Vegan vs. Vegetarian: What’s the Difference?

Vegan vs. Vegetarian: What’s the Difference?

The basics on both dietary types and how best to spice up your meatless dishes.

a delicious recipe

Wondering what the differences are between vegetarian and vegan diets? Simply put:

Vegan:

A plant-based diet which means avoiding all foods of animal origin, including dairy products, gelatin, honey and eggs. Vegans will usually also forego consuming foods that are processed using animal products, which can include some beers and wines.

Vegetarian:

A catch-all term for a diet that’s based on the consumption of vegetables and fruits, grains, nuts, beans and meat alternatives (such as tofu and tempeh). Breaking this out further, the most commonly found vegetarian classification in Canada is the lacto-ovo vegetarian, which is someone who avoids meat but includes eggs and dairy products in their diet. Further to this, lacto-vegetarians include dairy products but no eggs, while ovo-vegetarians consume eggs but no dairy.

Though not truly vegetarian, a related sub-group includes the flexitarian, which is someone who primarily keeps to meatless foods but may, on occasion, include chicken or fish. Some flexitarians will choose to include meat in their diet from time to time. A pescetarian is someone who includes fish and seafood in their diet, but eschews chicken or meat.

Meatless Myth Busting:

While some may think eating meatless means dishes lacking in flavour, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Take the humble tomato, for example. There is nothing quite like a juicy, sun-ripened tomato enjoyed fresh from the vine when in season. To enhance flavours further, add a sprinkle of Club House Sea Salt Grinder. Roasting tomatoes, especially plum or cherry tomatoes, with a drizzle of olive oil and sprinkle of herbs, such as Club House Basil Herb Grinder, helps intensify flavours and bring out the natural sweetness – regardless of the growing season.

Whether vegetable-based or other meatless dishes, including grains and beans, adding a dash of herbs or sprinkle of spices is a quick and convenient way to enhance flavours – especially when spice options are kept on-hand in your cupboard. Here are a few food and spice partners to get those creative juices flowing:

Potatoes: McCormick Gourmet Ground Nutmeg
Cauliflower: Club House Paprika
Sweet Potatoes: McCormick Gourmet Cayenne Pepper
Squash: Club House Pumpkin Pie Spice
Sweet Peppers: McCormick Gourmet Marjoram Leaves
Cucumber: McCormick Gourmet Organic Dill Weed
Cabbage: McCormick Gourmet Caraway Seed
Celery: McCormick Gourmet Freeze Dried Chives
Broccoli: McCormick Gourmet Lemon Pepper Seasoning
Tomatoes: Club House Italian Seasoning
Beets: McCormick Gourmet Organic Celery Seed
Zucchini: McCormick Gourmet Organic Herbes de Provence
Eggplant: McCormick Gourmet Fennel Seed
Carrots: Club House Ground Ginger
Avocado: McCormick Gourmet Cilantro Leaves
Brussels Sprouts: Club House Ground Mustard
Rice: McCormick Gourmet Ground Turmeric
Oats: McCormick Gourmet Ground Cinnamon
Pasta: Club House Crushed Red Pepper
Quinoa: McCormick Gourmet Mild Curry Powder
Black Beans: McCormick Gourmet Chili Powder
Chickpeas: McCormick Gourmet Garam Masala
Eggs: McCormick Gourmet Fine Herbes
Feta Cheese: McCormick Gourmet Mint Leaves
Gouda Cheese: McCormick Gourmet Cumin Seed
Goat Cheese: McCormick Gourmet Sriracha Seasoning

If you or someone you know is thinking of going meatless, it’s important to plan for a balanced diet in order to get the protein, vitamins and minerals you need. Consider consulting with a registered dietitian. Visit dietitians.ca/find to locate someone in your area.

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