Sunday, November 28, 2010

D.I.Y Seitan from scratch!

When I became vegan, I read about something called vital wheat gluten, and started to search frantically for it. I found it, but only at the health food store, and it was crazy expensive. This was more than 4 years ago, and last I checked, the prize was even higher. I've bought it a few times, and I really love it. Chickpea cutlets, black bean burgers, sausages, seitan, it's all possible with the magic gluten flour. Unfortunately, I'm not rich, and I also hate spending money on over-prized food, so I didn't buy it very often. Here, it's non existent.

I refuse to be seitan-less though. With no tofu or fake-meats in the stores, we fall back on seitan when beans and lentils seems a bit boring. Luckily, Martin is a veteran seitan maker, or as veteran you can be when you are no more than 20 years old. A little more than a year ago, we were visiting his friend who lived in Düsseldorf, and that's where I was thought to make seitan from scratch. We had to buy a big blue bucket to knead it in, since the sauce pans in his home were to small. But we made it through, and since then, I've made it that way my self.

I wrote you a guide on how to do it, with pictures to go with it. It's really super simple, give it a try!

 Mix flour and water. I used 2 kg wheat flour and 1200 ml water, but it may very depending on your flour.

Knead it until it comes together nicely.

Let it take a bath for 2-12 hours.

Time to start kneading! Place the bowl in the sink.

Knead it with running water, and change it when it get's to white. You will soon notice how the gluten begins to show.

Half way there! At this point, the dough might not hold together very well. Don't worry, just hang in there!

Done! All the starch is gone and you are ready to boil it.

Cut it up in smaller pieces.

Let it simmer in broth, soy sauce, onions, garlic or whatever floats your boat.

After 45-60 minutes it's ready, it will be quite firm by now. Let it cool in the broth, and use it for whatever you want to!


  1. What a great post! Your seitan looks great. Really impressive. I like the step by step and I like your attitude. If you can't get something, make it yourself :)

  2. I remember doing this a couple of years ago, sheesh it sure gave my arms a good work-out! A great step by step guide, I could've used that back then. :)

  3. That looks awesome! I love making seitan but that's with the vital wheat gluten that I have no problem finding around here. Might have to give this a shot someday anyway.

  4. Your seitan looks so good! :) I'm also impressed that you make it all the way from scratch.

    In continental Denmark we have something called "gluten flour". It's not the same as vital wheat gluten, but it's widely available and quite cheap, and seems to work okay when making seitan. Usually I just stock up on gluten flour when I'm in Sweden, however. ;)

  5. I really like your blog, and your pictures. This is definitly one i'll keep reading. and great with a recipe for seitan! I've never had it but it seems like a lot of fun making. /r

  6. awesome post! I've only ever made seitan with VWG... never from flour. This is a great little tutorial :)