Alongside the beauty and lifestyle content I write, one of the main purposes of this blog is to make veganism as accessible, convenient and enjoyable as possible. Here in the UK, I have definitely taken for granted just how many vegan options are available on a budget that I forgot to account for what it would be like, as a vegan, outside of the country. This was only realised once I had travelled to Gran Canaria where fresh produce was both limited and expensive which proved challenging. However, if you are thinking of travelling there sometime soon, please do not let this put you off as I have compiled (in this post!) a list of tips and meal ideas that will hopefully provide some insight to eating vegan abroad.
If it hasn’t already been mentioned elsewhere, Canarian Potatoes are your best option for a local delicacy that is both vegan and very accessible. These are boiled salted potatoes covered in mojo sauce, which consists of pepper, vinegar and spices. These can be found in all sorts of restaurants which means, as long as these are scattered around the island, you can never go hungry. These can be made further budget friendly by buying the sauce (around €2) and potatoes (€1.30 per KG) separately to cook at your accommodation.
Where to find: 19 Holes (Maspalomas), Roca Verde Restaurant (Playa Del Ingles)
Great World – Chinese Restraunt in Playa Del Ingles
Gran Canaria is not a vegan/vegetarian-friendly country. In fact, trying to explain dietary restrictions is almost pointless, if not impossible to be completely understood. Because of this, eating out should be thought over carefully. Using the HappyCow website, I thankfully discovered Great World which offers some fantastic Chinese Vegan options which follow closely to the Whole-Foods diet. My personal favourite was this vegetable chow-mein style dish, and this came with both a sweet and spicy sauce for dipping (which I believe is courtesy with most main dishes). I had to come back twice because it really was delicious.
Side note: For two people with two mains, a side of rice, 2 beers and a vegetable spring roll, this came to €21 euros.
Eating on Excursions
For this post I can only really speak for my one excursion, which was a dolphin tour in the Puerto Rico area of Gran Canaria. Here, we were promised an all inclusive buffet and free drinks. This was somewhat mis sold as there really wasn’t much selection to be called a ‘buffet’ as we were handed plates with spanish omelate and salad. Snacks included watermelon, bananas and apples. Although this may not be what you want to hear, considering the prices of these products outside of the boat, I ensured it was me who was eating said salad and fruit. Take advantage of eating a full meal beforehand.
Starches were the main consistency of every meal because not only are they some of the cheapest products worldwide, but they are the most satisfying in ensuring you stay fuller for longer. Side effect: Great diet food also!
Breakfast: Jumbo Oats (€1-2) with Soya Milk and Banana. There are a tonne of banana plantations in Gran Canaria and I found, contrary to bananas in the UK, the bananas were much sweeter. These are optional of course but definitely helped transform an otherwise plain breakfast.
Lunch/Dinner: When I wasn’t making my own version of Canarian potatoes, I was making the most of the Pasta based dishes. One night it was purely tomato pasta, which although sounds boring, was such a nice treat. On another night, I found a soya-based bolognese (€2) which was added to pasta with an additional side of broccoli (€2.30) for a vitamin boost.
If you have any questions regarding eating in Gran Canaria, I am more than happy to help. Safe travels.