7 weird and wonderful meat substitutes


soup-with-tofuIf you want to extend your meat-free Mondays to include more days of the week you can get plenty of cheap protein from eggs and tinned tuna.  But what about those days when you really can’t face another eggy dish or would rather eat worms than cook with tuna yet again?

There are all sorts of strange meat substitutes, some of which are easy to find, others a bit more of a challenge. Some taste a bit odd but it’s horses for courses. You might find you’re passionate about tofu. Stranger things have happened. And it’s a lot cheaper than steak.

TVP – The camper’s friend (Textured Vegetable Protein)

TVP is made from soya flour and has the same protein content as tofu. It was originally eaten by mountaineers because it was impractical to lug huge slabs of meat around the Himalayas or whatever. And it was a school camping trip staple when I was  kid.


Apparently seitan looks like duck and tastes like chicken. AKA wheat gluten, it’s made from powdered whole wheat flour, water and savoury flavourings and contains less protein than many meat substitutes.


Quorn is usually formed into burgers and nuggets and it actually tastes pretty good despite being made of fungus. Don’t think… just eat!


Tofu is just soya bean curd. It’s useful stuff, suitable for stir frying and deep frying, cubing and pureeing, good in soups and stews.


Edamame is just another word for the humble fresh soya bean. You can also buy them frozen and pre-shelled, perfect for flinging into soups and salads.


Name a bean, any bean. They’re all really good for you and packed with protein, with the most of the good stuff in fava and kidney beans.


Oh dear, it’s ugly. But this minger of a soya product, made of fermented soya beans (yuk), contains a whopping amount of  protein. It’s quite meaty-tasting and performs much the same role as tofu.


About Author

I’m Kate. I live just outside Brighton, high up on the South Downs, with my husband Tony and our three cats. I’m dedicated to saving money, spending less, buying wisely, cutting waste, re-using, recycling, re-purposing and generating cash from the stuff I no longer want.

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