Best-ever seitan steaks

By Wendy Andresen | Jul 08, 2020
Photo by: Wendy Andresen

I’ve been working for ages to perfect a seitan (say-tan) steak that is tender, flavorful and rave-worthy, and I think I finally nailed it. This recipe makes four big, juicy, meaty portions that you can serve in your favorite steak style.

I personally like them pan-fried in nondairy butter over medium-low heat for about three to four minutes per side with the pan covered. You can be creative about de-glazing the pan with brandy, red wine or simply broth.

A dusting of flaky sea salt and fresh rosemary elevates these steaks to gourmet status. We also really liked the addition of a few blistered cherry tomatoes.


1 1/2 cups peeled diced raw beets (about 8 ounces)

1/2 cup water

3/4 cup cooked lentils, drained

2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast

2 Tbsp. reduced-sodium soy sauce

1 Tbsp. mushroom powder

1 Tbsp. cider vinegar

2 tsp. onion powder

2 tsp. garlic powder

2 tsp. vegetarian beef-flavored bouillon

1 tsp. liquid smoke flavor

1 1/4 cups vital wheat gluten


1. In a food processor, combine all of the ingredients except the vital wheat gluten until smooth.

2. Add the vital wheat gluten to the food processor and process on low speed for a minute or two, until it forms a dough and no dry spots remain. Stop before your food processor smells like it’s about to catch on fire.

3. Transfer the dough to a counter top and knead it for no longer than 2 minutes. It will be sticky at first but will soon become smooth and elastic. Do not knead it excessively or it will become tough.

4. Flatten the dough into a disc about an inch thick and cut it into four wedge-shaped pieces. Wrap each wedge in a piece of aluminum foil and flatten it a bit more.

5. Place the wrapped steaks in a steamer basket and steam for 25 minutes. Be sure the water does not boil dry.

6. Let the steaks cool to room temperature, then refrigerate them overnight before unwrapping them. They are then ready for you to pan-fry in oil, grill, or broil as you would any steak. I suggest adding either oil or nondairy butter when cooking, to keep the steaks moist.

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