Vegan Beef Rendang Recipe (Bruneian Curry)

Vegan Beef Rendang Recipe (Bruneian Curry)

If you’re into spicy food, and we mean REALLY spicy food, then give our 100% vegan “Beef” Rendang a try, made with vital wheat gluten to emulate the taste and texture of the real thing.

This is the national dish of Brunei, a small sunny country in Southeast Asia, and is best served with another favourite in Brunei, Nasi Lemak, which is a three ingredient rice recipe infused with coconut milk.

This meal may take a bit of time to prepare (the vegan beef simmers for an hour and a half) but believe us, it’s well worth the time and effort. Maybe for a special occasion or for those who just want to try something new.

Take a look at our vegan asian recipes page for more like this!

Vegan Beef Rendang (Bruneian Recipe)

Have you ever tried to make vegan beef before? No? Why not give it a try! This recipe is super spicy and the national dish of Brunei, that's right, "Beef" Rendang!

Course Main Course
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 32 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 42 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 612 kcal


Vegan Beef (Dry Ingredients)

  • 1 tbsp mushroom Powder
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 cup vital wheat gluten

Vegan Beef (Wet Ingredients)

  • 70 grams extra-firm tofu moisture removed
  • 2 tbsp white miso paste
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp vegan worcestershire sauce
  • 1.5 tsp tamari/soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 160 ml water

Vegan Beef (Broth)

  • 12 cups water
  • 2 onions peeled & quartered
  • 1 carrot chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup tamari/soy suace
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 2 tbsp demerara sugar
  • 1 tbsp mushroom powder
  • 1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp ginger powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper

Rendang Paste

  • 10-15 dried red chillis de-seeded
  • 10 shallots peeled
  • 3/4 inch fresh ginger peeled & sliced
  • 3/4 inch fresh galangal peeled & sliced
  • 3 stalks fresh lemongrass thick bottom third only
  • 1/2 inch fresh turmeric
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk full-fat

Other Ingredients

  • 1 cup desiccated coconut
  • 2 cups coconut milk full-fat
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 kaffir lime leaves torn roughly
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp salt


For the Vegan Beef Broth

  1. Add all ingredients to a large pan and bring to a boil.

For the Vegan Beef

  1. Combine all dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.

  2. Place all wet ingredients in a blender and mix until well combined (be sure to crumble your tofu).

  3. Add the wet to the dry ingredients 1/2 cup at a time until all the dry and wet ingredients become one.

  4. Knead your "beef" by hand for 10 minutes - punch the day lights out of it. This is very important as this gives it the meaty texture.

  5. Add your "beef" to the vegan beef broth, cover and simmer for 1.5 hours.

For The Rendang Paste

  1. Start by soaking your dried chillis in warm water for 10 minutes. Then drain and de-seed (see notes for details).

  2. Add the chillis, shallots, ginger, galangal, lemongrass, turmeric and coconut milk to a blender and blitz until well combined. Leave to one side.

Creating The Dish

  1. In a wok, dry fry the desiccated coconut on a low heat for around 7 minutes, or until golden brown. 

  2. Allow to cool and then grind the coconut in a pestle and mortar until it forms a powder. Leave to one side.

  3. Once the beef has simmered, take out of the broth and cut up into uneven squares.

  4. In a wok, add the chopped beef, coconut milk and water - bring to a boil and stir constantly.

  5. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for around 25-30 minutes (add a bit of water if the mixture becomes way too dry).

  6. Add the ground coconut, kaffir lime leaves, sugar and salt, and stir-fry for an additional 5 minutes.

  7. Serve with traditional Nasi Lemak (Bruneian Coconut Rice) or rice of your choice.

Recipe Notes

  • Simply blitz dried porcini mushrooms to create mushroom powder.
  • If you'd prefer your Rendang with much less heat, use 3-5 dried chillis rather than the traditional 10-15 (WARNING, it will blow your head off!)
  • You can use powdered turmeric for the Rendang paste if you don't have any fresh to hand.

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