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All About the New Meat Substitute TVP: What Is It & How to Use TVP

Substitute TVP vegan

As the vegan community throughout the world has begun to grow and increase in numbers, so has the vast variety of plant-based foods. Nowadays vegan food is at an all-time high in success – you can get almost anything in a veganized version, from chicken to fish to all kinds of meat. The biggest thing when it comes to veganism is finding plant-based and cruelty-free sources of protein that are not only ethically developed but also tasty. The tvp meat substitute is the newest and greatest thing on the market right now, and is responsible for the development of all the plant-based meat substitutes we see today. I am here to explain to you exactly what it is, where it comes from, and how you can incorporate it into your fully vegan diet.

What Is Textured Vegetable Protein?

Textured vegetable protein (TVP) is essentially the combination of plant products that are used as a base to create many of the vegan versions of meat alternatives and substitutes we have access to today. It’s all very well that we sit down and enjoy a vegan burger, plant-based chicken nuggets, and fish and chips that almost taste identical to the real thing, but do we really know where these fantastic natural “meat” products came about? Textured vegetable protein is, in the most simple terms, a derivative of Archer Daniels Midland’s creation in the 1960s, an agricultural dream turned into the base for almost all soy-based or soy-derived vegan meat substitutes. The TVP meaning is basically a high protein, high fiber alternative to meat that is most commonly made using soy flour.TVP now comes in a variety of different sizes, textures, and flavors and is a common ingredient in many popular vegan and vegetarian recipes.

What Is TVP Made Of?

What Is Textured Vegetable Protein Made Of?

The common question when it comes to meat substitutes is the possible side effects and health benefits. Is textured vegetable protein healthy? The real answer to this all lies in its nutritional information as well as what it is made of. TVP is essentially a really highly processed soybean derivative. Usually, the process of making TVP involves separating the soy protein from the other ingredients found in soybeans and compressing it into chunks, granules, or slices, to be dried out and rehydrated when cooked. To better understand whether it’s healthy or not here, is the textured vegetable protein nutritional information typically seen in most products.

Textured vegetable protein calories are relatively low-average and range at about 80Kcal per ¼ cup serving. The carbs in tvp are relatively low too at around 7grams per serving. The rest of the nutritional content of TVP includes:

  • Fat – 0 grams
  • Fiber – 4 grams
  • Protein – 12 grams

On top of this, TVP is also extremely low in sodium, high in potassium, and contains various vitamins and minerals, such as B vitamins, iron, magnesium, folate, and phosphorus.

Textured Vegetable Protein Health Risks

Eating, cooking, and enjoying TVP will not have harsh and damaging effects on your health, but it is recommended to consume it in moderation, for a number of reasons:


Textured vegetable protein may contain MSG MSG is highly addictive and is what leaves you coming back for more and craving junk foods. The overconsumption of TVP may cause weight gain, give you the impression you need to eat more, and not help any cholesterol or heart problems either.


If you are allergic to soy, then consuming TVP can have some really unwanted side effects, including upset stomach, rashes, headaches or severe migraines, shortness of breath, and even vomiting.

The bottom line is that, although MSG is not the best for you and may cause some unwanted issues, the benefits offered by TVP, especially for vegans, do outway the cons. s long as you do not over-consume, enjoying this meat substitute now and again has no harm at all.

How To Use TVP

Using textured vegetable protein as a meat substitute in your dishes is a great, healthy, and nutritional alternative that does not only taste good but is easy to cook too. Because most TVP is dehydrated, the first step of the cooking process is to rehydrate it by simply soaking it in a bowl of hot water or broth for about 10 minutes. TVP has a similar texture to ground meat and thus works well in stews, soups, curries, casseroles, and chili, and is a great way to elevate a hearty and warming dish. The best thing about TVP and coking with it is that it can absorb almost any flavor immediately and is also extremely versatile, making it a great addition to many already created vegan recipes.

The Bottom Line

As you can see, TVP is a great and suitable option for all vegan and vegetarian buddies out there. It is a great way to add some extra plant protein to your diet, and can pretty much be used in any dish you like. It is also a very good meet imitation, and can fool even the biggest carnivores. So the next time you’re looking for a sneaking addition to your meal, why not get experimental in the kitchen and give the humble textured vegetable protein a try?

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