Spring weather is finally here to stay and we are so delighted because it means that it’s time for block parties, food festivals, and rooftop barbecues! For most of us, barbecues are synonymous with burgers, steaks, and all things meaty — it’s the kind of stuff we grew up loving. And to be honest, we still love sticky, barbecue sauce-covered food — yes, even “ribs.” The trick to making plant-based food is all about choosing the right substitute and seasoning. To learn more, check out The Ultimate Guide to Vegan Meats and Meat Substitutes and 5 Tips to Make Meatless Food Taste Meaty.

Recreating your favorite foods in a new way is a fun, exciting affair. That’s why today, on National Prime Ribs Day, we’re celebrating all the different ways to can make savory, meat-free ribs. All of these recipes can be found on the Food Monster App!

1. Balsamic BBQ Seitan and Tempeh RibsBalsamic BBQ Seitan and Tempeh Ribs

Source: Balsamic BBQ Seitan and Tempeh Ribs

These Balsamic BBQ Seitan and Tempeh Ribs by Rhea Parsons are indulgent, delicious, and will satisfy any BBQ cravings you may get. Serve them with some mashed potatoes and coleslaw or your favorite BBQ Fixin’s. They make a great appetizer or entrée.

2. Smoky Slow Cooker Tempeh With Sweet Potato 

Vegan Smoky Slow Cooker Tempeh With Sweet Potato and Green Beans

Source: Smoky Slow Cooker Tempeh

Made from cooked, fermented soybeans and originating from Indonesia, tempeh packs a nutritional punch. What distinguishes tempeh from tofu, you may ask? Where tofu is made from the curds of the bean, tempeh is formed from the whole bean – it is also firmer, so it’s perfect for cutting into “ribs,” as in this Smoky Slow Cooker Tempeh by Natalie Tamara. Tempeh is slow-cooked with aromatics and savory spices until perfectly tender, then served with sweet potato. It’s perfect as is or with a little barbecue sauce on the side.

3. Sticky Baked BBQ Tempeh StripsVegan Sticky Baked BBQ Tempeh Strips

Source: Sticky Baked BBQ Tempeh Strips

Nothing says springtime like sticky, smoky, barbecue-sauce-slathered eats. These oil-free Sticky Baked BBQ Tempeh Strips by Larice Feuerstein would make a delicious addition to your backyard get-together this summer or anytime you’re looking for an easy vegan dish that everyone will love. Just make sure to cook a couple of batches!

4. Savory Herb-Baked Tempeh and Quinoa 

Savory Herb-Baked Tempeh and Quinoa

Source: Savory Herb-Baked Tempeh

As much as we live for barbecue sauce, sometimes these Savory Herb-Baked Tempeh “ribs” by Steph McKercher are delicious, too! This filling main entrée is full of herby flavor thanks to sage and thyme! Pulling together hearty tempeh with all the tangy notes of apple cider vinegar and sage, this is one dish that is perfect for a nice dinner with friends and family.

5. Barbecue Baked Seitan StripsBarbecue Baked Seitan Strips

Source: Barbecue Baked Seitan Strips

Considering how incredibly flavor absorbent seitan is, it’s no surprise that baking it in the oven with BBQ sauce already slathered all over it would yield delicious results. In this recipe for Barbecue Baked Seitan Strips by Josephine Watmore, seitan is made from scratch and then doused in a savory BBQ marinade. Add this seitan to tacos for a zesty Mexican dish, to wraps with vegan mayo, or on top of your favorite salad.

6. Korean Tempeh RibsVegan Korean Tempeh Ribs

Source: Korean Tempeh Ribs

These Korean Tempeh Ribs by Natalie Tamara are marinated in doenjang, a thick, chunky paste made from fermented soybeans, ketchup, and spices, and then grilled so they’re flavorful and delicious. Tempeh is made from soybeans, making it rich in iron and a worthy main course for your weeknight dinner. Added to the marinade here, it gives the tempeh steaks a deep savoriness that’s rare.

7. Braised Seitan Short Ribs in Spicy Chili Sauce 

Seitan Short Ribs

Source: Seitan Short Ribs

After braising in the spicy chili sauce, these Seitan Short Ribs by Rhea Parsons will be tender to the point of almost falling apart. Serve over potatoes or polenta and ladle more of the sauce over everything, after you’ve placed the seitan ribs on top of the mashed potatoes. This dish is so comforting, warm, meaty, and satisfying.

8. Barbecue ‘Ribs’

Barbecue "Ribs"

Source: Barbecue “Ribs”

These Barbecue “Ribs” by Yana Chistyakova are a work of genius. A combination of textured vegetable protein and vital wheat gluten nails the flavor and texture perfectly. They’re meaty, savory, and amazing when coated in homemade barbecue sauce. One bite and they’ll become one of your barbecue essentials.

9. Grilled Cheesy Mac n Rib PizzaGrilled Cheesy Mac n Rib Pizza

Source: Grilled Cheesy Mac n Rib Pizza

Who doesn’t need pizza covered in macaroni and cheese and meaty seitan? Yes, you read that right: Macaroni and cheese on a pizza. This Grilled Cheesy Mac n Rib Pizza by Barbara Musick is an ooey-gooey combination of mac n’ cheese, caramelized onions, and BBQ seitan.

10. Korean BBQ Tempeh Sandwich With Kale Slaw 

Korean BBQ Tempeh Sandwich

Source: Korean BBQ Tempeh Sandwich

Creamy avocado and tart kale slaw team up with meaty tempeh “ribs” to give you a crunchy and delicious Korean BBQ Tempeh Sandwich by Meredith Youngson. By keeping the marinade liquid and simmering the tempeh, you allow for a tender, juicy cut of tempeh that retains its flavor and moisture.

All of the options are drool-worthy, but which recipe is your favorite? Let us know in the comments!

Learn How to Cook Plant-Based Meals at Home!

Reducing your meat intake and eating more plant-based foods is known to help with chronic inflammationheart healthmental wellbeingfitness goalsnutritional needsallergiesgut health, and more! Dairy consumption also has been linked to many health problems, including acnehormonal imbalancecancerprostate cancer and has many side effects.

For those of you interested in eating more plant-based, we highly recommend downloading the Food Monster App — with over 15,000 delicious recipes it is the largest plant-based recipe resource to help reduce your environmental footprint, save animals and get healthy! And, while you are at it, we encourage you to also learn about the environmental and health benefits of a plant-based diet.

Here are some great resources to get you started:

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