During college, I challenged myself to try a vegan diet. I wanted to get out of my cooking rut, make different recipes, and play with new ingredients. So after using the carton of milk and nearly two dozen eggs in my refrigerator to make angel food cupcakes and lemon bars, I scribbled down a grocery list and headed to the store.
While many of my pantry staples were naturally vegan, like cold cereals and oats and even some snack bars, I picked up vegan-friendly butter, soy yogurt, and milk, along with a box of egg replacement powder for baking. I even bought a vegan baking cookbook at a local bookstore downtown and slowly flipped through its pages upon returning home.
Although I originally intended to stick with veganism for just a month, those four weeks flew by. I easily adapted some of my favorite baking recipes using simple swaps, like that egg replacement powder (which I still use!) and dairy-free yogurt, and I found I enjoyed some of the seitan and vegan-friendly granola I bought from the supermarket just as much, if not even more, than the previous ones I had been eating.
Greek yogurt was the only thing I occasionally missed… And that was mainly because of its high protein content and really thick consistency. (Back then, nobody made “Greek style” dairy-free yogurt!)
When I realized how easy and natural it was, I continued with vegan baking and cooking for almost two months…
Until we took a family vacation to France.
As a once-in-a-lifetime trip, it felt like a fitting end to my vegan challenge, and I ate the same fancy cheeses, quiches, and pastries my family picked out. Croissants, profiteroles, pains au chocolat, tartes, macarons… I didn’t want to look back on that vacation with any regrets!
However, since then, I’ve also realized that certain pastries are really easy to make eggless and dairy-free… Like these healthy vegan blueberry scones! They’re just as moist and tender on the inside as classic scones, even with zero butter, eggs, or heavy cream. You just need one bowl and 30 minutes to make them too!