The Vegan Nugget Even Meat Eaters Will Love

Vegan Desserts

Banana Split Sugar-Dusted Beignets

Find out more about Lauren's cookbook here. 

[Written by Kim-Julie Hansen]

If you’re anything like me, you want the best of both worlds. To not eat animals and their by-products while still enjoying the meals you loved growing up. Better yet, to enjoy healthier and more environmentally friendly versions of these meals, made entirely without meat, eggs and dairy. Enter Alpha Foods. I first tried one of their products, a pizza burrito, at a natural foods fair in Baltimore a couple of years ago and I was instantly hooked. The company was only just getting started at the time and little did I know how many other amazing products they’d be adding over time, all the while constantly listening to their consumers’ feedback and trying to do better. It’s thanks to that feedback, for instance, that Alpha Foods decided to remove all palm oil from their products earlier this year.

After burritos came handheld pot pies, pizzas, tamales and even… nuggets, made entirely without any meat or cheese. After being vegan for almost a decade, I’ll admit that I pay attention to how good a product tastes, but I don’t always care if it resembles the non-vegan version that closely (as long as it’s delicious). So in order to see just how realistic Alpha Foods’ nuggets were, I enlisted the help of the toughest meat-eating critic I know, my brother.

 

“Honestly, if I could just have these all the time, I’d easily never have actual chicken nuggets ever again.”

 

We took the nuggets out of their packaging and decided to prepare them three ways: in a microwave (which only took 2 minutes!), in the oven and in a pan. The pan-fried version was the winner and as my brother took his first bite, his facial expression went from bewilderment to excitement. “Wow… I don’t even know what to say.” Then, after the third or fourth nugget, he elaborated: “It’s like… good. Really, really good. Are you sure these are vegan?”. “100% vegan,” I assured him. “But, what about protein?”, he inquired. When I told him that they were actually super high in plant-protein and contained zero cholesterol, he was stunned. After devouring the last nugget, he concluded: “Honestly, if I could just have these all the time, I’d easily never have actual chicken nuggets ever again.”

Click here to find out where you can by Alpha Foods’ vegan nuggets. 

 

“[W]hether you’re vegan or not, I hope you try Alpha’s meatless chik’n nuggets and that you enjoy every bite!”

 

My vegan heart sighed. I’ve since asked many other friends, both vegan and not, to try them as well and I have yet to find a single person who doesn’t love them. Our goal at Best of Vegan is never to pressure anyone, but simply to offer alternatives in order to make veganism seem a little more accessible and a little less overwhelming. So, whether you’re vegan or not, I hope you try Alpha’s meatless chik’n nuggets and that you enjoy every bite as much as my brother did! (on a personal note, if you find their pot pies, try those too, they’re incredible!). And since nuggets are always better with some tasty dips, here are five quick and easy plant-based dip recipes for you to try:

[Plant-based dips, clockwise from top left: spicy mayo, smoky ketchup, cucumber yogurt dip, vegan “honey” mustard (made without honey!) and cilantro tahini dip]

Spicy Mayo

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup vegan mayonnaise
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 chili flakes
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1 pinch sea salt

Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients!

Yogurt Cucumber Dip

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened vegan yogurt
  • 1/4 cucumber, diced (washed but not peeled)
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 pinch sea salt

Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients!

Vegan “Honey” Mustard

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup yellow mustard
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup*

Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients!

*Note: for a slightly less sweet version, use 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp yellow mustard and 2-3 tbsp maple syrup instead.

Lemon Tahini Cilantro Dip

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 3 tbsp water (slightly more if needed)
  • 2-3 tbsp lemon or lime juice
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 pinch pepper
  • 1 handful fresh cilantro chopped

Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients!

Smoky Ketchup

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup or coconut sugar
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 1 tsp liquid smoke (or 2 pinches smoked salt)

Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients over medium heat in a small pot.
  2. Cook for 2-3 minutes, then remove from heat and let cool.

Text & Photography: Kim-Julie Hansen

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Alpha Foods. All opinions expressed are our own.

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