Veganism And Vegans In The UK

vegan questions Nov 26, 2018

There are approximately 600,000 vegans in the UK in 2018, according to The Vegan Society.

The number of vegans in the UK continues to increase. As a result, vegan food, clothing and cosmetics are becoming increasingly easy to source, and can be found in most supermarkets and on most high streets.

The UK vegan population

The UK vegan population is growing. From 2006 to 2018, the number of vegans in the UK increased by more than 360 percent. This year, food giant JustEat listed veganism as its top consumer trend for 2018, after the demand for vegan and vegetarian food ordered through its platform increased by 987 percent.

Large brands like Nestle, McDonald's, Starbucks, Pret A Manger, Pizza Hut and Pizza Express have all increased their vegan offerings in the UK to meet the demand for food that's free from animal produce.

Best vegan cities in the UK

If you're a vegan UK resident, there are lots of places you can find great vegan food and vegan non-food products. Some cities are known for offering an exceptional range of vegan restaurants, clothes shops and supermarket ranges. 

The best cities for vegans as ranked by Vegan Life magazine are:

  • Manchester
  • Edinburgh
  • Leicester
  • Bristol
  • Glasgow
  • Cardiff
  • Liverpool
  • Leeds
  • London
  • Birmingham

It's now easier than ever to find vegan food and products if you live in the UK. Manchester, the city ranked as number one for vegans in the UK, has 129 vegan restaurants or restaurants with vegan options. If you're looking for vegan food in a city you're visiting, try the Happy Cow app or website.

Different faces
The number of vegans across the UK is growing (Photo: Adobe. Do not use without permission)

Best vegan cities in Europe

There's also been an increase in the availability of vegan food and products overseas. The top ten best cities for vegan food in Europe as ranked by Vegan Life magazine are:

  • Amsterdam
  • Paris
  • Lisbon
  • Stockholm
  • Berlin
  • Copenhagen
  • Prague
  • Vienna
  • Oslo
  • London

Vegan food in UK supermarkets

There are lots of vegan products available in typical UK supermarkets. Tesco, Sainsbury's and Asda all have their own vegan ranges, offering cheese, pizzas, ready meals, ice-cream, sweets, cosmetics and household essentials.

Tesco operates 6,550 stores across the continent and is the biggest supermarket in Europe. If you're vegan, Tesco is a great place to shop for cruelty-free food, and because it's so large, it's likely that there is one close to you. The company operates in 12 countries, and employs almost half a million staff members.

Some of Tesco vegan meals and products include:

  • Wicked Kitchen Thai Curry
  • Wicked Kitchen Nana's Mushroom Bolognese
  • Wicked Kitchen Smokin' Pasta And Amaze Balls
  • Wicked Kitchen Gunpowder Potato And Chana Masala
  • Wicked Kitchen BBQ Mushroom Pizza
  • Wicked Kitchen Caponata Pizza
  • Wicked Kitchen Sweet Potato Pakora Wrap
  • Wicked Kitchen Red Velvet Brownie
  • Wicked Kitchen Pineapple Dream Cake
  • Tesco Finest Butternut Squash and Mushroom Wellington
  • Oumph! Kebab Spiced
  • Pulled Oumph!
  • Oumph! The Chunk
  • Bol Thai Coconut Curry Pot
  • Bol Mediterranean Roasted Vegetable Pot
  • Bol Keralan Coconut Curry
  • Tesco Free From Toffee And Vanilla Cones
  • Perfect World Caramel And Pecan Ice Cream

You can also find Tesco vegan ice-cream and other brands including the vegan Ben & Jerry's range and Booja Booja ice-cream.

There are two vegan sourdough pizzas at Tesco, the Wicked Kitchen Caponata Sourdough Pizza and the BBQ Mushroom Sourdough Pizza. You'll also find that lots of chips and potato-based products, like waffles and smiley faces, are vegan.

Ingredients change often, so it's always a good idea to check individual packaging every time you shop, to make sure the food you're buying hasn't been altered to become non-vegan.

Tesco Wicked Kitchen
Most UK supermarkets like Tesco sell a wide range of vegan food

UK vegan bloggers

There are dozens of vegan bloggers based in the UK you can take inspiration from. They blog about a variety of topics, from food to raising vegan children. Looking for some inspiration about plant-based diets or living a cruelty-free lifestyle? Type ‘vegan blogger' into Google, or take a look at some of our suggestions below. 

Plant Based News

We upload blogs and articles on a daily basis, discussing the latest vegan news and issues from the UK and around the world. 

The Little Blog Of Vegan

The Little Blog Of Vegan is an award-winning recipe, beauty, advice and lifestyle blog. The food Holly Jade cooks and the cosmetics she recommends are 100 percent vegan. 

The Vegan Kind

The Vegan Kind is the UK's best known vegan subscription box, but it also has an extremely informative blog. The company posts about all sorts of interesting vegan topics, like cruelty-free cleaning and how to encourage people to go vegan. 

The Vegan Womble

The Vegan Womble posts are a collection of blogs pulled together by a vegan community from across the UK. They're always looking for contributors, so if you feel as though you have something to add to their offering, get in touch. Otherwise, enjoy their amazing recipes, or read their other blogs about vegan current affairs. 

Everything's Peachy

As well as recipes, Everything's Peachy posts about general lifestyle, zero waste, skincare, cosmetics and decluttering, as well as opinion pieces.

Vegan UK celebrities

If you're a UK based vegan, you're in good company. There are 600,000 vegans in the UK. There are also lots of UK based vegan celebrities, many of whom publics discuss their veganism and promote the lifestyle. Here are some of the best known ones. 

  • Evanna Lynch

Harry Potter actor Evanna Lynch is an animal rights activist and proud vegan. This year she was an official Veganuary ambassador. 

  • Lucy and Tiffany Watson

Made In Chelsea sisters Lucy and Tiffany Watson are both proud vegans. They regularly promote veganism and vegan products on their Instagram pages, and opened Tell Your Friends, a vegan restaurant in Parsons Green, London, in 2018. This year Lucy released a cookbook called Feed Me Vegan.

  • Ellie Goulding

International superstar Ellie Goulding is a proud vegan. She says her vegan diet makes hers feel leaner and healthier. 

  • Justin Hawkins

Who said veganism wasn't rock and roll? As well as being lead singer and guitarist for The Darkness, singer and songwriter Justin Hawkins is a proud vegan. The star recently posted an image of a fridge stuffed with goodies alongside the caption: "The trouble with veganism is, you can never find anything to eat #poppycock." 

  • David Haye

Boxer David Haye went vegan after abstaining from meat and dairy for a period of training and finding he felt better than ever. He's publicly declared that it's a myth that people need meat for strength. 

  • Lewis Hamilton

Legendary Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton went vegan in 2017. He talks often about how great he feels, and regularly encourages people publicly to adopt a cruelty-free lifestyle. 

  • Nathalie Emmanuel

Game of Thrones star Natalie is a proud animal rights activist and advocate of a vegan diet. She recently revealed to Shape magazine that her plant-based diet helps her stay in great shape. 


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