As someone who has been a vegetarian for over 12 years, I've tasted my fair share the many vegan meats on the market. Let's just say it's been a lot of trial and error. Although meat alternatives are meant to substitute meat, some taste like the real deal while others are rubbery and downright inedible. To save you from eating anything truly awful, here are seven of the best vegan meats that won't have you wanting to go back to you carnivorous ways.  

1. Trader Joe's Chickenless Crispy Tenders

Trader Joe's can do no wrong in my book, and these Chickenless Crispy Tenders are a great addition to any grocery haul. These tenders taste so much like your fast food favorite that I was even able to convince my chicken nugget-loving friend they're delicious. The texture has a nice bite and the flavor doesn't have an odd soy aftertaste. Dunked in ketchup or your favorite leftover restaurant condiment packets, these will are my ideal quick lunch.

2. BOCA Veggie Crumbles   

avocado, guacamole, tacos, vegetable
Alyssa Cronin

BOCA Veggie Crumbles are a freezer staple. It cooks quickly and can easily replace any recipe that calls for ground beef or turkey. The pieces are smaller than how ground beef cooks up but the flavor is similar. It's made of soy protein, so just like tofu it takes in the flavor of what it's cooked in. Think: tacos, spaghetti bolognese, chili—the possibilities are endless.

3. Beyond Burger

I'm not quite sure how they do it, but the Beyond Burger is the product that burger dreams are made of (it's even found in the meat aisle!). If you're that person who brings their own vegetarian or vegan option to summer barbecues, then this is what you should bring. When grilled to perfection, it resembles a medium-rare burger, is juicy, and tastes just like what your friends will be eating.

4. Classic Meatless Meatballs

If you plan on throwing a fancy dinner party anytime soon, then these meatballs are sure to be a great addition to your

appetizer spread. This Italian classic combines flavors like basil, parsley, and fennel into something you'll crave every night of the week. The texture is softer than a traditional meatball but does keep its shape well when cooked with your favorite jarred pasta sauce.

5. Meatless Breakfast Patties

Breakfast sandwiches, anyone? If your favorite fast food breakfast item before giving up meat was a classic McDonald's McMuffin, then this meat substitute will have you reminiscing. Pop one of these in the microwave for a minute or two and then put it on a toasted English muffin and you'll have a quick breakfast full of protein while you run out the door.

6. Smart Bacon

If you're not a fan of sausage on your breakfast sandwiches, the next best thing is bacon. When cooked in a lightly oiled skillet, this bacon gets perfectly crisp. Make a veggie BLT, a simple spaghetti carbonara or even an egg bake or tofu scramble, for a delicious brunch without having to leave the comfort of your home.

7. Veggie Pulled Pork

Easily recreate your favorite Southern meal with this meal starter. I've never actually had pork, but my friends who've recently made the switch to veganism say this veggie pulled pork tastes just like their BBQ pit-stop favorite. To have crispy pieces of 'meat,' cook this in a skillet. But if you want a softer pulled pork, you can heat it in the microwave. This is a customizable dish, so you can add your favorite barbecue sauce or even make tacos.

Vegan meats are a great choice for those looking to limit their meat intake. The options I've listed above are just some of the best vegan meats on the market, and I doubt you'll notice these aren't actual meat when eating them.