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Maintaining a vegan-friendly diet while on a budget

Whether you’re new to the world of plant-based eating or simply looking for healthier food alternatives, you may have found yourself spending much more than usual on your grocery trips. Despite talks of expensive vegan diets, going plant-based can be customised to fit most people’s lives, regardless of income. In addition to fresh whole fruits and vegetables being on the pricey side, there are still quite a few ways you can save a penny. All you need are the right recipes. Remember to always consult with your doctor or nutritionist before starting a new eating plan.

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Staying on budget 

Believe it or not, sticking to a budget while following a plant-based diet is pretty easy to do. Cheaper than most meat-based foods, shopping for plant-based foods can get a bit pricey, especially when you have no structured grocery list to follow. To avoid falling into that trap, here’s how you can save on your next grocery trip. 

  • Compare grocery stores– To save big, check your nearby grocery stores flyers for any deals they may be running and compare the prices.
  • Buying in bulk– Buying products like BodiCafé’s nuts and seeds range in bulk is more affordable than occasionally buying as it lasts longer and can be kept in a fridge or freezer.
  • Try to substitute-Adapt your favourite meat-based foods with plant-based ingredients. BodiCafé’s plant protein range is a great replacement for minced beef and lamb.
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Get Creative 

There’s no doubt that finding new foods to replace your previous diet can be a bit tedious and may take a bit of exploring. Luckily, most of the ingredients you’ll need are plant-based. Since you’re eliminating meat and dairy from your diet, you’ll have more room to be creative in your fruits, veggies, spices, and dairy alternatives. However, if you’re still struggling to find some yummy budget-friendly recipes, we’ve curated three tasty recipes that are worth trying.

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Kidney bean curry 

You can honestly never go wrong with beans, they’re affordable, filling and oh-so-delicious. 

Ingredients you’ll need: 

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • a thumb-sized piece of ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 small pack of coriander
  • 1 tsp of BodiCafé’s cumin powder
  • 1 tsp of BodiCafé’s paprika
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 400g can kidney beans, in water
  • cooked basmati rice, to serve
Photo by Pille R. Priske on Unsplash

To view the full recipe click here. 

Tarka Dhal 

Enjoy a simple and mouth-watering meal like this dhal with healthy ingredients you probably already have in your cupboard. 

Ingredients you’ll need: 

To view the full recipe click here. 

Photo by Mario Raj on Unsplash

Buffalo chickpea tacos 

Enjoyed as a snack or a quick meal, this delicious taco is made with whole food ingredients and can be ready in less than 30 minutes. 

Ingredients you’ll need 

Photo by Quin Engle on Unsplash

To view the full recipe click here. 

Avoid breaking the bank this season and indulge in healthy, wholesome meals when you try BodiCafé’s plant-based friendly range in your next budget-friendly dish.

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Articles

Beginner Guide: How to read vegan/vegetarian product labels

How to shop vegan products.

Whether you’re vegan or a vegetarian, checking your product labels should be second nature. However, if you’re new to following a plant-based or vegetarian diet, reviewing product labels and ingredients can be a daunting task. Avoid feeling overwhelmed on your next grocery run with these helpful tips and tricks.

Remember, you should always consult with your doctor or nutritionist before starting a new eating plan.

Photo by KWON JUNHO on Unsplash

If following a plant-based and vegetarian diet is new to you, questioning the foods you eat may be newfound territory. Transitioning from a regular diet to a plant-based one can be overwhelming at first, especially if you’re not used to checking the ingredients labels. Well, don’t panic. Here’s how you can shop with confidence on your next grocery haul.

Does the label indicate if it’s vegan or vegetarian? Once you’ve established this, you can take a closer look at the ingredients of the content to verify. If the item says it contains non-vegan allergens such as eggs and dairy, it isn’t vegan.
If the item is ‘cruelty-free or ‘free from animal testing, then these items are most likely to be vegan. To be safe, look out for items labelled with the Coalition for Consumer Information (CCIC) or the Leaping Bunny logo.
Vegan items that contain labelling that says ‘may contain’ are still vegan. It is simply a legal requirement to warn consumers that the products were manufactured where allergens are present.
Photo by Gareth Hubbard on Unsplash

List of animal ingredients to avoid

When checking the labelling of your vegan products, here is a list of potential animal ingredients you should look out for.

Lactose
Collagen
Honey
Cod Liver Oil
Gelatine
Whey
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Vegan shopping list 101

Grocery shopping can be a time-consuming process as is. Adding that to a newly transitioned vegan and vegetarian lifestyle can be a daunting task. If you still feel as if you’ve been thrown in the deep end with no clue on how to shop, here are a few items you should include in your pantry to get you started.

Whole grains. These can include whole-grain carbs such as macaroni, nutty rice and maize meal.
Nuts and seeds. Full of protein and fibres, nuts and seeds are a great essential to add to your pantry.
Herbs and spices. Whether it’s turmeric, paprika or a dash of salt, no dish is complete without a little bit of spice😎.
Fruit and veggies. These can be fresh, frozen or canned.
Photo by Taylor Kiser on Unsplash

Depending on your dietary preferences, meal prepping in advance can also help alleviate the stress of not knowing what to cook. Now that you know what to look for when buying vegan products remember this is YOUR list; you can tweak it to your liking.

Gain the confidence on your next grocery haul and try BodiCafe’s products which are all plant-based friendly and can be found in selected stores nationwide, or via our online shop:  https://www.bodicafe.co.za/

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Recipes

Stay cosy with these 3 comfort vegan food recipes

Grab a bite and tuck in!

Enjoy all your favourite comfort foods without feeling guilty. There’s something about comfort food that leaves you feeling warm and cosy on the inside. If you’re in the mood for delicious, hearty vegan comfort food, we’ve listed three tasty recipes we know you should try.

Credit: Photo by Roam In Color on Unsplash

 

 

  1. Mac and Cheese

No comfort meal is complete without a famous pasta dish, Mac and Cheese. Creamy, cheesy and full of flavour, this tasty cheese-free pasta dish will have you wanting seconds.

Credit: Photo by Atharva Lele on Unsplash

Ingredients you’ll need:

To try out this delectable dish find the recipe here.

2.  Root Veggie Bake

This season we’re rooting for the ‘root veggie bake’. An ultimate comfort food, this veg bake will leave you feeling warm inside and out. Crafted to tick all the healthy boxes, this wholesome pastry dish is rich in fibre, which means hello to good gut health.

BodiCafe/HLC Blog

What you’ll need:

Improve your gut health this season with this tasty dish and get the full recipe here.

3. Quinoa and tomato soup

Credit: Bodicafe/HLC Blog

There’s something about a nice bowl of soup that leaves one feeling nostalgic. Maybe it’s the anticipation of waiting until it’s ready to be eaten or the sweet aroma that fills up the kitchen once it’s completed? Whatever it is, soups are a must-have all year round.

What you’ll need:

Find comfort in these healthy and affordable recipes when you try out Bodicafe’s plant-based friendly products in your next dish. Remember to always consult your doctor or nutritionist before starting a new eating plan.

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Articles

Moove Over: Here’s why you should consider cutting out dairy

Incorporating any change to your diet, whether it’s big or small, can be a daunting task. As your body has essentially become accustomed to consuming and digesting certain products, eliminating them from your diet can seem irregular. One product we’ve seen more and more people remove from their diet is dairy, and here’s why you should consider doing the same. Remember to always consult with your doctor or nutritionist before starting a new eating plan.

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The difference between dairy-free and lactose-free

While they may sound similar, these two labels are not interchangeable. Lactose is a natural sugar that can be found in dairy products hence the lactose-free label, whereas dairy-free is exactly what it sounds like; it has no dairy. 

The Why 

Whether you’re lactose intolerant, have a milk allergy or use dairy as your go-to, consuming dairy on the regular can have some unpleasant effects on your body. According to many reputable sources and health experts, cutting out dairy from your diet is also a great way to help reduce inflammation and balance your hormones.

The side effects

  • Dairy products have been known to cause constipation due to an inflamed digestive tract.
  • Dairy products can cause gas and bloating.
  • For some people, consuming dairy can result in acne.
Photo by Anita Jankovic on Unsplash

Reap the benefits

Whether you’re converting from a dairy to a non-dairy diet or simply looking to make the occasional switch, here are a few benefits you could potentially experience when cutting out dairy. 

  • Get the glow – Cutting out dairy can reduce acne inflammation.
  • Shed the pounds – Depending on how well you adjust your diet, removing excess saturated fats and sugars found in dairy could promote weight loss.
  • Bye-bye bloating – If you’re prone to bloating, eliminating dairy from your diet can make a significant difference. 
Photo by Jonathan Borba from Pexels

The alternatives

Remember, there’s no need to rush your transition. The more gradual it is, the easier it will be to maintain your health and lifestyle. However, if you’re keen on diving right in, here are a few plant-based products that are worth introducing into your diet. 

Photo by Julia Zolotova on Unsplash

Whatever your move is, whether you’re looking to expand your plant-milk options or simply looking for a more affordable alternative to your current range, you can shop these products and more at BodiCafé.

 

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Plant-based diet VS a conventional diet

Plant-based diets are increasing in popularity. More and more people are switching from their omnivore diet to a diet that solely consists of whole foods. Some choose to go plant-based out of concern for the environment, while others make the switch because it’s considered a healthier option. Well, if you’re still considering making the switch, here are some key insights you should know before dipping your toes into the world of plant-based eating. Remember to always consult with your doctor or nutritionist before starting a new eating plan.

Photo by Nature Zen on Unsplash

Mythbusters

While a plant-based diet may not be for everyone, research shows that following a vegan diet provides numerous health benefits as long as you follow it correctly. Limiting the use of oils, processed foods and sugars, plant-based foods leaves you with plenty of whole foods filled with nutrients, maximising your nutritional intake.

By adopting a plant-based diet, you could potentially lower your risk of: 

  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes 
  • Colon and breast cancer

While there are many misconceptions about how following a plant-based diet may not provide you with the nutrients and proteins your body needs; as long as your calorie intake is enough, you’re almost certain to get enough protein. 

Foods to incorporate to boost your protein intake: 

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The Alternatives

Leaving the meaty meals behind can be challenging, especially if following a plant-based diet is new to your routine. However, as more and more people have started questioning their diets and its effects on animals, the environment, and possible health effects; supermarkets have started making meat alternatives more accessible and affordable.

Bring in the Subs

With a variety of plant-based versions of your favourite sausages and burgers, and other meat substitutes made available, taking the next step to ditching the meat is easier now than it was a couple of years ago. Containing fewer calories and less fat, here are a few meat alternatives that taste just as good.

  • Tofu – A classic meat alternative and is a low-calorie source of protein
  • Soya protein – Soya mince and soya chunks can be commonly used as a meat substitute 
  • Black beans – popular, healthy and delicious, most plant-based burgers are made out of black beans
  • Chickpeas – Providing a substantial amount of iron, chickpeas contain more protein than most types of meat
Photo by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash

Whether you’re new to the plant-based lifestyle or simply looking for tasty meat substitutes, you can shop these products and more at BodiCafé.

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3 DIYs to help keep your kids entertained

Ensuring your kids stay entertained while they’re home can be pretty stressful for any parent. Sure, it may be a bit chaotic getting into a routine however, establishing a routine and preparing activities beforehand can help alleviate potential stress and boredom. Stay one step ahead with these vegan and kid-friendly DIY recipes that are sure to keep them entertained.

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Satisfying frozen honey 

If you’ve been scrolling through the realm of TikTok or YouTube, you may have come across the ‘satisfying frozen honey trend. Sweet and sticky, this trendy recipe is vegan-friendly and can be made in a jiffy. 

What you’ll need 

  • Filtered honey→ 100% pure honey (honey that’s not 100% pure will crystallise)
  •  Food colouring 
  • Plastic bottle 

How to make 

  • Squeeze your honey into a plastic bottle 
  • To add some colour, drop some food colouring into the mixture
  •  Once poured into the bowl, remove the lid from your bottle and place it inside the freezer for 4-5 hours. 
  • Once frozen, remove it from the freezer and let it sit at room temperature for several minutes. 
  • Once rested, squeeze and take a bite! However, be cautious as this summer TikTok trend is extremely sweet due to its high sugar content.
Photo by Mariana Ibanez on Unsplash

Edible butter slime

Decadent, chocolatey and gooey, who would have thought we’d be saying all that about slime. Well, believe it or not, we’ve found the perfect 3-ingredient slime recipe that’s not only ‘taste-safe’ but also vegan-friendly. 

What you’ll need 

For Texture 

  • 1 tablespoon of powdered sugar 
  • Or chocolate-chip syrup, chocolate chips 
  • Crushed cashew nuts

How to make it

  • Mix your water and powdered milk together in a jug 
  • Whisk together your dry ingredients (maize meal and cocoa powder) in a mixing bowl 
  • Heat ⅓ cup of the mixed soya milk in your microwave until warm (not more than 20 seconds) 
  • When warming your soya milk, ensure that you’re using a microwave-safe dish
  •  Pour the milk into your mixing bowl along with your maize meal and cocoa powder and mix until a smooth slime begins to form 
  • Finish off by kneading your slime by hand 
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
  • Gluten-free vegan playdough 

Admit it, no matter how many times you’ve tried to stop your little ones from putting playdough into their mouth, one way or another, kids will fall victim to the unpleasant salty taste. However, unlike standard doughs, we’ve curated a safer playdough recipe that’s the perfect alternative for your kids to play around with. 

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup BodiCafé’s whole grain maize meal
  • ⅓ cup of tapioca starch 
  • ½ cup of salt
  • 2 teaspoons of cream of tartar 
  • 1 cup of water 
  • 2 teaspoons of coconut oil 
  • Food colouring 

How to make 

  • Combine all your ingredients in a deep pan, except the food colouring 
  • Turn on your stove at a low heat and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, constantly stirring until well combined 
  • Once the dough has been thoroughly mixed, turn off the heat and transfer your dough onto wax paper 
  • Allow to cool for 5-7 minutes until cool enough to handle
  • Once cooled down, divide the dough into 2 parts and then add 1-2 drops of food colouring 
  • Knead dough until colour is fully incorporated 
Photo by Julietta Watson on Unsplash

It’s time to ditch the board games and allow your kids to get crafty. Find these ingredients and more when you shop at BodiCafe.