They are also called meat analogue, meat alternatives, vegetarian meat, or vegan meat, approximates certain aesthetic qualities and/or chemical characteristics of specific types of meat.
The substitues are:
- Tofu: a soft white substance made from mashed soya beans. You can find it as silken, firm or smoked. It is high in protein and calcium.
- Tempeh : is made from cooked and slightly fermented soybeans and formed into a paste.
- Seitan: a protein-rich food made from wheat gluten, used in cooking as a meat substitute.
- TVP: Textured or texturized vegetable protein , also known as textured soy protein (TSP), soy meat, or soya chunks or granules is a defatted dehydrated soy flour product, a by-product of extracting soybean oil. It is often used as a meat analogue or meat extender. It mimics the tecture of chicken.
- Gluten-free vegan meat: gluten-free seitan. It uses several different flours and proteins to make a vegan meat that has a texture similar to seitan and can be flavored multiple ways for versatility. It can be sliced, rolled, made into cutlets, chunks or links.
- Jackfruit: is a tropical fruit. It can be a meat replacement because of its texture. It has a slight sweet taste, almost like pineapple.
- Legumes: black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, aduki beans, navy beans, chickpeas, split peas, peanuts and black-eyed peas. If you cooked them and mash them, the product is a paste that you can use to prepare patties, burguers and sausages.
- Mushrooms: the most common varieties are Portobello, umami, shiitake, matsukake or pine mushroom. They are healthy and filling and can replace meat in any recipe.
- Vegetables: that can substitute for meat include eggplant, cauliflower, potatoes, butternut squash, carrots and beets, or any other vegetable that can be smashed. Or you can make cauliflower or broccoli wings as pictured below.
Warning: These are highly processed meat substitues. They are not the best option for your body. But as a transitioning vegetarian/vegan these are quite decent choices you can pick for a while.