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Not ready to come out as vegan yet? No problem.
With lifestyles changes as big as veganism, you may want to take your time and ease yourself into the diet without being questioned or challenged on your protein sources. It takes time to learn and gain confidence, so go at your own pace.
We suggest confiding in a vegan veteran for advice and tips. We found it easier to stay on track when you have a support system or someone to answer your questions.
If you’re worried about how to live a ‘normal life’ without attracting unwanted attention to your diet, then read on. In this article, we’ll uncover six secrets on how to be an undercover vegan and attract zero attention to your new eating habits.
Grab your fake moustache and oversized sunglasses, we’re going incognito.
Incognito Vegan Hacks That Won’t Blow Your Cover
It can be overwhelming to “come out” as a vegan to your friends and family, especially all at once over a meal. If you’re not quite there yet, don’t worry. We’ve rounded up a few great tips on how to stay undercover without anyone knowing, not even your nosy Aunt Carol.
1. Volunteer to Book Restaurants
Arranging a get together with some friends or coworkers? Volunteer to be the booker of the restaurant. This way, you’ll have all the control of where to go so you can say no thank you to the Brazilian steakhouse and hello to a vegan-friendly joint.
We like to book crowd-pleasing joints, think Mexican or Asian. With this, everyone will be happy and you can bet on great options for you to easily and inconspicuously order vegan without attracting inquisitive stares.
Picking the restaurant also gives you some time to do some recon on the menu which brings us to our next tip...
2. Call Ahead and Menu Recon
If you’ve ever been out to eat with a vegan, you know the drill when they sit down to order. The vegan menu options, if they can substitute anything, is the pasta sauce made with meat, etc.
It’s important info to have and vital to ensure you’re not consuming animal products. If you’re trying to keep your diet on the DL, do your due diligence prior to sitting down at the table.
We suggest you call ahead and fire away with all your questions. You can even explain your situation and how you’re not trying to draw attention to yourself to avoid drama at the dinner table.
These days, you will find that most restaurants will have their menu online and often will have a little key at the bottom of the menu telling you what's vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free.
Photo Source: Live Eat Learn
3. Bring Your Own Food to the Party
Going to a party but worried about the food? No need to panic, because vodka is always vegan. In the event you don’t want to drink your calories, show the host some love and bring something (vegan) to share.
Take control of your snacking habits by making a shareable vegan dish to ensure you have something to eat. With creative recipes all over the net, you can make it so delicious no one will even take a second to think, hmmm is this lacking animal products?
Just because you’re vegan absolutely does not mean you can’t enjoy fun party foods like hot wings, loaded fries, or pretzel poppers. Check out these 40 drool-worthy recipes that you can make for your next outing. Let your hair down and nibble freely, my vegan friend.
4. Order Inconspicuous Vegan Food
There are a ton of options for vegan food out there besides salad. Whether you’re grabbing a burrito bowl, a stirfry, or a bowl of pasta, you can be sure to find vegan options almost anywhere that won’t have your coworkers taking a second look.
If your veganism secret gets out, try not to panic, this could be a great educational experience for others--just be sure not to do these things. If the conversation starts to get uncomfortable, you can always run to the kitchen and pull the fire alarm. Only kidding.
5. Pack Food That Looks Similar to Everyone Else’s
You and your coworkers roll into the corporate lunch room and you all whip out your lunches. Here comes the barrage of questions: “Ooh, what do you have for lunch today?”, “Did you make that yourself?”, “What do ya got there?”.
It’s easy to be called out, especially if you have chunks of tempeh topping bed of green. Don’t out yourself.
It’s easy to make and prepare vegan meals that look like a normal dish. Think spaghetti and marina *sans grated cheese*, a black bean burger loaded with fresh veggies, bean soup, or even a mock chicken dish using Boca’s chik’n patties. Blend in and avoid the questions.
If you’re not much of a cook or don’t have time, we completely understand. Working or going to school full time paired with making healthy life choices, both on and off the plate, takes a lot of effort.
We’ve compiled our 12 favorite vegan dinner recipes that can be made in 10 minutes or less--we’re not kidding. Check them out here.
6. Eat Before You Go
So you’ve been invited to a summer smoked barbeque. Or maybe it’s a wine and cheese party. Although at first, you may want to opt out of attending to avoid the temptation or stress, there will be times where you still have to show your face at a social gathering.
For these instances, simply eat before you go. You can also claim you have another dinner to go to after that you promised you’d save your appetite for--this works great during the holidays when a sit-down meal is hard to avoid.
You could also get a vegan subscription service to your door, like Naturalbox. They did equity crowdfunding and deliver packages to your door filled with tasty vegan treats.
Vegan Eating Under the Radar
If people start to raise an eyebrow at your new (and sudden) love for salad, you can always say you’re not in the mood to eat meat or that you’re feeling something lighter today. When all else fails, put them on a guilt trip by saying you’re trying to meet your veggie quota and ask them how many servings they’ve had today.
At the end of the day, you’re making this change for either yourself, the animals, and the world; no one else’s opinion matters.
When you are ready to come out to the world as a vegan, you might want to brush up on your knowledge because skeptics will inevitably want to challenge you. Check out the 9 Vegan Health Benefit Arguments that You Should Know.