Oxford Vegan Festival

I have travelled to London and Brighton for Vegfests before so was so thrilled when I saw one was happening on my doorstep for just £3 a ticket. There wasn’t a list of exhibitors online so I wasn’t expecting much to be honest but it definitely exceeded my expectations! As soon as I hopped on the bus to the venue I could sense that I was surrounded by vegans, which was unusual but nice.

I didn’t book a ticket in advance so I arrived as soon as it opened (even if I had booked in advance I probably still would have, I love to be punctual), and it was already busy and within 10-15 minutes I could see a huge queue had formed outside. I liked that it was on a much smaller scale than Vegfest, as in London and Brighton I ended up eating way too much because I can’t resist a sample. First thing I spotted was a huge stand selling doughnuts, croissants and baked goods. I grabbed a donut (£2) and wish I had picked up one of the cone things too!

I then spotted my favourite cake people ever, they serve the largest slices of moist, delicious cake for £2. I didn’t get any today as I was trying to practice some self restraint, this is a decision I already regret. I then wandered over to Go with the Fro’s because I saw a sign for churros, here I ordered a Biscoff milkshake (£3.50) which lined my stomach perfectly. Next to this was a stall serving jerk soya wraps, plantain wraps and other goodies which looked great, I had a sample of the jerk soya meat and I will be attempting to recreate this at home.

I then found a stand selling some of my favourite vegan treats including Primal Strips jerkys, Booja Booja truffles, Vego bars, Ten Acre crisps, Cleo’s peanut butter cups, vegan wagon wheels etc. I could have spent a fortune but left with a Vego bar, only one jerky (this is unheard of for me), white cheddar quinoa and kale puffs which I’ve been searching for since they started appearing on instagram and a tiny little aloe vera plant because it was only £1 and I love little plant babies.

Upstairs I grabbed a slice of seitan pepperoni pizza (£3) to keep my energy levels up and drooled over several brownie stands, one was serving some kind of cookie sandwiches which looked ridiculous. I then hovered around the massage stand hoping someone would offer to massage me, they didn’t so I moved on.

There were several hot food stalls on the upper level, the falafel wrap stand which is at London Vegfest was there – definitely the best wrap I have ever had but I wanted to try something new today. Next to them were Loving Hut, they were serving mac & cheese, phish and chips, chicken balls and spring rolls, hoisin duck wraps and a stir fry. I picked up the chicken balls and spring rolls which were super reasonable at £4.80 for both, the lady on the stall was so lovely and made my day. I’m going to have these for dinner with rice, brocolli and sweet chilli sauce!

I also picked up a jar of jackfruit in brine (£2.95) because I can never find it in Asian supermarkets, this was on a stall selling some beautiful exotic fruit I had never even heard of, I wish I was as drawn to fruit as I am to deep fried foods. I also finally treated myself to an Eden perfume, I got fragrance 62 which is a dupe of Georgio Armani – Si, cruelty-free and at a much nicer price of £12.

On my way out I was scraping together my remaining coins and I passed a stall selling sausage rolls, curry pasties, cheese and onion pasties as well as jackfruit chilli. I had a couple of quid left so I grabbed a sausage roll (£1.50) which is filled with sage and onion, tomato and mushroom jackfruit and navy bean – fun!

I was a little bit anxious to go by myself but I’m so glad I did, everyone was so friendly and several people approached me asking where I bought my milkshake and were so nice. I actually preferred going alone, I could go at my own pace, revisit the same stalls a million times with no complaints and I could leave when I wanted to. Hooray for vegan food and enjoying your own company!

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