This homemade vegan katsu curry is a winner for bringing your favourite eat-out option to your kitchen table. The gorgeous flavourful sauce, fluffy rice and fragrant toppings all make it so more-ish!
Katsu curry is known as one of Japan’s most popular dishes, and now it seems one of the U.K’s favourites. The sauce is rich in flavour, mildly spiced with a hint of sweetness – always an easy pleaser. Especially at Wagamama’s! It’s traditionally served with breaded chicken on a bed of rice, but I wanted to make my own vegan version to show you how quick and easy it can be done.
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What makes this vegan katsu curry recipe so straight forward?
Like most sauce recipes, the key for great results lies in layering the flavour at various stages of the cooking. You’ll start by frying off finely chopped onion, garlic and ginger. Simply by allowing these to cook for a few minutes, you’ll release their aromas and enhance the overall flavour of the dish. Then comes the spice mix and finally, the remaining ingredients step by step.
The final additions of tahini and peanut butter bring all the flavours together, and your eyes will be popping at the taste of it! The sauce is probably my favourite part of the whole meal (cue drool) and best eaten immediately once served (obviously!)
What’s the Best Type of Rice to Use for This Vegan Katsu Curry?
Standard basmati or long grain rice is perfect for this dish. I’ve used a mix of long grain and wild rice I found in Tesco as it contains slightly more protein and fibre. I cooked this with red lentils to further boost protein.
Lighter options include lentils on their own, quinoa, cauliflower rice or couscous.
How Did You Make Katsu Curry Vegan?
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In traditional katsu curry, there are a few animal products which you might see. These include egg, honey, chicken stock and chicken. The egg is usually used as part of the breadcrumb mix to coat the chicken, but I’ve used Quorn’s vegan chicken fillets as a short-cut which scraps the egg and meat altogether. Then instead of chicken stock, I’ve used vegetable stock and agave nectar instead of honey.
If you’re not able to get your hands on Quorn’s vegan chicken fillets, then here are a few alternative supermarket options:
- Quorn’s vegan nuggets or tex mex bites⠀
- Crunchy Tofu bites by Tofoo
- Vegan Chicken Pieces by Vivera
- Linda McCartney’s Vegan Chicken Bucket Pieces
- Frys Vegan Chicken
If you want to go that extra mile for a healthier option, here’s my advice.
How to go the extra mile and make this recipe more healthy?
I’ve used Quorn’s vegan chicken fillets as a quick and easy short-cut which makes this meal a breeze to cook, especially if you’re just in from work. I do love Quorn as there are so many benefits of cooking with it.
However, if you have some more time on your hands, you can make your own breaded tofu “chicken”. This is easily done by cutting strips of firm tofu and dunking them in a mix of plain flour, salt, black pepper, paprika and dairy-free milk. Then you evenly coat them in panko breadcrumbs, before frying each strip off in hot oil.
If you’d prefer to avoid fried food, you can place the ‘chicken’ strips on a cooking tray covered with non-stick parchment paper and bake them in the oven for approx. 25min at 180C.
It’s essential to use firm tofu for this type of thing, as soft tofu will break apart. If you’re in the U.K, I often use Tofoo’s extra firm tofu, which is organic.
If you LOVE this recipe, then I reckon you’ll also fall in love with my BAO-utiful Vegan Bao Buns with Katsu ‘Chicken’ and Fragrant herbs. They provide another fun way to use my vegan katsu sauce:
I’d love to hear your feedback in the comments once you’ve given my vegan katsu curry a try. I’m sure you will adore the taste and be delighted by how yummy a Life Without Meat can be.
Allergens: Soy, Wheat, Gluten, Celery I used vegan chicken fillets by Quorn. Their non-vegan version has milk in it, so just check the label. You can find these in your usual local supermarket either in the frozen or fridge section. I can't find an online link for the vegan ones so I've added the link for vegan nuggets should you wish to try them too. Sauce recipe adapted from Cupful of Kale. If you don't have agave nectar, you can use maple syrup or golden syrup. If you don't have tamari sauce, you can use soy sauce. As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
However, if you prefer some texture (as I do), keep it as it is. Stir in an additional 70ml of water to make the sauce a little thinner.
Allergens: Soy, Wheat, Gluten, Celery
I used vegan chicken fillets by Quorn. Their non-vegan version has milk in it, so just check the label. You can find these in your usual local supermarket either in the frozen or fridge section. I can't find an online link for the vegan ones so I've added the link for vegan nuggets should you wish to try them too.
Sauce recipe adapted from Cupful of Kale.
If you don't have agave nectar, you can use maple syrup or golden syrup.
If you don't have tamari sauce, you can use soy sauce.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.