Getting started

Changing to a vegan way of life can seem like a daunting prospect. You may have decided to do it in stages or you may have decided to do it all in one go. Whichever route you decide to take, my best advice is...

be prepared!


If you are going out, think beforehand about where you will be able to buy something. Will you want a bigger meal? If so, are there any restuarants that are more vegan-friendly than others?

Luckily, there's now more snacks out there that are vegan, and are readily available. Although there are some places that don't offer alternatives to cow's milk, the tide is definitely turning. There are quite a few places that no longer charge extra for soya milk. Hurrah! Below are some tips that helped me in becoming vegan and staying vegan.


Starting out

  • Set your own pace. You might want to start by cutting out the one animal product that you eat the most. Or, maybe start by making one day in the week vegan, and building up from there. You're changing your lifestyle, so it's normal for it to take some time before it feels natural.
  • Being vegan is not about depriving yourself and it can be fun 'veganising' dishes you have enjoyed as an omnivore. Check out the pesto recipe below for example. Make sure you're replacing the meat, dairy and eggs with something yummy, and not just leaving an empty space on your plate.
  • Meat substitutes are helpful as a stepping stone, but also check out foods such as pulses, tofu and tempeh.
  • A nutrition chart is a helpful reference tool to make sure you are getting the right nutrients. For example, Liz's Cook Charts
  • Sign up for the 30 day Vegan pledge and receive advice on making the transition to a vegan lifestyle.
  • Buy a vegan cookbook. Yes, there are loads of recipes online but you can't beat flicking through a recipe book, looking for a tasty treat to eat.
  • Enjoy the adventure!
vegan pesto recipe For more recipes, visit the Recipes page in the Food seciton

Out and about

  • Never leave home without a snack.
  • There are websites and apps for finding out about places to eat when out and about. Happy Cow is a good place to start, if you are travelling somewhere and want to find out what's available. Also check out the Eating Out page on this website for recommendations.
  • Don't be afraid to ask for dishes to be tweaked in restaurants.

Staying motivated

  • If possible, join a group. Check out for any local groups. A support network can be very handy.
  • Get reading around the subject and check out any of the many documentaries . Helpful reminders as to why you've decided to switch to a vegan lifestyle.
  • Don't be hard on yourself. You might slip up, but that's no reason to give up!
water infographic Source: The United Nations World Water Development Report 2015

Recommended Reading and Viewing

Eating Animals by Jonathan Safron Foer. An eye-opening account that should be read by all, regardless of dietary choices.

Holy Cow by David Duchovny. A very entertaining read that raises questions about our relationship with farmed animals.

The Kind Diet: A Simple Guide to Feeling Great, Losing Weight, and Saving the Planet by Alicia Silverstone. The book that set me off on the way to becoming a vegan. Lots of information and tasty recipes.

Vegan Freak by Bob Torres. Lots of practical advice.

Vegucated 2011 directed by Marisa Miller Wolfson. I watched this as a relatively new vegan. Entertaining and affirming.


Better for you. Better for animals. Better for the environment.