
Prewetts – Organic Premium Ground Flaxseed
Prewetts’ Organic Premium Ground Flaxseed is finely milled to make it easier for your body to absorb during digestion. It’s got a great earthy, nutty flavour that complements your porridge and smoothies.
14. Vegan Sweetener
In cooking and baking, you won’t get very far without a little sweetener to enhance the savoury flavours. For a healthier vegan alternative to sugar, try some of the amazing vegan sweeteners and syrups that are now available on the market. Vegan sweetener is an essential vegan product to replace honey, too.
The Groovy Food Company – Organic Agave Nectar (Mild & Rich)
Organic Agave Nectar is a fabulous alternative to sugar, as it contains 25% fewer calories than refined sugar (gram for gram). It also slowly releases energy, helping you to avoid a sugar crash.
15. A Treat
Last, but not least, a vegan grocery list is not complete without a treat! “How can that be an essential?” we hear you cry! In our humble opinion, life would be pretty boring without having something to look forward to once in a while. Adding a treat to your vegan grocery list is absolutely essential if only to make you smile!
So, whether your ultimate pick-me-up is a bit of choccie, a bag of veggie crisps or an afternoon muffin, whack one on your vegan grocery list!
Booja Booja – Organic Honeycomb Caramel Chocolate Truffles
For the ultimate, luxury, it has to be Organic Honeycomb Caramel Chocolate Truffles from Booja Booja! Smooth and delicious, there are enough in the box to share… but only if we have to!
Now get your pantry stocked!
So, there you have it 15 of the most essential vegan products to add to your vegan grocery list.
We’ve chosen to focus on groceries that not only help us maintain healthy diets, but are staples in almost any British kitchen. It just goes to show that pretty much anyone can follow a plant-based lifestyle!
Of course, your grocery list is a very personal thing and we’re sure there are lots more vegan groceries that we could have added. What would you put on your essential vegan groceries list?