New vegan friendly brand on sale at selected Tesco stores.
Have you heard of Gosh! and their range of burgers, bakes and bites, made using 100% natural ingredients, “as nature intended”?
Naturally free from the top 14 allergens, including cereals containing gluten, eggs, milk, soya, nuts, peanuts, celery, mustard, sesame seeds, lupin, sulphur dioxide, crustaceans, fish & molluscs.
So far I’ve tried their Mushroom, Puy Lentil & Butter Bean Bugers and can honestly say they are very tasty and quite impressive. Baked in the oven for 15-20 mins, they are full of flavour and held together much better than most other vegan burger brands.
Each 125g burger is only 200kcals and contains 7.7g protein and only 2.3g sugar.
I was recently having a conversation on Instagram, about how difficult it is to be safe in the knowlegde that the beauty products we purchase are vegan friendly.
I was raving about Superdrug’s own brand beauty and toiletries products all being certified by the Leaping Bunny as cruelty free; however this doesn’t always mean they are suitable for vegans. Superdrug do a great job at highlighting which of their products are suitable for us though, by always printing the info on the back.
A brand that likes to make us work a little harder is The Body Shop. Most people know them to be cruelty free, and often assume their products must also be vegan; again though this is not always the case. That’s why I was thrilled to stumble across this very comprehensive list put together by The Plastic Diaries beauty blog; presenting us with a long list of the huge variety of vegan products The Body Shop do offer (link to original post at the bottom of page):
We’ve had lots of requests for more vegan product lists so I’m excited to bring you one for the most requested store, The Body Shop. As probably the most globally recognised cruelty-free beauty brand, The Body Shop is often mistaken for being entirely vegan but while it’s unfortunate to report that isn’t the case, they still do have a huge vegan offering.
The cruelty-free status and vegan product information for The Body Shop is a little interesting because they hold cruelty-free certifications from most of the independent bodies but they are owned by L’Oreal so that raises a question mark depending on your own ethical beliefs. As usual, I will present to you the information about their animal testing policy and the products that don’t contain any animal ingredients, and allow you to make an informed choice as to what you purchase.
The Body Shop are certified cruelty-free by PETA.org and Leaping Bunny. However they’re parent company, L’Oreal, is considered non-compliant by PETA and there has been controversy over some products finding their way into duty free stores in China.
Some animal ingredients are used in The Body Shop products. Refer to the below list of vegan-friendly products for items without animal ingredients.
Vegan Product List
The complete list of vegan-friendly products at The Body Shop, as it stands at time of publishing, are:
It’s a difficult ethical choice we vegans are often faced with; The Body Shop have gone to the effort of creating a vast range of cruelty free and vegan products, yet ince 2006 they have been owned by L’oreal who use animals in product testing… So do we purchase from them or not?
Please have a read of the original post from Kimmi at The Plastic Diaries and then let me know your thoughts.
Has anyone been to Vegfest before? Last year I went for the first time, to the one at Kensington Olympia, London.
I picked up some bargains and found out about great new products and brands. So I am particularly excited for this Saturday, when the BF and I will be going to the one in in Brighton, unable to wait until it returns to London in October.
The dream is to one day have a stall selling food and sweet treats, but for now I’ll settle for being a happy visitor and customer.
A few things I will be purchasing :
Nakd bars from Natural Balance Foods – made from 100% natural ingredients such as fruits and nuts “smooshed” together in a handy bar. Wheat & dairy free, with no added sugars or hidden extras, I’m going to pick up a couple of boxes of my fave bars : Cashew Cookie & Cocoa Crunch
Explore Asian‘s bean pastas – vegan, organic, gluten-free, kosher “pastas”; the taste and texture of pasta, with all the benefits of beans! I’m especially looking out for their Edamame Spaghetti
Great Food UK 100% natural, gluten-free, dairy free, vegan, Halal & Kosher range of bites, snacks and meals – last year they had some great offers on their falafel and sweet potato pakoras!
I was a little unprepared last year and didn’t do my research before I went, so this time I’ve been studying the schedule.
Non-shopping things I’m looking forward to :
Jasmijn de Boo‘s (The Vegan Society) talk on vegan businesses, trends & success stories
Ellie Bedford‘s cookery demonstration – How to Eat a “Chocolatey” Rainbow
Melissa (Ms. Cupcake) Morgan’s talk on how to replace animal products in baking
Anneka Svenska‘s talk on vegan juicing and smoothies
Animal welfare conference section
Environmental & food sustainability conference
The Hemp Expo showcasing the industrial and medicinal benefits of hemp, including a smoothie demo from Tim Barford
Think I’m going to have a busy day!! Maybe I’ll see you there?
I am so into coconuts at the moment; I’m using coconut oil in everything, covering vegan treats in coconut flakes, considering purchasing some coconut sugar, I even nicknamed one of my pups “my little Coco-nut”… So I was looking forward to trying some of these coconut based yoghurts.
Created by self proclaimed “coconutters”, aiming to spread the coconut love near and far:
In the beginning there was the coconut and we saw that it was good. That’s why we’re on a mission to spread the coco-love far and wide by bringing together like-minded coconutters so you can enjoy the coco-clever things they make. And at the same time, we’re determined to give something back to the planet and it’s people, so we’re planting coconut trees, helping farmers and supporting charities.”
Dairy, soya and gluten free, Coconut Co yoghurts are made from coconut milk, sometimes with the addition of fruits, but I decided to try out the plain variety..
I’m not sure that I’ve ever eaten coconut yogurt before. I always enjoyed plain or Greek yoghurts before becoming vegan, but have been a bit apprehensive about trying other vegan yoghurt products, usually because they’re soy based, which I try not to consume too much of.
So I was excited to try this natural one & devoured it with homemade vegan chilli, as a soured cream replacement, and it was delicious. The coconut flavour went so well with the hot & spicy chilli, but it would equally go as well with musli, granola or fruit for breakfast too.
I’d thoroughly recommend and am looking forward to am trying out some of the other fruitier varieties. They even do frozen yogurt too, which has given me the idea of using coconut milk in my vegan “nice” creams at home!
Check out their website for more info, products, including ingredients & nutritional lists. You can join their mailing list, enter competitions and find out about the other “coconutter” brands too!
Whilst Crabbie’s use fish products in the finishing process of their Ginger Beers, I have just discovered that their 2 sauces are vegan!
I was searching for pickles & chutneys to go with Boxing Day’s bubble & squeak – I didn’t want to have to drag myself to the shops – and I found a pre-veganism bottle of Crabbie’s Ginger Spiced Sweet Chilli sauce at the back or our cupboard. As all vegans do, I immediately checked the back for the ingredients list, but there was no need as Crabbie’s have labelled these sauces suitable for both vegetarians and vegans.
After a little research I discovered the other sauce – Sweet Ginger Splash – is also vegan. Not only that, but they are both gluten free, and whilst our sweet chilli one went great with leftover bubble & squeak, the sweet ginger splash has been designed to add “zing” to puddings, cakes, fruit & ice cream – sounds like a winner to me!
Although these are not new products, it’s great to see that a well known brand have branched out in to a different range of products, and they’ve specifically made them suitable for vegans. Bravo Crabbie’s, now you just need to adjust your beer finishing process to exclude the use of fish!
My friends over at Mailbu HQ sent me a bottle of their original rum and asked me to bake something special for World Vegan Day – which is November 1st by the way, and kicks off a whole month of celebrating all that is good and vegan in the world, check it out :
I kicked off a weekend with a lovely little vegan rum & raisin cake recipe. I’d usually use rum extract in this recipe but this time I substituted it for the real stuff. I may have taken it a little easy with the rum, so feel free to add a little more if you really want to get that beautiful coconut flavour coming through nice and strong. A deliciously moist fat free vegan cake – give it a go. As delicious enjoyed with a cup of tea of as an afternoon snack, as with ice cream (vegan of course) for dessert.
Vegan Malibu and Raisin Cake
1 ½ x cups brown rice flour
½ x cup light brown sugar (I use Tate & Lyle as it’s vegan friendly)
2 x teaspoons baking powder (this has to be fresh in order for the batter to rise)
1 x cup almond milk (can substitute for other nut milks)
3. Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl and stir well
4. Add the almond milk and applesauce and stir again
5. Add raisins and Malibu and stir for a final time
6. Pour your batter in the tin and bake for 40-45 minutes
Second on my weekend venture in to all things Malibu, was a variation on a classic loaf of Banana Bread – with added Malibu for good measure, obviously.
I went all out with this recipe and added in double the quantity I’d previously used in the Rum & Raisin Cake. I thought the strength of the banana and cinnamon would even it out. Indeed it did, once again you can probably add a little bit more if you so desire.
This recipe is seriously simple, I don’t like complicated bakes. Made with only a handful of ingredients it’s so easy to throw together, though it does take a while to bake.
Vegan Banana and Malibu Bread
5 x large over-ripe bananas
1 x cup of almonds
2 x cup of pecans
1 x cup of brown rice flour
½ x cup of maple syrup (you can substitute for agave syrup or similar, but the maple syrup adds to the sweet nutty flavour)
3 x tablespoons flax seeds (you can swap for chia seeds if you prefer)
2 x tablespoons ground cinnamon
4 x tablespoons Malibu Original
1. Pre-heat your oven to 150C
2. Blend the almonds and pecans in a food processor to form a flour. I had to do mine in batches, about a handful at a time
3. Once all your nuts are blended to a flour, put in to a mixing bowl and along with the brown rice flour, maple syrup, flax seeds and cinnamon, and mix everything together.
4. Peel and mash all the bananas the bananas until smooth, then stir into the bread mix
You’ll end up with quite a wet sticky mixture, don’t worry, this is the right consistency
5. Use coconut oil to grease your trusty loaf tin and pour the mix in
6. Bake in your pre-heated oven for about 1 hour
I use a toothpick or skewer to check my bakes are cooked the way through. Stick it in to the centre of the cake / load, if it comes out clean, you’re done. If there’s mixture or batter left on the toothpick or skewer when it comes out, pop it in for a little longer – this will have to be a judgement call.
I had a slice, ok 2 slices, of this delicious bread after dinner this evening, with a thin layer of Meridians Crunchy 100% Peanut Butter. It can however be enjoyed on it own as it has so much flavour, but always accompanied with a cup of tea.
So there you have it, my weekend spent indulging in Malibu, though not in the way I usually would! Try out these recipes for yourself and let me know what you think. Too much or not enough rum? That’s the important question!
Oh and just to note, I used brown rice flour in both of my bakes, as its naturally gluten free, but you really could substitute for any flour you like.
Come back soon for more vegan recipes and keep up to date with my vegan life in London on my Instagram page – @IsItVeganUK