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Vegan Chinese-Style “Meat” Sauce over rice

Chinese-Style “Meat” Sauce (Vegan Recipe)

5 from 7 votes
This Vegan Chinese-Style “Meat” Sauce is one of those hearty dishes packed full of flavour that you can prepare in advance and serve over your choice or rice or noodles for a delicious meal. The sauce itself is packed with “meaty” TVP or texturised vegetable protein (but you can use other substitutes), and a mix of vegetables for the delicious bite. I personally love this on both rice and noodles for either a hearty rice topping or a delicious saucy bowl of noodles.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Asian, Chinese, East Asian, Fuison
Servings 5 people
Calories 133 kcal


Protein and Veg (see notes for other sub)

  • 1.5 cups dry TVP (see notes for sub)
  • 1 small red bell pepper diced into small pieces
  • 1 small green bell pepper diced into small pieces
  • 1/2 medium white onion diced into small pieces
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 small carrot peeled and diced into small pieces
  • 3.5 oz french or green beans sliced into small pieces

Spice Mix/Seasoning

  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp salt or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp Szechuan pepper powder , I simply crushed whole peppercorns (optional)
  • 1 tsp Chinese five spice powder see notes



Corn Starch Slurry

  • 2.5 tbsp corn starch , see notes
  • 5 tbsp room temperature water , see notes

For cooking

For Serving


  • Place the TVP or texturised vegetable protein in a large heat proof bowl. Pour boiling hot water and allow to rehydrate for 5-10 minutes until doubled in size. Run through some water and squeeze out any excess liquid. Set aside.
  • Prepare the vegetables of stir-frying. You can also include any other vegetables of choice and just finely dice/mince them as well.
  • For the sauce, simply mix everything together. Fee free to adjust to your taste!
  • If you’re planning to cook down noodles, you can cook it before preparing the sauce. I recommend to slightly undercook the noodles so they stay nice and chewy. Running the noodles through water after cooking can also help stop its cooking and wash off any starch.
  • Heat a large pan or wok over medium heat. Once hot, add some neutral oil. Sauté the onion, garlic, ginger, and vegetables until half cooked. Do note that you’ll need to cook the carrots a bit longer until tender. Add in the spices, salt and adjust to your taste.
  • Add in the rehydrated TVP or protein of choice.
  • Pour in the sauce mix. Mix to coat well. Pour in 1.5 cups of vegetable broth. Leave over medium heat until it comes to a boil.
  • Meanwhile, mix together the corn starch and water in a small bowl until you have a slurry.
  • Lower the heat of the sauce. While mixing, pour in the slurry. Continue to mix until the sauce starts to thicken form the corn starch.
  • Taste the sauce and feel free to season with more soy sauce, sugar, chili sauce if desired. If you want the sauce a bit runnier, you can slowly add more broth and mix well. From there, you can see if it's reached your desired consistency.
  • Scoop over cooked rice or noodles. Mix and enjoy!


Protein, Veg, and TVP

  • You can also use extra firm tofu and crumble this and cooked it down until it starts to resemble ground “meat”. Another great alternative is finely diced/minced mushrooms!
    You can also use plant-based ground meat alternatives like those from Beyond Meat, Lightlife Foods, etc.
  • DO NOTE that most of these brands have seasoned plant-based ground meat. If this is the case, you can skip the salt from the spice mix first and just adjust to taste as you cook.

Corn Starch Slurry and Broth

  • You can start with 1.5 cups of the broth. If you want the sauce a bit runnier, you can slowly add more broth and mix well. From there, you can see if it's reached your desired consistency.
  • On the other hand, if using 2 cups broth and you want the sauce even thicker, you can add more slurry by mixing together 1 tsp corn starch + 2 tsp water.
  • Do note that the sauce will continue to thicken as it cools.

Dark Mushroom Soy Sauce

  • This adds the rich caramel colour but isn't actually salty. It does add a hint of umami which is nice for the sauce. If not using this, you can add a bit more soy sauce if needed, to taste.


Serving: 1serving (just sauce) | Calories: 133kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 1713mg | Potassium: 63mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 203IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 103mg | Iron: 4mg
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