“But Bacon” + BLTA Salad

I’ve already done my bacon rant in my Wild Rice Bowl with Portobello Bacon post, but this “but bacon” is a common meme in the world of internet food things. So I will create my own vegan bacon echo chamber. And you know what? I think I’ll include some accidentally vegan bacon-flavoured things that are readily available in your neighborhood grocery store. Mostly because I think it’s hilarious that just about every “bacon-flavoured” food (that is not bacon itself) is vegan. YES. I AM SERIOUS. And then I will show you how to make your own vegan bacon that can be liberally sprinkled on everything from salads to pizza to vegan donuts. At the bottom you’ll see my BLTA Salad recipe.

Recently, a WHO article was released confirming that red meats, processed meats, and all meat cooked at high temperatures, are carcinogens. No, it’s not as bad as smoking but it still increases your risk for cancer, specifically colorectal, pancreatic, and prostate cancers . And, of course, people out there are going to argue with science if it tells them something that they don’t want to hear… But, with so many health hazards out there why would you take the unnecessary risk? There are simply much better foods that you can be eating that benefit your body, the planet, and the hundreds of *billions* of animals that would not otherwise be killed.

Like I said, there are a bunch of bacon flavoured foods that are acceptable to eat as a vegan. Let’s begin.

I think the most shocking one for people are bacon bits. Yes, a lot of bacon bits are vegan. Like McCormick’s Bac’n Pieces and the other Bac’n products as well. And Bac-Os (both the bits and the chips). As well as the generic brands that are usually labeled as ‘simulated’ or ‘imitation’ bacon bits.

If carbs are your vice there’s the RITZ Bacon and Black Pepper crackers or, one of my personal favs, Kettle Maple Bacon chips. As well as a few I had never heard of listed on PETA’s site here.

And these are just the foods not advertised as vegan!

Several weeks ago, I attended a Secret Vegan Dinner hosted by a local vegan chef. Every dish was amazing but he’s locally famous for his vegan seitan bacon. I mean.. LOOK AT THIS.

Vegan Bacon

This is a whiskey bisk with seitan bacon and cashew yogurt. If you want the chance to attend one of these dinners you can find his Facebook page here. His foods can be bought at Parthenon Supermarket in Kitsilano, or try his cheesecake at Meet on Main! I’m also currently using one of his homemade soaps and it’s lovely!

So I guess my point is this:

You’re probably thinking: what kind of contract do I need to sign with Satan himself in order to whip up some convincing vegan bacon? Well, none. I mean unless you can’t find simple ingredients like liquid smoke, sriracha, soy sauce, and vegetable oil. Then maybe?

Full Disclosure: The recipe for coconut bacon that I’m going to show you is not my own. I got this from the lovely Lorrie at the Think Green Supper Club in White Rock, BC. Check it out on Meetup.com if you’re in the area and come eat with us!

I am currently on a major health kick so I chose to use this in a salad. But I think this would also be great thrown into a pita and rolled up for a lunch! We ate this as two meal-size servings but it could also work out as 4 smaller servings if you want to pair it with a soup, a baked potato, pasta, or a sandwich.

BLTA salad

If you ask me, that looks a whole lot like bacon!

Keep in mind while cooking that this can go from perfect to burnt to a crisp very, very quickly! When you take it out of the oven you’re going to think “this isn’t done yet” but it crisps up more after cooking so be patient!

BLTA Salad

Makes 2 meals or 4 sides. About 20 minutes.

For the Coconut Bacon

  • 2 c large unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 ½ Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp liquid smoke
  • 1 Tbsp Sriracha
  1. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. Gently mix everything together in a bowl.
  3. Spread on baking sheet and bake for 12-14 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  4. Remove and let stand for 5 minutes. Eat!

For the Salad Dressing

  • 6 Tbsp vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • warm water
  1. Mix together the first 4 ingredients.
  2. Add warm water to thin to desired consistency (I used about 1/3 cup)

Everything Else

  • 1 c cubed avocado (about 1 & 1/2 medium avocados)
  • 1 c chopped tomatoes
  • 2 romaine hearts, chopped and washed
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  1. Toss avocado, tomato, romaine, and dressing in a large salad bowl.
  2. Sprinkle desired amount of coconut bacon on top (I used about 1/2 of the yield).
  3. Add ground pepper to taste.
  4. Eat immediately!

I hope you love this like we did!

Coming soon: my trip to PORTLAND VEGFEST!

xo Jenny

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