There seems to be a myth of inaccessibility surrounding veganism. This idea that it’s too expensive and restrictive.
I’ve been keeping vegan for a while now and I’ve spent less on my weekly shop than I did while I was vegetarian and significantly less than when I ate meat. To combat this fiction, I’ve put together a meal plan of main meals I eat during the week, fully costed, to show just how accessible veganism is. This can also be inspiration if you want to go vegan (or already are) but aren’t sure how to keep food exciting. All of the ingredients can be bought from Tesco’s.
Monday: Chili and Garlic Bread
Fun fact, Tesco’s own brand 40p garlic bread is made with margarine, it’s totally vegan!
Ingredients: tinned tomatoes, courgettes, kidney beans, 1 onion, 1 red pepper, 1 garlic clove, rice and 1-2 tsp of chili powder (for convenience sake, I’ve opted for microwavable rice but that one is totally up to you).
I operate under a chuck everything in the pan vibe, but you could start with frying your onions, then adding the chopped garlic, chopped peppers and chopped courgettes and let them fry until softened. Add the tinned tomatoes and kidney beans to the pan and heat until the kidney beans are soft. Add your chili powder and stir. Eat over rice and garlic bread. Totally filling, totally vegan. Now this recipe is one of the more expensive of the week, but as you’re buying multiple ingredients, you’ll be reusing for the rest of the week. The garlic, multipacks of onions and 3 packs of peppers will all be used throughout other recipes.
Total Cost: £3.95
Tuesday: Penne Arrabiata and Salad
Ingredients: extra virgin olive oil, penne pasta, tinned tomatoes, red chilli pepper and garlic.
In a large pan heat the extra virgin olive oil and garlic until fragrant – but be careful to not brown the garlic. Add your chopped red chilli and tinned tomatoes. Wait until the tomatoes soften and become a sauce-like consistency. Add cooked pasta to the pan and serve piping hot.
Total Cost: £2.91
Wednesday: Stir Fry
Ingredients: stir fry packet, wheat noodles and stir fry sauce.
This one is about as low maintenance as they come. Empty all the ingredients into a wok, and heat until cooked through. Boom. Done.
Total Cost: £2.25
Thursday: Jacket Potato, Hummus and Salad
Ingredients: large potato, sunflower spread, hummus and salad.
This is a great mid-week recipe, perfect for after that late seminar. Cook your jacket potato for around 25/30 minutes, heap on the sunflower spread and hummus and enjoy with a salad on the side.
Total Cost: £2.58
Friday: Sausages in Tomato Sauce
Ingredients: onion, red pepper, green pepper, 2 sticks celery, 4 cloves garlic, fresh chillies, 2 tins chopped tomatoes, cayenne pepper, courgette, rice and vegetarian sausages (Linda McCartney sausages are 100% certified vegan and delicious).
Pre-cook your veggie sausages and chop your veg. Once the sausages are cooked through, chop them into small slices. Then chuck it all in a giant pan and heat. Add your microwaved rice and cook till all the veg is softer and combined with the sauce.
Total Cost: £3.85
Saturday: Potato Curry and Naan Bread
Ingredients: potatoes, curry sauce and naan or rice.
This one is super simple. Peel and cube your potatoes to size. Boil until soft, but not falling apart. Once drained, heat them in a curry base of your choice. I personally love the mix of potatoes in a jalfrezi. Serve over naan bread or rice.
Total Cost: £1.70
Sunday: Toad in the Hole
Ingredients: veggie sausages, oil, flour, soy milk and onion gravy.
Cook your veggie sausages in the oven and prepare the Yorkshire pudding misture. Mix the hot oil, flour and soy milk and a pinch of baking powder. In a flat oven-proof dish, pour the batter around the cooked sausages. Serve with gravy on top. Tesco’s onion gravy is also vegan so enjoy!
Total Cost: £2.10