International Vegan Junk Food Day: What Junk Food Vegans Eat

Wouldn’t you know International Vegan Junk Food Day would be August 29th, the day of the Feast of the Beheading of St. John the Baptist, which happens to be a strict fasting day. But I have also been wanting to do a “What do vegans eat” kind of post, so while I probably won’t eat anything fried or drenched in olive oil today (or round, or on a platter, or cut with a knife) I will gladly share a junk food edition of What Vegans Eat.

So yeah. Whenever someone asks, “You’re a vegan? So…what can you eat???” I freeze up and have no idea what to say because a million things come to mind at once. First there’s the entire produce section at the grocery store, and all the countless things you can create with the numberless combinations of fruits and vegetables. Then you have grains, nuts, seeds, and SUGARY THINGS. There are nut milks, and seed milks, and grain milks. There are vegan meats and cheeses. Entire frozen meals and roasts.

It’s SO easy to be vegan these days, not like 17 years ago when I was lucky to find margarine and soy milk at the health food store. Now we can get doughnuts! But if you’re still at a loss trying to imagine these things, allow me to show you, in no particular order…

Vegan Cookies and Spiked Coffee, What Vegans Eat
Homemade cookies and spiked coffee. There are a TON of vegan egg substitutes for baking (just-add-water powders, mashed banana, chia seeds, flax seeds, baking soda + vinegar, to name a few), and several vegan margarines to replace butter – or experiment with nut and seed butters or oil.
You can also find cookies from Alternative Baking Company, GoodBites, Uncle Eddie’s, and many more online or at health food stores.

And the booze? Most booze is vegan!

Red Rabbit Bakery Doughnuts, What Vegans Eat
Here in Grand Rapids, MI we are lucky to find vegan doughnuts from Propaganda Doughnuts and Rise! Grand Rapids, and occasionally Bartertown Diner. In Texas, there’s Red Rabbit Cooperative in Austin, and Reverie Bakeshop in Richardson. Sweetpea Baking Company or Voodoo Doughnut in Portland, OR. Dun-Well Donuts in Brooklyn. Sweet Freedom Bakery in Philadelphia. Glazed and Infused in Orlando. BeetBox Bakery and Cafe in Denver. You get the idea.

Trader Joe's Speculoos and Peanut Butter Pretzels, What Vegans Eat
If you have a Trader Joe’s nearby, you’ll have all kinds of fun options, but if you can’t get your hands on the specific brands they sell, you can usually find something similar at your regular grocery store (in this case, Biscoff Spread and H.K. Anderson peanut butter filled pretzels are sold all over the place).

Vegan Burrito Moe's
You can get vegan tacos and burritos from Moe’s, Chipotle, Qdoba, and even Taco Bell! In fact most Mexican restaurants have TONS of vegan options.

Vegan Boxed Macaroni and Cheese
Think you’ll miss the days of quick, convenient boxed mac n cheese? NOPE. Earth Balance even uses similar packets of bright orange cheese-flavored powder!

Non-Dairy Vegan Cheese
And speaking of, we do okay without dairy-based cheese, too. Daiya, Chao, Go Veggie, Follow Your Heart, and Tofutti are some of the big brands out there, not to mention all the recipes you can find for making your own spreads & blocks at home. The vegan cheese scene is improving every day!

Meaty Vegan Sandwich
Arby’s has nothing on meaty vegan sandwiches – we have Qrunch Burgers, Boca Burgers, Amy’s Burgers, tons of smaller brands that can be found at health food stores, and all kinds of deli slices from Field Roast, Tofurky, Yves, and Light Life just to name a few. There are hot dogs, sausages, roasts, chic’n patties, sliders, battered “fish” (checkout Sophie’s Kitchen brand) and whatever else you can think of, we can and probably already have VEGANIZED IT.

Wait. I know what’s coming next. Let me cover this right now:

Cruelty Free Vegan Bacon
Yes, we thought about this, too. There are plenty of vegan bacon options out there, and lots you can make at home.

Dollop Vegan Frosting
Yes, you can even still eat canned frosting by the spoonful 😀 Nom Nom Nom I found Dollop at Meijer (also available at Wegmans, on Amazon, and at Nooch Vegan Market in Denver), along with a few really junky (but yummy and milk-free) brands. In fact, you can find All Kinds of Vegan Things at Meijer, and probably most grocery chains near you.

Make an Amazing Peanut Butter Cake with Caramel Sauce
You can still enjoy a fabulous birthday cake, too! Making your own is easy (from scratch or from a box), but many bakeries do vegan cakes these days, too.

Check out:
Chocolate Cake Recipe from the Minimalist Baker
Vanilla Cake Recipe from The Cake Merchant
Peanut Butter Cake Recipe from Oh She Cooks!
Carrot Cake Recipe from Love & Lemons

Aquafaba Vegan Marshmallow Fluff
And now we have discovered….AQUAFABA, the liquid from cooked beans. It can be whipped up to make vegan meringues and marshmallow fluff. It’s the most vegan thing ever, and it is delicious and amazing.
Look at the Macrons from Crazy Vegan Kitchen made with aquafaba!

Vegan Onion Rings from Stella's in Grand Rapids, MI
Here in Grand Rapids, MI, we have a wonderful bar that serves vegan burgers, potato wings (fried potato wedges coated in wing sauce), a vegan meatloaf dinner, and huge, indulgent beer-battered onion rings, among other things. In fact, you can read about every vegan-friendly (or not so friendly) restaurant I’ve been to in GR by visiting my Vegan in Grand Rapids page.

Koyo Vegan Ramen
Are you kind of person that likes to live off ramen? That’s okay. Top Ramen and Nissan both offer vegan flavors, or for three times as much ($1/ea in these parts) you can upgrade to Koyo brand ramen, made with organic ingredients and heirloom wheat.

Do you see what I’m saying here? YOU CAN DO IT! You can eat good things, and bad things that taste good, and never feel deprived, and be sweet to the animals, and lower your cholesterol. Today is about junk food, but there are a bazillion clean vegan options to balance this stuff out (or not). The point is, it’s easy. So what’s your excuse? GO VEGAN!

Find recipes and inspiration for International Vegan Junk Food Day on my Junk Food Fix page!

9 thoughts on “International Vegan Junk Food Day: What Junk Food Vegans Eat

  1. Ooh, good post! Nice reminder of all the yummy vegan junk food available nowadays. I truly can say I don’t feel deprived of anything since becoming vegan. I love vegan pizza (Amy’s frozen, or Papa John’s, or The Mitten here in Grand Rapids), vegan jerky, vegan Doritos (in the purple bag), Cracker Jacks, the wide selection of non-dairy ice creams (have you tried Frosty Boy’s soft-serve, in Grand Rapids??), and I could go on and on. You included a lot of the good ones here!

    • I still keeping thinking of more awesome stuff I could have included, too! I didn’t know about Frosty Boy’s soft-serve, thank you so much for the tip – you never know if this could be our last week of summer, so I need to get right on that!!

  2. I always freeze up too when asked since I want to just say “everything” because that’s what we eat just about nowadays. I would like to add there is vegan ice cream in just about any store (even Wal Mart) and Daiya has come out with vegan cheesecake! There is also vegan whipped cream too… Hmmm Maybe I am just thinking about lunch right now and my sweet tooth. ha-ha Oh and most Asian restaurants can make things vegan. Question though: Does your TJ’s have PB pretzels still? Ours tell us that these have been pulled from the shelves because headquarters are “investigating” the ingredients or something such as this…

    • Oh yes, I was kicking myself for not including ice cream! There are just so many things, and now I’m hungry from reading your list 😀
      So, we don’t actually have a Trader Joe’s here yet, but it’s coming at the end of the month. I think I got those when I was visiting Illinois, so maybe they don’t carry them afterall. That’s too bad! But you can find Anderson brand or whatever at Meijer, and probably Target, and I’ve seen PB Pretzels at Big Lots. Oh, and Big Lots has a knock-off brand of Biscoff sometimes (Speculoos).

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