In this week's installment of Kitchen Gadget of the Week, we are featuring something that may not…
It’s almost magical having smartphones in our pockets. There are apps for everything and that includes apps to help vegans navigate a non-vegan world.
Our Top Apps For Vegan Living
When we first transitioned to plant-based eating, and then to a fully vegan lifestyle, we often found ourselves wondering about ingredients in products at the market, whether we could find something to eat at a restaurant, and if something we were purchasing had been tested on animals. And, actually, we still do, but now we have apps that we depend on to answer those questions. These are our Top 5 Apps for Vegan Living in the Real World (just like our tagline!).
#1 Happy Cow
This app is first up because, seriously, it is THE app we pull out more than any other. Why? Because Happy Cow answers the question: “where can I find something to eat” no matter where you are. Without Happy Cow on your smartphone, it’s a blind, hungry search, driving around a town or a web search for familiar chains or “vegan-friendly-restaurants”. I mean, if you want to you can just “Hey Siri: are there any vegan restaurants near me?” and sometimes it can work out. But with Happy Cow, a quick, location-aware, search gives you everything in the area, from 100% vegan to veg-friendly, to veg options available. Boom. Let’s eat!
#2 Is It Vegan?
In our early vegan days, we used Is It Vegan? a LOT. That’s because it helps you navigate the grocery store. Let’s be real: who eats out every day? We sure don’t and there were tons of products that we bought regularly that we started looking askance at once we were concerned about things like dairy, gelatin (ewww), honey, chicken stock, and so on. This app is almost as magical as Happy Cow.
Using it is simple: launch the app, tap the Scan button, center the window over the suspicious product’s barcode, and ZIP you get “yes”, “no”, or a “not sure”. The “not sure” seems to happen on foods that aren’t in their database BUT when the answer is in between yes/no Is It Vegan offers information about questionable ingredients. Which helps one learn and to make a decision.
#3 Vegan Pocket
Vegan Pocket works essentially like Is It Vegan? but expands the concept to include cruelty-free and vegan beauty products. It’s another wonderfully helpful (occasionally eye-opening) app. Only available on iOS.
Cruelty-Free tells you straight-up if a product was tested on animals – it’s also regularly updated with new products (which is awesome). You can scan products, see brand logos and descriptions to match in-store, shop using direct links to brand websites, and even create a shopping list of your favorite brands.
#5 Bunny Free
Bunny Free is another app that scans barcodes. What makes it a tad different is that it allows you to search specific brands and/or browse a large list, then Bunny Free tells you if the company is vegan, working for regulatory change, or testing on animals. This app really helps you vote for change with your dollars (or your local currency). It can also be quite surprising to discover companies that aren’t so cruelty-free!
OK, we said 5 and this is #6. No worries, don’t send an email, we can count, lol! This is the just-1-for-fun app. I mean, it’s an emoji app. vegEMOJI is fun, adorable, and created by Follow Your Heart and rapper Lil B. It’s packed with cute little emojis that reflect the vegan lifestyle – so go spread some vegan love around on social media and your texts!