Going vegan is one of the most monumental changes we can make to impact the lives and health of animals and ourselves. Often times, people say they can’t go vegan because they can’t imagine life without their favorite food, whether that’s cheese, a burger or candy. Let’s face it, when going vegan, it’s not always green juice and kale chips. Vegan junk food has come a long way. And it seems like every week there’s some new amazing vegan meat alternative or dairy-free ice cream to try. Social media is filled to the brim with luscious, creamy vegan milkshakes, decadent cookie sandwiches and mouthwatering vegan burgers with all the toppings. And we are here to tell you that you too, can enjoy all the vegan junk food you want in the comfort of your own home, sweatpants optional.
Going vegan certainly entails enjoying a variety of whole, plant-based foods but junk food can still have a place in an otherwise healthy diet. The 80/20 approach to food, that is 80 percent healthy foods to 20 percent unhealthy foods is a great way to frame your diet so that you still feel vibrant and healthy while being able to enjoy and indulge in foods that may not be the ideal picture of health.
Vegan Junk Food List With a Healthier Twist
It’s important that you treat your body well and nourish it with healthy foods, while also not feeling guilty when you do choose to indulge in vegan junk food. With this in mind, this junk food list has been curated with a healthier twist. Yes, it’s still decadent, indulgent, eat the whole pint or bag junk food, however, we chose items that were either organic, non-GMO, lower in sugar or less processed than some other alternatives. While these aren’t the junkiest vegan items you can find, we guarantee you will love them and come back for more.
Nada Moo Strawberry Cheesecake Ice Cream
Nada Moo is an organic, coconut-based ice cream that is getting rave reviews and for good reason. This brand of coconut ice cream is made from organic ingredients, has less calories and less sugar than most other similar products on the market without sacrificing any of the flavor or the creamy texture. Nada Moo recently released this strawberry cheesecake flavor and it hits all the spots. Want cheesecake? Check! What something fruity? Check! Want a creamy treat that you can eat half a pint and not end up with a stomachache? Check! This is the go to treat of summertime.
Hu Hazelnut Chocolate Bar
When most people think of junk food, chocolate undoubtedly comes to mind. Chocolate has long been a highly desired food of humans. Over the years it has evolved into a sweet, gourmet treat available in endless varieties. While vegan chocolate isn’t hard to find, seeking out a decadent, vegan truffle isn’t quite as easy. Enter Hu Kitchen, who has created a line of vegan chocolate bars with simple ingredients, sweetened with low glycemic coconut sugar and with rich fillings such as cashew butter, almond butter and hazelnut butter. The Hu Hazelnut Chocolate Bar is an absolute masterpiece, with rich, sweet chocolate enveloping a thin, creamy layer of hazelnut spread reminiscent of everyone’s favorite childhood spread.
Little Secrets Sea Salted Almond Dark Chocolate Pieces
If you ever wished you could enjoy those small chocolate coated candies of childhood again, Little Secrets has your back. The sea salted almond dark chocolate pieces are sweet, crunchy, salty and taste just like candy without any artificial colorings or animal ingredients. These are ideal for sneaking into a movie or just snacking on in the car, or taking to the beach or…you get it. They’re pretty much ideal for any time or all of the time.
Surf Sweets Organic Watermelon Rings
If you’re looking for a sweet gummy treat, look no further than Surf Sweets Organic Watermelon Rings. These gummies are a dead ringer for the ones you ate as a child. They are miraculously organic and even contain one hundred percent of your vitamin C per serving! Fair warning; even though the bag says it’s two servings, you’ll want to buy another if you intend to share.
Simple Mills Crunchy Chocolate Chip Cookies
These crunchy cookies are so similar to those ones you may have eaten as a child that came in a blue bag, you know the ones? These cookies are the perfect amount of sweet, crispy and have just the right amount of chocolate chips. If you’re feeling creative, enjoy these cookies with a bit of chocolate frosting in between two as a sandwich and your sweet tooth will be beyond satisfied. Did we mention they’re grain free and minimally processed? A sweet treat with less processing means you can feel like you’re eating junk without the sugar hangover.
Live Kombucha Soda Culture Cola
Before you think we’re trying to pull one over on you because the word kombucha is involved, hear us out. Yes, Live Kombucha Soda is indeed kombucha, brimming with probiotics and enzymes and is surprisingly low in sugar. However, Live Kombucha Soda tastes just like soda without any of the sugar rush, headaches or feelings of remorse! The Culture Cola flavor is very reminiscent of a cherry cola and nothing can beat cracking one open and enjoying it with a slice of vegan pizza.
Siete Grain Free Nacho Tortilla Chips
These chips are one of the best things to happen to the chip world in pretty much forever. For those who are grain-free and still want to chow down on a crispy snack or for anyone who loves a good chip, these are a must try. These chips use a combination of healthy ingredients like cassava flour, chia seeds and avocado oil and turn them into a crispy, lightweight chip with a crunch. The seasonings such as serrano peppers and nutritional yeast create a cheesy, tangy and spicy flavor that you will not be able to resist.
Vegan Rob’s Brussel Sprout Puffs
Okay, Brussel sprouts may not be at the top of everyone’s junk food list. But these puffs have to find their way into your life because they taste just like the best cheese puffs you ever ate. These gluten-free puffs are throwbacks to cheesy puffs but instead of being neon orange they’re light green and rely on Brussel sprouts, nutritional yeast and spices to give them their savory, eat the whole bag in one sitting flavor. A bonus point for these puffs, even kids love them!
Louisville Vegan Jerky Co Maple Bacon
Upon opening a bag of this vegan jerky, the aroma alone will have your mouth watering. This tender, pull apart jerky is so flavorful that anyone vegan or not will want to devour it! The texture is tender and soft but slightly chewy and combines well with the smoky hints. One taste of this jerky and you will be addicted, so maybe just buy a case to start.
Field Roast Miniature Corn Dogs
Before most of us went vegan, we remember amusement parks and fairs and the delightful smell and flavor of corn dogs. Field Roast has wowed us again and created this classic food cruelty-free. The Field Roast frankfurters are reimagined in a mini size then battered in a cornbread mixture that is crisp on the outside for an authentic taste and feel. The flavor is so similar to the classic that you can feed these to your non-vegan friends and they won’t know the difference! That is, if you choose to share, and we won’t judge you if you don’t.
Whether you’re a vegan for animal welfare, the environment or your health, you can agree that being vegan doesn’t have to mean sacrificing your favorite flavors or textures. Vegan food often tastes better than the originals minus all the suffering of animals, the environment and you. Vegan junk food is an important instrument in helping to showcase the potential of a vegan diet to all people, and is perhaps one of the easiest ways to interest someone in going vegan. When people realize they can still have their cheesecake, their chocolate, their hotdogs and their jerky, veganism suddenly becomes more accessible and appealing.