What can a vegan or vegetarian eat on wartime rations?

Up until now I have been consuming no meat, cheese or dairy and instead using almond milk and taking a small nut ration and extra haricot beans to replace the meat and cheese. I did e-mail THE VEGAN SOCIETY regarding what vegans were given instead of milk, cheese and meat but as yet they have not replied. The Vegan Society formed in 1944..

Vegetarians received an extra ration of cheese instead of meat.

The only problem I am having during the 1940s Experiment, as a vegan, is that I cannot recreate some of the recipes. I could when I attempted to live on wartime rations in 2006 and again when I started this blog in 2009 but in this latest attempt at living 100% on wartime rations,  I have become vegan.

Of course, we are now, in 2012,  lucky to have many meat and cheese alternatives available to use, so I have decided to alleviate my culinary frustration and use some of the alternatives as part of my rations, for the next few months.

I’d like to share with you some of the alternatives I am or will be using as part of my “wartime rationing” allowance to allow me more wartime culinary creativity in my humble, messy, kitchen..

Weekly Vegan Alternatives

Margarine/Butter 6 oz/ 150 g (less than half a tub)
Organic Earth Balance– Soy, GMO free, margarine

Cooking Fat 4 oz/ 100 g
Earth Balance– Soy, GMO free

Cheese 4 oz/ 100 g (cheese ration varied from between 2 oz and 8 oz)
Daiya (the ONLY cheese tasting vegan cheese in my humble opinion- delicious! )

Milk 3 pints/ 1800 ml (sometimes dropping to 2 pints)
Almond Milk– Organic

Meat to the value of 1shilling and sixpence (today that would be like buying 1/2 lb of minced beef)
Yves– vegan minced beef alternative

Bacon & Ham 4 oz/ 100 g
Yves- Vegan bacon rashers


I am not a processed foods lover even though the ingredients in most of these products are very natural, it is unlikely I will stick with the meat alternatives for very long HOWEVER it will be good to be able to start to re-create some of the dishes that used bacon or beef. The cheese and dairy alternatives though are a completely different kettle of fish.. I can see nothing in their ingredients list that alarms me infact all are pretty much organic and GMO  free. The DAIYA CHEDDAR CHEESE is particularly VERY IMPRESSIVE. It is the only hard or shredded vegan cheese I have ever tasted that tastes good! AND it actually melts just like the real thing. So thank you to my friend TONY LANTZ for putting me onto this vegan alternative.

I can’t tell you how wonderful it was yesterday to have my first cheese sandwich in 6 months..

Oh cheese- how I have missed you

C xxxx

Getting to grips..

Trying to find out information about veganism during the 1940s & WWII is proving to be quite difficult.

I’ve actually stopped eating meat, fish, milk and cheese etc now and using the next few weeks to prepare before my 8 week 100% vegan challenge. But information on the rationing system for VEGANS is pretty non- existent. During WWII vegetarians received extra rations of cheese instead of meat but what about the vegans?

I wanted to take the opportunity to thank Lili, Mary, Beti and Tempewytch who left comments on my last post…. I will be taking Lili up on her offer of more recipes for vegans during the 1940s and I have spent a lot of time reading up about the origins of Veganism thanks to Mary. It even seems more fitting that I should incorporate a veganism challenge into my 1940s Experiment as the word Vegan and the vegan movement was conceived in 1944 and therefore was very much a lifestyle that many embraced during the war years.

Here is a very interesting interview with Donald Watson who founded the Vegan Society and created the word Vegan  http://www.foodsforlife.org.uk/people/Donald-Watson-Vegan/Donald-Watson.html

At the moment I am preparing for the challenge… it’s difficult. Incorporating it into my 1940’s Experiment is not on my mind at the moment. I am simply trying to get to grips with it full stop..

Today I cooked a wonderful Vegan Tofu Stir Fry – CLICK HERE FOR RECIPE AND PHOTOS however they didn’t have Tofu in the 1940s (not that I am aware of anyway)

So my challenge is two-fold. Get to grips with turning vegan and get to grips with finding out more about veganism during the 1940s ….

PS Do you think vegans were given extra nuts?

PPS If anyone can help me out with any information they may have I’d be so grateful!!