If you’re a vegan, a vegetarian, or just someone who doesn’t like the taste or consistency of most meat, you’ve undoubtedly encountered a large slew of green, leafy, plant-based dishes. Salads and smoothies aren’t inherently bad, but even the most dedicated vegetarian convert may sometimes yearn for a hearty, meaty meal. Luckily, there are some simple swaps and substitutes you can enact in your meatless dishes to replicate a much meatier meal.
If it’s fullness and warmth you seek, consider one of these ways to make comfort foods vegan. For a general meaty meal, however, the following list of foods will enable you to create bold, flavorful dishes that taste as close to meat as possible. We’ll get you your umami fix if it’s the last thing we do.
Sometimes, the path to meatiness lies in the seasoning. If you season, say, a beet or some legumes with the same spices one would use on a steak, your plant-based food takes on a meaty flavor profile — enough umami to make you question whether or not you’re eating a hunk of meat. Additionally, cooking plant foods in the same way you’d prepare chicken or steak (e.g. grilling) can make any non-meat food feel a little meatier. You may even find that fruits, when prepared properly, can make great meat replacements. Upton's Naturals was kind enough to provide us with two savory recipes including jackfruit which you can find here and here.
Ditch any preconceived notions you may have had about what a meat-free diet should be and consider what it could be. Click ahead to see 10 Simple Swaps and Substitutes to Turn Your Meaty Dinner Meat-Free.