Protein is the most expensive part of your food storage. At the same time, it's an important addition to keep you and your family healthy. While true freeze-dried meat is the best base for your protein storage, some people use TVP to supplement their protein.
What is TVP?
TVP is Textured Vegetable Protein. It's made from soy flour after the soybean oil is extracted. It's a protein substitute that is high in fiber and natural protein. It easily absorbs flavor and retains the flavor with cooking.
Benefits of TVP
TVP is something that you've probably had many times throughout your life. Schools and fast food restaurants use it to supplement meat. You've probably had it in tacos, hamburgers, sloppy joes, and casseroles. Whether you use it alone or you use it to extend meat, it's a great product to have on hand. Benefits include:
Affordability - Soy protein is significantly less expensive than meat.
Flavor- It can be flavored with meat juices or another seasoning to taste just like meat.
Ease - While TVP needs to be cooked, it doesn't need to reach a safe temperature, so it's easy to use in an emergency.
Meat Substitute- TVP is perfect for those on a kosher or vegetarian diet.
Drawbacks of TVP
TVP is not meat at all. Alone, you can definitely tell the difference between the two. Other drawbacks include:
Lower Protein - While TVP has naturally occurring protein, it has less than half of its meat counterpart. It is actually not a complete protein, lacking two essential amino acids; cysteine, and methionine.
Higher Sodium- Because TVP needs to be flavored, it generally has a high sodium content.
Soy- TVP is soy protein. If you are on a soy restricted diet, you will not want to use TVP to supplement your protein storage.