Veganuary – Healthy swaps to make on a plant based diet

Veganuary is upon us! A month-long charity campaign focused on supporting Veganism, that helps us reduce our consumption of animal products. 

Whilst eating more vegetables, fruits and wholegrains is simple and may sound easy, substituting ingredients in our favourite dishes might be more of a challenge. Read on for my top swaps when it comes to all things plant based for Veganuary…


Swap milk for plant-based milks

Who hasn’t tried a plant-based milk in their latte these days? Whether you prefer almond or oat, soya or coconut, make sure you choose one that is unsweetened and opt for one without additives and preservatives. Plenish is a great option here, as it only contains three ingredients, and their almond milk froths the best! 


Swap Honey for Maple Syrup or Date Syrup

Love a swirl of honey on your morning yogurt? Think again this Vegnuary. Honey is not classified as vegan as it is a by-product from bees. Swap this out for maple syrup or date syrup – both unrefined sweeteners made from plant sources, which also pack in a few more nutrients than honey, too!


Swap Cheese for Cashew Alternatives

Cheese can be a challenging vegan swap. There are a number of vegan cheese alternatives on the market, however many of them can be rubbery, tasteless or filled with preservatives and additives. For the healthiest and most natural option to reach for this Veganuary, get yourself some nut cheese. Mouse’s Favourite cashew brie or the Kinda Co almond feta are good quality choices


Swap Chicken for Tofu or Tempeh

Over the past couple of years we have all seen the exponential rise of vegan/vegetarian meat substitutes. Whilst some of these are on the healthier side, there are others that are packed with ingredients you can’t pronounce, and can be highly processed. Tofu and Tempeh on the other hand tend to be less processed when in their natural form and are packed with plant-protein. Try chucking these into a stir fry, thai green curry or in a salad instead of chicken. We love the Tofoo company Tempeh and tofu nuggets.


Swap Beef for Lentils/Beans 

Burgers, chilli and lasagne are not entirely off the card’s friends! Make simple swaps. Use lentils instead of mince in your lasagne/shepheards pie, kidney beans in your chilli con carne or black beans as the meat substitute in a burger. The added plus? Pulses are filled with fibre, plant-protein and good for your wallet, too. 


Swap eggs in baking with chia eggs

Eggs act as a rising agent and binder in cakes and baking, so with vegan baking we can often find cakes can come out crumbly or flat. Try using a chia egg which can help act as a binder in recipes that don’t need to rise – i.e waffles, pancakes, breads and cookies.  

Simply mix 1 tbsp of chia seeds with 2.5 tbsp of water. Leave for 15 minutes and then mix again. You will notice that they form a gloppy like consistency, and there you have it, a chia egg!


Make sure you’re covering your nutrients

If you are intending to follow a vegan diet for longer than just Veganuary, make sure you cover your intake of B12 (only found in animal foods), Vitamin D (very difficult to obtain in the winter and on a vegan diet), Calcium (can be low to reduce calcium from dairy) and Iodine (found in fish and dairy). Consider fortified plant options or supplements alongside a healthy, wholefood diet. 


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Hi there

London Nutritionist Clarissa Lenherr

I’m Clarissa, a registered nutritionist (mBANT) and workplace wellness expert. In my practice, I have helped hundreds of clients reach optimal health through creating sustainable, effective habits and dietary adjustments. My aim is to empower people with the skills, tools and knowledge to take their health into their own hands and feel the happiest, healthiest versions of themselves. Featured in The Daily Mail, Women’s Health, The Telegraph, and more.




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