These Vegan Boneless "Ribs" are even better than the real thing, according to my (non-vegan!) husband. The Asian inspired sauce is terrific!
You know how Murphy's Law rules my life?
Open a cake business... turn up with a gluten allergy
Buy a house.. gets hit by a tornado a couple months later.
Well, we can add a new one to the list.
My husband and I have been slowly coming to the conclusion that he needs to go vegetarian.
I'll spare the gory details, but just know that life will be better for both of us.
As someone who gets pretty sick if I go more than a few days without animal protein, my main concern was him getting enough protein on this new eating plan.
We did a ton of research - decided that tempeh was better for him than tofu, for example - and went to a local "vegan butcher" to try some fake meats, which actually have a ton of protein.
The good news was that he loved fake ribs. The bad news? They cost more per pound than actual steak does!
More research turned up the fact that the "best" fake meats are made from vital wheat gluten.
As a point of interest here, regular flour is about 12% gluten, vital wheat gluten is a "flour" made up of about 80% gluten.
So, you know... SUPER GLUTEN.
SO I figured, "whatever, I don't have to eat it, we'll just have to be extra careful in the kitchen", and bought some to play with.
Opening the first bag of it caused a big plume of gluten to blow up right in my face. I was sick for a few days and wanting to claw my own face off. Awesome.
We learned from that, and now keep a HEPA filter mask and gloves in the kitchen, for making these things.
ANYWAY. Now that I've bemoaned how awful the stuff is...
After a few trial batches,starting with what seems to be the default ingredients and method for making seitan - the wheat based fake meat - and adjusting from there, I turned out a batch that had him happily declaring that he likes the stuff MORE than actual meat.
... I have no idea how to take that.
The Asian-Inspired BBQ Sauce
To be fair, though, the Asian inspired sauce I came up was completely wild.
As in, we'd totally do shots of it, had we not had actual food to cook with it *right there*.
It was just a bit of this, "hey, do you want some ginger in here? OK...". SO glad I wrote it all down as I went!
So, if you're an actual carnivore like me, know that this sauce is amazing and would go well on basically any meat or vegetable. It's great on beef, pork, and even fresh tuna.
I can't speak to the taste of the ribs, myself, because I value my health. 🙂
I would imagine that moldy old gym shoes would taste amazing if marinated in this sauce, however, so I'm going to go ahead and believe Porter that they're pretty decent!
More Vegetarian Recipes
Looking for more delicious vegetarian recipes? Check these out!
Paleo Sweet Potato Gnocchi
Trader Joe's Tofu Edamame Nuggets
Vegetarian Chorizo Burger
Vegetarian Donairs / Vegan Donair Meat
Vegetarian Salad Rolls
Wild Rice and Edamame Salad
Wild Rice Polenta Sandwich
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Vegan Ribs in Asian Inspired Sauce
Asian Inspired Rib Sauce
- ½ Small Onion Chopped
- ¼ Cup Soy Sauce
- ⅓ Cup Brown Sugar Packed
- 2 tablespoon Sesame Oil
- 1 tablespoon Rice Vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Sriracha
- 3 Garlic Cloves Pressed or minced
- 1 teaspoon Grated Ginger
- 1 tablespoon Sesame Seeds
- ½ teaspoon Ground Pepper
For the Sauce
- Add everything except sesame seeds to a blender or food processor, blitz until very smooth.
- Stir in sesame seeds, chill until ready to use.
For the "Ribs"
- Preheat oven to 350, grease a glass loaf pan (4″ x 8″ or similar size)
- In a medium bowl, mix together wheat gluten, nutritional yeast, and seasonings.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together almond butter, soy sauce, sesame oil, and liquid smoke until relatively smooth. Add a little apple juice at a time, whisking until smooth.
- Once wet ingredients are well whisked, pour into dry ingredients and stir to form a lumpy dough. Turn dough out onto a clean work surface, and knead for at LEAST two minutes. This is important – if you don’t knead it enough, it’ll turn out puffy, and more like a baked good than a “meat” substitute. It won’t really look any different as you go, you just have to trust in your timing.
- Press dough evenly into prepared loaf pan, slice into 5-6 “ribs”. (They’ll bake together, you’re basically scoring them). Bake for 30 minutes.
- Separate“ribs”, toss with sauce, and allow them to sit in the sauce while you heat your grill up.
- Grill until everything is nice and caramelized, basting a couple times with more sauce.
- Serve hot. (We like to garnish with sliced green onions, but that’s optional)