Updated: Jan 10, 2021
Vegans love to say things like, "As long as you're eating enough food you don't need to worry about protein." And they're half right. The recommended daily allowance for protein for a sedentary woman is about 35 grams a day. This is pretty easy to get if you're eating a a fair amount of veggies, grains, beans, etc. But- this number doesn't hold true for everyone.
If you're working on building muscle, or in an extended calorie deficit, the protein recommendations get a little fuzzier. 1 gram per pound? 1 gram per kilogram? 0.8 grams per pound? 1 gram per pound of lean body mass?
The truth is there isn't one set answer. Research has come up with a range of optimal protein levels for plant based athletes, but this means that rather than 35 grams a day you're probably looking at anywhere from 70-120 grams per day depending on your size and activity levels. These numbers are harder to hit with just broccoli and garbanzo beans.
Seitan is like the original fake meat. It's made mostly of vital wheat gluten (no substitutions, sorry to my gluten free friends) and is super versatile! Don't let the number of ingredients intimidate you, it's really easy to throw together and it's very forgiving. You can chuck in virtually any seasonings, beans, added fats, or liquid, that you like and it will come out perfect. Other than the vital wheat gluten you can skip or change basically any ingredient in this recipe, just be aware that the macros will change.
2 cups of mushroom, veggie, or vegan beef stock for steaming
125 grams Lupini beans, rinsed and drained (any beans will work, macros will change slightly)
Approximately 1/4 cup, or 35 grams, Sun-dried tomatoes (shake off excess oil but don't rinse)
285 grams Vital Wheat Gluten
5 grams dried shiitake mushrooms blended into a powder
10 grams beet powder (optional, adds to the "steak" color)
1 Tablespoon Tomato paste
25 grams Lupin Flour (soy or chickpea flour will work too)
1 Tablespoon Low Sodium Soy Sauce
1 Tablespoon Kitchen Bouquet or similar browning liquid
Pinch of any of your favorite seasonings: garlic powder, paprika, salt, pepper, steak seasoning, etc.
Set your stock on the stove as you make the seitan, reduce the heat once it comes to a boil
Pulse beans and sun-dried tomatoes in the food processor until they form a smooth paste
Add in remaining ingredients and pulse until well combined. This will form something that looks a little like wet sand.
Add in 1-2 cups of water or stock (stir in 1/2 a cup at a time, continue until dough looks well combined)
Pulse until sticky dough is formed
Knead dough by hand or in food processor. 2 minutes if using a machine, about 5 minutes if by hand
Separate into 7 portions
Roll and stretch each piece into a sort of ball, and then flatten with your palms and stretch the dough until a steak sized piece is formed. Each piece will expand when you steam it so make your pieces a bit flatter than you think they should be
Steam or boil for 30 minutes, flipping once, until pieces feel slightly rubbery when you squeeze them and completely hold their shape.
Prior to serving cook your steaks in a saute pan for about 3 minutes per side or until lightly golden. Alternatively, cut your steak into cubes and bake in the oven/ air fryer. They will puff up just a bit when you do this but will return to normal after a minute or two.
Serve however you want!
Macros per serving
C | 13
F | 4
P | 36
As always, these are based on the weight of ingredients. Macros may vary based on brand.