Vegan bacon made from coconut? OH YES! Crispy, smoky, just a tad sweet, and so amazingly delicious, 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 talk to other vegetarians who tell me bacon was the toughest thing for them to give up. I always found it completely gross, from my meat-eating days as a kid, into my college years while I served breakfast to hungry tables at the local Friendly's. The breakfast shift was my least favorite for the mere fact that the aroma of bacon continuously pumped out of the kitchen.
So it was never like there was some big empty space in my heart where bacon belonged. At least until I started veganizing recipes that called for bacon and realized something was most definitely something missing.
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.
This couldn't be easier to make!
Stir up a smoky marinade and then add your coconut and give it a gentle stir.
Distribute the 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.
Once it's nice and browned, take it out of the oven and let it cool. It'll continue to crisp up as it does.
Tips for Making Amazing Coconut Bacon
- Use flaked coconut (not shredded!) to get those nice big pieces of coconut bacon like you see in the photos. Bob's Red Mill and Let's Do Organic brands are both good choices. And be sure to inspect the bag closely when buying: look for nice big flakes and not too many crumbs (which can be the result of coconut getting crushed during shipping).
- Make sure your coconut is unsweetened.
- Watch it like a hawk during baking. It browns very quickly and is super easy to burn.
Delicious Ways to Use Your Coconut Bacon
This stuff is totally snackable (and highly addictive), but if you're looking for some delicious vegan bacon-filled recipes, try these:
- Vegan Avocado Melt with Coconut Bacon
- Vegan Maple Bacon Doughnuts from My Darling Vegan
- Vegan Pasta e Fagioli
- Coconut bacon is awesome on avocado toast!
Check out how easy it is to make in my snazzy video!
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.