When I became vegan, I discovered I had to really start reading food labels vigilantly. Several products that I automatically assumed were vegan were not. Among them:
Chewing gum. I’m still researching this one but haven’t yet found a vegan one. There are too many ingredients to list that might be of animal origin depending on the brand, too. So I will report if and when I find a vegan version because I really used to like to chew gum once in awhile.
Some mints. I used to like Altoids but they are made with gelatin. I have found an alternative in Myntz from Trader Joe’s. Now if only that company would make a chewing gum!
Morningstar Farms Chik Patties and burgers. They contain milk & eggs.
Some soy yogurts are made with a milk-based culture. I used to love O’Soy vanilla yogurt but they use milk. Silk soy yogurt doesn’t but I don’t like it. So I do without.
Potato chips. I love to have potato chips with a sandwich; it just doesn’t seem right without them. But when my husband went on a road trip to the Porcupine Mountains last year, he bought some and brought the rest home. When I read the label, it said it contained milk & eggs! Crazy! But finding vegan potato chips isn’t difficult.
Chocolate. I used to love milk chocolate but obviously it has milk. I found a brand at Nutri-Foods called Choco-Milk & it’s made with rice milk and is very good. My husband likes dark chocolate which usually doesn’t contain milk anyway. But most chocolate contains milk. I have to even buy a brand of chocolate chips at Nutri-Foods that is made with soy instead of milk.
Mayonnaise. A lot of people forget that this has eggs. I have found a substitute in Vegenaise at Nutri-Foods. I cannot tell the difference. It’s great in dressings and on my tofu sandwiches.
Yesterday for lunch (and later at the library) I made the Spinach Salad with Grilled Tofu & Apples from The Garden of Vegan. It was so good! Here’s the recipe:
1 lb. medium-firm tofu, sliced into strips or cubed (I used firm, cubed)
1 tbsp dark sesame oil
5 tbsp olive oil (for dressing, I used only 4 tbsp)
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tsp Dijon mustard
2 tsp maple syrup
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
4 cups spinach leaves, washed & drained (I used an entire container of Earthbound Farms baby spinach)
1 Granny Smith apple, chopped
1 cup fennel (I didn’t have, so I just used 1/2 of an onion, chopped)
In a large fry pan on medium-high heat, sauté the tofu in the sesame oil until browned. Set aside to cool. In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil, vinegar, mustard, maple syrup, salt & pepper. In a large bowl, toss together the spinach, apple, & onion (or fennel). Top with dressing & tofu. I just tossed all the tofu & dressing with it.