A natural dye which is made from the ground up seed pods of the annatto tree, which grows in Central and South America. It often used to impart a yellow or orange colour to foods, but sometimes also for its flavour and aroma.

Use as a natural colorant for homemade vegan cheese sauces, vegan cheese and other sauces to give them a yellow appearance.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is made by squeezing out the juice from apples, adding bacteria and yeast to create alcoholic fermentation and then then alcohol is converted into vinegar by acetic acid-forming bacteria. Apple cider vinegar is commonly used in vinaigrette’s, salad dressing, chutneys, food preservatives and marinades.

Apple cider vinegar is a great ingredient when making vegan cheese and cheese sauces to give it that ‘acidic’ cheesy taste you find with non vegan cheese.

Apple Juice Concentrate

Apple juice from concentrate means that all the excess water from the apples is removed, creating a product more concentrated than the initial juice. Compressing and then freezing the apple juice allows a more productive method of packaging and transportation. Water is then added to the juice again before it is sold.

Drink apple juice concentrate but only after adding water as its sugary and more intense than regular apple juice.


Apples are the fruit produced by an Malus Pumila (apple tree). The tree originates from Central Asia. There are many different types of apples but the most commly used ones for cooking and baking are: bramley apples, granny smith apples and red or yellow gravenstein apples.

Use cooking apples to make a delicious dessert or breakfast. Stuff with dried sultanas, dried peel, almond extract then bake.

Apricot Compote

Compote is a dessert originating from medieval Europe, made of whole or pieces of fruit in sugar syrup (in this case, apricots). Whole fruits are cooked in water with sugar and spices.

Apricot Jam

Apricot jam is a fruit preservative made by either crushing the fruit or cutting it into pieces and the heating it with water and sugar.

Mix with water and heat to make a glaze for a fruit tart.


Apricots are a fruit that come from an apricot tree. They have a small stone in the middle of them and can be dried to make dried apricots.


Eat apricots as a snack or cut up them up and add to desserts, yoghurt or breakfasts.

Apricots, Dried

Dried Apricots are a great source of potassium and vitamin A, are high in fiber and have a low glycemic index (they normally do not have any sugar added to them).

Apricots are better eaten at meal time to prevent tooth decay and 30g of dried apricot is equivalent to 80g of fresh apricot (1 of your 5 a day).


This is the liquid that is in tins with chickpeas. Some recipes may call it chickpea water, and it is commonly used as a replacement for egg whites and used to make meringues. There are many recipes on the internet that have different uses for aquafaba.

Use aquafaba to make a delicious home made mayo or meringues.

Aquafaba Mozzarella

This is a type of vegan cheese that is an alternative to mozzarella made from cows milk. It has a different texture, however it looks similar in colour to traditional mozzarella.

Use to top pizzas, lasagnas, mac n’ cheese etc.

Arborio Rice

This Italian short-grain rice is named after the town of Arborio located in the main growing region
Arborio rice is most commonly used for risotto dishes and rice pudding. The grains are rounded in appearance and when cooked feel firm, chewy and creamy because of their higher amylopectin starch content. Arborio rice absorbs liquids and flavours and releases starch far better than other types of rice, giving risotto its characteristic texture.

You can also use Arborio rice to make a quick and easy rice pudding instead of the typically used pudding rice.


Also known as arrowroot starch or arrowroot powder is derived from a tropical South American plant and similar to corn starch, arrowroot is commonly used as a thickener in recipes. Unlike cornstarch, arrowroot is completely flavourless and will not impart a starchy taste into puddings or other dishes that it is used to thicken. Some of its benefits include improving heart health and digestion as well as boosting energy levels in the body.

Arrowroot is gluten free, so use it as a thickener in sauces instead of flour.

Arrowroot Powder

Arrowroot powder is the same as arrowroot starchArrowroot is a perennial herb found in Rain forest habitats. Arrowroot is cultivated for it’s starch (powder) which used as a thickening agent, it can be used as a replacement for cornstarch. It is an excellent ingredient which is often used in baking gluten free recipes. Arrowroot creates a soft and light texture, it is also very easily digestible, it is not irradiated and does not contain any added sulfates.

Arrowroot is gluten free, so use it as a thickener in sauces instead of flour.

Arrowroot Starch

Arrowroot is a perennial herb found in rain forest habitats. Arrowroot is cultivated for starch which used as a thickening agent, it can be used as a replacement for cornstarch. It is an excellent ingredient which is often used in baking gluten free recipes. Arrowroot creates a soft and light texture, it is also very easily digestible, it is not irradiated and does not contain any added sulfates.

Arrowroot is gluten free, so use it as a thickener in sauces instead of flour.


Artichokes are a type of thistle, particularly globe artichokes, that are grown and used as a vegetable. It is a round shape head that flowers. There are different types of artichoke. Check your local supermarket for artichokes and there are sometimes artichoke hearts in tins to be included in recipes.

Preserved/jarred artichokes make a great ingredient for mock ‘fish’ cakes due to their flaky texture.


Also known as hing, this is a crucial ingredient in Indian vegetarian cooking. Derived from a species of giant fennel, asafoetida has a unique smell and flavour while raw but mellow and garlicky when cooked. Used primarily with legumes and dishes featuring veggies such as cauliflower.

Add to salad dressings to add a unique flavour.


This is a green vegetable that is referred to as spears due to the tapered shape at the end of the vegetable. It is best when eaten during April to June when it is in season in the UK.

Lightly steamed or griddled, asparagus makes a tasty and healthy salad topping.


Aubergines are otherwise known as eggplant in other countries. It has a creamy coloured flesh and a purple skin.

Roasted in the oven, aubergine makes a tasty salad topping, a sandwich filler, or it can be added to pasta sauces, a vegetable curry or a stew.

Aubergine Pesto

Aubergine pesto is made using Aubergine as the main ingredient along with pinenuts and basil.

It is widely available in UK supermarkets.


Avodcado is a fruit due to the large stone in the middle. It has a creamy texture and light green flesh. They are best eaten when they are slightly soft, however once they are ripe there isn’t a lot of time before they become over ripe and inedible.

Mix with cocoa powder and sweetener to make a healthy chocolate moose.

Avocado Oil

The famed fruit, avocado, has made it as a toast topper, cake thickener and burger ‘bun’, so it only makes sense to try drizzling in a frying pan. Produced by pressing the Persea Americana fruit down to an oil consistency, avocado oil contains heart-healthy oleic acid and monounsaturated omega-9 fatty acid.

Avocado oil is great at hydrating and softening your skin, and can also be used as an effective treatment for acne and blackheads, eczema and other forms of skin inflammation.

Baby Broad Beans

These are broad beans that have not matured fully. They have a sweeter flavour are mostly available as a frozen product.

Remove the outer shell of the broad bean to reveal the green bean inside. This makes a delicious, nutritious and pretty addition to a summer salad.

Baby Carrots

A baby carrot is a carrot sold at a smaller size before reaching maturity, not to be confused with a  baby-cut carrot, which is a small piece cut from a larger carrot. Baby-cut carrots are often marketed as ‘baby carrots’, although that is not what they actually are.

Baby Kale

Compared to mature kale, baby kale is more versatile and more tender. The leaves are softer in texture and high in vitamins A, C and K.

Use as an alternative to spinach by adding to curry, stews, and soups or roast in the oven to eat as a tasty snack.

Baby Peas

Baby peas or petite-pois as they are often called refer to a particularly young and tender green pea. These peas are smaller and have a sweeter flavour to regular garden peas. They are perfect along side many savoury dishes, or alternatively , a handful mixed in any meal can add a little colour and goodness!

Use baby peas or petite pois in stews and pasta sauces as a way of adding another vegetable to your dish. Baby peas are a delicious addition to a salad.

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