Sunday, September 20, 2015

Veganize a Family Recipe: Vegan Pot Roast


Today for Vegan MoFo we're veganizing an old family recipe.

I come from a family of Hungarian Jews, so I could think of nothing more appropriate than this slow-cooker pot roast, particularly because this is the dish my mother makes for nearly every major holiday. I'd never made a vegan pot roast before, but having recently acquired a slow cooker, I was up for the challenge!

UntitledBecause I was a little pressed for time with this entry (i.e. no time to experiment too much), I simply adapted my mother's recipe with a little seitan pot roast help from Robin Robertson's recipe from Fresh From the Vegan Slow Cooker (along with a few embellishments of my own).


What You'll Need:
for the seitan:
1 1/2 cups vital wheat gluten
1/2 cup chickpea flour
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
2 tbsp liquid aminos (or soy sauce)
1 tbsp ketchup
3 tsp olive oil (two to mix into seitan and one to coat)
1 1/4 cups vegetable broth
1/4 tsp smoked paprika, plus more for sprinkling

for the rest:
4-5 carrots, peeled and chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
2 parsnips, peeled and chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
2 potatoes, cut into 1-inch chunks (you can use sweet potatoes, yellow, or idaho, whatever your fancy!)
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1 large onion, thinly sliced
3/4 tsp thyme
1/4 tsp liquid smoke
1 tbsp Bragg's liquid aminos (or soy sauce)
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1/4 dry white wine
a healthy dose of salt and black pepper

What You'll Need to Do:
Mix up all of the seitan ingredients in a bowl and knead for approximately 3 minutes, until elastic and holding together nicely. Then coat with additional tsp of olive oil and sprinkle with 1/4 tsp paprika.

In a small bowl or mixing cup, mix together your broth, liquid smoke and aminos (this is going to serve as a "beef"y broth base).

Coat your cooker with a small amount of oil, then add in your potatoes, carrots, garlic, parsnips and half of your onions to the bottom of the cooker. Season your vegetables with the thyme, salt, and pepper, and a dash of smoked paprika. Add in your wine and vegetable broth mixture.

At this point you can either add the seitan in whole (Robertson recommends using oiled parchment paper or foil to keep it separated), or you can separate it into smaller pieces. I tried smaller pieces since I thought they'd absorb the rest of the flavors more readily that way.

Cover with the remaining onions, and add a bay leaf on top. Cover your cooker, and let simmer for approximately 8 hours, until all of your carrots and potatoes are tender.

This smells so amazing while it's cooking. The real trick is to wait those 8 long hours until it's ready!


Tips and Tricks:
If you're looking for an even simpler seitan recipe, check out a totally different version on Robertson's site. Sounds like another good option!

By the way--if you're looking for a great vegan slow cooker recipe book--Robin Robertson's book is it! We love everything we've tried in there, and are so excited for slow cooker weather to be coming back around so that we can try even more!


  1. That looks so good! I haven't made seitan in a slow cooker yet, but it totally makes sense. I think going the smaller pieces route sounds like the best way to go...certainly turned out well.

  2. I adore my slow cooker! And Fall foods! Aunt Puck just referred me here to your blog and I am so excited to sift through for all you've shared. You're my #1 blog to read right now:) Hope you'll check out my little baby too at

    1. Awesome!! Hope you enjoy! You can follow along on Facebook at as well! Look forward to checking your your blog as well.

  3. I wonder how this would work in an Instant Pot? I know a slow cooker would also work.