Nutrition

14 Meals For Success In Veganuary

Veganuary is an annual challenge run by a UK nonprofit organisation that promotes and educates about veganism by encouraging people to follow a vegan lifestyle for the month of January. A vegan or plant-based diet excludes all animal products, including meat, dairy, and eggs. When people follow it correctly, a vegan diet can be highly nutritious, reduce the risk of chronic diseases, and aid weight loss. People who choose to live a vegan lifestyle may also avoid clothes, soaps, and other products that use or contain parts of animals, such as leather and animal fur. People following this diet should, however, take care to get key nutrients that people usually consume in animal products. These nutrients include iron, protein, calcium, vitamin B-12, and Vitamin D.

Research has shown that a vegan diet can help do the following:

  1. Promote weight loss: Twenty-two publications from 19 studies were studies in a systematic review1. The majority of them were randomized controlled trials comparing a low-fat vegan diet to an omnivore diet in participants with overweight, type 2 diabetes mellitus and/or cardiovascular disease. All studies reported weight reductions, of which seven revealed significant differences, and four revealed non-significant differences between the intervention and the control groups. The results suggest that plant-based diets may improve weight status in some patient groups. This is likely due to the high fiber content , increasing satiety amongst individuals and the nutrient density of the diet.
  2. Reduce your risk of heart disease by lowering cholesterol levels: According to current guidelines2, a healthy dietary pattern is high in vegetables, fruit, whole grains, seafood, legumes, and nuts, and includes a modest amount of low- and non-fat dairy products. It is also low in red and processed meat, sugar-sweetened foods and beverages, and refined grains

 

Foods High In Protein

  • Tofu
  • Tempeh
  • Legumes
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Edamame beans
  • Lentils
  • Quinoa
  • Chia seeds
  • Hemp seeds
  • Seitan

Weekly Meal Plan

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Breakfast Banana Pancakes  Tofu scramble on toast Oats with soya yoghurt Vegan cinnamon apple baked oatmeal Tofu scramble on 1 sweet potato Cinnamon Danish Chia seed pudding with soya milk
Lunch Black bean chilli over lime cous cous Quinoa and bean salad Tofu veg stir fry Mushroom and tofu grain bowl Mac ‘N’ Cheese Black bean and avocado sandwich Quinoa and butternut salad
Dinner Cauliflower black bean tacos Chickpea and cauliflower curry Vegan mushroom shepherds pie Lentil Dahl Tofu stir fry Roasted Ratatouille Spaghetti Broccoli and brown rice vegan casserole

Vegan Cinnamon-Apple Baked Oatmeal

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups (220g) old-fashioned oats
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/4 cups (532ml) unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 cups (280g) sweet apple, grated and unpeeled (such as Honeycrisp)
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (57g) walnuts, chopped
  • 2 cups (228g) strawberries, sliced
  • 1 cup (120g) raspberries
  • 1 cup (120g) blackberries

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F (190ºC). In a large bowl, stir together oats, cinnamon, baking powder and salt. Stir in almond milk, grated apple, syrup and vanilla. Pour mixture into an 11-by-7-inch glass baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle evenly with walnuts.
  • Bake until set, about 35 minutes. Let stand 5–10 minutes before cutting into six pieces.
  • Combine strawberries, raspberries and blackberries in a bowl. Serve berry mixture over oatmeal.

Serves: 6 | Serving Size: 1 oatmeal piece and 2/3 cup berries

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 232; Carbs: 31g; Protein 7g; Fat: 11g

4-Ingredient Foolproof Banana Protein Pancakes

Find the ingredients and directions here, just substitute the egg for 1.5 mashed bananas and use your favourite vegan protein.

Serves: 4

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 132 kcal; Carbs: 15g; Protein: 15.4g; Fat: 1.3g

Curried Tofu-Spinach Scramble

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 1/2 cups (212g) crumbled extra-firm tofu
  • 3/8 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup (76g) grape tomatoes, halved
  • 4 cups (84g) fresh spinach, lightly packed

Directions

Heat a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan and swirl to coat. Add tofu, and sprinkle with curry powder and salt. Cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Move tofu to one side of the skillet and add tomatoes to the empty side. Cook 2 minutes or until tomatoes start to wilt. Gradually add spinach, stirring gently until spinach wilts, about 2 minutes.

Serves: 2 | Serving Size: About 1 cup

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 214; Carbs: 5g; Protein 18g; Fat: 13g

Vegan Mac ‘N’ Cheese

Find the ingredients and directions here.

Serves: 4

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 351 kcal; Carbs: 49g; Protein: 13.1g; Fat: 10.7g

Roasted Ratatouille Spaghetti

Ingredients

  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 small (10-ounce/284g) eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch (1.3cm) cubes
  • 1 medium (8-ounce/227g) zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch (1.3cm) cubes
  • 2 cups (12 ounces/340g) cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 6 medium garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon herbes de Provence or Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 8 ounces (227g) whole-wheat spaghetti
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, torn into bite-size pieces, optional garnish for serving

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 450°F (232°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Mound the vegetables on the baking sheet with the garlic. Drizzle with the oil and sprinkle with herbes de Provence, salt and pepper, and toss with your hands to coat the vegetables with oil. Bake, stirring with a spatula once or twice, until the vegetables are tender when pierced with a fork, 30 minutes.
  • While the vegetables are roasting, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook according to package instructions. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Place the pasta in a large serving bowl.
  • When the vegetables are done, transfer the garlic to a cutting board. Peel the garlic and mash with a fork. Combine with the garlic, spaghetti, roasted vegetables, basil and enough reserved pasta water to coat the noodles with the veggie sauce. Serve immediately.

Serves: 4 | Serving Size: 1 3/4 cups spaghetti/284g

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 322; Carbs: 52g; Protein: 10g; Fat: 9g

Chickpea and Cauliflower Curry

Ingredients

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons turmeric, divided
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 large jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • 2 cups (360g) fresh tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups (250g) cauliflower florets
  • 2 cups (328g) cooked chickpeas, no salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup (8g) fresh cilantro

Directions

  • Slice the sweet potatoes and steam until very tender. Let cool slightly, slip off the skins and mash. Stir in 1 teaspoon of the turmeric and set aside.
  • Add the coconut milk to a large saute pan placed over medium-high heat. Add the ginger and jalapenos and bring to a boil, cook for a minute after it starts boiling. Stir in the remaining teaspoon turmeric, cumin and pepper and cook for a few seconds. Add the tomatoes and cauliflower and return to boil. Cover the pan and reduce to medium-low, and cook for about 4 minutes. When the cauliflower is tender, stir in the chickpeas and cook until heated through. Stir in the lemon juice. Serve curry atop sweet potato mash.

Serves: 4 | Serving Size: 3/4 cup sweet potatoes and 1 cup curry

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 232; Carbs: 43g; Protein: 10g; Fat: 3g

Creamy Peanut Butter Noodles

Find the ingredients and directions here.

Serves: 4

Calories: 363 kcal; Carbohydrates: 43.3g; Protein: 13.8g; Fat: 14.6g

Vegan Mushroom Shepherd’s Pie

Ingredients

For the potatoes:

  • 1 medium russet potato, peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 1/2 head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled, divided
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 ounces (225g) silken tofu, drained
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

For the mushroom filling

  • 1/2 ounces (14g) dried porcini mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 pounds (680g) mushrooms, trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 bunch Swiss chard, stems and leaves chopped and separated
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 cup (75g) cooked lentils
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch (optional)

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).

For the potatoes:

  • Put the potatoes and cauliflower in a pot of salted water and bring to a boil. Cook until fully tender, 15–20 minutes. Drain and return to the hot, empty pan and let cool slightly.
  • Meanwhile, put the garlic and olive oil in a small baking dish or foil packet and bake until golden, about 30 minutes.
  • Mash the roasted garlic and olive oil with one chunk of the potato, then run all of the potatoes, cauliflower and tofu through a ricer, if you have one, or pulse it all in a food processor until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper and set aside.

For the mushroom filling:

  • Put dried mushrooms in a large bowl and cover with 2 cups boiling water; set aside.
  • Separate the stems and caps of the fresh mushrooms; mince the stems and chop the caps.
  • Heat a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and fresh mushrooms. Cook, stirring frequently until they’ve released their liquid and that liquid has cooked off, about 10 minutes.
  • While the fresh mushrooms cook, lift the dried mushrooms from their soaking liquid, squeeze to drain and mince. Reserve the soaking liquid.
  • Add carrots, celery, onion and chard stalks. Cook, stirring, until the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and minced, dried mushrooms; stir to combine. Add the chard leaves and cook, stirring, until wilted, about 2 minutes. Add the mushroom soaking liquid and lentils, bring to a simmer and remove from the heat. Stir in thyme. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • For a thicker, more gravy-like filling whisk the cornstarch in a small bowl with a bit of cold water to create a smooth paste. Whisk in about 1/2 cup (120ml) of the liquid from the mushroom mixture to create a slurry. Stir the slurry into the mushroom mixture.
    Transfer mushroom mixture into a baking dish (a 9-by-13 pan works well); top with the mashed potatoes. Bake until the mushroom mixture bubbles along the edges and the potatoes are golden brown, about 35 minutes. Let cool 10–15 minutes before scooping to serve.

Serves: 6 | Serving Size: 2 cups (450g)

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 22; Carbs: 35g; Protein 15g; Fat: 7g

One-Pot Lentil Dahl & Homemade Naan

Find the ingredients and directions here.

Serves: 4

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 354 kcal; Carbs: 36g; Protein: 33g; Fat: 8g

Broccoli and Brown Rice Vegan Casserole

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (92g) long-grain brown rice
  • 1 cup (133g) sweet potato, cubed
  • 2 cups (182g) broccoli, chopped
  • 12 ounces (340g) extra firm silken tofu (we used Mori Nu)
  • 4 tablespoons (20g) nutritional yeast
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons tamari soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder

Directions

  • In a small saucepan, bring 1 cup water to a boil, then add the brown rice. Return to boil, then reduce the heat to low and cover. Cook for about 40 minutes. Steam the sweet potato cubes until tender. Let cool slightly.
  • Preheat the oven to 375ºF (190ºC). Coat an 8-inch (20cm) square baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  • Place the sweet potato cubes and tofu in the bowl of a food processor bowl and puree, scraping down and repeating until smooth. Add
  • the nutritional yeast, tamari and arrowroot and process to mix.
  • In a large bowl, combine the cooked rice, chopped broccoli and tofu mixture. Stir until well-mixed, then spread in the prepared pan.
  • Bake, uncovered, for 45 minutes. The top will be cracked and feel firm when pressed lightly with a fingertip.
  • Cool and cut into 4 squares.

Serves: 4 | Serving size: 1/4 pan

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 261; Carbs: 36g; Protein: 15g; Fat: 6g

Giant Dairy-Free Protein Cinnamon Rolls

Find the ingredients and directions here.

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 210 kcal; Carbs: 23.3g; Protein: 10.1g; Fat: 8.6g

Cauliflower Black Bean Tacos

Ingredients

  • 6 corn tortillas
  • 4 cups (400g) cauliflower
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (278g) cooked black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup (40g) green onions, chopped
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 cup (15g) cilantro, coarsely chopped

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 400ºF (200ºC), and wrap the tortillas in foil. Heat the tortillas for 10 minutes.
  • Place the cauliflower in a food processor and pulse until chopped to the size of ground beef.
  • Coat a large saute pan with olive oil and place over medium-high heat; add the cauliflower. Cook, stirring frequently for about 5 minutes, until the cauliflower is tender and the pan is dry. Add the garlic, chipotle powder, salt and black beans and cook until hot.
  • Serve 1/2 cup of the cauliflower filling in each corn tortilla, top with green onions, tomatoes and cilantro.

Serves: 3 | Serving Size: 2 tacos

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 286; Carbs: 52g; Protein: 13g; Fat: 4g;

Quick Black Bean Chili Over Lime Couscous

Ingredients

For the chili

  • 1/2 cup (120ml) chopped onion
  • 1/2 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 small jalapeno, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups (256g) cooked no-salt black beans, drained
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

For the couscous

  • 2/3 cup (57g) whole-wheat couscous
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro

Directions

  • Set a large saute pan, spritzed with olive oil, over medium-high heat. Add the onion and pepper and stir. When it starts to sizzle and brown, about 2 minutes, lower the heat to medium-low and stir occasionally until the vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, jalapeno, black beans, chili powder and salt and bring to a simmer, cooking until tomatoes are softened and the mixture is thick, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  • For the couscous: Bring 1 cup of water to a boil in a small pot. Add the couscous and lime juice, stir quickly and cover. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Fluff and stir in the cilantro.

Serves: 2 | Serving size: 3/4 cup couscous and 1 1/2 cups chili

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 435; Carbs: 88g; Protein: 21g; Fat: 4g;

Mushrooms, Brussels Sprouts & Tofu Grain Bowls

Ingredients

  • 1 (14-ounce/397g) package extra-firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons white miso
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • 1 pound (454g) Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
  • 4 ounces (113g) shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and caps thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 2 cups (241g) precooked farro
  • 4 teaspoons Sriracha

Directions

  • Drain tofu and cut into 1/2-inch thick slices. Drain slices between layers of paper towels as the oven preheats.
  • Preheat oven to 425°F (220ºC). Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together canola oil, miso, 1/4 teaspoon salt and garlic. In a medium bowl, combine Brussels sprouts and 1 tablespoon miso mixture, tossing well to coat. Arrange on 1/3 of prepared baking sheet. In the same medium-sized bowl, combine mushrooms and 1 1/2 teaspoons miso mixture, tossing well to coat. Add mushrooms to the baking sheet, keeping separate from the brussels sprouts.
  • Cut tofu into bite-sized cubes. Add to the medium bowl, and combine tofu with the remaining miso mixture, tossing gently to coat. Add tofu to the remaining 1/3 of the baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes.
  • Remove mushrooms from pan. Gently stir Brussels sprouts and tofu and bake for 5 more minutes.
  • Meanwhile, heat sesame oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add farro; sauté 2 minutes or until heated through and slightly crispy.
  • Spoon a scant 1/2 cup farro into each of four bowls. Top each serving with 2/3 cup Brussels sprouts, 1/2 cup tofu and 3 tablespoons mushrooms. Drizzle 1 teaspoon Sriracha over each bowl.

Serves: 4 | Serving Size: 1 bowl

Nutrition (per serving):

Calories: 364; Carbohydrate: 37g; Protein 17g; Fat: 17

Take Home Message

With 14 meals to motivate you through Veganuary, you’re halfway there. Just because your dietary requirements are changing for the month, doesn’t mean your macros have to take the hit. They can be as good as ever.

 

 

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Our articles should be used for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to be taken as medical advice. If you’re concerned, consult a health professional before taking dietary supplements or introducing any major changes to your diet.


  1. Tran, E., Dale, H. F., Jensen, C., & Lied, G. A. (2020). Effects of Plant-Based Diets on Weight Status: A Systematic Review. Diabetes, metabolic syndrome and obesity : targets and therapy13, 3433–3448. https://doi.org/10.2147/DMSO.S272802 
  2.   Benatar, J. R., & Stewart, R. (2018). Cardiometabolic risk factors in vegans; A meta-analysis of observational studies. PloS one13(12), e0209086. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0209086 

  



Jenaed Gonçalves Brodell

Jenaed Gonçalves Brodell

Writer and expert

Jenaed Gonçalves Brodell is a well know Registered Dietitian (HCPC) and Sport Scientist. She is a fitness enthusiast and comes from a semi professional field hockey background. Her passion for sports nutrition and background in the sporting arena making her relatable to many amateur and elite sports personnel. She has experience working for the NHS & in South Africa as a consultant dietitian. She provides evidence based, easy to follow, practical advice and guidance.She has experience in the Paediatric field specialising in sports performance for junior and adult athletes. Her writing background comes from extensive researching throughout her career finding the most up to date information and translating it into easy to understand information for the public. She shares information on her public instagram page @nutritionaldco_ on the latest in evidence based nutrition.


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