Nutritional value of Textured Soy Protein and how to use it.
What is textured vegetable protein (TVP) made out of? It’s made from soy flour, which is derived from soybeans.
TVP was created in the 1960s by a man working in the agriculture industry. Today, it’s most often sold as TVP “crumbles,” which can be used to make different meat alternatives, like vegan sausages, vegan taco “meat” and so on.
You’ll also find TVP in most packaged meat substitutes sold in grocery stores, including soy sausages, soy burgers and soy chicken strips.
TVP goes by several other names depending on the country where it’s sold, including soy meat, soya chunks/granule/slices or defatted soy flour.
All types of textured vegetable proteins are made from dried soy, but there are a bunch of different TVP options sold in stores, which mainly differ in terms of their sizes and shapes.
When shopping for TVP, you’ll find:
- flakes (big and small)
What does TVP taste like?
When it’s not combined with other spices and ingredients, it basically tastes like nothing. TVP has almost no flavor on its own, making it ideal in terms of versatility in recipes.
In stores, it’s available in a variety of flavored and unflavored varieties, such as those meant to mimic the flavor of beef, bacon, ham, chicken and sausage.
If you buy the unseasoned type, expect it to taste bland. You’ll want to add other flavors, such as spices and sauces, to make it more appealing.
Soybeans are naturally high in protein, especially for a plant. This is exactly why soy products — including TVP, soy milk and soy protein powder — are among the most popular plant-based protein sources.
TVP is low in both fat and cholesterol and also high in fiber. This makes it appealing to those following low-fat diets, such as adults with a history of heart disease risk factors, including high cholesterol.
Additionally, it’s a good source of a number of essential nutrients — including magnesium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, vitamins B2 and B6, potassium, and folate.
How to Use Textured Soy Protein
Aside from being a common ingredient in commercially produced vegetarian meat products, textured vegetable protein is also used as a meat extender in protein patties, meatloaf, stews and soups. Additionally, it can be worked into health bars, salads, cereals, baked potatoes and stuffing as a protein additive.
For a simple way to work textured vegetable protein into your meals, use it anywhere you would use ground beef or turkey—just make sure you rehydrate it first.
Easy to prepare, TVP takes on the flavor of whatever recipe it’s added to, making it an incredibly versatile addition to a wide variety of dishes and cuisine. Incorporating textured vegetable protein into your favorite recipes is a delicious and simple way to reap all of the benefits of soy.
How to Rehydrate Textured Soy Protein
To rehydrate textured vegetable protein, combine it with hot water and let it sit until the dried vegetable protein has soaked up all the liquid. Once it’s rehydrated, season and cook your faux meat for delicious results. Because that taste of textured soy protein is easy to manipulate if you want to use it to make taco meat, season it with whatever you’d typically use. Once you add a tortilla and fillings like onion, tomatoes and cilantro, it’s sure to be one of the most delicious tacos plates you’ve made!