Food

Chloe Coscarelli’s Top 10 Vegan Cooking Substitutes

In a time when most foods can be veganized, rising star chef and new cookbook author Chloe Coscarelli offers up her arsenal of food substitutes for ditching the meat and dairy.

Chloe Coscarelli is everywhere. Mainstream outlets such as the Today show, The Talk, and Big Morning Buzz Live are all rolling out the red carpet for this young, vegan chef who's making meat-free cuisine both accessible and delicious through her new cookbook, Chloe's Kitchen. We asked Chloe her go-to vegan food substitutes, and she's thrilled to share her top 10 with VegNews readers.

1. Vinegar
Vinegar is a great egg replacement, especially for cakes. When combined with baking soda, vinegar acts as a binding agent and creates a moist texture.

2. Cashews
Blending raw cashews with water is a perfect cream alternative for savory dishes like fettuccine Alfredo.

3. Coconut Milk
Canned coconut milk is nature’s substitute for sweet heavy cream. Chocolate mousse, ganache, and whipped cream can all be made vegan with this simple replacement.

4. Mushrooms
Crimini, shiitake, portabello, and oyster mushrooms all have a juicy hearty texture that is perfect for replacing meat. Ground into veggie burgers or charred on the grill, mushrooms are a succulent substitution for meat in any form.

5. Dark Chocolate
Pure dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants and a great milk chocolate replacement for non-dairy desserts.

6. Avocados
This nutrient-dense fruit can add a creamy body and boost of flavor to almost anything. Avocados can be added to pesto sauce as a substitute for cheese or whipped up as a spread for sandwiches.

7. Nutritional Yeast
Nutritional yeast is high in protein and B vitamins. Its natural flavor and yellow coloring make it a great substitute for cheese.

8. Tofu
Tofu can be sliced, diced, or cubed to achieve a meaty consistency. For best results, freeze a package of tofu and then defrost in the refrigerator overnight.

9. Non-Dairy Milk
Soy, almond, and rice milk are fabulous alternatives to dairy milk. They are lower in fat and can be used interchangeably in any recipe, from milkshakes to creamy soups.

10. Almond Butter
Almond butter has a mild taste and is a great source of protein and fiber. It adds a thick, velvety texture to smoothies or shakes. For nut allergies, try hemp butter.

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