MetMUnch – Brain food to smash university!

As the new academic year begins, fear not! MetMUnch is here to give you advice on what brain food you should be eating to give you a boost, and the advantage.

First things first, eat breakfast! It’s a no brainer!

Research shows that students who eat before exams perform better than those that skip the meal. So get up and get eating brain food!

But rather than just vaguely recommend you eat things that contain slow-release carbohydrates or foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, we’re going to showcase five foods you’ll all recognise that can help you merit that distinction 😉

Oats

The primary fuel for your brain is glucose, which comes from carbohydrates. The fibre present in oats keeps your brain sharper for longer, as it provides your brain with a sustainable level of glucose release. Oats also contain protein to help you stay full of energy for longer.

To jazz up this brain food and enhance the nutritional benefits, just add a slice of banana or some blueberries.

Oats

Eggs

Eggs are a great source of protein and amino acids. They are also one of the best sources of vitamin B-12, which helps regulate brain function. Eggs also contain choline, a precursor of acetycholine, which plays a key role in memory and learning.

Make yourself a nice omelette for breakfast in the morning and you are bound to feel more focused in your lectures.

Egg

Salmon

We love salmon! It’s not only delicious, but it’s also great brain food. It is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, which will improve your memory during revision and exams.

Salmon is also one of the best sources of vitamin B-12, and an excellent source of protein. All things you need to boost your brain!

Salmon

Chocolate

Yes, you heard us right…chocolate! The polyphenols in chocolate increases blood flow to the brain, improving brainpower and help to protect against age-related memory loss.

Before you rush out to buy a bar though, make sure it is dark chocolate, 70% cocoa or more, as dark chocolate has high levels of vitamins and minerals such as potassium, copper, magnesium and iron.

Chocolate

Avocado

Ahh…avocados! Now these beauties not only contain folate, which helps lower stress, but they also contain lots of protein, healthy fats and antioxidants, which are vital for optimum brain function.

Make sure you add some avocado slices to a salad or add them to your wholemeal sandwich to keep you cool, calm and collected.

Avocado

Check out MetMUnch on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for more food, health and sustainability inspiration!

How you can get the most out of university!

It’s Welcome Week! We know that most of you will be moving out for the first time and we definitely know the the first few weeks will be a little crazy! But once the dust has settled and you start uni in earnest we have some great bits of advice from our students about how you can get the most out of university!

Here we go:

  1. Don´t Skip Breakfast

Some people skip breakfast because they think it will help them lose weight. But research shows the opposite is true. Eating a good breakfast will give you energy and help you curb hunger throughout the day. Try a filling breakfast like eggs, fruit or wholegrains.

A good breakfast will make you mentally sharp too – helpful for those 9am lectures.

  1. Go For The Fruit

One thing you’ll quickly notice at uni, quite often you won’t have much time between lectures and seminars. If you’re darting between classes and need some food on the go, go for the fruit. It’ll fill you up, give you some energy, and tick off one of your five portions of fruit and veg a day.

There’s fruit available across Manchester Met, and it’s cheap, accessible and healthy – all you need!

  1. Buy A Wok

This will be the most versatile weapon in your cooking arsenal. Short on time? Got a load of
ingredients you need to use? Get them in the wok!

You can flash fry a stir-fry in a matter of minutes – and you’ll feel like a pro as your ingredients sizzle away. Make a good protein your stir-fry star, and support it with a wide variety of veggies.

Woks aren’t just good for stir-fry either. They’re great if you’re cooking eggs, making a healthy filling for a Mexican dish, or just tossing some salad!

Buy a flat-bottomed wok to maximise the surface area, and make sure it’s big enough to get all your ingredients in.

(One other thing: watch out for the smoke near your fire alarm!)

  1. Have A Routine

The lure of takeaways is always strong, especially if you don’t have any food in. How do you fight the temptation? Try having a routine.

Plan every day for breakfast, lunch, an afternoon snack, dinner, and an evening snack if you fancy it. Try eggs or wholemeal cereal for breakfast, salad or a wrap for lunch, something high protein like salmon, chicken or tofu with veggies for dinner, and snack on fruit and nuts in between. They say it takes twenty-one days to form a habit – give it a go for three weeks!

It’ll help you manage your money too: planning a weekly shop when you know what you’re eating in advance means cutting out impulse buys. And remember: try not to shop when you’re hungry!

  1. Budget, Budget, Budget

Be mindful of your money when shopping for food, and have a budget in mind for your shopping. Sticking to it for a few weeks will see you right for the whole term.

Try doing a big shop one day a week instead of nipping out to the local shop for bits and pieces. Convenience stores may be convenient, but they’re also way more expensive. Try to shop in a group and share costs. Processed food tends to be pricier too, so go for basic ingredients and make your own meals.

Eating seasonally is another good tip. Out of season fruit and veg will have flown from around the world just to get to your plate, and that bumps up the cost to you. Try local, seasonal produce. It’ll cost less, and it’s good for the environment!

One super tip is to check out supermarkets in the evenings – they’ll often reduce prices on stuff close to the sell-by date. Just find the reduced section and pick out the things you like. Even if you don’t eat it that night, a lot of food can be frozen and eaten later – just make sure to read the guidance on the packaging!

  1. Get Social

If you’re moving into halls, chances are you’ll have a shared kitchen. Pitching in for food and sharing cooking with your new housemates is a great way to bond, and the kitchen will quickly become the hub of your hall.

Splitting the costs of everyday items is a great way to cut your budget, free up space in your cupboard and reduce food waste. You can learn new recipes and skills, try foods you’ve never tried before, and mix with your new housemates. And if you cook in groups, it means you don’t need to cook every day!

  1. Be Active

Being active doesn’t have to mean hours at the gym, you can find ways to fit more activity into
your daily life. Try getting off the bus one stop early, or take the stairs instead of the lift.

If you’re exercising, try to include some carb-rich foods before and after. Things like bananas,
pasta, rice and noodles are all good.

MMU Sport offer a great range of activities for everyone – from introductory sessions to sport teams and societies – so check them out!

  1. Stay Hydrated

We need to drink about 1.2 litres of fluid every day to stop us getting dehydrated. This is in addition to the fluid we get from the food we eat.

An aluminium water bottle is a great investment – you can fill it up in the morning and carry it around lectures with you. This will save money (Manchester Met has free water fountains across campus), save the environment, and help you stay hydrated throughout the day.

  1. Keep Learning

Key to making the most of university is using every opportunity you can to learn. Manchester Met doesn’t end with your course – there are loads of events, guest lectures, displays and talks going on all the time.

Why not take the chance to educate yourself about your diet too? Not just what goes into your food, but where it comes from and how it’s made. A sustainable diet is often a healthy one, and you’ll quickly learn what foods work for you.

MetMUnch runs fun, pop-up events across the campus all year-round, and membership is open to any Manchester Met student. Our trained nutritional scientists can answer any questions you might have about diet and nutrition!

  1. Expand Your Horizons

Scroll through your Instagram feed. Everyone’s sharing pictures of what they had for tea. But what if your feed is full of healthy, nutritious accounts? We find inspiration from what other people are trying, including unusual and fashionable foods. Quinoa was unheard of a few years ago; now it’s taken the food world by storm, and with good reason: it’s meat-free, gluten-free and high protein.

Kale and popcorn have been big recent hits with various health benefits. Now everyone wants to be on the next food hype. You’re in charge now, so try things out and see what you like! Home-made will always be more healthy, and food gives everyone an easy, accessible and creative way to learn a new skill.

Check out MetMUnch on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for more food, health and sustainability inspiration!

Fun, food and fresher’s flu – Sam Harrison

Hello Freshers! (and returning students!) This is it!

The start of the academic year, with nothing but fun, friends and hangovers in front of you (plus, hopefully a few lectures). Chances are, before you arrived you gave the following (admittedly, extremely important) things some serious consideration:

  • The colour scheme and theme of your new bedroom (I personally recommend just scattering a few cushions around the place). *I’d advise against asking your parents to do multiple trips in a car full of candlestick holders, trinkets and ornaments (I definitely didn’t do this. Not at all. Nope. No. Ok, maybe)

  • Some new outfits (studies suggest looking stylish at 9am lectures helps retain additional information (MrIMadeThisUp, 2018)).
  • If you’re going to get along with your course mates and flatmates (I’m pretty sure you will!)

But how much consideration have you given to your food, your health and the prospect of being the best, healthiest you possible?

We all neglect aspects of healthy eating from time to time, and MetMUnch certainly won’t advise against going out with your new friends, drinking, dancing and having the time of your life! – The social aspect of university life is incredibly important!

That being said, here are a few tips to balance out all the booze and late nights, so you can reach your full potential in the coming weeks and months, keep your bank balance healthy and keep fresher’s flu at bay;

  • Drink water, even on a night out! – Alcoholic drink, water, alcoholic drink, water. Your head and your bank balance will thank you for it in the morning. Booze not only dehydrates you, but tends to be high in calories and lacking in nutrients. By drinking water every other drink, you’ll rehydrate your body and save some calories for the following mornings yummy breakfast (we all need an amazing breakfast after a night of drinking, right?). For more tips on avoiding horrendous hangovers, please read this great blog by lovely Emma http://metmunch.com/blog/

  • Speaking of breakfast – eat breakfast! Everyday, especially on university days. Your body has been fasting over night and needs to replenish its stores to allow you to thrive and stay alert. Early morning lectures can be tricky enough without falling asleep and hitting your head on the desk in front of you. MetMUnch recommends oats, oats and more oats! So versatile, so filling and so nutritious. Add fruit, nuts or seeds. Why not add a few squares of dark chocolate in there? This breakfast will give you slow releasing carbohydrates to power you through until lunchtime.
  • Plan ahead – This ultimately saves time and money (things we tend to take for granted when living with our parents). Make a shopping list, stick to it and cook your meals in advance. What could be better than a yummy, nutritious meal waiting for after a long day at uni? This also reduces the risk of feasting on junk and takeaway food. We also recommend visiting supermarkets in the evening, as this is when they tend to reduce the prices on various foods and you’re bound to bag a bargain. So many healthy foods, such as fruits and vegetables, can be frozen, which locks in vitamins and minerals and allows you to eat them at your leisure.

  • Try not to get caught up in food fads and “superfoods”. The majority of the foods we know to be good for us have always been good for us, and will continue to be good for us. Make sensible choices – swap the white bread for brown bread and the Frosties for muesli (you get the idea).

There you have it – a few simple tips to help you through your first weeks and months of the university year. Squeeze every last bit of fun out of your time at uni and be good to yourself; you’ve worked hard to get here and you deserve to thrive.

For more information on health, nutrition and sustainability follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!

MetMUnch are buzzing about their new bee collaboration!

MetMUnch has teamed up with a sci-artist to develop some bee-utiful materials for their exciting To Bee or Not To Bee event at the Museum of Science and Industry.

Kelly Stanford creates art themed around scientific concepts, and uses it for science communication purposes. Kelly is currently involved in is the STEM Bee sculpture, which will be located at Manchester Oxford Road station from July 23rd to September 23rd. The bee sculpture is embellished with science facts, imagery from research publications, poetry and portraits of famous local scientists.STEM BeeKelly also started the John Dalton Garden Project after noticing how much diversity in plant and insect species there was in such a small-enclosed urban space.

She said: “Having started the John Dalton Garden Project I was surprised to spot Ashy Mining Bees burrowing in the wooden planters – a species which isn’t recorded as being present here on the NBN Atlas. This inspired me to go ahead documenting and illustrating what I saw. I’m hoping to build a visual guide of all plant and insect species in the garden to raise awareness of what can potentially be found in an urban environment such as university campuses.

Screen Shot 2018-07-04 at 16.25.03 “I feel that small-scale studies such as these are really important in highlighting the fact that species that were once pushed out by urban development can now be successfully
reintroduced, even with minimal space and resources.”

Continuing with the bee theme, Kelly has now teamed up with MetMUnch to create bee-utiful materials that highlight the diversity of food that bees help to produce, and dangers they face as numbers continue to drop. MetMUnch will be at the Bee: Late event at the Museum of Science and Industry is being held on Wednesday 25th July, which will have lots of fun and interactive bee-themed activities. Visitors will be able to see first-hand what the collaboration has developed in what promises to be a great evening.

Bees

For more information go to – https://www.msimanchester.org.uk/whats-on/bee-late

Or get in touch with us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram!

The MetMUnch Vegan Foodie 5 – by Nikita Star

Manchester pizza #1

You just have to say the word and I drool. Who doesn’t love pizza?! Italian food is my all-time fave, pizza and pasta are life. When I first went vegan nowhere offered a vegan pizza, and I think I had withdrawals. But now, Manchester is full of them and even big chain restaurants such as Pizza-Hut and Pizza-Express have them on the menu, complete with Violife vegan cheese (the best cheese in my opinion; some vegan cheese is an embarrassment, but Violife  is perfection).

Like that of my burgers blog, I’ve titled this with #1 – as I plan on eating many other vegan pizzas to share with you. Here’s four for now…

Dough Pizza Kitchen – 77 High St, Northern Quarter

Pizza 1

Veggie Vegan Pizza £9

I went here with a non-vegan friend as it has many options for the both of us, as well as gluten free alternatives. Located in hipster-ville known as the Northern Quarter, Dough offers a variety of dishes, but you can’t go somewhere named Dough Pizza Kitchen and not order pizza, for goodness sake. I ordered the veggie one topped with mushrooms, spinach, sweetcorn, sun-blushed tomatoes, chillies and of course vegan cheese. I enjoyed my pizza with a side of BBQ sauce. I would have liked more toppings and cheese, but it still hit the spot.

The Old Abbey Taphouse – Guildhall Cl, M15 6SY

Pizza 2

Left: Vegan Margeherita with added pineapple (yes, I’m that 
type of pizza lover) and jalapeno (£8)
 Right: it’s not vegan so it doesn’t matter 😉

What I’m sharing with you is very special. I adore this place, and the food. The Old Abbey is a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths) focused hub in a pub, located close to Hulme Asda, a stone-throw away from the MMU Birley campus. Not only is their food delicious, but they do what they can to be sustainable and they host a vast selection of events and daytime activities, and at night it comes thrives with live music.

The pizza here is 100% my fave on this blog. The pizza base is hand-made and stone-baked to perfection and topped with Violife cheese. The menu includes other dishes and can be delivered to the local area. All round 10/10 for food and fun.

Garden of Vegan – 222 Wilmslow Rd, M14 6L

Pizza 3

Vegan Margarita with added green chilli & pineapple (£7.50)

Fallowfield students rejoice! A fully vegan takeaway!! I was thrilled when I discovered this, and even more delighted that the food is actually incredible. I haven’t tried everything on the menu, except the potato wedges (super) and their pizza- which is a very close 2nd favourite! I’m a fan of thinner bases compared to thick deep pan pizzas, so this is heaven in my mouth.

As you can see this is the second pizza on here with chilli and pineapple- my two favourite toppings (disagree if you must, but pineapple on pizza works 😉), with a side of BBQ sauce. I like to whack my pizza in the oven as soon as it arrives for 5mins, because I have asbestos mouth and like things hot. I also add in a note to the delivery man to keep the box flat to avoid he pizza getting smushed. All that being said, vegan pizza takeaway- my world is complete.

Bella Italia – Multiple locations

Pizza 4

Mille Colori (£9.99)

At a restaurant that doesn’t do vegan cheese? Order a cheese-less pizza! (Most bases are vegan-friendly, but double check). It may not be the full pizza experience, but it doesn’t have to compromise on taste and saves on the calories and fat, so you can have extra wine or dessert 😉

Bella Italia is happy to make all their pizzas without cheese but have one already specially selected on the menu. The Mille Colori falls under Pizza Vita category- a pizza under 600 calories with a side salad. But as you can see from the picture, its only under 600 calories because half of it is missing! Still, I can’t complain on the flavour and found it satisfying.

Keep an eye out for more reviews coming up on MetMUnch and get in touch with us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram to let us know what you think! 

Gastronauts at the Museum of Science and Industry

 Gastronauts 2For one night only, MetMUnch’s nutrition team of ‘gastronauts’ highlighted the wonders of eating bone friendly, calcium rich food, to over 700 people, space style.

Having been invited by the Museum of Science and Industry (MSI) to be involved in its Space: Late event, which also showcased Tim Peake’s Soyuz spacecraft, MetMUnch sent people on a food journey that took them beyond the stratosphere and into the nutritional stars.

Soyuz

Like on Earth, astronauts eat three meals a day, with nutritionists ensuring the food they eat provides them with a balanced supply of vitamins and minerals. However, calorie requirements are much higher for astronauts. Depending on the person’s gender and body mass, they could require between 2000 and 3200 calories. This is believed to be because the body is never truly at rest while in space and so requires more fuel to keep going.

Being in the space environment is also known to induce bone loss and, subsequently, calcium loss. According to NASA, astronauts that spend an extended period in space can lose on average one to two percent of bone mass each month.

Skeletonaut A4

However, calcium deficiencies and bone loss aren’t just an issue in outer space, with osteoporosis now affecting over three million people in the UK according to the International Osteoporosis Foundation.

With this in mind, MetMUnch set its nutritional scientists a mission to reveal how astronauts, and people back on Earth, can receive their calcium in a fun, sustainable, and easy to digest fashion, in a space-age way only MetMUnch can.

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Having received official ‘space food’ direct from NASA, the MetMUnch team set about recreating it in Manchester Metropolitan University’s labs. This meant choosing calcium rich foods to be vacuum-packed. A selection of broccoli, beetroot, strawberries, blackberries and raspberries were freeze-dried into powder and sealed. These were accompanied by dried apricots, prunes and dates be given to the public.

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The evening was a resounding success for all concerned, and guests left with space food and new information to savour. MSI’s Contemporary Science Programme Producer, Gina Cooke, said: “We always look forward to working with MetMUnch as they repeatedly generate exciting ideas for public engagement, which ultimately inspires our audience. Gastronauts is the perfect example of this. It was part of our popular Space:Late, which over 700 visitors attended.

“MetMUnch brought a huge team of passionate MetMUnchers who opened up conversations about the importance of calcium. They even gave visitors vacuum-packed food samples to take home. It complimented our programme and provided a new spin on the theme. They were one of the most popular activities on the night and we can see why!”

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With companies looking to go on missions to Mars, space food will need to be lightweight and nutrition dense to save on weight, but also flavoursome and creative to avoid ‘menu fatigue’ in space. This means nutritionists will have to come up with something dynamic, but also sustainable due to restrictions in space. The event seems to have left some students inspired to the step up to the challenge.

Faizan Khokhar, a Level 4 Nutritional Sciences student, said: “Working within the MetMunch team allows you to broaden your knowledge on a variety of subjects, and gives you the opportunity to inform and educate others, through events such as the Space: Late evening held at MSI, which was a successful collaboration.

“When you seriously start to contemplate about working as a nutritionist for NASA in the future, you know how much you enjoyed the event.”

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Check out our hashtag, #Gastronauts on social media to see how the night unfolded or visit our Flickr for more photos.

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram! 🙂

THE METMUNCH VEGAN FOODIE 4 BY NIKITA STAR

Wagamama – multiple locations

Waga 6

That’s right, this week we have a whole blog dedicated to Wagamama and their New Vegan Menu. Just recently, me and the MetMUnch crew had the pleasure of sampling every single dish in abundance.

What a wonderful time we had!

Wagamama released the new plant-based menu due to the growing demand from vegans and vegetarians, me being one of them. Furthermore, they’re interested in creating a more sustainable dining experience- which is why MetMUnch was invited.

Out of the new 29 dishes, 11 are solely vegan. Before I touch on my favourite ones, let me say each one was filled with flavour and the whole group had very satisfied tummies. The only hang up was it was quite high in sodium, from the soy sauce and additional salt, saying that we did over indulge on every dish so we did feel it!

Waga 1

Whilst you are deciding what to eat, you must try one of their fruit and vegetable juices. Super refreshing and delicious, we all ended up opting for the “Positive” juice containing pineapple, lime, spinach, cucumber and apple. Whilst most sipped elegantly, mine was gone in three gulps and I wanted another. Instead of ordering another juice though, I found myself colouring in my table-mat.

Below are the starters, going across from the top left to the bottom right we have edamame, wok-fried greens, yasai gyoza and raw salad. The edamame was the least favourite from me and my fellows, but the dumplings (yasai gyoza) were incredible. They weren’t greasy or poorly filled, but instead soft and light yet filling with tons of flavour and texture. This would be the starter I would opt for the in the future.

Waga 2

Keeping in order with the menu, we have the mains: yasai itame, kare burosu ramen, yasai pad thai, yasai yaki soba, warm chilli yasai salad and yasai samla curry. Pad Thai is always going to be a traditional favourite but what I was not expecting was to enjoy the salad so much!

Moreover, I wasn’t alone; everyone around me couldn’t get enough, we were using the lettuce as wraps and shovelling it in our mouths. I never order a salad when I’m eating out, but for this I will make an exception. The tofu was crispy and sweet and there was a range of texture with the veggies. The crisp romaine lettuce tasted like heaven against the strong flavours and saltiness from the soy sauce. The samla curry won the “best curry” award in PETA’s Food Awards, and that is no surprise, it was delicious and hearty. A couple of the team did not care for this one however, but that was due to their general dislike of coconut.

Waga 3

Usually, I’d scoff at sorbet being the only option for a vegan dessert- where’s the chocolate cake?! However, after being utterly stuffed with delicious, yet salty food, this cold dessert was just right. Both were very sweet, the lemongrass and lime also a bit sour- like a lemon sherbet. The guava and passion fruit was surprisingly creamy for a sorbet and I preferred the more mellow sweetness of this flavour.

Waga 4I highly recommended a trip to Wagamama’s, we all enjoyed it including those who had never experienced eating fully vegan meals. The staff are friendly and its fab there is plenty to choose from. Keep an eye out at the Freshers Fair for the wagamama stand; in my first year I won a free main and my friend won a free starter!

Waga 5

The MetMUnch team at Wagamama 🙂

Keep an eye out for more reviews coming up on MetMUnch and get in touch with us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram to let us know what you think! 

The MetMUnch Vegan Foodie 3 By Nikita Star

Manchester Burgers #1

Everyone loves a burger with fries, right? You don’t have to go to a fully vegan establishment to find a meat-free one, most eateries in Manchester have one on the menu, or at least one you can ask to be made vegan by excluding the mayo or cheese.

I plan to eat more vegan burgers in Manchester, but for now, here’s four to look out for…

Handmade Burger Co. – Deansgate, M3 3WB

Nikita Burger 1

Handmade Burger Co. Thai Vegetable Burger (£8.25)

This place offers so much variety. Not only do they have a vast selection of meat burgers for those not ready for the plants, they have six veggie vegan-friendly burgers to choose from, along with additional sides, salads and milkshakes. I went with meat eaters who ordered chicken and beef burgers, but when mine came out they commented how good it looked and one wished she had opted for a veggie one.

I had the Thai Vegetable burger: Thai vegetable patty, grilled peppers, sweet chilli sauce, red onion and watercress. It was full of sweet and savoury flavours and was hearty and filling. I would happily eat this burger again, but not before I try their other five!

 

BrewDog – Peter Street, M2 5BG

Nikita Burger 2 copy

BrewDog Hail Seitan Burger (£9) + sweet potato fries (£2.50)

Oh my! This is the only time I have ever had seitan. I do not know if all seitan tastes this good or whether BrewDog just cooked it to perfection. Seitan is made from the wheat protein gluten, sounds gross I know, which is why I had never bothered trying it before. Named “Hail Seitan”, this burger is described as a BBQ seitan steak with crispy kale, sun kissed tomato chutney and hummus.

The taste and texture literally reminded me of sticky BBQ spare ribs from a Chinese takeaway; meaty, a little chewy, sticky and sweet. I was very pleasantly surprised and thoroughly enjoyed it, 10/10. BrewDog is not a vegan eatery but has a few options, including another burger, a hot dog, buffalo cauliflower wings, salad and sides.

 

Fuel Café – Wilmslow Road, M20 3BW

Nikita Burger 3 copy

Falafel Burger with salad (£6.20) + sweet potato wedges (£3)

If you’re a student living close to fallowfeild, Fuel is just down the road heading towards Withington. It has that student, quirky hippy vibe to it. Very friendly and soulful atmosphere with lots of colour, cosiness and hosts open mic nights and live music. The menu caters hearty vegetarian food with vegan options, including breakfasts, mains, cakes, milkshakes and booze. I had the falafel burger, made vegan, and it was as tasty as falafel burgers get, with a dollop of hummus for a great price. The side of sweet potato wedges bumped up the bill, but they were worth it.

I also treated myself to a piece of chocolate cake, which was super decedent and would satisfy anyone’s chocolate cravings. A satisfying meal within a great setting, you would come back just for the atmosphere itself.

 

Nando’s – Multiple locations

Nikita Burger 4

Nando’s Supergreen Burger (£6.25) total + two sides (£10.45)

I loved the soya veggie burger on the old Nando’s menu, but just recently, they ditched it and replaced it with two new burgers: Sweet Potato & Butternut and Supergreen.
With Nando’s veggie burgers you must request no mayo for them to be vegan and they can be ordered either on a bun, pitta or wrap. Now, I was optimistic as I enjoyed their old one. I was disappointed.

The taste, I cannot fault. However, this cannot be classed as a burger. It did not hold together in the slightest, it was completely soft and mushy, resembling more of a sandwich filler paste. I would eat it again for sure; it was delicious and complemented the sun-dried tomatoes. Nevertheless, it is not a burger.

Keep an eye out for more reviews coming up on MetMUnch and get in touch with us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram to let us know what you think! 

 

The MetMUnch Vegan Foodie 2 by Nikita Star

Festivals & Fairs!

Before I begin introducing Manchester restaurants, let me start with a quick intro to vegan foodie festivals and fairs! These are happening more and more regularly within the Manchester food scene. Search for them on social media to keep up to date and make sure to go hungry and prepare to be stuffed with a range of taste-tastic creations. Vegan or carnivore, you will not be disappointed.

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VON (Vegan Organic Network) Festivals and Fairs

http://veganorganic.net

Von is a UK registered charity aiming to promote and support organic vegan agriculture.

These snaps were taken from their event in November 2017. VON is great for vegan feasting and hold multiple events throughout the year. Look forward to free mini samples on offer and sometimes a goodie bag on entry.

As well as incredible food, there are clothing and beauty stalls, live music, and various talks and workshops. For future events, check out their Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/pg/VeganOrganicNetwork/events/

Honestly, you would never believe the cakes below were vegan.

Nikita Cakes

 

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GRUB – Plant Powered Sundays http://www.grubmcr.com/

Fairfield Social Club, Archway 6, Temperance Street,  M12 6HR

Ok, so this becoming so popular and I can’t wait to go back. I can see this place being my new favourite spot for vegan grub. GRUB is a street food events company and holds events every weekend, but Sundays are dedicated to the plant eaters. They have 4 or 5 street food stalls, and they are exceptional and change weekly.

The setting has a hipster vibe full of soul, fairy lights and music. There’s a bar serving vegan alcohol and it’s the place to be on a Sunday. Follow them on twitter as they’re always doing competitions for free food and drinks at their events. Though they’re open all day and try to stack enough grub, get there early, you don’t want to risk missing out.

Nikita Chippy

I was lucky enough to attend when “The Hip Hop Chip Shop” were there (see above). Oh my, a vegan chippy. It was FAB. Very impressed with their battered soy shrimp and the chunky chips were the best chippy chips I’ve ever had, for real.

I had treats from ChouChoux, and Bake-O-Rama’s cupcakes were superb. All washed down with a refreshing pint of vegan cider.

Let’s face it, Sundays are a day of rest, so rather than cook yourself, go and enjoy the best vegan street grub Manchester has to offer.

Nikita Cakes 2

 

COMING UP:

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Northern Vegan Festival. https://www.northernveganfestival.com/
When: Saturday 7th April, 10:30am – 5pm

Where: Manchester central, Windmill Street, M2 3GX

I love this one. I missed last year but I did go the previous year. I find it similar to the VON festival. Its big and rammed with food, beauty and clothes stalls. There’s workshops, demos, talks, live music and sometimes speed dating! At the end of the day it spills over to a night of socialising at The Thirsty Scholar- a lively pub down the road from Man Met Uni, serving vegan alcohol. The event is volunteer run and all ticket money goes to animal welfare charities.
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Vegan Life Live http://www.veggies.org.uk/event/vegan-life-live-manchester/

When: Friday 20th April – Sunday 22nd April
Where: Event City, M14 7TB

This is a new 3-day event brought to us by Vegan Life Magazine. A bus ride away for us Manchester students, its located in Trafford. It sounds as though it will be worth the journey, promising delicious food and drink, clothing, cosmetics and education.

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The MetMUnch Vegan Foodie By Nikita Star

Being Vegan in Manchester

I’m Nikita and I’m a second year Nutritional Sciences student at Manchester Met. Yes, my love for food is so real, that I’m studying it!

Since being a baby, my mum tells me stories of my excessive sweet tooth, and not much has changed, well except I transitioned to a vegan diet in 2013. To be honest, this only grew my passion for food. At the time, veganism was no way near as big as it is now and so it forced me to learn how to cook. Fast forward a few years and eating out or ordering a vegan takeaway has never been easier.

The vegan movement continuous to grow and Britain alone has seen a 360% increase in Vegans over the last 10 years (Quinn, 2016), with figures of over half a million Brits being vegan (The Vegan Society, n.d.). Furthermore, in 2017, statistics revealed 28% of Brits reduced their meat intake within 6 months and 49% are interested in doing so (Mintel, 2017) for ethical and health reasons. Meat alternatives are on the incline with 50% of Brits purchasing meat-free products (Mintel, 2017) and this year a whopping 168,500 people signed up for the Veganuary pledge for reasons including animal welfare, health and the environment (Veganuary, 2018).
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Figure 1: Veganuary (2018) Statistics

Manchester is the place to be for vegan grub, with more vegan options appearing on menus and new vegan restaurants popping up all over the city. This isn’t surprising, Manchester has always been ahead of the game being the birthplace of the Vegetarian Society.

So, I dedicate this blog series to all the delicious vegan food Manchester has to offer. I would like to point out some of my photos are of mediocre quality; I had no idea I would end up sharing my food adventures. If you’re new to Manchester, new to Veganism, or just want to increase your palette, stay tuned to find out where is good to get Manchester vegan grub.

References

Mintel (2017) 28% of Brits have cut back their meat consumption over the last six months. Mintel. [Online] [Accessed on 22 February 2018] http://www.mintel.com/press-centre/food-and-drink/28-of-brits-have-cut-back-their-meat-consumption-over-the-last-six-months.

Quinn, S. (2016) Number of vegans in Britain rises by 360% in 10 years. The Telegraph. [Online] [Accessed on 22 February 2018] http://www.telegraph.co.uk/food-and-drink/news/number-of-vegans-in-britain-rises-by-360-in-10-years/.

The Vegan Society (n.d.) Key facts. The Vegan Society. [Online] [Accessed on 22 February 2018] https://www.vegansociety.com/about-us/further-information/key-facts.

Veganuary (2018) A Record-Breaking Veganuary 2018. Veganuary.com. [Online] [Accessed on 22 February 2018] https://veganuary.com/blog/a-record-breaking-veganuary-2018/.