Vegan Food - Including Soup, Salad, and Bread


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Vegan Cheese

Cheese can be the hardest animal product to give up, since so many recipes call for it and so many meals have it, and also because vegan cheeses are harder to find than other substitutes. For example, most traditional grocery stores have a wide selection of soy milk and soy burger, which can replace dairy milk and beef burgers, but these grocery stores often do not have vegan cheese.

You can find cheese substitutes at specialty stores and natural food stores, but some of the cheese substitutes still have non-vegan ingredients. Most of all you want to look out for casein or calcium caseinate, a milk protein often used in soy cheeses for texture. You also want to look out for whey, renet, or any other animal products. Remember, many soy cheeses still contain some milk in them.

Understandably, some vegans do not like to use vegan cheese or other substitute foods that imitate non-vegan foods. Other vegans do not mind having "pretend" foods. Newer vegans especially find that vegan cheese and other substitutes can help them adopt a vegan lifestyle, since they can simply exchange non-vegan foods with substitutes. For example, a person who habitually eats grilled cheese can turn vegan without having to give up grilled cheese entirely, but simply by using vegan cheese instead of dairy cheese.

The Vegan Gourmet brand of vegan cheese has possibly the best reputation among vegans. It contains neither animal products nor gluten. Most people say it melts better than most other vegan cheese. It has a softer texture than dairy cheese. It works great for sauces, pizzas, and anything else that calls for melty cheese.

Of course, many other brands of vegan cheese exist, with varying tastes and prices. Trying as many out as you can will let find out which ones you like best.

As mentioned earlier, many conventional grocery stores often do not have vegan cheese, or otherwise may not have a good selection. You can find vegan cheeses at health-food and whole-food shops. Large grocery stores often have a way to request products, so you could call a local supermarket and request that they stock vegan cheese. If you do choose to do that, make sure you stress vegan cheese, or else they may get you a cheese substitute that still has animal products in it.

Vegan cheeses are generally made with soya protein. They can be soft or spready, grated or sliced, hard or firm, etc. You can even find mozzarella-style vegan cheeses which you use for sprinkling on type of foods such as pizza. Vegan cheeses come in various flavors, such as cheddar, gouda, edam, and stilton.

You can use vegan cheese in a variety of dishes, such as pizzas, lasagnas, sauces, sandwiches, and baked potatoes. You use vegan cheese in basically the same ways you use dairy cheese. Of course, vegan cheeses often do not melt and stretch in precisely the same way. Redwoods makes one called "Super Melting Cheezly" which supposedly melts just like cows' cheese.

We hope this article answered all of your questions about vegan cheese. If you have any remaining questions, or if you have any comments or suggestions, please post them in our Vegan Forums.