Time to Break Up With Your Beloved Bacon? 7 Vegan Alternatives That Rock It!

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vegan bacon

People. Freakin’. Love. Bacon. And I understand it, I do. Before ditching the meat, I used to enjoy a BLT quite frequently. Firstly, you don’t have to ditch bacon. Okay, well you kind of do have to ditch real bacon.  But going vegetarian or vegan is about recreating those popular foods in a more health conscious way.  And with bacon, it’s all about the flavor and texture, so the challenge is preserving those two things in your vegan bacon.

Well, we are up for the challenge! Here are 8 bacon-alternatives + recipes to help you give up the piggy part of this ever so popular staple, but not the special flavors and eating experience.

1. Coconut Bacon

Coconut bacon was the first type of vegan bacon I tried, and I really liked it. I now make batches of the stuff and use it dishes like salads as a sprinkle. But how the heck can coconut taste like bacon? Liquid smoke will be your new friend. It adds that smoky bacon taste to foods, whilst soy sauce will add the saltiness. Looking for a quick fix to satiate your bacon cravings? Organic Matters sell these already made Vegan Coconut Bacon snacks. But if you’re looking for a large batch that you can just as easily make at home and enjoy regularly then this recipe below will fill that bacon sprinkle void.

Get the recipe here.

vegan bacon

2. Rice Paper Bacon

It terms of aesthetics, this rice paper bacon looks exactly like the meat version. The rice paper is seasoned with a smoky paste that will give it that smoky/salty taste of bacon and it’s then popped into the dehydrator until it’s crispy and bacon-esque in terms of texture, You can then use it as you please! Bragg’s Liquid Aminos will work in this recipe to create that salty taste that bacon has.

Get the recipe here.

vegan bacon

3. Jackfruit Bacon

Jackfruit and bacon are not two foods that I would even say slightly mimic one another. They’re so far apart from one another in terms of flavour that I actually scoffed a little when I first read about jackfruit being used in place of bacon and pulled pork in recipes. Well, I had my humble pie served cold when I delved a little deeper and found that jackfruit was perfect for recreating meat like bacon. The fleshy fruit soaks up flavors so that when it’s marinated in a smoky, maple mixture, it becomes exactly like bacon. If you don’t live anywhere tropical where jackfruit is readily available then don’t worry. Brand Essential sell tinned jackfruit that is even stored in salted water, giving it that real bacon vibe.

Get the recipe here.vegan bacon

4. Tempeh Bacon

Tempeh makes such a great substitute for bacon as it becomes so wonderfully crispy once cooked, and salty just like the taste of bacon, so it’s great for people transitioning over from meat to plant-based. Once made, this tempeh looks like rashers of bacon making it great to place in sandwiches. Brands such as Tofurky sell already marinated strips like these Smoked Maple Bacon Tempeh if you’re feeling a little bit lazy. But if you’ve got tempeh on hand and want to turn it into bacon this recipe below is eerily perfect.

Get the recipe here.

vegan bacon

5. Carrot Bacon

When I think of ways to make bacon using veggies, carrots don’t spring to mind. But now that I’ve found this recipe I can’t wait to make this. Carrots are so readily available and pretty cheap to buy, so you can always have this vegan friendly bacon on hand if you’re someone that used to love meat. To keep from drenching your carrots in coconut oil you may want to buy a spray version for making this recipe. Chosen Foods sell this handy little spray that’s perfect for this.

Get the recipe here.

vegan bacon

6. Shiitake Mushroom Bacon

Mushrooms have a very meat-like texture when cooked, so they’re used in place of meat for quite a few recipes, such as burgers and steaks. Once they’ve been cooked in the oven they come out crispy along the edges and succulent in the middle. You can use this on so many recipes, but they’d go really well with some tofu scramble. If you can’t get your hands on some fresh ‘shrooms then you find dried shiitake mushrooms on websites such as Buy Wholefoods Online. All you have to do is pop them into water to re-hydrate them and they’re ready to go.

Get the recipe here.

vegan bacon

7. Crispy Eggplant Bacon

If you’re really looking to mimic the texture of bacon, then eggplant is a really great choice. The eggplant is cut into bacon-looking strips and are then marinaded with smoky spices, maple syrup, tamari and vegan Worcestershire sauce which all comes together for a mix that is savory, sweet and spicy. The eggplant bacon is then baked at a low temperature and once cooked, it’s golden brown and crispy. You might want to invest in a vegan friendly Worcestershire sauce as manyt brands contain anchovies. Annie’s sell one that is both vegan and organic so it’s worthwhile checking your ingredients before making.

Get the recipe here.

vegan bacon

So, now we can go and make recipes such as . . .

Vegan BLT Sandwich

How could I not include my favorite recipe here? I love a sandwich every now and then and when I eat one I like it packed full of deliciousness. The creamy mayo, crisp lettuce, juicy tomatoes and slices of vegan bacon combine together perfectly. The best part? You could use any of the above fakin’ bacon to replace the real deal.

Get the recipe here.

vegan bacon

Lora O'Brien

Lora O'Brien

Lora is a virulent health enthusiastic. She freelances from the UK where you can find her writing about all things healthy foodie and natural beauty. Fun fact? She reads and watches more DVDs than the average human.
Lora O'Brien

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