Vegan Bacon

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Introduction: Vegan Bacon

About: I'm a full stack web developer focusing on security and privacy.

As the resident vegan expert here at instructables.com, i am always looking for new ways to make foods that appeal to vegans and non vegans.

If there is any one food product that is the bane of the vegan existence, it's bacon. If the vegans are ever going to be taken seriously, we must find a good substitute for bacon.

I aimed to conquer this dastardly devil, with my own with Vegan Bacon!!!

Step 1: Ingredients

You will need the following to make these awesome morsels

3 tsp of soy sauce (Bragg's is prefered)
1/3 c apple cider vinegar
1 tsp tomato paste
1/4 tsp liquid smoke
1 pkg tempeh

and oil for frying

Step 2: Chop the Tempeh

First you want to chop the tempeh as thinly as possible, about 1/4". The thiner you cut it the better it will fry and crisp when you make it.

Step 3: Prep the Marinade

Next, add all the liquid ingredients in a shallow dish. Mix around the tomato paste until it's homogenized.

Step 4: Marinate the Tempeh

Now you want to place the tempeh in the marinade and marinate for at least 3 hours. I did mine over night to really soak in the flavor.

Step 5: Fry the Tempeh

After you are done marinading, its time to fry! I used peanut oil, but any oil will do. You are looking for brown and crisp, not black.

After you are done frying, blot with a paper towel to remove excess oil

Step 6: Enjoy!

And that's it, pretty easy!

Now you can use this vegan bacon in all kinds of dishes, like vegan BLTs or with breakfast with some good ol' tofu scramble.

I ate mine straight and it was pretty good. It certainly doesn't taste like bacon, but it satisfies that craving for fried oily things. 

Please show off your vegan dishes with veggie bacon in the comments!

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    64 Discussions

    awesome now I have a kosher and vegan beacon ;)

    i really, really, really appreciated this.
    just imagine my face when i figured out that typing ''vegan'' at instructables
    could connect me to such fu#$¨#% awesome recipes like this...

    vegan cheers from brazil! hahahaha

    bacon is meat nothing else vegans cannot substitute for bacon



    I HATE MY NEIGHBORS!!!!!!!!!! I CAN HERE THEIR MUSINC THROUGH A SOUND PROOF WALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Ok, you teased me. I thought it was some sort of cannibalism recipe for when you are trapped on a deserted island w/ a vegan and you are craving bacon. LOL

    Keep on trying new recipes. I will never go to the dark side but my wife medically cannot eat meat so things like this make life a little easier. Thanks and we'll give it a try.

    doesnt taste or look like bacon huh? not exactly a name id use . I think its best to call it something else like vegan fried breakfast sticks or something

    soya paste. remarkably versatile stuff.

    from http://www.soya.be/what-is-tempeh.php , a DIY tempeh page:

    Tempeh is cake of soybeans, which have been de-hulled, cooked, mixed with a tempeh starter (culture of Rhizopus oligosporusor Rhizopus oryzae) and incubated for a day or two.

    5 replies

    Do you know if the taste resembles natto at all? Or is it the fermentation that makes natto different? Or even better: Are you familiar with natto? and so forth... thnx

    At least the tempeh I've had hasn't been that similar to natto - less of that strong fermentation taste. Of course, that could be because it's frequently cooked with a lot of other strong flavors that may just be masking that.

    Tempeh has me a bit confused and wanting to try and find some! I can think of a million uses for it! -unlike natto-

    i've never heard of natto before. where i live, there's very limited access to exotic ingredients. you know, way "out there" stuff like tofu, coffee-flavoured yoghurt, and provolone cheese, lol.

    it's a very small town is what i'm saying.

    No provolone cheese? I'm not visiting. or even better I might visit and bring some! hehe.

    Some good suggestions out there, (msg, liquid smoke, etc) but fugawdsake, most commercial bacon bits are vegan; THEY taste like bacon (basically), why can't we find a more accurate marinade recipe?

    I think it's mostly the combination of that type of fat and the salt that makes it so addictive!

    BTW, every vegan i know names bacon as their "apocolyse food": the one thing that they will loot from the stores and eat glutinously when we all are about to die anyway.

    I'm a meat eater and respect the rights of vegans to eat what ever they want or don't want. But instead of trying to make things out of veggies that are "meat-like", why not just make veggies that taste better and not try to sneak in the "oh but it's just like meat" stuff. It's not meat and no matter what you do, it will not have the same flavor, texture, etc of meat. Just make a better tasting vegan meal. Otherwise you loose a lot of people with the first bite of the non-meat, meat substitute.

    But by all means keep trying new recipes!

    5 replies

    Just because someone no longer chooses to eat meat doesn't mean they do not like the taste of meat. There's a lot of reasons people choose not to eat meat, and I honestly don't know any vegans/vegetarians who don't eat meat primary because they don't like the taste. They may also not like the taste, but that's not their primary reason.

    It's like saying a diabetic should stop using sugar substitutes. They may not be choosing to eat sugar (because it'll kill them if they don't) but they can still like sweet things.

    I'm on the other side of this debate. I'm not a vegan or vegetarian, but I love tempah bacon. :)

    This is a common lack of understanding among the omnivorous, and there are a variety of adequate replies depending on why a person is veggie. Here are a few:

    - Many recipes call for meat. By making meat substitute that can fill these roles, it opens up a lot of extra variety at mealtime.
    - Many people these days are switching to a meatless diet for health or political reasons, and meat substitutes help to ease that transition.
    - People enjoy these meat substitutes in their own right. They don't need to exactly replicate meat to have their own merits. I know omnivores who buy vegetarian (admittedly not vegan) sausages because they prefer them in taste, ease of preparation, and health to the "real deal"

    If someone is willing to not be a Vegetarian/Vegan because they dislike a veggie alternative product, then, chances are, their heart isn't in it, and would find some excuse at some point to go back to meat. When I became Vegetarian 22 years ago, if I wanted a meat-like alternative, I had to buy TVP, and soak it overnight, cook it for an hour, then flavour it to make it palatable, but here I am, all those years later, now a Vegan (of 18 years) and I can go into any supermarket and fill a trolley with delicious Vegan food. The horrible stuff never put me off, because my reasoning was sound, and based on a desire to remove myself from the system of cruelty that exists to put meat on a plate at a cheap price.

    I agree with that. I first told my mom I wanted to be vegetarian when I was 6 or 7 years old, and I remember that I never liked the taste of meat. So I've never liked meat substitutes or felt cravings for anything meaty.

    But I guess some people could miss something. I used to like gelatin as a child, and I was very happy when I discovered vegan substitutes. I suppose it could be the same thing with bacon, or any other thing for that matter.