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It seems like there are way too many fake meats out there with a laundry list of ingredients. Well, we’re here to show you how to make vegan ground beef using simple, plant-based ingredients.

Let’s do this!

Tofu Crumbles With A Spoon
The end result of making your own vegan ground beef

📖 About

We love the fact that there are so many vegan alternatives to foods like meat, cheese, or ice-cream. While we think this is awesome, why not create a similar product that tastes better and is cheaper.

We. Love. Tofu. If we can find a way, we will add it to just about everything. It takes on the flavor of any marinade or seasoning so well, and packs a ton of protein into any dish. What’s not to love?

We often hear people say tofu is bland, but that’s because it wasn’t made the right way. If you’re not already a tofu addict, we guarantee you will be after you make this vegan ground beef recipe.

Brick Of Tofu And Seasonings
You only need a few ingredients for this easy recipe

🍲 Key ingredients

There are tons of variations to this recipe, but some our must-have ingredients include:

  • Tofu: this makes the perfect base for a vegan ground beef recipe. It’s not only low in calories but contains a high amount of plant-based protein. Tofu contains 11 grams of protein per 100 calorie serving, while ground beef only has just under 9 grams. How crazy is that?
  • Liquid aminos: this ingredient is a staple in our household. It really helps give the tofu grounds some color and adds a nice salty flavor.
  • Nutritional yeast: also referred to as “nooch”, this ingredient will give your tofu grounds that umami flavor. Nooch also contains all 9 amino acids and is a great source of B vitamins for vegetarians and vegans, especially if it’s fortified.
  • Liquid smoke: made from condensing the smoke of wood, this ingredient gives a natural smoky flavor (obviously). Just be careful not to go overboard with liquid smoke, as it can be very overpowering.
Crumbling Tofu Into A Bowl Of Marinade
Crumble tofu into your bowl of marinade

🔪 Instructions

The best part about this recipe is how simple it is to put together. First, mix the marinade ingredients in a large bowl. Then, crumble in the tofu with your hands and mix it all together.

Seasoned Tofu Crumbles On A Pan
Spread the crumbles out evenly on a baking pan

Now listen up, this next part is critical. Make sure to spread the tofu out evenly on a parchment-lined pan. You don’t want to have too much overlap otherwise they won’t crisp up enough.

Vegan Ground Beef In A Bowl
Bake until golden and crispy

Bake it at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes, but keep a close watch towards the end. This will ensure you don’t burn the small pieces into ash.

🌡️ Storage

This recipe will keep well for 4-5 days in the fridge.

💭 Budget tips

We think everyone should be able to eat better for less, so here are a few tricks to make this recipe even more affordable:

  • Swap the liquid aminos out for soy sauce (remember soy sauce isn’t gluten-free)
  • Buy your tofu in multiples
  • If you need it even cheaper, consider leaving out the nutritional yeast

🍴 Tasting notes

This vegan ground beef is so easy and versatile. We know you’ll love it. It’s:

  • Smoky
  • Chewy
  • Protein-packed
  • Savoury

If you try this recipe, please rate it and leave us a comment below! Want to stay up-to-date with new recipes? Subscribe to our newsletter or connect with Broke Bank Vegan on social media. Happy eating!

Tofu Crumbles With A Spoon

Vegan Ground Beef

Mitch and Justine
In less than 40 minutes, you will have a versatile plant-based ground beef replacement that you can easily add to any of your favorite dishes. Or just eat it on its own!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Snacks
Cuisine American, Gluten-Free, Vegan
Servings 1 serving
Calories 635 kcal


  • Baking sheet
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Tofu press


  • 1 pack extra firm tofu, crumbled ($1.42)
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil ($0.19)
  • 3 tbsp liquid aminos ($0.54)
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar ($0.11)
  • 3-4 shakes liquid smoke ($0.04)
  • 2 tsp garlic powder ($0.04)
  • 1 tsp oregano ($0.04)
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast ($0.74)
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika ($0.05)
  • Sea salt to taste ($0.01)


  • Preheat your oven to 350°F and line a large baking pan with parchment paper.
  • Add the oil, liquid aminos, rice vinegar, liquid smoke, smoked paprika, salt, pepper, garlic, oregano, and nutritional yeast to a large bowl. Mix until well combined.
  • Drain and press the tofu brick, then crumble with your hands directly into the bowl of marinade.
  • Spread the tofu crumbles evenly across your pan, and bake at 350°F for 30 minutes, or until they turn a golden brown color.


  • Remember to spread the tofu out evenly with no overlap on a parchment-lined pan for optimal cooking.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 635kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 72g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 0mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 3g | Calcium: 600mg | Iron: 3.68mg
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♻️ Similar recipes

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Can I make this with soft or medium tofu?

We would not recommend making this with soft or medium tofu. Firm or extra firm tofu works best to give the recipe a chewy texture.

Is this recipe gluten-free?

This recipe is gluten-free. Just avoid traditional soy sauces because they contain wheat. Instead, use liquid aminos or tamari, which are both made from soybeans only. You can also use coconut aminos for a sweeter flavor.

Can this recipe be made without liquid smoke?

Yes, this recipe can definitely be made without liquid smoke. It just adds a nice smoky flavor.

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