Easy Guide To A Gluten-free, Soy-free Vegan Meal Plan

When I hear the word ‘vegan’, tofu is one of the first words that comes to mind. Some vegans have allergies or intolerances to soy and wheat, eliminating popular plant-based proteins tofu and seitan. By thinking ahead, eating a gluten-free and soy-free vegan meal plan can be easier than you think.

What Is A Gluten-free Diet?

First and foremost, let’s clearly define what gluten is. Gluten is the protein found in wheat, barley, and rye that provides structure to the grain. A gluten-free diet is removing sources of gluten and only eating foods without gluten.

Gluten is in a lot of foods, even ones that you wouldn’t expect! Here’s a list of common foods with gluten:

  • baked goods
  • beer
  • breads
  • breaded meat and vegetables
  • Brewer’s Yeast
  • cereals
  • crackers
  • dips and sauces
  • food coloring
  • malt
  • meat alternatives
  • packaged goods
  • pasta
  • protein bars
  • seitan
  • soups
  • soy sauce
  • salad dressings

Celiac’s Disease

In more recent years, following a gluten-free diet has become part of a trendy lifestyle. But it’s not an option for people with Celiac’s Disease. This autoimmune disease doesn’t allow the body to digest and absorb gluten, creating more health issues down the road.

 gluten free soy free vegan

What Is A Soy-free Diet Plan?

Soy comes from soybeans and is found commonly in our food system. Soy in the form of tofu is especially popular in a vegan diet because it is a source of protein. A soy-free diet means removing any and all sources of soy, including:

  • edamame
  • meat alternatives
  • miso
  • soy lecithin
  • soymilk
  • soy nuts
  • soy sauce
  • oats that aren’t gluten-free
  • tempeh
  • textured soy protein
  • tofu
  • whole soy beans

Vegan Diets

For a variety of reasons, following a vegan diet has gained popularity recently. Vegans do not eat meat, eggs, fish, dairy, or any animal byproducts. Healthy vegan diets aim to be rich in fruits, vegetables, grains, and plant-based proteins.

It’s a common misconception that vegans don’t get enough protein or that there aren’t enough plant-based sources. Following a gluten-free and soy-free diet can make it harder to find plant-based protein. However, there are many sources of vegan protein!

  • beans
  • lentils
  • meat alternatives
  • nutritional yeast
  • nuts and seeds
  • nut-based milk
  • nut and seed butter
  • peas
  • spirulina
  • veggie burgers

A Guide To Gluten-free And Soy-free Vegan Foods

Reading Ingredients Lists

The most important tip to eating a gluten-free and soy-free diet is to read ingredients labels. According to the FDA, any product can bear a ‘gluten-free’ label if it has less than 20 ppm gluten present. This does not guarantee the product is 100% gluten-free and has most likely not been tested or that cross-contamination hasn’t occurred.

Even if a product says gluten-free, it may be made in a facility that also processes wheat or soy. There may be a warning on the label that says the product ‘may contain wheat or soy’ – if that’s the case, steer clear. Manufacturers change ingredients all the time, so it’s important to keep an eye on the package.

Opting for naturally gluten-free and soy-free foods is another way to avoid these ingredients. Additionally, finding foods with a gluten-free certification guarantees the product is free from gluten. This organization reviews the manufacturer’s products and ingredients, as well as testing products based on risk.

Learn more about How To Sweeten Almond Milk At Home

Eating Out

One of the biggest challenges as a gluten-free soy-free vegan is dining out at restaurants. Menus often don’t list their ingredients fully, leading to potentially hidden sources of soy and wheat. Some foods may not seem like they wouldn’t have soy and/or wheat, there’s a chance it might. Even if you manage to find a menu item without soy and wheat, there is also a risk of cross-contamination during food preparation.

If you’re willing to take the risk, this is where communication is key. Be sure to ask a knowledgeable staff member about the ingredients to clear up any concerns. Additionally, always be sure to inform the person handling your food that you cannot have soy and wheat – especially if it’s because of an allergy.

Protein Powders

Worried about not getting enough protein? Thankfully, there are a few protein powders that can be added to any gluten-free, soy-free vegan meal plan. These can be used especially in smoothies and baking to get a protein boost.

1. Garden of Life – Raw Organic Protein

This protein powder is really the full package for a supplement. Not only is it gluten-free, soy-free, and vegan, but it also has 22 g of protein per serving. With live probiotics and enzymes, this variety comes in four flavors: unflavored, vanilla, chocolate cacao, and vanilla spiced chai.

2. Orgain Organic Plant-Based Protein Powder

Gluten-free, soy-free and plant-based, this unflavored protein powder is commonly found at major grocery stores. If you’d like some flavor, Orgain has seven flavors available, including vanilla, chocolate, peanut butter, and iced coffee.

3. KOS Organic Plant Protein

Last but not least, this award-winning vegan protein powder is soy and gluten-free. There are six fun flavors (Mint Chocolate, hello!) as well as an unflavored option.

Gluten-free and Soy-free Vegan Recipes

If the thought of cooking and finding recipes that fits your lifestyle makes you nervous, don’t worry! You’re not alone following a gluten-free and soy-free vegan meal plan. Spend time doing a search for vegan chefs and recipe creators that keep soy and gluten out of their recipes.

Starting with basic ingredients that are natural soy and gluten-free is a good place to start, too. Think fruits, vegetables, grains, beans, nuts, seeds, and spices. If you’re starting a recipe with whole foods, it makes it easier to avoid your no-no ingredients.

Read more about How To Cook Canned Baked Beans On Stove

Conclusion

Gluten-free and soy-free vegan meal plans can be tricky to navigate, making it essential to have a plan. Whether it’s gluten-free, soy-free vegan recipes, or eating out, there’s a lot to keep in mind. Having a guide (like this one!) and communicating your needs will help the transition.

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