9 Vegan Foods That You Already Have in Your Kitchen

Posted by 2 years ago | Permalink | Comments (39)

Going vegan is a great chance to become more creative in your cooking – as evidenced by all the mouth-watering entries to the Great Vegan Bake-Off, for example. But if you’re just starting out with a plant-based diet, it might come as a relief to realise that you’ve probably been eating vegan food all your life without even realising it!

The following are just a few much-loved staples that happily contain no animal products:

1. Beans on toast:

A meal that’s ready in minutes, contains not an ounce of cruelty and literally costs you pennies. It’s no wonder that thrifty students and hungry people in a hurry love to wolf this down.

CC Baked Beans

avlxyz / CC BY-SA 2.0

2. Chips:

We’re not claiming that deep-fried slivers of potato smothered in salt and vinegar and dunked in ketchup are healthy – but you can’t be virtuous all the time, right?
Stock chips

3. Hummus:

Who doesn’t love hummus? You can buy it everywhere, and it goes with pretty much anything – pita bread, salad, crisps, carrot batons, falafel or straight out of the tub. (Maybe that last one’s just me.) Thanks to the sesame seeds and chickpeas it contains, it also packs a powerful protein punch.

Hummus copy

4. Tomato soup:

Tinned (though steer clear of versions that contain cream) or home-cooked, this is a comforting classic. Here’s a really simple recipe for making your own.


5. Porridge:

Apparently, nearly half of us Brits like to start the day with a bowl of steaming oats. Make it extra-wholesome by adding a splash of soya or almond milk, a banana and some dried fruit.

CC Porridge

mlinksva / CC BY 2.0

6. Biscuits:

Who’d have guessed that Hob Nobs, Oreos, pink wafers and Jammie Dodgers are “accidentally vegan”?! Many brands of ginger nuts, chocolate bourbons and digestives are, too – just double-check the packet to be sure before you buy.

3 packets

7. Fruit salad:

Desserts don’t come much easier (or healthier) than this! Choose and chop up your favourite fresh fruits, toss them in a bowl and you’re good to go.

Fruit salad coctail on a plate

8. Spaghetti:

Whip up a vegan bolognaise, stir in some vegan pesto or just grab a jar of marinara sauce and top it off with a sprinkle of fresh herbs. Extra brownie points if you can eat it without getting sauce on your chin.

CC Spaghetti

nawitus / CC BY 2.0

9. Crumpets:
Most store-bought crumpets are vegan, which means that you can enjoy a quintessentially English afternoon tea without guilt!
CC crumpets
ZapTheDingbat / CC BY 2.0
See – vegan eating is easy! Share your favourite “accidentally vegan” offerings in the comments. And if you’re after more tips about a cruelty-free diet, get yourself one of our free vegan starter kits right now at PETA.org.uk/vsk.


  • Jo commented on January 3, 2014 at 3:28 pm

    I’m pretty sure the European version of Oreo’s has Whey powder in them.

    • Anne commented on January 3, 2014 at 4:35 pm

      Hi Jo – They have recently changed the recipe, so that European Oreos are now vegan, too! However, it is worth double-checking the packet, to make sure you’re not buying old stock made with the non-vegan recipe. Here’s a bit more info: http://veggies.co.uk/2013/03/19/vegan-oreos/#comment-142786

      • sophie wilde commented on August 24, 2015 at 1:43 pm

        Thanks for that,I’m just making my online supermarket order and was searching for some choccie biscuits and had to do a double check as looking at the ingredients Oreos indeed seem to be vegan..Hooorah ,a packet or 2 becken I think !!

  • Caroline Murphy commented on January 3, 2014 at 6:13 pm

    I eat most of these and found the hobnobs were vegan the other day, over the moon! Doesn’t tell you how to not scoff the whole packet though :(

  • Emma O'B commented on January 6, 2014 at 10:36 am

    A lot of the biscuits say “may contain milk” though, so we tend to steer clear of those. Shop own brand oath biscuits tend to be ok, I think Hob Nobs have a disclaimer on milk in the allergy advice…

    • sophie wilde commented on August 24, 2015 at 1:51 pm

      I think what it is that manufacturers cover themselves for every possibility of cross contamination of ingredients sparking off an allergic reaction and that’s why they even go as far as to say that milk etc might even be in the building.I’m afraid after 39yrs of being a veg I don’t go that far as we wouldn’t eat any packaged food as the glue that holds boxes together is often of animal origin.Another example of that is envelopes we’d never send a letter again .Even manmade shoes the chance of being vegan is slim when it comes to gluing on the sole of the shoe.

  • Sarah calderwood commented on January 6, 2014 at 10:53 am

    I discovered this morning that my old fav biscuits ‘Lotus’ are labelled vegan, how happy am i?! :)

  • shelley commented on January 6, 2014 at 11:42 am

    Its great there are so many everyday food items that are actually vegan. I often wonder why companies dont label their food suitable for vegans (if they are) like they do for vegetarians. It would make life so much easier and shopping less time consuming if it was. Often i pick up a item and cannot see in anyway it containing animal ingredients but the label doesnt state it suitable for vegans so i never know whether it is suitable for vegans or contains some form of animal that isnt recognized by myself. Some companies/supermarkets do which is great. I find most big brand names use a lot of palm oil in their products so even though they contain no animal ingredients i will not eat them because of the palm oil. Alot of supermarkt own brand stuff uses alternatives to palm so i buy those instead or make my own.

    • kelly kane commented on January 6, 2014 at 5:16 pm

      i have to say im appalled at the amount of food that now contains palm oil, just about everything in Marks and Spencer i think :(

    • Lorraine Smith commented on August 3, 2015 at 2:22 pm

      I also do not like to eat foods containing pam oil, as so many forests have been destroyed to plant these trees, putting other animal lives as risk!

  • Brodie commented on January 6, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    heyyy there’s actually a debate whether Oreos are vegan or not… On the Oreo website it says they’re not as they have cross contact with milk… but they might just be trying to cover themselves… Also, Kraft (the makers of Oreos) does animal testing apartently !!!! All in all, I would stay clear of Oreos and other Kraft products :(

  • Mike Levers commented on January 6, 2014 at 2:12 pm

    Please let us have more of these I can feel myself becoming vegan already !!!!
    Maybe I’ll live on baked beans !

    • P Eden commented on January 13, 2014 at 7:53 am

      Please let me know more food I can eat if I go vegan after seeing the video I felt sick to my stomach people shouldn’t be allowed to do that to animals their should be laws and heavy fines.

  • Mrs Elliott commented on January 6, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    i ve really enjoyed the vegan diet so far. . been alot easier than i thought and so healthy.snackimg on advacado and motzas and lots of bean dishes. . Blake bean dish tonight . . you just have to be organised with planning what youre gonna eat :)

  • Rachel Duggan commented on January 6, 2014 at 7:15 pm

    Be careful not to buy biscuits with palm oil in though!
    “Vast areas of pristine rainforest is slashed and burned each year in order to make way for oil palm plantations. Many orangutans and other wildlife are killed in the process, so that this one vegetable oil can be used in many of our everyday foods and products. This large-scale deforestation is pushing orangutans to extinction, along with many other native species of Borneo and Sumatra.”

    • Lorraine Smith commented on August 3, 2015 at 2:23 pm

      I agree, couldn’t have said it better!

  • Diane Lester commented on January 6, 2014 at 7:43 pm

    the ones i can think of are Marmite, peanut butter, and dumplings with vegi suet, i have a war time cake recipe that uses vinegar instead of egg it works very well. can send the recipe to anyone interested

    • vera dyke commented on January 13, 2014 at 5:13 pm

      Hi Diane, Would you be so kind as to send me the war time cake recipe.
      Best Regards
      Vera Dyke

  • Olivia commented on January 6, 2014 at 9:14 pm

    Hob nobs have palm oil.

  • Darren Wachler commented on January 6, 2014 at 9:14 pm

    I would like this too. I have been a VEGAN for many, many years!

  • Darren Wachler commented on January 6, 2014 at 9:18 pm

    I have been a Vegan for many, many years. I would still like emails for more.

  • Vicky commented on January 6, 2014 at 9:31 pm

    I agree with Shelley, a lot of biscuits and baked goods contain Palm Oil, and that is definitely something to avoid

  • Rebecca White commented on January 7, 2014 at 1:30 am

    I was under the impression that most baked beans and tinned soups actually had casein and whey powder in them ? Also, as has been mentioned, a lot of these companies do animal test so ?
    Another thing I find, as a Lactose Intolerant/Dairy Allergic Vegan, a lot of things that say they are suitable and don’t contain any milk produce still must be made in that environment and do sometimes contain some source as they don’t half make me poorly ! I even had a Vegan Yoghurt given to me by a Vegan friend to try, from a well known Supermarket. She had been buying them and loved them, so wanted me to try them. They definitely contained some milk somewhere along the line !! I was very ill indeed. I just stick to Free From ranges now or home made. It’s easier and safer.

  • Sara Maidens commented on January 7, 2014 at 4:08 am

    Oreos say they may contain milk so i would not eat them myself as i am a vegan.

  • jane commented on January 16, 2014 at 12:44 am

    The rainforest.org website has a good list of ethical and palm oil free foods which include bread and bisciuts

  • Leigh-Catherine salway commented on September 17, 2014 at 4:50 pm

    New York bakery bagels are also vegan. Cinnamon and raisin are delicious toasted with dairy free sunflower spread or organic Peanut butter. Kettle chips salt and balsamic vinegar too are vegan and delicious.

  • joanne commented on November 5, 2014 at 1:40 pm

    I have found Lotus Biscoff spread which is vegan, staes on label. Just ike the biscuits you get with your coffee.

  • Siobhan McMinn commented on December 27, 2014 at 10:15 am

    It’s the best feeling in the world when you find out something you already like is vegan lol. I was so happy when I found out about bourbons! Pushed my luck with custard creams.
    Anyone from Europe though! After eights and Frys chocolate creams are vegan too!!! 😀

  • Hayley Marshall commented on December 27, 2014 at 10:18 am

    Totally agree about the palm oil, I spend alot of time campaigning to increase awareness of how palm oil devastates the orangatang habitat so shocking that so many people are totally unaware of where it is sourced from.

  • Andy commented on December 27, 2014 at 11:17 am

    Did you know that most of Sainsburys own brand stuff is Vegan

  • Tanni commented on December 27, 2014 at 3:01 pm

    Im a vegetarian fr quite some time now . Wants to go vegan but im allergic to soy so a lot of options goes out of window. thanks fr this post it shows some alternatives to soy. Just one request cn anybdy plz suggest some milk alternatives

    • Anne commented on December 29, 2014 at 4:34 am

      Hi Tanni,
      You’re in luck – in the UK there are many delicious non-dairy milks that don’t contain soy! Almond milk, oat milk, hazelnut milk, rice milk, hemp milk, coconut milk… most larger supermarkets will stock a selection of these.

  • Rusty commented on December 28, 2014 at 8:15 am

    It’s a difficult balance between veganism & healthy & sustainability. Saturated fats lurk in the Oils used for mass production biscuits, sauces, pastes & breads. Palm oil is used in bread. Sugar is in sauces, baked beans, bread etc.

    Got to be do careful with the saturated fats & sugars when choosing vegan stuff from the cupboard.

    For me the vegan diet is all about the multitude of vegetables, pulses & fruits that can be combined to make an incredibly healthy way of life. Beans on toast, Oreos & pasta should be the last resort if your very hungry DBD didn’t get to the market!

  • lucy commented on December 28, 2014 at 8:56 am

    your suggestions for vegan or even vegetarian food are neither appetising or inviting. my aunt has been a vegan for 70ish years (now 84), she went as an 11 year old to a slaughter house and has never eaten meat since, all of the meals she cooked for me as a child were amazing and all vegan, she was a war baby so I don’t know where she got it from. My aunt isn’t around now. I am extremely careful where I source my food from and how it is kept, treated and killed. I tried the vegetarian route because I had issues with how animals were treated but really struggled with veggie/vegan diet and ideas and what contains what??? i decided to source my food properly. I have a self imposed ban on anything that contains palm oil and have been following that since the Panorama programme (about 4/5 years ago), i never buy from supermarkets, i grow 60 percent of my yearly veg/salad, i insist on free range (i live in the countryside and know the farmers et al!!), any help at all with a vegetarian/vegan diet would be welcomed. it is a nightmare/mindfield!!

  • Nicki commented on December 28, 2014 at 5:37 pm

    please could you send me the recipe too! I’m new to veganism and need all the help I can get

  • rebecca commented on December 29, 2014 at 4:37 pm

    I’ll eat all the oreos I want Rusty it doesn’t make me any less vegan than you! Vegan for the animals!

  • laura commented on January 25, 2015 at 11:34 am

    I think the company that produce Oreo have an appalling animal rights record… So vegan ingredients but not ethical.

  • Aimee commented on August 10, 2015 at 10:51 pm

    Oreos are not vegan, they state that fact on their website

  • Tom John commented on October 30, 2015 at 8:15 pm

    Oreos ar NOT VEGAN !! Check their site… It says they come direct contact with milk … I’m a vegan so has developed lactose intolerance and even if I wanted to I can’t eat them and they make me sick… Meaning they’re not vegan …

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