Food Guide

10 Delicious Vegan Chicken Substitutes That Will Have You Forgetting Meat in No Time!

In this post, we will be exploring different vegan substitutes for chicken that work great in plenty of recipes.

Even if you are a meat-lover or vegetarian, keep reading and try our vegan chicken alternative suggestions to decide what you like the most.

What is chicken?

Whole Foods Market, Organic Chicken Whole Fryer Bagged Air Chilled...

Check Current Price

Chicken is simply the meat of a chicken, normally a hen.

It refers to any cut of any chicken breed.

Each breed might produce its own flavor and texture, but in general, these differences are not significant.

Chicken meat is typically soft and has a mildly sweet taste.

Some popular cuts of chicken are chicken breast, chicken wings (including chicken wingettes and chicken drumettes), and chicken legs (including chicken drumsticks and chicken thighs).

These cuts can come with or without the skin and bones depending on the butcher or your preference.

White meat chicken that comes from the breast cut is considered healthier than its dark meat counterpart because it is leaner and contains less saturated fats.

Therefore, chicken breast has a milder flavor, and softer texture, and is also more expensive than other cuts like chicken wings or chicken thighs.

Chicken is a staple in many cuisines thanks to its versatility.

It can be cooked in different ways, such as deep-frying, grilling, baking, boiling, or stewing.

Can you substitute chicken with vegan alternatives in cooking recipes?

Of course, chicken can be substituted with other ingredients that are vegan-friendly.

Swapping from chicken to a plant-based element doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice the flavor.

Typically, the vegan alternatives can easily soak up aromas and flavors from spices and other ingredients they are cooked with, so even though they might not taste like real chicken, you can still enjoy delicious dishes that are much healthier than meat-based fare.

What vegan substitutes can you use in place of chicken?

Today, with the increase in vegetarianism, the market offers a lot of vegan chicken substitutes that can help you spice up your meal in a better way.

Look below to find out what works best for you:  

1. Tofu

365 by Whole Foods Market, Tofu Extra Firm Organic, 14 Ounce

Check Current Price

Tofu is an economical way to substitute meat like chicken.

This soy-based ingredient is especially popular in Asian cuisine, so if there is an Asian market or grocery store in your area, you can easily have tofu in your meal.

Tofu can be cooked in different ways, such as boiling, frying, baking, or stir-frying.

The texture of tofu can range from soft to firm, so depending on your preference and the recipe, you should use the proper type of tofu.

2. Seitan

Sweet Earth Seitan Traditional Strips, 8 oz

Check Current Price

Seitan is another popular option that can be used to substitute for meat, especially chicken due to the mild taste of this poultry.

Seitan comes in different sizes, shapes, and textures and all are available in most supermarkets or vegan stores.

Seitan also easily absorbs the flavors of other ingredients and spices so just season it with whatever you like.

3. Lentils

365 by Whole Foods Market, Lentils Red Organic, 16 Ounce

Check Current Price

Lentils are a kind of vegetable with a starchy texture and rich taste.

Different kinds of beans and peas are some popular examples of lentil vegetables.

When using these ingredients to substitute for chicken, you should opt for the kind with a light color like white or green beans instead of black beans.

Lentils can be baked and served directly as the main course as they are packed with protein and many other essential nutrients.

Otherwise, you can blend or simmer and mash lentils to create a patty-like form and use them in grilling or baking recipes.

4. Nuts

Blue Diamond Almonds Whole Natural Raw Snack Nuts, 40 Oz Resealable...

Check Current Price

Nuts can be used as a very healthy vegan-friendly ingredient to substitute for chicken.

There are different kinds of nuts that come in different flavors, including cashews, hazelnuts, peanuts, almonds, and Macadamia to name a few.

Nuts are typically more expensive than other vegan chicken replacements that are mentioned above.

They are meant to be eaten raw rather than cooked.

Nuts can be eaten whole or crushed into smaller pieces to serve in salads.

The bottom line

So what do you think about our meat-free ideas to substitute for chicken? There is no such thing as a better one because it all comes down to personal preference.

If you don’t mind trying something new to get in some vegan protein instead of chicken, let’s give all of the aforementioned vegan chicken replacements and let us know your opinion.

As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. When you purchase an item from Amazon through one of my links, I receive a small commission at no added cost. This helps support the site!

Emily W.

Emily Wong is an Asian-American food writer the founder of With nearly 8 years of experience, she has a passion for making cooking accessible to everyone and sharing her personal experiences with food. Emily's vision for is to create a community of food lovers who are passionate about cooking, eating, and sharing their experiences with others. Read my story
Back to top button