Tofu Bacon Bits Recipe | Smoky + Salty Vegan Bacon Crumbles (2024)

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5 from 6 votes. Leave a review!

This tofu bacon bits recipe is easy to make and perfect to use however you’d like! They’re super crunchy, salty, smoky and way better than store-bought mock bacon bits.

There are so many ways to use these vegan bacon crumbles, including on Caesar salad or as a compliment to tofu scramble! However, they’re so delicious that you might want to snack on them as-is without anything else!

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Are Bacon Bits Vegan?

Bacon bits made from “real” bacon are of course non-vegan. However, many store-bought mock bacon bits are accidentally vegan since they’re made from soy.

While store-bought mock bacon bits can certainly be a convenient vegan option, they often don’t taste that great (to me at least). Instead, I prefer to make my own bacon bits because it’s quite an easy process.

This recipe uses tofu as the base for a delicious, salty vegan bacon crumble!

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Ingredients to Make Tofu Bacon Crumbles

Most ingredients for this recipe are easy to find and could be already in your vegan kitchen! The full ingredient list includes:

  • Extra firm tofu: This is the best tofu option. Its lower water content allows the tofu to crisp nicely! If you need to press your tofu, do that first! I buy an extra firm tofu that doesn’t require pressing.
  • Tamari (soy sauce): For loads of salty flavor and a dark color, tamari is a delicious gluten free option. If you prefer, regular soy sauce is perfectly fine to use!
  • Maple syrup: A touch of sweetness brings the flavor of these bacon crumbles to the next level!
  • Smoked salt: The main flavors in bacon are salt and smoke. Therefore, smoked salt is ideal for this recipe! I buy smoked salt at a local bulk food store. If you can’t find this ingredient, regular salt plus a drop of liquid smoke can be used (I do not like smoked salt, so I never use it).
  • Nutritional yeast: For depth of flavor, some nutritional yeast is a great addition.
  • Smoked paprika: To increase the smokiness of these vegan bacon bits, some smoky paprika helps round out the flavors.

How to Make Vegan Bacon Bits

This recipe is quite easy to make with most effort used to crumble the tofu. It takes some time to bake a perfectly crispy final product, but the time is well worth it for delicious vegan bacon bits!

Step 1: Crumble Tofu and Mix in Flavoring

The most important step in this recipe is to crumble the tofu as small as possible. Smaller pieces cook faster and can become crunchy. It also helps coat each piece with the added flavors!

Take your time and crumble the tofu extra-small. Once that’s done, stir in the remaining ingredients until each little piece of tofu is coated evenly.

Step 2: Bake and Serve

Preheat the oven to 350 °F and prep a baking tray by covering it with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

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Spread the crumbled and seasoned tofu into a very thin layer across the baking tray, then bake for 45 minutes, tossing your bacon crumbles around every 15 minutes. Tossing helps the bottom edges become crispy!

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How to Serve this Recipe

Serve vegan bacon bits however you’d serve regular bacon bits. I typically use this recipe in vegan Caesar salad, on top of tofu scramble or in a delicious vegan breakfast burrito!

These bacon bits are made from tofu which offers some plant-based protein and healthy fats. However, a serving of these bacon bits is small, so the total amount of protein you’ll get is quite low unless you eat a large amount!

This recipe is really like a garnish that can boost the flavor of whatever recipe you like!

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Tofu Bacon Bits Tips and Substitutions

My best tip for this recipe is to crumble the tofu as small as possible. Smaller pieces become crispier!

Also, it may be tempting to increase your oven temperature to cook the bacon bits faster. This doesn’t work well since the tofu needs time to dehydrate through to the center!

As for ingredients substitutions, you can use either tamari or soy sauce. Tamari keeps the recipe gluten free, but it that isn’t a concern for you (or you don’t buy tamari) regular soy sauce works perfectly.

Other than that, if you can’t find smoked salt, use regular salt with a small drop of liquid smoke. I don’t like liquid smoke because its flavor is too overpowering for me, but use it if you like it!

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How to Store Leftover Tofu Bacon Bits

Cool leftovers completely (on the counter/ baking tray) before transferring to an airtight container and storing in the fridge for up to a week. These bacon bits stay quite crisp in the fridge and can be served cold straight from the fridge.

📖 Recipe

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Tofu Bacon Bits (Vegan Bacon Crumbles)

This recipe for tofu bacon bits is simple to make and creates deliciously crunchy, smoky and salty bacon crumbles. They’re perfect to use in Caesar salad, on tofu scramble, in wraps, on a baked potato; however you’d use “regular” bacon bits! Gluten and nut free.

5 from 6 votes. Leave a review!

Prep Time 15 minutes mins

Cook Time 45 minutes mins

Total Time 1 hour hr

Servings 6 Servings

Calories 52 kcal

Cuisine Vegan

Ingredients

Instructions

Step 1: Crumble Tofu and Mix in Flavoring

  • If you typically press your tofu (and liquid comes out) it’s best to start with that. It’s not strictly necessary but the cook time will increase if there’s excess liquid in your tofu.

  • After pressing the tofu, crumble very small pieces from it into a mixing bowl. Make your tofu the size of small bacon crumbles as it’ll bake more evenly and become crunchier the smaller the pieces are.

    175 grams extra firm tofu

  • Mix in the remaining ingredients.

    3 tablespoons tamari, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, ½ teaspoon smoked salt, 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast, 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

  • Stir until the tofu is evenly coated with everything.

Step 2: Bake and Serve

  • Prep a baking tray by covering it with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.

  • Spread the tofu crumble into a thin, even layer across the baking tray.

  • Bake in an oven preheated to 350 °F for 45 minutes, tossing the bacon bits around every 15 minutes.

  • Once baked, the crumble should mostly feel crisp but will crisp more as it cools. The bacon bits should be a dark brown color and should have “shrunk” as water content of the tofu is now evaporated.

  • Allow the bacon bits to cool completely before refrigerating in an airtight container.

Notes

Accuracy of nutrition information cannot be guaranteed (certain ingredients may not have all nutrients listed in the database); amounts may vary (and will vary depending on brands of ingredients used); all nutrition fact values rounded to the nearest whole number.

*I buy smoked salt at a local bulk food store. If you can’t find this ingredient, use ½ teaspoon regular salt with a small drop of liquid smoke.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 Serving (⅙ of recipe)Calories: 52 kcalCarbohydrates: 4 gProtein: 6 gFat: 2 gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1 gMonounsaturated Fat: 1 gSodium: 689 mgPotassium: 111 mgFiber: 1 gSugar: 2 gVitamin A: 186 IUCalcium: 114 mgIron: 1 mg

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

More Vegan Meat Recipes

Like this recipe? You should also try:

  • TVP Spaghetti Sauce Recipe (Bolognese)
  • Vegan TVP Chili Recipe (High Protein)
  • Teriyaki Tempeh Recipe (with Homemade Sauce)
  • Vegan Sushi Bake Recipe (with Chickpea “Tuna”)
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About Nicole Stevens

Nicole is a long-time vegan with a Masters of Science in Food and Nutrition.

She helps people thrive on a vegan diet with balanced recipes.

Tofu Bacon Bits Recipe | Smoky + Salty Vegan Bacon Crumbles (2024)
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