SIGN UP FOR FREE WEEKLY RECIPES

Vegan Bacon Recipe (Goodness Of Smoky Taste)

This post may contain affiliate links. See my disclosure policy.

Savor the smoky essence of our Vegan Bacon Recipe, a culinary masterpiece that redefines plant-based indulgence. Crafted from strips of marinated tempeh, this savory delight boasts a perfect balance of crispiness and chewiness, kissed with a hint of maple sweetness and a dash of paprika for that irresistible smoky flavor.

Whether nestled in a sandwich or adorning a breakfast plate, each bite is a testament to the delicious possibilities of compassionate cooking.

WHY IT WORKS?

  • Utilizes high-protein sources like tempeh or tofu, promoting a nutritious alternative.
  • Incorporates liquid smoke and spices, delivering the beloved coconut bacon flavor.
  • Offers a cholesterol-free option, supporting heart health.
  • Satisfies both vegans and meat-eaters with its versatile, smoky taste.
  • Reduces environmental impact, aligning with sustainable eating practices.

Don’t have time to read the full blog post? JUMP TO THE RECIPE HERE!

Finding the perfect vegan bacon recipe can feel like a culinary quest for the Holy Grail. Many crave that smoky, crispy goodness in the morning but need help finding a plant-based alternative that doesn’t sacrifice flavor or texture. 

I remember my skepticism, scrolling through countless recipes, doubtful that anything could come close to the real thing. Yet, the journey led me to a discovery that changed my breakfast game forever.

This vegan bacon rivals its pork counterpart in taste and satisfaction and aligns with a compassionate lifestyle. I’ve crafted vegan bacon with even the most dedicated meat lovers asking for seconds by experimenting with simple ingredients and a straightforward method.

Vegan Bacon Recipe

What Is A Vegan Bacon?

Vegan bacon is a plant-based alternative to traditional pork bacon, designed to replicate the latter’s smoky, savory flavor and crispy texture without using any animal products.

Made from ingredients such as tempeh, tofu, seitan, or even vegetables like mushrooms and eggplant, vegan bacon is marinated in a blend of flavors like liquid smoke, soy sauce, maple syrup, and spices to achieve its characteristic taste.

This alternative offers a cruelty-free, cholesterol-free option for those following a vegan lifestyle or anyone looking to reduce their meat consumption while still enjoying the pleasures of a bacon-like experience.

Quick Fact: Vegan bacon, crafted from plants like tempeh or tofu, offers a smoky flavor and crispy texture. It is a sustainable, cholesterol-free alternative to traditional pork bacon.

Vegan Bacon Recipe

Recipe Directions

  • Preheat the Oven: To ensure the oven reaches the right temperature for baking, start by setting it to 400°F (204°C).
  • Prepare Baking Sheets: Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. This prevents sticking and makes cleanup easier.
  • Make the Marinade: In a shallow bowl, whisk together all the ingredients listed for the bacon marinade until well combined. Pour this mixture into a lipped plate or a shallow casserole dish wide enough to fit sheets of rice paper.
  • Marinate Rice Paper: Gently place one sheet of rice paper onto the marinade, allowing it to soak on one side before flipping it over. Ensure it’s evenly coated and softens slightly, but not so much that it tears easily.
  • Create Bacon Strips: Transfer the marinated rice paper to a cutting board. Dip another sheet in the marinade and place it on top of the first sheet. A pizza cutter slices the rice paper into thick, bacon-like strips.
  • Arrange on Baking Sheets: Lay out the rice paper strips on the prepared baking sheets. Make sure they are distinct. If the marinade begins to separate, give it a quick whisk before continuing with more rice paper.
  • Bake to Crispy Perfection: Place the baking dish sheets in the oven and bake for approximately 7 to 8 minutes. Watch closely, as the thin strips can quickly go from perfectly crispy to burnt.
  • Cool and Store: Once baked to a crisp texture, remove the vegan bacon from the sheets to prevent sticking. If there are leftovers, store them in an air-tight container at room temperature for up to 3 days or refrigerate them to extend their shelf life for a few weeks.

Vegan Bacon Recipe

Variations, Add-Ons, And Toppings

Variations

  • Base Ingredient: Beyond rice paper, you can use tempeh, extra-firm tofu, or thinly sliced vegetables (such as mushrooms or eggplant) as the base for your vegan bacon. Each offers a unique texture and flavor profile.
  • Flavor Adjustments: Customize the marinade by experimenting with different types of vinegar, adding a dash of hot sauce, or incorporating smoked paprika for extra smokiness. Maple syrup can be replaced with agave nectar for a different type of sweetness.

Add-Ons

  • Spice Blends: Introduce spice blends like Cajun or Italian seasoning into the marinade to add complexity to the bacon’s flavor.
  • Nutritional Yeast: Sprinkle nutritional yeast onto the bacon strips before baking for a cheesy and nutty flavor with added nutrients.
  • Seaweed Flakes: Adding crushed seaweed or kelp flakes can enhance the umami flavor, making the vegan bacon taste more like its seafood counterparts.

Vegan Bacon Recipe

Toppings

  • Avocado: Serve your vegan bacon with sliced or an avocado oil spread for a creamy contrast to the crispiness.
  • Tomato and Lettuce: Use fresh tomatoes and lettuce as toppings alongside your vegan bacon for a classic BLT sandwich.
  • Maple Glaze: Brush a light maple syrup glaze on the bacon strips in the last few minutes of baking for a sweet finish.
  • Vegan Cheese: Melt vegan cheese over the bacon strips right before serving for a decadent addition.

Vegan Bacon Recipe

Vegetable Substitutions

  • Mushrooms: Their meaty texture makes them perfect for replacing beef or pork in stews and stir-fries.
  • Cauliflower: Great for mimicking chicken or steak, especially when roasted or grilled.
  • Jackfruit: Its fibrous consistency is a substitute for pulled pork or chicken.
  • Eggplant: Its sponge-like ability to absorb flavors is ideal for dishes like lasagna or bacon.
  • Zucchini: Spiralized, it becomes a convincing stand-in for pasta.
  • Butternut Squash: Cubed and roasted, it can replace meat in curries and soups.
  • Lentils: A hearty base for burgers or meatloaf when cooked and mashed.
  • Chickpeas: Their versatility allows them to stand for chicken or fish in salads and cakes.
  • Beets: Roasted and sliced, they offer a meaty texture perfect for sandwich fillings.
  • Sweet Potatoes: Their firmness and sweetness make them a great substitute for meat in wraps and tacos.

Quick Tip: To enhance the flavor of vegan dishes, don’t shy away from using a variety of spices and herbs. They add depth and complexity without the need for meat.

Vegetable Substitutions

Best Side Dishes

  1. Scrambled Tofu This is a vegan take on scrambled eggs, seasoned with turmeric for color and nutritional yeast for a cheesy flavor.
  2. Avocado Toast Simple and nutritious, topped with crispy vegan bacon bits for added crunch and flavor.
  3. Grilled Tomatoes Seasoned with herbs and olive oil, they make a juicy and flavorful complement.
  4. Sautéed Spinach or Kale Greens sautéed with garlic and a splash of lemon juice offer a healthy and vibrant side.
  5. Hash Browns or Potato Rösti Crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, these potato dishes provide a comforting base in golden brown color.
  6. Vegan Pancakes or Waffles Sweet options to balance the savory bacon, served with maple syrup and fresh berries.
  7. Baked Beans A classic pairing, choose a vegan recipe for a hearty and warming side.
  8. Fresh Fruit Salad For a lighter option, a colorful salad of seasonal fruits offers a refreshing contrast.
  9. Roasted Brussels Sprouts Roasted until crispy with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar, they add a delightful crunch.
  10. Vegan Mac And Cheese Creamy and comforting, this filling side dish complements the smokiness of the bacon.

Best Side Dishes

How To Serve?

  • BLT Sandwiches: Layered with lettuce, tomato, and vegan mayo on toasted bread.
  • Breakfast Platters: Alongside tofu scramble, avocado slices, and roasted tomatoes.
  • Salads: Crumbled over Caesar or spinach salads for a smoky crunch.
  • Loaded Potatoes: Topped on baked or mashed potatoes with vegan sour cream and chives.
  • Burgers and Wraps: Added to vegan burgers or wrapped in tortillas with fresh veggies and sauces.
  • Pasta Dishes: Mixed into carbonara or sprinkled on a creamy Alfredo for a bacon bite.
  • Pizza Topping: Scattered over vegan cheese pizzas for extra flavor.
  • Soups and Stews: Added to potato leek soup, split pea soup, or vegetable stews for a savory depth.
  • Brunch Dishes: Incorporated into vegan quiches or frittatas.
  • Snack: Eaten by itself as a crispy, savory snack or appetizer.

Quick Tip: For crispier vegan bacon, bake on a wire rack over a baking sheet. This allows air to circulate, evenly crisping each piece without flipping.

How To Serve?

Storage & Make Ahead

  • Storage: Store cooked vegan bacon in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. To maintain its crispiness, place a paper towel between each layer of bacon slices.
  • Make Ahead: Prepare the vegan bacon mixture and shape it into strips. Freeze the strips on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper until firm, then transfer them to a freezer-safe bag. To cook, simply thaw the strips in the refrigerator overnight and cook as directed, or cook from frozen, adding a few extra minutes to the cooking time. This makes it convenient to have vegan bacon ready whenever you need it.

Fact: The first known recipe for vegan bacon dates back to the early 20th century. It utilized coconut flakes seasoned with tamari and smoked paprika for its smoky flavor.

vegan bacon recipe

Time-Saving Tips

  1. Prep in Bulk: Make a large batch of marinade and store it in the fridge. Marinate and bake multiple servings of vegan bacon, then freeze for later use.
  2. Use Pre-Cut Ingredients: Buy pre-sliced tempeh bacon, tofu, or vegetables to reduce chopping time.
  3. Double Bake: Use two baking sheets in the oven simultaneously to double the bacon’s cooking time, reducing overall preparation time.
  4. Quick Thaw: If using frozen vegan bacon, thaw quickly by placing it in a single layer on a baking sheet in the oven at a low temperature.
  5. Marinate Overnight: Let your base ingredient marinate overnight in the fridge. This not only saves time but also enhances the flavor.
  6. Use a Mandoline Slicer: A mandoline slicer is much faster than cutting by hand for consistent and tofu strips, tempeh, or vegetables.
  7. Batch Cook: Cooking larger quantities less frequently saves time in the long run. Store cooked vegan bacon in the fridge or freezer for easy access.

Vegan Bacon Recipe (Goodness Of Smoky Taste)

Vegan Bacon Recipe (Goodness Of Smoky Taste)

Recipe by Julia

Vegan bacon is a plant-based diet alternative to traditional bacon, crafted from ingredients like tofu, tempeh, or mushrooms.

Seasoned with a mix of liquid smoke, soy sauce, and spices, it offers a smoky, savory flavor and a satisfyingly crisp texture. Perfect for those seeking a cruelty-free option, it enriches dishes with a burst of flavor without animal products.

Course: Breakfast, Snacks
0 from 0 votes
Servings

4 – 6

servings
Prep Time

15

minutes
Cooking Time

7

minutes
Calories

80

kcal
Cook Mode

Keep the screen of your device on

Ingredients

  • 8-10 pieces 8-10 Rice Paper

  • 4 Tbsp 4 Nutritional Yeast

  • 1 Tbsp 1 Garlic Powder

  • 4 Tbsp 4 Olive Oil

  • 6 Tbsp 6 Tamari (or soy sauce)

  • ½ Tsp ½ Liquid Smoke (or BBQ sauce)

  • 1 Tbsp 1 Maple Syrup

  • ½ Tsp ½ Ground Black Pepper

  • ½ Tsp ½ Smoked Paprika

  • Tsp Mushroom Seasoning or MSG

Directions

  • Preheat the Oven: Set your oven to 400°F (204°C) to ensure it’s ready for baking.
  • Prepare Baking Sheets: Line two baking sheets with parchment paper to prevent the bacon from sticking and to facilitate easy cleanup.
  • Make the Marinade: In a mixing bowl, whisk together the nutritional yeast, garlic powder, olive oil, tamari (or soy sauce), liquid smoke (or BBQ sauce), maple syrup, ground black pepper, smoked paprika, and mushroom seasoning until well combined. Pour the marinade into a lipped plate or a shallow dish that can accommodate a sheet of rice paper.vegan bacon recipe
  • Marinate Rice Paper: Place a sheet of rice paper in the marinade and let it soak briefly on one side before flipping to coat the other. Ensure it’s evenly covered and softens slightly without becoming too fragile.
  • Arrange on Baking Sheets: Spread the rice paper strips on the prepared baking sheets in a single layer without overlapping. If the marinade separates, whisk it again before dipping more rice paper.
  • Create Bacon Strips: Move the marinated rice paper to a cutting board. Then, marinate another sheet, place it atop the first, and use a pizza cutter to cut the rice paper into thick strips resembling bacon.vegan bacon recipe
  • Bake to Crispy Perfection: Bake in the oven for 7 to 8 minutes. Keep an eye on them; they can quickly become too crisp or burn.
  • Cool and Store: After baking, promptly remove the vegan bacon from the baking sheets to avoid sticking. For leftovers, use an airtight container for storage at room temperature for up to 3 days or refrigerate for a longer shelf life.vegan bacon recipe
  • Equipments List
  • Oven
  • Baking sheets
  • Parchment paper
  • Mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Lipped plate or shallow dish
  • Cutting board
  • Pizza cutter
  • Wire rack (optional)
  • Airtight container (for storage)

Notes

  • Watch Closely: Vegan bacon cooks quickly and can burn easily; monitor closely during baking.
  • Marinade Consistency: Adjust the thickness of the marinade by adding water if it is too thick or more nutritional yeast if it is too thin.
  • Storage Tips: Use parchment paper between layers when storing to prevent sticking.
  • Reheating: For best results, reheat in the oven or on a pan to maintain crispiness.
  • Customize Flavors: Feel free to tweak the marinade ingredients to suit your taste preferences.
  • Uniform Thickness: Ensure rice paper strips are uniformly thick for even cooking.
  • Alternative Cooking Methods: Experiment with air frying for a quicker, equally crispy result.
  • Serving Suggestions: Crumble over salads, add to sandwiches, or enjoy as a snack.

vegan bacon recipe

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Make Vegan Bacon Without Liquid Smoke?

You can make vegan bacon without liquid smoke using alternatives that impart a smoky flavor. One popular substitution is BBQ sauce, as suggested in the recipe.

You can also use smoked paprika or a dash of smoked salt to achieve the desired smokiness. While the flavor might slightly differ, these substitutes can provide a similar depth of flavor to your vegan bacon.

How Can I Store Vegan Bacon, And How Long Does It Last?

Vegan bacon should be stored in an airtight container to maintain its texture and flavor. Placing a piece of parchment paper between each layer will prevent the strips from sticking together.

Stored in the refrigerator, vegan bacon can last up to a week. For longer storage, you can freeze it for up to three months. When ready to use, reheat in the oven or on a skillet to restore its crispiness.

vegan bacon recipe

Is Vegan Bacon Healthy?

Vegan bacon is generally considered a healthier alternative to traditional pork bacon. It’s typically lower in saturated fat and cholesterol-free, making it a heart-friendly option.

However, the healthfulness can vary depending on the ingredients used, especially the marinade’s amount of oil and sodium. Using whole food ingredients like tempeh or mushrooms as the base can boost the nutritional profile, providing fiber and essential nutrients.

Can I Use Something Other Than Rice Paper For Vegan Bacon?

Absolutely! While rice paper offers a unique texture similar to crispy bacon, you can use several other bases for vegan bacon.

Tempeh, tofu, and thinly sliced vegetables like eggplant or zucchini are popular alternatives. Each provides a different texture and flavor profile, so you might want to experiment to find which best suits your taste preferences.

How Can I Adjust The Recipe To Make The Vegan Bacon Less Salty?

If you find the vegan bacon too salty, there are a few adjustments you can make. First, you can use low-sodium tamari or soy sauce.

Another option is to dilute the tamari with water or increase the other non-salty liquid ingredients in the marinade, like maple syrup or oil. Additionally, tasting the marinade before adding the rice paper or base ingredient allows you to adjust the seasoning to your preference.

Leave a Comment

Author picture

HELLO AND WELCOME TO
VIE DE LA VEGAN!

Greetings from the heart of Vie De La Vegan, where each dish we share is a chapter in a larger story of discovery, wellness, and the transformative power of a plant-based diet. My name is Julia, and I am thrilled to be your guide on this delightful culinary adventure.

More About Me

POPULAR RECIPES

AS SEEN IN