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Working With TVP (Textured Vegetable Protein)

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Good Morning,

Yesterday I had a little snack of canned vegetrarian chile, and was reminded that the chile was made with TVP, also known as Textured Soy Protein. I actually like the stuff when it's incorporated into these canned, vegetarian chiles, and often wish there was a greater percentage of the ingredient in the mixture. Well, I found a couple of local sources for the stuff, and I'd like to experiment with it, perhaps by adding it to my home made chile or adding it as an extender in meatloaf and meatball recipies.

From what I understand, it readily absorbs flavor from whatever it's marinated or cooked in, so perhaps it could be a nice carrier of flavors when incorporated into other dishes, and maybe doing so without adding additional fat to the recipe.

Any thought on using TVP in such dishes, ideas about adding flavor, and other recipes and techniques that use the product?


post #2 of 6

I frequently use the minced TVP (low Fat) - . I have found the chunks to be too chewy.
For example, in a small cup -try using about 1/2 cup dry tvp, mix with a little warm water and whatever spice you like (garlic, pepper etc) and let it expand.

While waiting for the tvp to absorb the liquid, you can prepare an egg omelette (I use 10 eggs whites, onions and veggies) and when your omelette is almost done -add the tvp and fold over, add some low fat grated cheese and a tablsp of hot salsa. This is an awesome breakfast: over 25g protein, low fat and tastes great. :lips:

Also great in burgers, chilis, meatballs, or any recipes that calls for ground meat. I usually mix 3/4 meat with 1/4 tvp. When you use the low fat tvp, it adds protein without extra fat.
post #3 of 6
Have you ever thought of taking Boca Burgers and chopping them up to mix with your vegetarian chili or whatever? I love the flavor of Boca Burgers and they have a meaty texture that would give you the texture and mouth feel which you are looking to achieve.

You can also soak regular TVP in hot water and then mix it with your vegetarian dish.
post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
No, as I've just started thinking along those lines. I do like some of the Boca Burgers, and will probably try your suggestion. Sounds promising.

Coincidentally, I was thinking of something similar just a couple of days ago - adding some flavorful, low fat sausage (usually pre-cooked) to meat loaf. There are lots of brands here with interesting flavors, and your idea about the Boca Burgers seems to be along those lines. Thanks!

post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Great! Thanks for the suggestions. I really want to try flavoring the TVP and adding it to meatloaf and meatballs. My thoughts were to use a stock and add some flavoring components - spices, herbs, etc.

post #6 of 6
We use flavored dry TVPs as a meat replacement on long backpacking trips. They don't spoil or need refrigeration, they are lightweight and most of the freeze-dried meat bits are flavorless and quite expensive anyway.

We use a sausage-flavored TVP along with dehydrated hash browns (with peppers and onions) to make a breakfast hash. Taco TVP makes a great burrito. Chicken and beef flavored TVPs get added to freeze-dried dinners for extra protein and flavor. One can also make a chicken and dumplings meal out of chicken-flavored TVP, gravy mix, freeze-dried peas, and bisquit mix. One can also use chicken TVP in a chicken curry with chicken-flavored rice mix, dried apples, peas, onions, and raisins. Pepperoni TVP can be turned into a skillet pizza using flatbread, tomato powder (spiced and reconsituted) and grated cheese.

At home, we've used the taco TVP to make a vegetarian chili and burritos. The chunky ham TVP makes a passable scalloped potatoes with "ham" for vegetarians, and we've used the sausage TVP in omelets. But I'll be honest, I'm not a big TVP user when don't have to be.
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