Being Vegan, Vegan Being: Meggan Ryan – (Aerial Barbie) – We Seem Scary, but We Don’t Bite Unless You’re Plant-Based

My name is Meggan Marie and I am a Los Angeles native. I teach dance and I am working on 2 vegan startups- PlantPoweredPaws, a vegan dog apparel brand that supports animal welfare; and Meggan’s, a vegan candy company specializing in artisan peanut butter cups. You can find both start-ups only on Instagram right now: @PlantPoweredPaws and @MeggansOfficial.

What was the moment you realize that you wanted to go vegan?

I was in college at UCLA and I took a mandatory class called “art as social action.” The professor was Peter Sellars (not the actor), and his class focused on food. Food politics, slow food, food art, food choices. It was fascinating. I was writing a paper for his class and thinking about food and eating a chicken salad sandwich. All of sudden I could taste death. I realized what I was eating and I never wanted to eat it again.

How long have you been Vegan?

After that moment of realization, it took me about 2 years to fully eliminate all animal products from my life. I went full vegan in 2009 and never looked back.

Why is being Vegan important to you?

At first being vegan was important to me more for the “political” reasons- not supporting the fast food industry, and doing something to reduce my carbon footprint. While those reasons are still important to me, I just don’t understand how anyone could eat something as beautiful and kind and loving as a cow or pig. It just doesn’t make sense to me.

Any recommended Vegan books?

Obligate Carnivore. This book was really important to me because I learned that humans and dogs do not need to eat meat to survive. I read it in 2009 and my dogs have been vegan ever since.

Any recommended social sites, Facebook Groups or other?

I really like using Instagram to connect with other vegans around the world.

Do you have a favorite movie or videos or your own media that you want to share?

I really like cartoons- I would love to create a vegan cartoon based on my two dogs!

Photo by Amanda Alapizco Christopher Davis

Do you actively promote veganism?

Yes- I actively promote veganism on my Instagram sites- for example, with PlantPowered Paws, by posting pictures of my two very large, very happy and very healthy (and also very cute!) vegan dogs, I can raise awareness for vegans and non-vegans that there are ways we can live completely cruelty free, even if you own a big mean looking pit bull.

What is your favorite Vegan meme?

The one about my face when I go to a vegan restaurant and I can eat anything off the menu!!!

What is the vegan stereotype you hear the most and how do you respond to it?

“Where do you get your protein?” or some protein variation. We seem to live in kind of a protein obsessed society, and I think we get way more than we need. Usually, people- men or women- ask me about it but quickly realize they have no leg to stand on with that argument when they see my muscles LOL.

Chin-ups in a ball gown. #chinups #ballgowns #ohyoufancy #gymwear #workoutclothes

A post shared by Meggan Marie (@aerial_barbie) on

What’s your favorite Vegan restaurant?

I really like this magical place in Mendocino County called The Raven.

Please share your favorite vegan recipe?

My fave breakfast recipe is for a smoothie- avocado, banana, kale, strawberries, protein powder, and blueberries blended with water. The avocado makes it soo creamy. My go to for dinner is a quick vegan grilled cheese- lots of earth balance butter, follow your heart cheese (2 flavors- parm and cheddar) with some tomato basil soup. It’s not fancy, but it’s quick, easy and satisfying after a long day of dancing!!

Some encouraging words for new Vegans?

Don’t be hard on yourself if you “make a mistake.” Don’t give up all veganism for 1 thing- Just because you can’t give up cheese (yet!) doesn’t mean you have to keep eating hamburgers. Find a way to be easy on yourself, and most importantly if you are serious about it find some vegans to be friends with in real or virtual life. We seem scary, but I promise we don’t bite unless you are a french fry.

What does living cruelty-free mean to you?

Doing the best you can to do the least harm possible. To me that means in all aspects of my life- composting, recycling, buying used instead of new, shopping at farmers markets and trying to reduce my carbon footprint where ever possible.

What are you favorite Vegan non-food products or companies?

I love Cynthia King’s ballet slippers.

What is the toughest Vegan item to find that you need?

It used to be ballet shoes, but now those are readily available. I would say now it’s good vegan food on long road trips away from home.

Talk about a time when you struggled with your Veganism?

Dating is probably the hardest. It’s really hard for a shy girl like me to meet people at all, and then to meet a vegan? Odds are like, nearly impossible. I would love to date another vegan! Dating is always hard because I do not want to force my ideals on someone else but at the same time I’m like, “if you’re going to take me out on a date, can we at least go somewhere where I can eat something???” LOL

What is one question you would ask other Vegans?


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