What is Vital Wheat Gluten?
Vital wheat gluten is a type of flour that’s high in protein and low in starch. It’s made by hydrating wheat flour to activate the gluten (a protein), then processing the mixture to remove everything but that gluten. The result is a dense, chewy, protein-rich food ingredient.
How is Vital Wheat Gluten Made?
The production of vital wheat gluten involves washing wheat flour dough with water until the starches dissolve, leaving the gluten behind. This is then dried and ground back into a flour-like consistency. Due to its strong texture and high protein content, vital wheat gluten is an essential ingredient in many types of bread, other baked goods, and even meat substitutes like seitan.
Is Vital Wheat Gluten Vegan?
Yes, vital wheat gluten is vegan. It’s derived entirely from wheat, a plant-based food source. It’s commonly used in vegan and vegetarian cuisine to make seitan, a high-protein meat substitute.
Of course, while the vital wheat gluten itself is vegan, it’s always important to check the other ingredients in any food product to ensure they’re also vegan-friendly.
Vital Wheat Gluten in a Vegan Diet
Vital wheat gluten is a valuable addition to vegan diets because of its high protein content and versatile use in cooking. When seasoned and cooked, it takes on a meat-like texture making it a popular base for vegan meats, including burgers, sausages, and more.
In conclusion, vital wheat gluten is vegan and provides a versatile, protein-rich ingredient for a variety of vegan dishes. Its unique texture makes it a favorite in plant-based cooking, especially for creating homemade meat substitutes like seitan.