#Veganuary 2016 – Do you need help?

Veganuary and an offer of support smallery

Dear You,

Are you interested in trying to go vegan for 2016 or even just to try it out in January 2016? There are lots of resources out there and I’ve collected a few of them on this page. Also, please feel free to email me if you have any questions or need support along the way, especially if you’re in Toronto, since that’s where I live, and that’s one of the main cities I know. (but this is an open offer to anyone anywhere.)

I went vegan in the late 90’s. I was young and living in Alberta, which even to this day has a bit of a reputation of being meat-heavy (though Edmonton is amazing for vegan options). It was a bit strange to be the only vegan I knew in real life, but that’s still not a completely foreign experience for people even with our changing world. Veganism is more and more common, and it’s easier to find food and friends than ever before, but you can still encounter resistance or misunderstanding and it can be frustrating, especially in the beginning, when you discover that many people, including people you respect and love, don’t see the world the same way you do.

So feel free to reach out by email or by twitter or on facebook if you ever need a quick word of encouragement, a restaurant recommendation, an ingredient replacement, or something else in the veganism sphere.

Be nice to me and I’m usually pretty friendly 🙂

Resources in Toronto

Going out to eat:

Meet people

I think having a social support network is essential to have a good time being vegan. If all of your friends are reacting negatively to what can become a fairly major lifestyle change, it’s nice to have a friendly haven of support to turn to. Here are a few options:

Farm Animal Sanctuaries in Ontario

Why vegan? Meet the animals other people call food. Many of these sanctuaries offer regular tours, open houses, and events. Follow them all for maximum adorable farm animal pictures and information.

General Resources

  • Vegan Kit – covers the how’s & why’s and offers recipes, touches on health and environmental aspects
  • 30-day Vegan Challenge – This is one of my favourite resources to recommend – it’s not free, but it is put together by one of my favourite vegans – Colleen Patrick-Goudreau can be your vegan pal, 24/7 in this great book and online program. She offers straightforward recipes, advice, and information. Also check out her free Food For Thought podcast
  • Post Punk Kitchen Forums – Connect with vegans around the world online in a friendly welcoming environment.
  • Veganuary – sign up to their mailing list and get helpful information sent to you throughout the month of January.
  • PCRM 21-day Vegan Kickstart


  • Plant Based on a Budget – veganism can be affordable and fun. Pricing is based on USA produce costs, but gives you an idea of how much making a meal will cost.
  • Fatfree Vegan Recipes – not always fat free, but a nice collection of recipes in varying levels of difficulty.
  • Post Punk Kitchen Recipes – Recipes from the brilliant Isa Chandra Moskowitz (creator of cookbooks like the Veganomicon, Vegan Brunch, Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, and so much more.)



Wondering how veganism and the environment connect?

Human Rights and Food Justice

For me, there is more to veganism than just food, or even just animals right to exist. You can delve into the rights of migrant workers involved in food production and harvest.



There are so many books out there, and the Toronto Public Library has SO MANY. Just search for “Vegan” and you’ll find so many great cookbooks and more. You might be surprised at the quantity of books available for free at your own public library, so check them out.

One of my favourite books is a bit of a cerebral examination of why people eat animals – it’s aptly named Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer (on TPL:641.303 FOE)

Also check out the Toronto Animal Book club for past reading lists or connect with the Animal Legal Defence Fund’s Animal Book club online.


Please feel free to add any recommended resources or things that have helped you along the way in the comments