plant-based

How to order vegan at fast food resturants

Posted on Updated on

f7b9fd22d3264c4399eeaff6356819cf
Image via Pintrest.

What do you eat? Is probably the question I’m asked the most as a vegan. And I have to try really hard not to roll my eyes. There is so much food—it’s glorious. But for new vegans—and people considering transitioning or reducing their consumption—knowing what is and isn’t okay can be difficult when you’re desperate for a feed in public. So, here you go:

McDonalds

There’s been a lot of controversy about this. I don’t know about how it is overseas, but in Australia, the chips and hash browns are vegan. You can also get burgers without meat and cheese—I am fond of a hamburger with no meat, and then putting some fries inside. There’s also the option to create your own burger—but keep in mind, some of the fillings will be cooked alongside meat. You can ask them to cook it separately, but whether or not they do it is another thing. Plus, Maccas are always super busy. Also, the salsa fries are vegan! Rejoice!

Dominos

vegan peta
Vegan pizza, oh my god. Image via PETA.

The classic bases and tomato sauces are vegan. I order any of the vegetarian ones, and simply remove the cheese. There’s loads of veggies we can eat—like tomato, spinach, capsicum, pineapple, olives, and so on. Considering you could veganise a $5 value pizza for a meal, Dominos is pretty exciting.

Also, GARLIC BREAD. That is all.

 

Red Rooster

Again, GARLIC BREAD IS VEGAN! Holla! Also, they sell roast veggies. Admittedly, they’re often not great—but if you’re stuck with nothing else, it will sustain you. Of course, you could always order a burger without meat, cheese or mayo, and ask for salads instead. For the most part, workers are very understanding and helpful—but maybe don’t do this if they’re super busy, because they will absolutely hate you.

Hungry Jacks

veggiwhopper-1-e1455492655960
Introducing: the Veggie Whopper. Yummmm. Image via Vegan Outreach.

Did someone say Veggie Whopper with no cheese or mayo? YUM! At first, I was wary about a burger lacking mayonnaise, but trust me: it works. Also, sometimes I just bring my own mayonnaise or vegan cheese. Regardless, when you’re drunk or starving or need some kind of comfort food, this giant burger will totally hit the spot. And don’t forget the fries and onion rings! Mmmmmm onion rings.

Grill’d

Grilld-Veggie-Vitality-Vegan-Burger
The Veggie Vitality! Image via PETA.

Exciting news! Grill’d have recently announced an entirely vegan burger to their menu—the Veggie Vitality!  It features a quinoa veggie patty, sweet potato, beetroot, pineapple, avocado, carrot and lettuce. It is quite tasty and very satisfying, but I’d highly recommend asking for tomato relish sauce as well, to give it a bit more of a zing! Otherwise, there are numerous tasty vegetarian options you can veganise (by removing products like cheese, mayonnaise and pesto). My personal favourite is the Garden Goodness burger, which (ordered without cheese) is amazing. Adding pineapple is always a bonus for me! All of Grill’d’s chips are also vegan—sweet potato chips! Zucchini chips! Potato chips! Yum. The tomato relish sauce is vegan and serves amazingly with these options. Watch out for the super low carb bun though—it has egg! All other buns are vegan, though. Give it a try!

Subway

A delicious Veggie Delight sub is sure to cure any hunger pains! You can order any white, brown or wholemeal bread and a range of amazing veggies, like carrot, lettuce, cucumber, tomato, avocado, pickles, olives, and so on. There is also a veggie patty available, but I prefer a simple salad sandwich. Vegan sauces include BBQ, tomato, sweet chilli and sweet onion—the latter is my personal favourite! Sadly, none of the smoothies or cookies are vegan. Oh well, at least Oreos are!

Guzman Y Gomez

img_1626_sm
Burrito bowl with no cheese. So much love. Image via Canberra Vegan.

I actually cried tears of happiness to find out the guacamole here is vegan. I mean, YUM! You can basically order any of the “veggie” options without the cheese, and it will be vegan. There’s burritos, burrito bowls, guacamole and chips—not to mention frozen alcoholic beverages. Wink wink. Definitely somewhere you should check out!

Kebab shops

Two words: felafel kebabs. Vegan. Delicious. I particularly love adding pineapple or hummus to mine, with a sweet chilli or BBQ sauce—as well as a heap of veggies! Don’t be afraid to ask what vegan options they have! But keep in mind, sometimes places make their own hummus, and I have been caught a few times where the hummus has not been vegan (bad news for your stomach). Enjoy!

 

 

Advertisements

I’m sorry, but I don’t support the dairy industry.

Posted on Updated on

COW

I feel for our dairy farmers—I really do.

I can’t imagine how it would feel to have everything you’ve ever known dwindle around you. To have your livelihoods rendered worthless. To be thrown into unfair debt. I have no doubt that dairy farmers have the best intentions—and maybe some of them really do look after their animals. But even so: dairy is a destructive industry, where animals are objectified as means to an economic end—and this isn’t okay.

Before you abuse me, take a moment to consider my words—humour me.

Let’s think about the practicality of dairy and how we actually get milk—cows don’t just magically produce it: it results from pregnancy. Like humans, cows carry their young for nine months.  Unlike humans, most cows will have their young taken away within 12-14 hours after birth due to their economic strain. Calves less than 30 days old—known as bobby cows—will often be sent to the slaughterhouse. In Australia, this is around 400,000 calves per year. This “cruel separation” is a traumatic experience, destined to be repeated over and over for a cow’s workable lifetime— every 13 months. These calves will never even taste their mother’s milk.

There are 1.6 million dairy cows in Australia. While cows will naturally live around 20 years, cows in the dairy industry are only expected to live around seven to eight years. Australian cows also produce around 5730L of milk per year—which is incredible, as the average is only 2900L.  Our farmers are struggling, and no matter how beloved certain cows may be, farmers simply need to get as much as they can from their livestock. But is money worth these drastic measures?

Speaking of drastic measures, let’s talk about industry standards. Yes, there are standards—and yes, they’re a lot better than a lot of other countries. They do genuinely try to provide better lives and treatment for cows in terms of welfare. But some aspects are still quite barbaric, such as dehorning and castration. Dehorning is a common practise for male and female cows, which involves sensitive tissue being sawn off. Castration, while considered a major operation for older bulls, can be done to males younger than six months by anyone—no matter how inexperienced. Shockingly, there are no laws required for pain relief.

has-new-zealands-milk-gone-bad
Bobby cows. Image via Vice.

Is cruelty and objectification not enough to convince you of a change of heart? Well, let’s look at health factors.

For decades, we’ve been fed the idea that dairy is best—that we need it. But consider who would have encouraged this propaganda: that’s right, the for-profit dairy industry. Yes, dairy is the source of calcium and other vitamins, but to put it bluntly: it’s not meant for us. It’s meant for a rapidly growing baby calf.

Dr Mark Hyman said consuming dairy is actually not in our best interests, and that we’ve been force-fed many ideas that are not factual. For instance, milk doesn’t reduce fractures—it may actually increase the risk of them by 50%. By consuming five to seven portions of fruits and veggies per day (and no animal products), a person can reduce their risk of heart disease by 47%, strokes by 26%, and cancer by up to 18%. Furthermore, about 75% of the population is lactose intolerant. Know why?

Because. We’re. Not. Meant. To. Drink. Another. Animal’s. Milk.

mother-and-calf-cows
Breaking this bond is the price of dairy. Image via My Mind Vegan.

Think about it. Think about what they’re not telling you. Do you think animals should be used purely for economic gain? Even if you don’t think it’s wrong for them to be killed for our consumption, I’d like to think that—as reasonable agents—we can agree that cows should at least be treated well—starting with stricter industry standards and better policing. Even if they’re going to be slaughtered, at the very least, they should live fulfilling lives.

Does this make you feel sad? Do you wish things were different? Well, they can be—and you can help. Change begins with education. Even one mind changed can start a revolution. As it is, we don’t need dairy—there are plenty of plant-based sources of calcium, like dark leafy greens, beans, pulses, nuts, brown bread, enriched fruit juice, plant-based milks, soy mince, tofu and so on. Dairy is dwindling—the number of farms in the last two decades has decreased by two thirds. Maybe there’s a reason for it.

Dairy farmers, I feel sorry for you—that you’ve been brought into this war and are struggling. That you’re only paid 37 cents for a litre of milk, despite it costing 38 cents to produce. But instead of supporting our farmers by buying their product, why don’t we encourage them and donate to them to create new and sustainable livelihoods—livelihoods that don’t rely on forced slavery.

Some things are meant to change—and I for one choose compassion.

hv4mw0nkpho
Cows smile when you don’t eat them or take away their babies. Image via Reddit.