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what is vegan, vegan diet, veganism, vegans

What is Vegan?

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What is Vegan? Let me run it down for you — and you’ll have a much better understanding of the lifestyle and how to bake for it.


Hi Bold Bakers!

As Bigger Bolder Baking’s in-house alternative baker, I love creating recipes for all you bakers that are trying to find a new way to improve your diet and nutrition while still enjoying the homemade sweets. As you might have noticed, my recipes might have attributes of all different kinds of popular diets. From my Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies to my Keto Fudge Brownies, I think it’s pretty clear I myself do not have one particular point of view, I prefer to give it all a try.

The reason I like to try a wider range of diets and lifestyles is so I can be a source of information and know-how for you! Thus, I wanted to give you Bold Bakers my personal rundown on what it is to be vegan! It’s all about a plant-based lifestyle. To learn more and hear my personal opinion, keep on reading!

Is Vegan It A Diet?

what is vegan, vegan diet, veganism, vegans

As those that have practiced being vegan, or like to make vegan recipes, know it is not about “dieting,” dropping pounds, or even being particularly healthy. Being vegan and choosing to live that lifestyle is all about cutting out all animal products and, instead, eating entirely plant-based. While vegetarians often times don’t eat meat, they can still eat dairy, eggs, and cheese. Vegans do not eat anything that is animal derived — including gelatin, honey, or cow/goat/sheep milk.

Why Choose to be Vegan?

Most people who choose this lifestyle do so for a combination of reasons. And again, this is not about a promise of looking or feeling a certain way, it is more often about the ethical and environmental associations that come with eating animals and animal-based products.

When people ask me, “Is it ‘healthy?'” I tell them there are many vegan foods and desserts that are rich and delicious. Many who are unaware of the real motivation of being a vegan mistake these foods for being low-calorie or inherently “healthier,” but this is not always the case. I personally went through a phase of making and eating lots of raw vegan desserts and ultimately found the style of baking to be very rich. Many do report feeling great after choosing this lifestyle, though, as this often comes with increasing your intake of healthy veggies and cutting out dairy, which can greatly improve gut health and digestion.

That said, I know just as many people who say it is not for them because they did not feel nourished. I am personally not vegan but I do like to give you the option to make my recipes without dairy and eggs.

Can All Recipes Be Turned Vegan?

what is vegan, vegan diet

Many of my recipes are vegan from the start, as I personally don’t eat too much dairy. In terms of eggs, I often include a substitute like flax or chia egg in my recipes as these do wonders for those who don’t want to cook with eggs or are allergic. These ingredients act like binders in the way eggs do. Flax and chia also have added fiber and healthy fats, making them my go-to egg replacement.

In addition to these options, there are many other ways of working with egg substitutes all outlined in Gemma’s super handy Egg Replacement Chart! From applesauce to sour cream, there are many ways to bake without eggs, depending on what kind of recipe you’re making. If for some reason my recipes require eggs and can not be replaced, I will note that. In terms of your own experimenting when it comes to baking, you can almost always assume flax and chia egg will work in baked goods. When it comes to desserts that require just egg white or egg yolk, or un-cooked egg like Tiramisu, there is really no replacement (sometimes egg whites can be swapped for Aquafaba, though!).

If you ever have any questions AND suggestions about how to substitute eggs just shoot me a message and I’ll get right back to you!

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Katherine Cowgill by Teren Oddo Oct. 2015

Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I’m passionate about sharing my years of experience to show you how to make game-changing baking recipes with over-the-top results! Join more than 1 Million other Bold Bakers in the community for new video recipes every week!

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