Vegan meat replacements

Finding the perfect vegan meat replacements is not a big deal. If you consider both the meaty texture, as well as the nutrition, there are many options available to choose from.

Keeping health benefits aside, avoiding meat in the diet can also be termed as an environment-friendly act.

In this article, we are going to discuss some vegan meat replacements, and how does following a plant-based diet adds to the betterment of the environment. We are also going to talk about lab-grown meat replacements and if they are any good.

List of Naturally Available Vegan Meat Replacements

  • Mushrooms

Mushrooms are probably the closest substitute of meat that you can find.

This has a meat-like texture and has a delightful savory taste to it.

There are tons of recipes that you can follow with mushrooms. (Try out Veg Biryani with Jackfruit and mushrooms, a delicious vegan meat replacement). It is packed with nutrition. They are high in natural fibers and low in calories.

If you want to add something wholesome in place of meat in your vegan diet, go for mushrooms. Check out for allergies also.

  • Jackfruit

If we discuss a plant-based option, which is closest to the texture of meat, is definitely jackfruit. Especially in Asian style cooking, jack fruit is quite popular.

Jackfruit has a fibrous and chewy texture. And hence, it is obvious that it will be counted as a great vegan meat replacement. Be it jack fruit curry, Kathal biryani or pakodas (fritters), this vegan meat replacement gives a tough fight to other non-vegetarian options.

If you are buying canned jackfruit, see if there is some extra sugar added to it. Avoid the ones which have extra sugar.

Beans And Legumes

Beans and legumes are the best options as a meat-based protein substitute. They are rich in healthy protein as well, and at the same time, very affordable.

There are so many food options that fall under this broad category, such as chickpeas, lentils, black beans, black peas, and so on.

Few Processed Vegan Meat Alternatives

  • TVP or Textured Vegetable Protein

Archer Midland Daniels prepared TVP for the first time back in 1960. It was probably the first processed option made as a meat substitute.

The preparation comprises of removing fat from soy flour by using various solvents. And in turn, what we get is a low calorie, low fat, high protein end product.

It can be prepared into fries, nuggets, and chunks, tasting quite similar to chicken.

Around 30 grams of TVP contains 93 calories, 9 grams of carbohydrates, 14 grams of protein, 0.4 grams of fat, 1 gram of fiber, and 1.2 micron.

TVP is tasteless in its raw form. But it tastes like the dish you are preparing. Chilly TVP sounds delicious!

  • Seitan

Seitan is another form of processed meat made with wheat gluten. It is an edible derivation of gluten and protein from wheat.

It is probably one of the healthiest options to go for in the processed vegan meat list. Only water is added to the wheat flour and the starch is removed.

Seitan is pretty flavorless on its own. It is very chewy. But on cooking, exactly as TVP, it acquires all the flavors of the spices and the sauce.

Seitan is full of iron and protein, and very low in carbs.

Consumption of seitan is not recommended for a gluten-free diet, as it is practically gluten extracted from wheat. Seitan goes well as a directed alternative to both beef and chicken.

  • Quorn

Quorn is a meat substitute derived from mycoprotein. Mycoprotein is a type of fermented fungus. They grow in wet soil.

Mycoprotein may be safe for many but reports say that it can be allergic to many, showing gastrointestinal symptoms of illness.

You will find grounds, patties, cutlets, and tenders made of Quorn products.

No doubt that Quorn can be termed as a good source of protein as 60 grams of it contains 10 grams of protein.

We recommend you read the labels carefully before adding Quorn to your daily diet.

The Connection between Environment and Meat Consumption

According to new reports, meat consumption has even increased over the past few years. This outcome shows the immense demands for land sources for rearing cattle and livestock, as well as water for them.

For this reason alone, vegan meat substitutes have an edge over real meat, when it comes to being environment-friendly. With no pressure on the availability of water, land resources, we can extract the nutritious goodness of meat in plant-based food items. And hence, in the long term, it will be considerably impactful to our environment and health.

With increased consumption, there are other reports as well that shows a different scenario. The big chunk of the younger generation is getting inclined towards vegan options. They are becoming even more climate-conscious and accepting vegan alternatives for the better. However, we can not deny the fact that especially in processed vegan meat, there are some additives and other things that can be seriously harmful to human health.

How Does Eating Meat Trigger Global Warming?

  • Greenhouse Emissions

Livestock adds to harmful emissions in the climate. It sounds unreal but it is true. According to a report of the UN, raising livestock may add up to 14% of greenhouse gases (man-made), which includes methane as well.

By the word ‘emissions’, often carbon dioxide comes to our mind. But the emission of methane is almost 35 times more harmful than CO2.

  • Effects On Biodiversity

Besides these emissions, meat-eating results in an alarming loss of biodiversity. By continuous consumption of meat, we can sense many habitats are being hugely impacted.

According to estimation, nearly 50% of the available land on earth is used for agricultural purposes. And almost 79% of it is used for cattle-stock or livestock raising.

  • Impacts On Forestation

Raising livestock is one of the causes of rapid deforestation, as it requires huge land resources. Recent reports concluded that beef production can be held responsible for the rapid deforestation of the Amazon Rain forest.


There are both natural, as well as processed options available as vegan meat replacements.

The nutritional values may vary but we have kept it quite similar to meat. But you can always choose the best for your need on your own nutritional and dietary requirements.