Are you tired of clucking around looking for a tasty vegan chicken alternative? Well then, you are in for a real treat! I’ve been scouring the shelves of UK supermarkets looking for the best meat-free chicken alternatives that not only replicate the taste and texture of chicken but also work as a like-for-like alternative in your old favourite chicken-based dishes.
From soy-based chicken pieces to scrummy seitan-based snacks and pre-flavoured ready-to-eat chunks, I’ve got you covered! There is well and truly a plant-based meat alternative out there for everyone.
I have included a mix of vegan chicken alternatives, all of which I eat on a regular basis and can be bought from the major supermarkets. Within this guide you’ll find substitutes for cooking with, adding to sandwiches and wraps, and snacking on. So you can eat vegan chicken all day, every day.
Prepare to meet your new vegan chicken obsession with my guide to the best vegan chicken alternatives in the UK!
1. Heura Vegan Mediterranean Chicken Pieces
Made from: Soya protein
Nutritional values per 100g: 135 kcal & 18g protein
These vegan chicken pieces from Heura are incredibly succulent and delicious making them the perfect alternative to chicken. They are made using soya protein and are flavoured with Mediterranean herbs which I find complement most dishes that I add them to.
In particular, I like to add these to vegan paellas and pasta dishes. I regularly add Heura’s vegan chicken pieces to my vegan creamy mushroom pasta recipe as they work really well with cream sauces.
To top it all off, they are a really healthy option with one of the lowest calorie contents and a substantial amount of protein. I also don’t find these to be overly processed as they still resemble the soft stringy texture of soya.
2. Moving Mountains No Chicken Burger
Made from: Wheat, pea & soya protein
Nutritional values per 100g: 238 kcal & 15g protein
Whenever presented with the choice of a beef-style vegan burger or a chicken-style burger, I will always pick the latter. I absolutely love a good vegan chicken burger and these patties from Moving Mountains do not disappoint.
These taste great, not too dissimilar to the chicken burger patties that I remember from my pre-vegan years. The outside is coated in breadcrumbs which adds a lovely crispy texture to the burger.
It should come as no surprise that these are a little higher in calories than other vegan chicken alternatives mentioned here, but these are supposed to be more of an occasional treat rather than a weekly staple. That being said, they are still relatively high in protein which is awesome!
3. THIS Isn’t Chicken Plant-Based Pieces
Made from: Soya & pea protein
Nutritional values per 100g: 167 kcal & 23g protein
I’m sure THIS needs no introduction, thanks to their outrageously funny marketing tactics. But for those who don’t know about this company, THIS is a fully vegan plant-based meat brand supplying some of the best alternatives on the market, including THIS Isn’t Vegan Bacon and THIS Isn’t Pork Sausages.
Their chicken pieces are one of my go-to alternatives whenever I am cooking something that requires a plainer chicken-like flavour, like in Asian food. For example, they go really well in my vegan Pad Thai dish and they work perfectly as a chicken replacement in curries and stews.
Amazingly, THIS has managed to pack 23g of protein per 100g of these pea and soya-based chicken pieces. Moreover, they are also relatively low in calories, making them great for regular weeknight dinners.
4. M&S Plant Kitchen No Chicken Kyiv
Made from: Wheat & soya protein
Nutritional values per 100g: 242 kcal & 14.4g protein
I used to love eating chicken kiev as a kid. It was mostly because of the crunchy breaded outer and the oozing garlic butter middle. It really had very little to do with the chicken, which was really just used as a vessel for the garlicky goodness. So I saw no reason why this dish couldn’t be easily veganised.
Thankfully, M&S noticed this gap in the market and has provided these knockout vegan chicken kievs. They are just how I remember them!
I like to serve this with some new potatoes and steamed green vegetables on the side. Although, I probably wouldn’t eat this on the regular as it isn’t the healthiest!
5. Squeaky Bean Chicken Tikka Style Pieces
Made from: Wheat & pea protein
Nutritional values per 100g: 222kcal & 21g protein
As a teenager, my staple lunch would consist of a wrap smothered in mayonnaise and filled with salad and chunks of chicken tikka pieces. Now I can recreate this with these delicious vegan chicken tikka style pieces from Squeaky Bean.
They make lunchtime that bit easier and with the high protein content, that bit healthier too!
These are ready-to-eat, so simply stuff your favourite bread product with these along with a sauce and you’ve got yourself a delicious meal.
For anyone like myself who struggles with gluten, then try to avoid eating this too regularly as one of the main ingredients is wheat.
6. Eatplanted Chicken Lemon & Herb
Made from: Pea protein
Nutritional values per 100g: 215kcal & 20g protein
The older I get the more I am coming around to eating salads. Especially when they are made with chunks of these delicious lemon & herb vegan chicken from Eatplanted.
Simply fry these off so that they go nice and crispy and then add them to your favourite salad combo. Drizzle with a great sauce and you’ll have the tastiest salad.
The flavour is really lovely, with a mix of lemon and mustard topped off with some gentle herb flavours. The vegan chicken itself is made using pea protein which is what gives you 20g of protein per 100g, not bad!
7. VFC Original Popcorn Chicken
Made from: Wheat & soya protein
Nutritional values per 100g: 272kcal & 12.9g protein
Some of my favourite takeaway snacks pre-vegan were ones which despite being made from animal-based products, were simply tasty because of what they were made into. In this case, I used to love KFC’s popcorn chicken, mainly because I really enjoyed the flavouring of the crispy batter coated around the outside.
I have enjoyed many vegan versions of this, including ones made using tofu. But the version that really gets it spot on is by VFC. These have a great popcorn chicken flavour that reminds me of the ones from KFC.
The inside is nice and succulent and the outside is super crispy. They are great served up with a pot of vegan mayonnaise or spicy ketchup. Serve these up at your next party or movie night and see if your friends or family can even tell the difference.
8. Vivera Plant Chicken Breast
Made from: Wheat & soya protein
Nutritional values per 100g: 204kcal & 9.4g protein
If you are looking for something a little bit more realistic then you’ll like these plant-based ‘chicken breasts’ by Vivera. They are a bit creepy to look at since they do look really look like chicken.
You can cook these up like chicken breast and serve it with a side of steamed vegetables and this creamy vegan mustard sauce. Or you can slice it into chunks and cook it into pasta dishes and curries. Alternatively, you can even attempt to make your own vegan chicken kievs.
Considering that these are also made from wheat and soya protein they are relatively low in protein when compared to other products here. But you will probably eat more of this vegan chicken breast than you would pieces of the other products.
9. Quorn Vegan Chicken Slices
Made from: Mycoprotein
Nutritional values per 100g: 94kcal & 11g protein
Quorn products are a classic for a reason. They’ve consistently produced great vegan and vegetarian products that are affordable and healthy. Making everything from Mycoprotein, a type of fungus, all of their products are sustainable to make and low in calories.
These vegan chicken slices from Quorn are a staple in my kitchen. I use them to make tasty sandwiches, toasties, and vegan quesadillas.
They are great for anyone who loves chicken sandwiches, as these slices are pretty similar in both taste and texture.
10. BirdsEye Chicken-Free Dippers
Made from: Wheat
Nutritional values per 100g: 312kcal & 10g protein
I used to love oven dinners as a kid. They usually consisted of some sort of processed animal-based food served with a side of peas. It wasn’t the healthiest of dinners but it always felt like a treat.
This is why I love these chicken-free dippers from BirdsEye as part of their Green Cuisine range. They are just as I remembered chicken dippers to be, but without all the unnecessary harm!
I would recommend these to anyone with kids and teenagers for when you want to make a simple dinner. But I will not judge if you stick a few extras in the oven to make dinner for yourself too. I definitely enjoy eating these every so often for nostalgia reasons.
Vegan chicken comparison
I have presented all of the best vegan chicken products in the UK here in a table which helps to compare the ingredients, their nutritional values and their cost.
|Vegan chicken brand||Made from||Calories per 100g||Protein per 100g||Cost||Purchase|
|Heura||Soya protein||135 kcal||18g||£3||Go to Ocado|
|Moving Mountains||Wheat, pea & soya protein||238 kcal||15g||£3||Go to Ocado|
|THIS||Soya & pea protein||167 kcal||23g||£3.25||Go to Ocado|
|Marks & Spencers||Wheat & soya protein||242 kcal||14.4g||£4.25||Go to Ocado|
|Squeaky Bean||Wheat & pea protein||222 kcal||21g||£3.15||Go to Ocado|
|Eatplanted||Pea protein||215 kcal||20g||£3.50||Go to Ocado|
|VFC||Wheat & soya protein||272 kcal||12.9g||£3||Go to Ocado|
|Vivera||Wheat & soya protein||204 kcal||9.4g||£3||Go to Tesco|
|Quorn||Mycoprotein||94 kcal||11g||£2.60||Go to Ocado|
|BirdsEye||Wheat protein||312 kcal||10g||£3||Go to Ocado|