Vegan Filipino Barbecue

April 18, 2022

Filipino

By: Jasmine Briones 

A veganized version of mouth-watering and flavor-packed Filipino Barbecue. It’s made with the perfect balance of tangy, sweet, and savory ingredients and is perfect for any gathering. This recipe is easy to prepare and will blow anyone who tries it away, vegan or not!

vertical photo of Vegan Filipino Barbecue on skewers with green onions

Inihaw (also known as sinugba or inasal) are different barbecue dishes from the Philippines, usually made from pork or chicken. You can serve them on bamboo skewers or in small pieces with a dipping sauce (sawsawan). They are commonly sold as street food and are also known as Filipino barbecue or Pinoy barbecue.

Various types of barbecue exist in the Philippines, but today I am making a veganize version of Filipino pork-style barbecue. 

ingredients for Vegan Filipino Barbecue on gray background with labels

Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Soy curls: We decided to use soy curls as the vegan meat substitute in this recipe. We also tested this recipe with ready-made seitan, and it didn’t perform as well as the soy curls, so we recommend the former over the latter.
  • Vegan beef broth: Adds “beefy” flavor without using meat. We like to use this one.
  • Soy sauce: The salty, umami-packed flavor bomb of a condiment helps this barbecue build depth of flavor. You can also opt for tamari, which tastes like soy sauce, but is gluten-free.
  • Banana ketchup: Don’t let the name scare you off! Although this sauce is made with bananas, it doesn’t taste like bananas after they are cooked down. If you cannot find banana ketchup or don’t want to make your own, you can opt for regular tomato ketchup.
  • Calamansi juice: Calamondin, Philippine lime, or Philippine lemon, is a vital citrus hybrid cultivated in the Philippines. The flavor can be described as a tart combination of lemon, lime, and orange. Opt for lemon juice or lime juice if you don’t have access. 
  • Vinegar: We used apple cider vinegar, but white vinegar works.
  • Fresh garlic: do not skimp on the garlic!! You need A LOT for this recipe, but trust me, it is essential! 
  • Brown sugar: Some recipes use lemon soda (7-up, Sprite, or even ginger ale) in the marinade as it both tenderizes the meat and adds sweetness. Since this is a vegan recipe, I realized tenderizing was unnecessary, so I opted for just sugar, and it worked out perfectly!
  • Vegan Oyster sauce: Although there are no oyster sauce products labeled “vegan,” those labeled vegetarian are vegan-friendly! We use this brand.
  • Sesame oil: This ingredient is optional but recommended as it adds depth of flavor and umami to the dish.
  • Ground black pepper
  • Red Chili Flakes: Optional but recommended if you want a kick of spice! You can opt for fresh peppers as well, depending on your preference. 
horizontal photo of Vegan Filipino Barbecue on skewers with green onions

How To Serve Filipino Barbecue

You can serve the barbecue in small pieces with rice (or even better, garlic fried rice) and a side of sawsawan made by combining soy sauce, vinegar, onion, black pepper, garlic, spicy peppers, and sugar. It also pairs well with a small glass of beer. If you’re looking for a Filipino beer to try, San Miguel Beer is great.

The barbecue can also be served on bamboo skewers, as pictured above! 

Vegan Filipino Barbecue in cast iron skillet

Equipment

vertical photo of Vegan Filipino Barbecue on skewers with green onions

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vertical photo of Vegan Filipino Barbecue on skewers with green onions

Vegan Filipino Barbecue


  • Author: Jasmine @ Sweet Simple Vegan
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

A veganized version of mouth-watering and flavor-packed Filipino Barbecue. It’s made with the perfect balance of tangy, sweet, and savory ingredients and is perfect for any gathering! This recipe is easy to prepare and will blow anyone who tries it away, vegan or not!


Ingredients

  • 2 cups hot water
  • 1 teaspoon vegan beef bouillon paste
  • 2 cups soy curls
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup banana ketchup (or regular ketchup)
  • 2 heaping tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 heaping tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons calamansi juice or lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1/2 tablespoon vegan oyster sauce
  • Optional: 1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 heaping teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons oil

Equipment


Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, mix together the hot water and vegan beef bouillon paste.
  2. Add the soy sauce, banana ketchup (or regular ketchup), garlic, brown sugar, calamansi juice or lemon juice, white vinegar, vegan oyster sauce, sesame oil, red pepper flakes, and ground black pepper. Mix everything until uniform.
  3. Add in the soy curls, mix and set aside to marinate for 10-15 minutes, or up to overnight if you are not cooking this the same day. 
  4. Grab a large cast-iron skillet (or a large skillet of your choice) and set it over medium heat with 2 tablespoons of oil.
  5. Using tongs, slowly remove the curls from the bowl, reserving the marinade in the bowl. Cook for a few minutes, or until it begins to brown. 
  6. Begin adding the marinade, 1/2 cup at a time, and cook. Once the first batch of broth cooks off, add in the next and continue this process until you have cooked off all of the liquid. Make sure you cook off the full 1/2 cup before adding in the next batch! Continue to cook until the barbecue begins to char to your liking.
  7. Set the barbecue aside and allow it to cool. If you would like, you can transfer the barbecue to skewers for presentation purposes, but its not necessary.
  8. Serve with rice and dipping sauces of your choice and enjoy!

Notes

  • Some recipes use lemon soda (7-up, orSprite) or even ginger ale in the marinade as it both tenderizes the meat and adds sweetness. Since this is a vegan recipe, tenderizing was unnecessary, so I opted for just sugar, which worked out perfectly!
  • We did not add any additional salt to this recipe as both the soy sauce and broth added enough for our liking. However, if you want more, feel free to season it with salt to taste. 
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Filipino

Keywords: Vegan, Filipino, Barbecue, charred, soy curls, entree, side, party

Disclaimer: This page may contain affiliate links, which means that we earn a commission if you purchase through those links, but your price remains the same. Thank you for supporting Sweet Simple Vegan!

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Recipe rating

  1. Carolina says:

    Absolutely delicious! I didn’t have soy curls, so I used TVP in chunks and worked.

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