Meat Glue Not Just For Meat Anymore.

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The Struggle:

Transglutaminase also known as Meat glue definitely sounds like something that can only be used with, well… meat. We have written about this topic before. But, until recently it was a difficult thing to find a protein that worked with transglutaminase. Most vegetables contain one of the proteins needed for the transglutaminase to work, but not the other. What if there was a way to use transglutaminase with one vegetable protein to make firmer, and more stable plant based foods?


“Is there one vegetable protein that works with Meat glue?” 


I Choose You, Meat Glue.

First, let’s do a quick overview of the type of transglutaminase that should be used with plant based foods. When using transglutaminase for plant based cooking you will need to use TI. This type of transglutaminase contains no helper proteins. Transglutaminase RM contains sodium caseinate which is a protein from milk. Transglutaminase GS contains gelatin which is from fish bones. Transglutaminase TI is just the transglutaminase enzyme and maltodextrin which acts to keep the enzyme free flowing. It is a common myth that all transglutaminase comes from animal sources, in fact it comes from many different sources. All the Transglutaminase enzymes we sell come from non-animal sources. So now that that is out of the way let’s get to the cool part!


Recently we began using a great faba bean protein. It has worked wonders in all of our plant based foods. We have made plant based burgers, sausage, meatballs, and even meatloaf. Not to mention all the recipes we have coming down the line (stay tuned). But as we have been running through our testing we have wanted to find the best way to produce any plant based meats. We decided to try out a small amount of TI with the faba bean protein. We have tried this before with our soy protein and after a bit of research we found that soy lacked lysine, one of the proteins needed for transglutaminase to work. So we mixed up a solution of faba bean protein and added some transglutaminase to it. Transglutaminase TI has the highest amount of active enzymes of all the different types. But also TI tends to work with the least amount of foods due to its lack of a protein aide. After about 1 minute of being mixed with the faba bean protein solution it began to set. We had a control sample of the faba bean protein solution without the enzyme and it was still fluid. We had finally found a plant based protein that aided the TI! We decided to add this to our plant based chicken nuggets recipe and we found great success. We were able to get the texture we were looking for as chicken nuggets needed a firmer texture than we could get by just using our regular method. We are so very excited to have found this out and we can’t wait to see what other recipes it will work with. Check out our recipes below to see exactly how it works!


Ready to get Cooking?

Give our Plant-Based Golden Chickn Nuggets recipe a try! A chicken nugget is the guilty pleasure, the grab and go, the dino-shaped treat that keeps children happy. Now enjoy this grown but still delicious plant-based nugget that has all of the bouncy texture and fun with none of the mysterious animal parts.



  • I’m really excited about this discovery! I’ve been trying to make a gluten-free alternative to seitan, and haven’t had much luck. I think this might help me get there. If you could come up with a recipe for plant-based hot dogs, I would love that! Your plant-based meat recipe has seriously been a game changer for me in the kitchen and my omnivore husband loves the burgers I make for him now. I’m super excited to try out the new chicken nugget recipe!

  • We are trying to eat healthier and have gone completely plant based. This was not based on not liking meat, but rather health reasons and the inability to digest animal proteins and fats. That being said, I’m concerned about adding things into my plant based “meat” that I’m not familiar with, such as Transglutaminase TI. This article, “Microbial transglutaminase should be considered as an environmental inducer of celiac disease” found at causes me concern as we are also already gluten intolerant. Will this product cause us more issues, or is it safe to use in these recipes? Any help is appreciated. I love this site and use numerous products!!! You guys have truly helped us survive this transition to plant based food.

  • I had a question about the Methylcellulose HV. I am a manufacturer of vegan based products, I wanted to see how I could accomodate in my plant the use of the alginate and calcium chloride dip for the skin. My concern is a one use dip solution, or one run. I would have to do a long vat bath with a dwell time of, in your opinion 8-10 minutes to calcify the skin enough for drying. Do you know anyone doing this process in manufacturing? I am curious if it has been done, and if they are re-using the liquids for a second run.

    • Scott Guerin
      March 30, 2022 4:33 pm

      Hi, we do not know anyone who is using this process in manufacturing. We do believe some companies are doing something similar, but we do not know their process. Also we are not too familiar with large commercial productions. Sorry we wish we could be of more help.

  • I am wondering of the MooGloo TI will remain firm to the bite when hot or cold, as in an italian sausage? I am working on a product that I have achieved the perfect texture using Methylcellulose HV but as you know, when cold it returns to its naturally soft state. I would like the sausage to remain firm in both cold and hot applications. Will the MG TI do this for me? I assume I will be removing all together the Methylcellulose or at worst decreasing the percentage used. I am also using the faba bean protein as a filler along with pea granules.

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