Easy Vegan Meals

I do enjoy cooking but it’s winter – a season of darkness and cold. It’s dark by the time we get out of work, and it’s dark when we wake up in the morning, and most days, by the time I get home, I’m ready to just curl up somewhere warm and hibernate. Under the circumstance, I have those days and sometimes weeks where I just can’t muster the energy or enthusiasm to do any cooking.  Fortunately, plant-based frozen and ready-made meals have really hit their stride lately and new options are flooding the market like never before.

I know some of you out there may feel guilt over eating or serving frozen meals and I’ve wrestled with that feeling as well.  There’s a lingering connotation about these kinds of convenience foods, that somehow eating them makes us lazy, culinary failures, but that’s certainly not the case.  Our lives are busy and complicated and we all sometimes need to lean into these little bits of easy luxury.  Also, as the lists proves, frozen meals are hardly the bland, boring utilitarian things they used to be.

booshBoosh’s specific objective as a company is to provide convenient plant-based meals for those are unable to prepare meals from scratch, and so far they’ve been killing it.  With a growing product line that includes nutritional comfort food classics like Mac & Cheeze, Sloppy Joes, Chili and Shepherd’s Pie, Boosh has something to satiate every appetite quickly and efficiently, without comprising flavour. Currently only available in Canada.

Amy’s Kitchen 
Screen Shot 2022-12-20 at 10.05.54 PMAmy’s Kitchen is a veteran of the convenience meal game and their vegan line, which includes soups, pizzas, and burritos, was a life-saver for me when I first made the transition to veganism. It took a long time for other companies to catch up with comparable products, and even now, with so many options on the market, Amy’s foods are still some of the best out there.

Screen Shot 2022-12-20 at 10.08.37 PMEveryone’s favourite gluten-free bakeshop has expanded their repertoire to include a line of prepared meals. You can expect the same high quality and full flavour in these products as they inject into their sweet treats. They have comfort food classics like Mac & Cheese and Lasagna but also more unique offerings like a Pad Thai, a Red Curry and Cabbage Rolls. Their meals have been spotted in a few stores (Fiesta Farms) but you can also always pick them up from their Kensington Market location – and grab a few cupcakes while you’re there, because why not.

Wholly Veggie
Screen Shot 2022-12-20 at 10.11.11 PMWith its distinctive, bright packaging and colourful funky font, Wholly Veggie’s products have become a familiar sight in the freezer section of many grocery stores. I first came across them at the Toronto VegFest several years ago, and was immediately sold after sampling their cauliflower crust pizzas. Since then, they’ve launched several new vegetable forward products, with versatile quick meal options that are both healthy and can prepared in mere minutes.

Daiya Foods
Screen Shot 2022-12-20 at 10.14.31 PMDaiya has become a powerhouse in the vegan grocery industry. What started out as an innovative cheese alternative has blossomed into a whole arsenal of plant-based goodness.  Their Mac & Cheeze is one of my favourite products, and beautifully replicates the experience and flavour of those childhood kraft dinner moments. They also make a killer burrito, and have a nice selection of pizzas.

Komo Plant Based Foods
Screen Shot 2022-12-20 at 10.15.44 PMKomo is a somewhat new company, based out of Vancouver, that has dedicated itself to creating hearty, feel-good favourites made with high quality plant-based ingredients. For full meals, they have Lasagna, Shepherd’s Pie and Chickenless Pot Pie, but they also make a Taco Fill and Bolognese Sauce that will instantly jazz up Taco Tuesdays or your pasta dinner. Available in select stores, but you can also order off their website.

Alpha Foods
Screen Shot 2022-12-20 at 10.17.33 PMAlpha Foods was founded in 2015 in California, but its products have only recently started making their way north into Canadian stores. As someone who struggles to find time to eat breakfast, I really appreciate that someone finally came up with a vegan breakfast sandwich! And couple of minutes in the microwave is all it takes. They also make several types of burritos and some stellar Chik’n Nuggets.

Situ’s Kitchen
Screen Shot 2022-12-20 at 10.18.42 PMSitu’s Kitchen is a new company that’s attracting a lot of attention for its innovative take on plant-based foods. Situ, which means grandma in Lebanese, began with a veganized version of Fatyre, a popular Lebanese meat pie dish, but now its expanding line includes a pot pie, calzones, and spinach and cheese pies. Also, if you want dessert, because why wouldn’t you want to have dessert, they also make a couple different kinds of cakes.

Lita’s Mexican Foods
Screen Shot 2022-12-20 at 10.19.45 PMLita’s Mexican Foods is a company that originated in Richmond, BC, that began by making flour tortillas that honour the culinary tradition of Northern Mexico, but then expanded their expertise into making Taco Meal Kits and Taquitos, both of which are perfect for quick filling dinners on busy evenings. Their products can be found in most specialty grocery stores, like The Big Carrot, Whole Foods, and Fiesta Farms.

Farm Boy
Farm Boy is one of the most vegan-friendly big-chain grocery stores in Ontario, and they are regularly adding new products to their plant-based roster.  They have their own vegan cheese line (highly recommended), as well as fresh baked items like cookies, croissants, and muffins.  But they also shine in the prepared and frozen foods sections, with an abudance of vegan options like fresh soups, pizzas and curries, but my personal favourite is the Kung Pao chick’n meal.


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