I was really turned off by seitan the first time I tried to make it.

It’s not that I didn’t like the taste or texture, just that it felt like a huge chore to make.

It took a long time for me to come around to trying to make it again. What finally won me over was trying Isa Chandra’s seitan sausages. Not only are those easy to make, but they have a great taste and texture. I still follow that recipe a lot because of how much I like it, but I’ve also played around with it in the years since.

This recipe follows the basic ingredients, proportions, and methods that make those sausages work so well, but it’s intended as more of a blank slate. With this, you’ll get a seitan with a basic, “meaty,” umami taste that you can season however you want afterwards.

Like the title says, this is a recipe for steamed seitan, so you’ll need a large pot and a steamer basket to make it. There are other ways to make seitan, but this is the easiest in my opinion.

I’ll be posting several recipes in the coming months using this seitan as a base because it’s really versatile in what you can make with it.

This recipe is for a large batch because I like to make a lot and refrigerate it to use over 1-2 weeks. You can cut it by half if you don’t want so much at once.

Check out the recipe below the photo.

Leave a comment if you try it and have questions or suggestions for improvement.

Blocks of seitan sitting on a wooden cutting board

Recipe

Makes 4 Blocks of Seitan – 10 Minutes Preparation & 40 Minutes Cooking

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Chickpeas (From a Can, Drained)
  • 2 1/2 Cups Vital Wheat Gluten
  • 2 Cups Water + extra for steaming
  • 1/2 Cup Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/4 Cup Soy Sauce
  • 2 Teaspoons Garlic Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Liquid Smoke

Directions

  1. Place steamer basket in large covered pot with about 1/2 inch of water and turn heat up to medium
  2. In a large bowl, add chickpeas and smash well with a fork
  3. Add nutritional yeast, garlic powder, and black pepper to bowl and mix with chickpeas
  4. Mix soy sauce, water, and liquid smoke in a separate container, add to bowl, and mix with chickpeas
  5. Add vital wheat gluten and mix until a sticky dough forms
  6. Form dough into a ball with your hands and knead several times – if it is covered in dry flour, fold it over a few times until that is incorporated
  7. Split the ball into four equal sized chunks
  8. Form each chunk into a block of about 4×4 inches
  9. Wrap each block in aluminum foil
  10. Place the blocks in the steamer basket and steam for 40 minutes
  11. Remove from basket and allow to cool
  12. Refrigerate up to 2 weeks

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