Suggested Food & Recipes
Before planning your food sampling menu, here are a few tips from our seasoned activists:
- Keep it simple! Give out samples of items that are readily available in local grocery stores and that are easy to make.
Even if you serve the tastiest vegan food in the world, if people can't find it in grocery stores, or if it's a complicated
recipe, chances are no one's going to buy it or make it on their own.
- No more than three please! Serve no more than three types of items. Focus on the quality of each sample, as opposed
to serving a large variety.
- Teach, teach, teach! Serving vegan samples is a great way to expose people to meat and dairy alternatives. So, use this
opportunity to dish out some vegan veggie meats, vegan cheeses, and non-dairy milks. People are often pleasantly surprised
by how delicious (and healthy) these products are.
- If you don't have a way to keep vegan cheeses hot and melted, we strongly advise against serving them. Cold vegan
cheese normally isn't very appealing.
- If you serve vegan milks, you'll want to make sure they are chilled. One method is to keep the containers in a bowl
of ice or in an ice chest.
Now, keeping those tips in mind, here's a list of some of our favorite vegan products:
(Note: If you purchase an item that isn't on this list, please read the ingredient list CAREFULLY. Some veggie meats are not vegan and may contain eggs, dairy, or other animal by-products. In addition, a common problem with soy cheese is that some brands contain casein, a milk protein, and therefore are not vegan.)
Vegan Veggie Meats
- Gardein makes a large variety of delicious vegan plant-based meats, including buffalo wings and crispy tenders. You can usually find Gardein in the refrigerated and freezer sections of the grocery store.
- Tofurky produces soy-based vegan meats that come in a variety of options and flavors. The deli slices are great for sandwiches!
- Field Roast
- Field Roast makes vegan grain meats.
In addition to loaves, they also make a variety of sausages and vegan chorizo.
- Beyond Meat - Beyond Meat is one of the newest vegan meats to hit the market. These soy-based chicken-free strips have generated a lot of buzz, with many (including Bill Gates) announcing that they cannot distinguish between the chicken-free strips and conventional chicken strips.
- Daiya is a great cheese alternative. It comes pre-shredded and is available in three flavors:
cheddar, mozzarella, and pepperjack. Daiya is best served hot, and when melted it stretches!
This vegan cheese is an excellent option for people with food allergies because it is dairy, gluten, and soy free. They now also make wedges, slices, and cream cheese!
- Follow Your Heart- Follow Your Heart is a soy-based product sold in block form. Like Daiya, this cheese also melts and comes
in a variety of flavors. It is also best served hot.
- Wayfare- Wayfare makes a great product called "We Can't Say It's Cheese." It comes in a variety of flavors, is gluten and soy-free, and can be easily spread on crackers.
- So Delicious - So Delicious makes a variety of coconut and almond based milks. Their newest milk, almond+plus, has five times the amount of protein as most other almond milks.
- Almond Breeze
- Almond Breeze is delicious milk a great option for people with common allergies.
It is dairy, soy, and gluten free! Almond Breeze comes in several varieties including original, vanilla,
and chocolate (chocolate is always a huge hit!).
- Earth Balance
- Earth Balance is now making soy milks! In addition to the great taste, they are also organic.
Currently, there are four varieties: original, chocolate, vanilla, and unsweetened.
- Silk Soy Milks
- Silk is another soy-based milk alternative. It comes in a variety of flavors, and during the winter
holiday season silk "nogs" are available!
- Vegenaise is a vegan version of mayonnaise. People are consistently shocked by how much it tastes
like conventional mayo! Vegenaise is a tasty addition to vegan sandwiches, veggie hot dogs, and more.
Vegan Ice Cream
- Tofutti Cuties- Tofutti Cuties are vegan mini ice-cream sandwiches. They come in many different flavors and
are a huge hit, especially with children.
- Coconut Bliss
- Coconut Bliss vegan ice cream is sold by the pint and there are a variety of flavors.
In addition to being vegan, this delicious product is organic, fair-trade, and soy/gluten free.
- SoDelicious Minis
- Similar to Tofutti Cuties, SoDelicious Minis are a delicious vegan ice cream sandwich.
If doing outreach in a location where you can only distribute wrapped food, the products below may be good options.
- Sun Flour Baking Company
- Sun Flour Baking Company makes individually wrapped mini-cookies that are sold in bulk.
- Primal Strips
- Primal Strips are individually wrapped packages of vegan jerky.
Here are several sample ideas using some of the products previously described.
When reading through these ideas, please keep in mind your outreach location.
Try to select samples that are feasible for your event and likely to please your demographic.
- Gardein 7-grain crispy tenders (or Tofurky Deli Slices)
- Vegan sourdough baguettes or vegan French bread
- Mustard (if using Tofurky)
If using Gardein, bake the Gardein 7-grain crispy tenders per package instructions. Cut the bread lengthwise and
slather both sides with Vegenaise. (Add mustard if using Tofurky). Then, add the tenders (or Tofurky slices
if using Tofurky), lettuce, and tomato. Slice into thin, sample-sized servings.
Vegan Veggie Meats on Toothpicks
- Vegan veggie meat (for example, Gardein, Field Roast, Tofurky, or firm marinated tofu)
- Cherry tomato or olives (depending on which goes better with your chosen veggie meat)
- Mustard/Vegenaise for dipping
Cut veggie meat into bite-sized pieces. With the toothpick, skewer one piece of veggie meat and one cherry tomato
or olive. Repeat until the desired number of samples are created. Make the mustard/Vegenaise
available for dipping.
- Scoops (mini tostada chips)—make sure they're vegan
- Black beans
- Field Roast Mexican Chipotle Sausage
- Follow Your Heart or Tofutti Sour Cream
- Daiya Cheese
Heat up the black beans and Field Roast. Then, assemble the tostada by adding the heated beans and Field Roast,
Daiya Cheese, salsa, and sour cream