Embracing a vegan diet is a step towards a healthy lifestyle. Not surprisingly, most Americans want to give it a shot. Veganism is no longer only a celebrity trend but a public movement. You may find the transition challenging to start with because skipping animal-based foods is not easy. After all, it can take some effort to figure out plan-based alternatives to meat, eggs, and dairy. Moreover, there are always chances of making mistakes or falling short of commitment down the line.
Sticking to the veganism goal gets even more challenging if you are a fine-dining enthusiast and love trying all the new restaurants and eating joints in town. You will probably have eating out on your weekly wishlists, but it can be intimidating as a beginner. But you can follow some easy vegan diet rules and eat out without worrying about your goals. Here is a comprehensive list of rules beginners can rely on.
Be committed to your cause
Switching to veganism is a massive commitment because it is about breaking the habits of a lifetime. Committing to the cause is easier said than done, but it is the only way you can steer clear of temptations. You need not give up your social circles or outings, provided you have self-control. Define your reason to go vegan, and you will not have to struggle on the motivation front. Also, getting your facts about a vegan diet is crucial for newbies. Unless you know what to skip, there are good chances of landing with the wrong foods on your plate. You may actually find ways to relish your favorites with the most surprising alternatives like mock meats and plant milk. But everything boils down to awareness and commitment.
If you are a beginner with a vegan diet, you need not worry a lot about missing out on outings. There are plenty of options catering to this segment of the American population. Wherever you live or travel, you can easily find a restaurant that matches your expectations. You only need to invest some time in researching the options nearby. If you are in Atlanta, look for restaurants serving vegan food atlanta for its patrons. You can search online or seek recommendations from like-minded dining enthusiasts. The initial search can save time and prevent frustration down the line. Ensure to check their timings and dining and takeaway options.
Check the menu
Once you find a vegan restaurant nearby, you must check their menu to understand the options. Digging deeper into the ingredients is a rule every vegan must follow because the last thing you want is to add the wrong food to your plate. For example, you will not want your veggies to be sautéed in honey for sweetness. Double-checking the menu can help you avoid such accidents. The good thing is that you can rely on these specialized restaurants for their judgment on ingredients. Yet checking for yourself always makes sense for beginners as it enables you to check your ingredient assessment skills. You can even browse through the menu on the restaurant website before dining in.
Whichever place you choose for dining out, be sure to order wisely. It will be much easier if you choose an all-vegan restaurant. Look for a place with the adapted versions of your favorite cuisine on offer. Expert chefs can alter most dishes to make them vegan-friendly with a little creativity. You can even convey your specific requirements and expectations while ordering to get personalized dishes accordingly. Beginners may find ordering intimidating initially. But you will be a lot more comfortable as you learn the ropes and get more experience of eating out at vegan joints.
Prioritize vegetarian options
As a rule, you must prioritize vegetarian options when eating out at a random place. They are the safest because you need not worry about meats being used as an ingredient in vegetarian dishes. But do check ingredients and ensure there are no eggs, honey, or dairy. Do not hesitate to ask the waiting staff or chef because these ingredients may not always be visible in the dish. But you cannot risk eating one that has them in a hidden form, so it is better to verify facts before ordering. You will have to do the bit if you can dine with your gang wherever they plan to.
Stick with side dishes
Another food rule to stay safe in random eateries and restaurants is to stick with side dishes. They are less likely to have meat or dairy because they are inherently vegan-friendly. For example, you can order a vegetable salad, assorted fruit, fries, or stirred veggies instead of a classic meal when eating out. Mixing multiple side dishes is a good way to make a filling meal. Check the menu to ensure that the place has enough side options to satiate your vegan desires while partying with your besties.
Consider allergy-friendly dishes
You can consider allergy-friendly dishes if you do not see much in the name of vegan dishes on the menu. These recipes are more likely to be dairy-free, and a little effort is enough to customize them to make them vegan. The good thing is that allergy-friendly options are available in most restaurants these days, so you need not stress much about finding them. You can easily skip ingredients such as milk, butter, cheese, and sour cream with these options. So they are ideal for vegans and diners with food allergies.
Eating out sounds like an intimidating aspect of being vegan, but it is only a matter of time before being comfortable with the idea. You may feel overwhelmed about choosing a restaurant and ordering as a beginner. But things get better as you become a seasoned vegan and identify the best dining options in your area. As you gain more knowledge, you can even pick the best ones while traveling. Follow these rules, and you will never go wrong with your choices even as you dine out and have a good time with friends and family.