8 Reasons to Visit a Vegan Fair This Year

Are you in two minds about visiting a vegan fair? Maybe it involves travelling out of your way, or rearranging other plans? We’re here to tell you exactly why you should visit at least one vegan fair this year – although there’s a good chance you’ll want more once you realize just how great vegan events are.

1. Discover new products/companies

Vegan fairs are an excellent way to get introduced to companies you might never have come across otherwise. Some of our best vegan fair finds have come from companies we’d never even heard of – like this delicious vegan feta by Lettices. Some brands don’t have their products stocked in mainstream stores, or trade mainly locally/online, so going to a vegan event is a great way to give them a try.

2. Sample food before you buy

Vegan food can be expensive, and there’s nothing worse than splashing out on a new type of vegan cheese/chocolate/fake meat, only to find that it’s disgusting. Most traders at vegan events will have plenty of free samples on offer, so you can check that you like food before you purchase. It’s a good idea to try as many samples as possible before you decide what to buy – you don’t want to miss out on any gems at the end.

3. Support vegan businesses

Attending vegan fairs is a great way for small businesses to get the word out about their products, and get feedback from customers. By purchasing from them, you’re helping the business to grow and improve. Even if you don’t buy from every stall, even picking up a flyer and giving the company a follow/like on social media can be a big help.

4. Get vegan clothing, toiletries and make-up

Vegan food is becoming more and more common in mainstream shops, but non-food items like clothing, toiletries and make-up can sometimes be harder to find. Vegan fairs are a great place to get hold of items like this, and you’ll often find some really unique products. There’s usually plenty of printed clothing available too, perfect if you like statement T-shirts and hoodies.

5. Meet like-minded people

Vegan events can be an excellent place to meet like-minded people, particularly if you live in an area where veganism isn’t very common. Most stallholders will be happy to chat, and many events designate areas specifically for connecting with others. VegFest London features a ‘Teen Zone’ and a ‘Mature Zone’, making it easy to meet similar people while taking part in fun activities.  You could make a new best friend!

6. Attend talks and cookery demos

You’ll find a really diverse range of talks and demos at most vegan events – there’s usually something for almost everyone. We’ve seen talks on everything from vegan bodybuilding and healthy vegan diets to alternative healing and vegan activism. Cookery demos offer a great chance to pick up some new kitchen skills, and lessons on making your own vegan cheese are common.

7. Try tasty lunch options

Most vegan fairs are full of so many tasty lunch options that it can be hard to pick just one! Offerings will vary from event to event, but we’ve seen vegan pizza, vegan fish and chips, vegan hot dogs, vegan curries and more. Be sure to check outside the venue as well as inside, as food trucks often have some great offerings. Dessert options are usually plentiful as well, with cake, waffles, ice cream and froyo being some of the most popular.

8. Get freebies

Many vegan fairs are free to enter, particularly if they’re small, local events. Many fairs offer a free goodie bag to the first X number of visitors through the door, so it can pay to arrive early. You’ll often find freebies available on a number of stalls too, especially when a new company or product is being promoted.

Have we convinced you to visit a vegan fair this year?

If so, check out this list of 2017 UK vegan fairs for details of upcoming events.

It’s also helpful to join vegan Facebook groups for your local area and follow your favourite vegan brands on social media to keep up with new event announcements.

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Top Ten UK Vegan Christmas Finds 2016

With Christmas fast approaching, we thought we’d give you a list of our top ten festive vegan finds. If you fancy browsing our entire list, check out the Christmas section here (you can filter by supermarket on the right hand side, or at the bottom of the page on mobile).

1. Favorina Mince Pies (Lidl)

These are delicious warmed in the microwave, and come in a bigger box than most. There’s lots of good stuff in the Favorina range, including jelly fruits and turkish delight – see our Lidl section for more.

2. Penguin Bites (Tesco)

Fun Christmas crisps, perfect if you don’t want to eat too many sugary snacks.

3. Dark Chocolate and Orange Thins (Morrison’s)

These make a fun change from mint thins, and could be used in place of a chocolate orange.

4. Iced Mince Pies (Sainsbury’s)

Most mince pies don’t come with icing, so these are a fun novelty! Also free from gluten.

5. Chocolate and Hazelnut Churros (Tesco)

Warm vegan churros filled with chocolate and topped with glittery cinnamon sugar. What more could you want?

6. Gold Shimmer Hot Chocolate (Waitrose)

Shimmery hot chocolate – just mix with your favourite plant milk.

7. Chocolate Fondant Truffles (Tesco)

These truffles are really tasty with soft, melty centres. Good substitute for Lindt chocolates and nice to display in a bowl.

8. Merry Moos Selection Box (Sainsbury’s)

Lots of different fun flavours of vegan chocolate, all in a cute festive box. Perfect for kids.

9. Meat Free Festive Nut Roast (Tesco)

This festive nut roast comes with a fancy cranberry and port sauce and is clearly marked vegan on the box.

10. Rich Fruit Christmas Pudding (Morrison’s)

Morrison’s have a few vegan-friendly Xmas puds, including this one, an alcohol-free version, and a gluten-free option.

We hope this list has given you a few festive shopping ideas! Let us know your best finds below or on social media.

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Top UK Vegan Halloween Treats 2016

It’s not long until Halloween, so we’ve put together a list of spooky vegan treats available in the UK. Most of these items are available for a limited time, so stock up if there’s anything you really like!

Halloween Tube of Rich Dark Treacle Crunch Biscuits from Wilkinson’s

halloween-treacle-tube

These biscuits are pretty unusual – they aren’t too sweet and have a rich treacle flavour. Nice change from sweets and come in a fun tube.

Toffee Apple from Morrison’s

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Toffee apple for 57p! Make sure you check the label – this one contains E22 which is vegan-friendly, but there’s one on their website that uses carmine.

Dark Chocolate Bat Lolly from Lidl

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This cute dark chocolate bat is one of three chocolate lollies sold at Lidl, but he’s the only one that’s vegan!

Zombie Fingers Wotsits from Asda

zombie-wotsits

These limited edition Wotsits are ‘Flamin’ Hot’ flavour rather than cheese, and suitable for vegans. They’re limited edition, so we’d recommend stocking up if you’re a fan.

Strawberry & Butternut Bear Claws from Asda

bear-claws-strawberry-butternut

For a healthier option, try these ‘bear claws’. Made from only apples, pears, strawberries, butternut and black carrot extract. There’s also a green variety with apple, pear and pumpkin.

Trick or Treat Starburst from Asda

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A mix of sweet and sour sweets – good for party games.

Various items from M&S

There are loads of vegan sweets available at M&S if you’re looking for a good mix – check out their latest vegan list here. Highlights include spooky crisps, fizzy spiders, and jelly brains.

Have you made any vegan Halloween discoveries this year? Let us know below or on social media!

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Mr Kipling Jam Tarts No Longer Vegan

Mr Kipling jam tarts are sadly no longer vegan, as milk and milk protein have been added to the recipe. See the new ingredients below.

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If you’re disappointed by this change, why not tweet Mr Kipling and let them know? In the meantime, these yummy free from jam tarts from Sainsbury’s are a nice replacement.

sainsburys free from jam tart

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Where to Buy Vegan Chocolate Ice Cream in the UK

There’s a surprisingly good selection of vegan chocolate ice cream sold in UK supermarkets – check out the list below. These vary in price, flavour and ingredients so there should be one to suit you.

Swedish Glace Chocolate Non-Dairy Ice Cream

Swedish Glace Chocolate Non Dairy Ice Cream 750Ml

This soy chocolate ice cream tastes exactly like regular chocolate ice cream, and is one of the cheaper options. Currently sold in Tesco and Waitrose. Also available in strawberry and vanilla.

Sainsbury’s Deliciously Free From Chocolate Iced Dessert

Sainsbury's Deliciously Freefrom Chocolate Iced Dessert 480ml

A fairly new offering from Sainsbury’s, based on coconut milk, this is also available in strawberry. We’ve heard great reviews of both flavours.

Antonio Russo Dairy-Free Chocolato

Antonio Russo Dairy-Free Chocolato 500ml

This slightly more exotic option includes orange zest, which makes a nice change. Sold in Waitrose.

Jude’s Dairy Free Chocolate Ice Cream

Jude's dairy free chocolate ice cream 500ml

Another Waitrose option, we’ve heard mixed reviews about this one. Some say the flavour is too dark/bitter.

Booja-Booja Hunky Punky Chocolate Ice Cream

booja choc ice cream

A luxury option, this is sold in Waitrose, some branches of Holland and Barrett, and many independent health stores. Good once-in-a-while treat option.

You can also try vegan frozen yoghurt and frozen smoothie, both available in chocolate flavours. What’s your favourite vegan ice cream?

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Where To Buy Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies in the UK

Did you think going vegan meant no more chocolate chip cookies? Think again! Listed below are some tasty, vegan-friendly cookies available in the UK. You won’t need to go to any specialist shops to get hold of them – just pop to your local supermarket.

Tesco Free From Chocolate Chip Cookies

Tesco Free From Chocolate Chip Cookie Dairy Free 145G

Perfect if you’re looking for a gluten-free and vegan chocolate chip cookie, this own brand Tesco product is nice and crunchy, with a good flavour and plenty of chocolate chips. It’s definitely not the most decadent option though, so read on if that’s what you’re looking for.

Fox’s Chunkie Cookies with Dark Chocolate Chunks

fox dark choc chip

These Fox’s Chunkie Cookies are the definite winner for us as far as taste goes. Nice and crunchy/crumbly, not too sweet, with extra large chocolate chips. These are a great treat, and are quite often on offer for £1 in various supermarkets. It’s also worth checking bargain shops, as these can sometimes be found there too. Be sure to pick up the dark chocolate version – there is also a milk chocolate version which is not vegan friendly.

Choc Chip Hobnobs

Mcvitie's Hobnob Chocolate Chip 300G

The classic Hobnob biscuit, filled with chocolate chips – what’s not to love? These always go down well with both vegans and non-vegans, and are perfect for dipping into a cup of tea. They’re definitely the most sickly option in this list, but that means the pack usually lasts longer! These are currently available in Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s and Waitrose.

If you’d like to bake your own vegan chocolate chip cookies, check out our quick and easy recipe video.

You can browse our full list of vegan biscuits sold in UK supermarkets here – don’t forger you can filter by shop on the right hand side of the page, or at the bottom on mobile.

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Where to Get Vegan Pizza in the UK

“But what about pizza?!” This is one of the most common questions you might hear after telling someone that you’re vegan. This list shows that going vegan doesn’t mean giving up pizza, as there are still loads of delicious options available.

We’ve split this list into three sections: takeaway, frozen, and high street restaurant, so hopefully you’ll find something relevant to you. Bon appetit!

Takeaway Vegan Pizza in the UK

Papa John’s

papa johns sauc

All of Papa John’s bases are vegan – just ask them to remove the cheese. We recommend the Garden Party with no cheese and extra mushrooms. Their garlic dipping sauce is also vegan, as are the potato wedges and corn on the cob.

Pizza Hut Delivery

sides pizza hut

The pan base is vegan friendly – just add all the veggies you like. The garlic bread and potato wedges are also vegan – yay! You can check the full allergen and nutrition info here.

Independent

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There are lots of independent takeaways offering excellent vegan options. This helpful article from PetaUK lists them according to location. Pictured is a pizza from Basilico in London.

Frozen Vegan Pizza in the UK

Cheezly and Tomato Pizza

cheezly and tomato pizza

This vegan frozen pizza is available from Ocado, Holland and Barrett, or direct from VBites website. It’s quite small, but has reasonable reviews and is a great quick and easy option. This pizza could easily be topped with vegetables for a healthier, more filling meal.

Valsoia Dairy Free Pizza with Vegetables

valsoia pizza

This dairy free veggie pizza from Valsoia is available through Ocado here. Check out the rest of the range for items like chocolate spread and ice cream sandwiches.

Vegan Pizza at UK Restaurants

Pizza Express

pizza express pianta

Try the Pianta, a cheese free pizza topped with mushrooms, spinach, artichoke and pine nuts. Very tasty and slightly spicy. You can also choose any other pizza and ask for the cheese to be removed. Pizza Express even allow you to take in your own vegan cheese to be added to your pizza (it must be in a sealed packet with a visible use by date.) For dessert, there’s a nice sorbet available in two flavours.

Zizzi

vegan zizzi

The first high street restaurant to offer a vegan cheese on their pizzas, Zizzi is a great option. The vegan margherita is topped with tomato, Mozzarisella cheese (made from rice milk), and basil. You can add extra veggie toppings and there are quite a few vegan starters and sides (the bruschetta looks delicious), plus gelato for dessert.

Ask Italian

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The bases here are vegan, so just ask for the cheese to be removed and add a few extra toppings. You can also enjoy Rosemary and Sea Salt bread as a starter, and sorbet for dessert.

UPDATE 1/2/17: Pizza Express 

Pizza Express now provide an official list of their vegan-friendly options here, including various bases, sauces toppings and salad bar items.

This is just a small selection of all the places you can get vegan pizza in the UK – let us know your favourite and we’ll add it to the list.

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