Vegan Teriyaki Jerky

Last week I had the wonderful opportunity to go home and visit my family for the first time since the pandemic began. While it was a fantastic week, I did not have the chance to cook much, and hence, no recipe last week, sorry! However, while home my mom and I experimented making some vegan jerky– something she has done for years but which I had never tried. We stood over the counter and schemed up our best initial attempt; we wanted a citrusy, teriyaki jerky with both a little sweetness and some punch. 

Our first attempt was, well, not perfect. But it served as an awesome starting point. When I got home I picked up where we left off and tried three different types of citrus: orange, grapefruit and lime. I also tried two different cooking methods, one with a wire rack and one directly on the baking sheet. This recipe below is the best of all the attempts, and something I will make regularly as a protein filled snack. 

We use dehydrated soy protein to make the jerky. This can come in many forms, such as TVP, but we want it in bite-sized pieces. If you can’t find this item at your grocery store, the next easiest way is to buy from Amazon. As you see in the picture, I didn’t use soy curls, but alas the shape doesn’t matter. It may, however, affect the cook time a bit, so don’t be afraid to check on them relatively often, otherwise, happy snacking!

Active time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 90 minutes

Ingredients:

  • ½ lb soy curls (or another shape of dehydrated soy protein)
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 tsp fresh grated ginger
  • ½ cup low sodium soy sauce
  • ½ tsp liquid smoke
  • 1 tbsp fresh chili paste (or sriracha)
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp lime zest
  • 1 ½ tbsp lime juice
  • 2 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp water

Directions

  1. Rehydrate your soy curls according to package instructions, I would recommend doing so in your favourite vegetable broth. Once complete, drain and set aside to cool.
  2. Combine the garlic, ginger, soy sauce, liquid smoke, chili paste, sesame oil, maple syrup, lime zest, lime juice and sesame seeds in a medium bowl and whisk together thoroughly. In a small, separate bowl whisk together the cornstarch and the water to form a slurry.
  3. Add the sauce to a large sauce pot and heat on medium. When it begins to start boiling, add in the slurry and begin whisking. The sauce should begin to thicken within 10-20 seconds. Continue whisking over the heat for 30-45 seconds and then set aside.
  4. Now, place your cooled soy curls in a clean kitchen cloth. Squeeze it to remove the excess liquid, this will help the soy curls absorb the sauce and also dry out faster. Once the excess water has been squeezed off, add to the sauce pot with the sauce and combine. Preheat your oven to 250F.
  5. Once the oven is ready, line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone sheets. Spread the soy curls out across the two sheets. Bake for 40 minutes and then flip. Then bake for an additional 40 minutes and taste. If it needs to dry out more, continue baking for 10 minutes and tasting until they have reached the desired chewiness. Cool and enjoy!

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