Vegan bacon made from coconut? OH YES! Crispy, smoky, just a tad sweet, and so amazingly delicious. Once you try this coconut bacon you'll never miss the real thing!
This stuff will change your life.
I was never a fan of bacon. In fact, it's always weird for me when I would talk to other vegetarians who tell me bacon was the toughest thing for them to give up. I didn't even like the stuff during my meat eating days as a kid. It grossed me out.
Coconut bacon has everything that I consider to be good about bacon, and none of whatever it is that turns my stomach about the real stuff. It's crispy, smoky, salty and amazingly satisfying. I was a little concerned that the coconut flavor would overpower all of the bacony flavors, but instead it come through very subtly and surprisingly compliments the seasonings. These little flakes are the perfect substitute for bacon bits.
Ingredients You'll Need
- Flaked coconut. Big flakes of coconut are best for this recipe. The smaller shredded stuff burns too quick. Bob's Red Mill coconut flakes are the perfect size. Also make absolutely sure that your coconut is unsweetened.
- Soy sauce. Gluten-free tamari or liquid aminos can also be used.
- Liquid smoke. Liquid smoke is a totally vegan product made by concentrating the actual smoke that's created by burning wood. It's great for replicating the smoky flavor of bacon. Look for it near the barbecue sauce at your supermarket.
- Maple syrup. You could use another liquid sweetener like agave, but maple syrup will give your coconut bacon the best flavor.
- Apple cider vinegar. Again, this ingredient is ideal for the flavor we're going for, but red wine or white vinegar could be substituted in a pinch.
How It's Made
The following is a detailed photo tutorial on how to make this dish. Scroll all the way down if you'd like to skip right to the recipe!
This couldn't be easier to make!
- Stir up a smoky marinade by mixing your soy sauce, liquid smoke, maple syrup, and apple cider vinegar.
- Add the coconut and stir gently. Be careful not to break the coconut flakes into smaller pieces.
- Distribute the marinade soaked coconut on a baking sheet and pop it into the oven.
- Move the coconut bacon around every few minutes during baking so that it cooks nice and evenly.
Tip: I like to line my baking sheet with some parchment paper. The marinade can be really tough to wash off once it's baked on.
- Once it's nice and browned, take the coconut it out of the oven and let it cool. It'll continue to crisp up as it does.
Tip: Keep a close eye on the coconut as it bakes. It burns very quickly!
Shelf Life & Storage
Coconut bacon will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for at least a week. I don't recommend refrigerating or freezing it.
Frequently Asked Questions
It is if you use gluten-free tamari in place of soy sauce.
Coconut bacon is delicious and addictive! I sometimes snack on it by the handful or sprinkle it on salads or avocado toast. It's also great on a sandwich, like a vegan BLT or this grilled avocado sandwich. Sprinkle it on soups like vegetarian split pea soup or vegan pasta e fagioli. You can even use it in sweet recipes like these vegan maple bacon doughnuts from My Darling Vegan.
It's made from coconut, so the flavor is definitely present. I have heard from a number of coconut haters that love this stuff though, so the flavor probably isn't super overpowering.
Like this recipe? If so, please stop back and leave me a review and rating below if you try it! Also be sure to follow me on Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram, or subscribe to my newsletter for more recipes like this one!
Vegan bacon made from coconut? OH YES! Crispy, smoky, just a tad sweet and so amazingly delicious, you'll never miss the real thing!
Preheat oven to 325°.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a medium-sized bowl, stir together the soy sauce or tamari, liquid smoke, maple syrup and apple cider vinegar.
Add the coconut to the bowl and gently stir to coat it with the soy sauce mixture, being careful not to crush the coconut flakes.
Spread the coconut in an even layer on parchment. Drizzle any excess liquid over the coconut.
Bake for about 15 minutes, tossing every 3-5 minutes during cooking, until crispy and browned. Watch the coconut closely during baking, because this stuff can go from crispy to char in a very short time.
Remove the baking sheet from oven and allow to cool. The coconut bacon will continue to crisp up as it cools.