I tried making a vegan burger in my kitchen before, and it turned out all right. However, when I taste a vegan burger or a vegan hot dog at restaurants or in frozen foods, it seems much closer to the real taste.

So I was wondering, what are the ingredients that make vegan meat taste like real meat?


1 Answer 1


The meaty taste is Umami. It is the flavour of monosodium glutamate, in the same way that salty is the flavour of salt.

Both mushrooms and tomatoes of the right variety are quite rich in it, as is yeast extract. You can also just buy the stuff commercially.

Don't worry about the stigma attached to it, it's not actually toxic or anything.

  • 3
    Also, soy sauces (some have added MSG but it is not needed), doenjang, miso, sufu... Nov 28, 2016 at 12:32
  • 1
    Lots of yeast extracts are rich in glutamates and nucleotides as well.
    – SourDoh
    Dec 1, 2016 at 1:59
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    @SourDoh, I mentioned yeast extract in my answer. It's true that also miso and other fermented soy products have it too, but it was just a quick answer and hardly an exhaustive list.
    – Carmi
    Dec 1, 2016 at 6:59

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