Slow-Cooker Vegan Corned Beef

Vegan Corned Beef that is as meaty and flavorful as any non-vegan version we've ever had but made from seitan in the slow-cooker! The gorgeous color comes from beet puree, a much healthier alternative that still kicks ass. #vegan #seitan #plantbased #crockpot // plantpowercouple.com

Let’s get in the kitchen, pour ourselves a drink, and turn up the rebel music. We’re celebrating St Patrick’s Day vegan-style with this awesome Vegan Corned Beef!

For those of you who aren’t already familiar, corned beef & cabbage is a dish many Irish-Americans see as a quintessential component of their St Patrick’s Day traditions. During the weeks leading up to the feast day, we see this dish listed as a special at almost every Irish pub in Philly. So obviously, we had to make our own!


And make it we did…

Vegan Corned Beef that is as meaty and flavorful as any non-vegan version we've ever had but made from seitan in the slow-cooker! The gorgeous color comes from beet puree, a much healthier alternative that still kicks ass. #vegan #seitan #plantbased #crockpot // plantpowercouple.com

Traditionally, corned beef is made by taking a fatty piece of beef and soaking it in a salty / vinnegar-y brine for several days. Because this brine often contains nitrites, the meat has a bright pink color for which it’s known. It’s then often glazed or rubbed with some fresh black pepper and baked low & slow. All this results in a tender, flavorful roast.

For our vegan corned beef, we kept a lot of the traditional methods and flavor but updated the ingredients. Once again, this recipe proves that one need not surrender one’s ethics in favor of one’s traditions. Aka, we’re gonna to show you how to make a totally kickass corned beef without anyone having to die.

Sounds pretty amazing, right? 😉

How to Make Vegan Corned Beef

First, you’ll make your seitan. This seitan recipe is a bit different from ones we have posted in the past, thanks in part to the AMAZING Connie from Connie’s RAWsome Kitchen on YouTube. If you’re looking for some serious outside-the-box cooking inspiration, she’s totally your girl! Here’s what we learned from Connie that helped make this dish incredible:

  1. Instead of chickpea flour or nutritional yeast, try adding some all-purpose flour to your seitan dough. It sounds totally weird, but it improves the texture by leaps and bounds. No more chewy, tough seitan!
  2. Once your seitan dough is made, wrap it in plastic wrap and set it in the fridge for at least an hour. I knowww this makes the process that much longer, but a little planning ahead can go a long way. After we tried this tip, our seitan texture rocked.
  3. Have FUN with it! Sometimes, especially when developing recipes starts to become your actual job 🙋, you forget that cooking is supposed to be fun and experimental. Mistakes and miracles are both going to happen when you pursue anything remotely creative (and I 100% believe cooking is a creative endeavor). But you can’t be so afraid of the mistakes that you stop trying new things. If you do that, you’ll never get to the miracles. And this vegan corned beef recipe is one of the miracles, btw. 😋

Vegan Corned Beef that is as meaty and flavorful as any non-vegan version we've ever had but made from seitan in the slow-cooker! The gorgeous color comes from beet puree, a much healthier alternative that still kicks ass. #vegan #seitan #plantbased #crockpot // plantpowercouple.com

Connie also uses beets in many of her seitan recipes like we did in this seitan ham roast. That’s something I knew I definitely wanted to do for this corned beef. It’s the perfect way to add that iconic bright pink color to your vegan corned beef, sans the terrifying affects of nitrites. Seriously, Google search that stuff. It’s pretty frightening.

A Note for the Beet-Haters

But for my beet-haters out there, I feel it’s important to let you know that the end result does not at all taste like a beet. Trust me. I’m someone who has to hold her nose when cooking beets because the five-year-old picky eater in me just simply cannot. But I do know how healthy they are, so I’m super pumped I found a way to make them virtually unrecognizable but still attain some of the killer health benefits. Always a score with that one!

More Seitan Recipes to Try:

Other Vegan St. Patrick’s Day Recipes:

If you try this recipe for St Patrick’s Day or anytime, we would LOVE to know how it went and see your beautiful creations! You can rate the recipe and leave a comment below or tag us in your drool-worthy photos on Instagram. If you’re not already following, we’re @theplantpowercouple, with the ‘the’. 😉

We hope you enjoy this vegan corned beef recipe as much as we enjoyed creating it. Happy St Patrick’s Day!

Yield: 4-6 servings

Slow-Cooker Vegan Corned Beef

Vegan Corned Beef that is as meaty and flavorful as any non-vegan version we've ever had but made from seitan in the slow-cooker! The gorgeous color comes from beet puree, a much healthier alternative that still kicks ass.

1 hr, 30 Prep Time:

5 hr, 30 Cook Time:

7 hrTotal Time:

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4.1 based on 10 review(s)

Recipe Image

Ingredients

    For the beet puree:
  • 2 15 oz cans sliced beets (NOT candied beets)
  • For the seitan:
  • 1 cup + 2 Tbsp vital wheat gluten
  • 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/8 tsp ground mustard
  • 2/3 cup beet puree
  • 1/3 cup refined coconut oil , melted*
  • For the rub:
  • ground black pepper
  • sea salt
  • ground mustard
  • ground allspice
  • For the brine:
  • reserved water from canned beets
  • 1 cup water
  • 2/3 cup beet puree
  • 1 cup mushrooms, roughly chopped (optional)
  • 2 - 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp allspice berries
  • 1/2 tsp ground mustard

Instructions

  1. First, get your beet puree ready: Open your cans and drain the water out of each of them, reserving it in a bowl for the brine. Then, add all the sliced beets to your food processor and blend until a puree is formed. Set this aside for now.
  2. Next, make your seitan dough: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the gluten, flour, and all the spices. Make a well in the center of the mixture and pour in your melted refined coconut oil and 2/3 cup of the beet puree. Stir until combined. Then, get in there and knead the dough with your hands for about a minute.
  3. Cut a piece of plastic wrap into a large rectangle and sprinkle on a pinch of black pepper, ground mustard, ground allspice, and sea salt. Place the seitan dough on top of the seasonings and sprinkle the spices again on top of the loaf. Then, wrap the seitan dough tightly and stick it in the fridge for at least an hour or overnight.
  4. While your dough rests, get your brine ready by adding all the ingredients to your slow cooker and turn it on low. When time's up, take your seitan out of the fridge, unwrap it, and add it to the slow cooker. Cook on low for 2 hours, then flip and cook on high for another 2 hours.
  5. When the seitan has about 15 minutes left in the slow cooker, preheat your oven to 275F and grease a 9x9 baking dish. Sprinkle 1 tsp black pepper and 1/2 tsp sea salt into the bottom of the baking dish and carefully place your roast on top of it. Take about 1/4 cup of liquid from the slow cooker and pour it on top of the roast. Then, sprinkle it with another 1 tsp black pepper and 1/2 tsp sea salt.
  6. Pop that baby in the oven and bake at 275F for 45 minutes. Then, use a spatula to carefully flip the roast, pour another 1/4 cup of liquid from the slow cooker on top, and once again sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for another 45 minutes.
  7. When the time is up, allow your roast to cool for at least 20-30 minutes before you slice it. Serve with cabbage & boiled potatoes for an awesome traditional meal. Enjoy!

Notes

*It's super important here to use coconut oil labeled "refined" and NOT one labeled "unrefined" or "virgin". Refined coconut oil has none of the coconut taste. Also be sure to melt your coconut oil carefully on the stove or microwave before you measure it.

Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to a week or frozen for up to 6 weeks!

7.8.1.2
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https://www.plantpowercouple.com/recipes/slow-cooker-vegan-corned-beef/

Vegan Corned Beef that is as meaty and flavorful as any non-vegan version we've ever had but made from seitan in the slow-cooker! The gorgeous color comes from beet puree, a much healthier alternative that still kicks ass. #vegan #seitan #plantbased #crockpot // plantpowercouple.com

45 thoughts on “Slow-Cooker Vegan Corned Beef

  1. What are you thoughts about pressure cooking vs. slow cooking on this recipe? Yes I'm making it today LOL
    1. Hey, Amanda! We haven't tested the recipe in a pressure cooker and don't know much about them to be honest. But I know so many people who swear by making seitan in their Instant Pots, so I can see it being awesome! Let us know how it goes/went! :)
  2. I can't believe how good this is! Mine did not turn out pink despite using beet puree and liquid but I dont care. The flavor and texture are wonderful! I'm looking forward to using leftovers in a reuben!
    1. Yay!! I am jumping for joy reading this. So happy you enjoyed the recipe as much as we did! The pink color is so hit or miss, some people get no color and others have a REALLY BRIGHT pink. That's definitely a mystery we'll be working on in the future! :) But super pumped to hear you enjoyed the flavor and texture regardless.
  3. I did not like this recipe. It smelled so good and looks amazing. It really looks like meat. However it’s sweet and does not taste at all like the essence of corned beef. I see the point of the coconut oil because it looks like marbled fat in the loaf but that with the sugar made it taste like a dessert loaf and I think made it veer farthest from what I wanted. I’m also probably extra salty because it took so many hours to create! I cooked it right next to actual corned beef so I could tell at that point when mine smelled sweet and his smelled salty/sour it’d be off. I realllly want someone to create a loaf that tastes like the real thing cause it was one of my faves back in the meat eating days. PS I think this would make an excellent start for a tri tip or roast because of the look and texture, if you added beef seasonings and nixed the sugar!
    1. Hi, Shannon! Glad to hear you dug the smell and texture but sorry the flavor wasn't what you had hoped. That's the awesome thing about seitan recipes though - you can use the base recipe and adjust what you want more or less of. Hope you find your perfect vegan corned beef soon! Also, and I don't know if this is the case for your situation or not, but always be sure to use refined coconut oil for savory recipes like this, as unrefined will definitely give it that strong coconut / dessert-like quality. Good luck with your future seitan endeavors!
    1. Coconut oil naturally hardens at temperatures above 75F. For this recipe, unless it's warm enough where you are that the oil is already in a liquid state, you want to melt your coconut oil before measuring it by heating it in the microwave or carefully on a stove. :)
  4. I tried making this for my meat-eating parents and vegan husband. I doubled the recipe. I liked it quite a lot. Parents hated it. Husband picked up on the cinnamon and thought it tasted like a pancake. It was not a hit. Perhaps if I ever try making this again I won't use cinnamon or sugar-- I found it to be too sweet.
    1. Oh no! I'm so sorry to hear this. :( I had another comment saying it was too sweet as well, which is strange because every time I've made it, I didn't have that problem. Did you use refined coconut oil or unrefined? I could totally see it being weirdly sweet with the unrefined coconut oil!
  5. I am going to try this recipe this week! I read the reviews and I believe they did use unrefined coconut oil, which would not be good in this recipe! I also read that it was made for a carnivore! I have found carnivores do not like faux meat unless it's in a chili or smothered in sauce. When I became a vegetarian (now vegan) I did not like faux meat, because it simply isn't the same. It's important that people realize this is NOT going to be just like the meat they are used to, just like vegan cheese will not taste like dairy cheese, They simply are not the same! I have become a big fan of seitan since I became vegan. Since I have not had meat in 6 years, seitan is amazing to me! I am giving you 5 stars for effort, and for being kind. I will rate the recipe again after I try it. It sounds delicious!
  6. Hello I want to try this for Xmas and I'm wondering if I can substitute refined coconut oil for any other vegetable oil... Thanks in advance
    1. Hi, Nancy! The refined coconut oil is pretty critical for the texture of this roast. I haven't tested it with anything else; it could work, but the texture will definitely be a little different.
  7. I made this for Thanksgiving and even the meat eaters liked it. I'm making it again for Christmas. Do you think it can be made ahead and froze until Christmas?
    1. Yay! So happy to hear this, Kristen! You can definitely make and freeze it ahead of time. I'd let it thaw completely and then reheat it in the oven, wrapped in foil, at 300F for about 20 minutes. Hope it's a big hit again at Christmas!
  8. Hey! Happy New Year! Mine turned out great although I didn’t have the allspice. I used some Tuscan seasoning but it looks like yours and tasted good. For the people who said theirs turned out too sweet, i wonder if they used pickled beets instead of plain?
  9. I made this today, one of the best seitan recipes so far. High points on texture, color and taste, I will make it again! I had it with cabbage and potatoes :)
  10. I'm used to having corned beef out of a slow cooker in the broth (made with the corning spices packet that usually comes with the corned beef from the supermarket) with my cabbage, potatoes, etc. After baking this would it hold up if I put in a slow cooker broth with veggies to get the same effect?
    1. Hi, Will! I'd suggest cooking the cabbage and potatoes as you normally would and then pouring that liquid over the sliced roast, rather than adding it to the slow-cooker again which could negatively affect the texture. You could also try baking the finished slices in the oven to dry them out a bit before adding the seitan to your slow-cooker. Either way, I wouldn't leave it in the liquid for a long period of time!
    1. Hi, Ellen! It serves about 4-6 people depending on how you're slicing / using it. We can get about 6 sandwiches out of it or 4 servings when sliced thick and served with cabbage and potatoes.
  11. I’m so excited to make this recipe! If I was to speed up the cook time a little, how would you suggest doing that? Thank you!
    1. Yay, Suzie! We're so excited for you! :) We have not tried to speed up the cooking time on this one because we wanted it to be as close to the original process as possible - which takes a loooong time but is so worth it in the resulting taste and texture. You can totally cut the fridge time down to 30-60 minutes and mayyybe cook the roast on high in the slow cooker to shave an hour or so off, but be careful because we found even the slightest change in cooking time / temp can result in a major change in texture. If you try any changes, be sure to keep an eye on it and check the texture regularly!
  12. Wow!!!! Just absolutely wow!!I haven’t had a Reuben sandwich (my favourite) in 14 years and this was so authentic, delicious and even all the non-vegetarians at the table said it was incredibly like a Reuben. I got some great pictures but I can’t see a way to post them here. Definitely being added to my favourites in my recipe box thank you so much for this!!
  13. I'm planning to make this for St.PD. Can I make it ahead and store in the fridge? How would you reheat it? Thanks, Jenny
    1. Hi, Jenny! You can totally make it ahead of time. We suggest saving the roasting portion for day-of, but if you want to pre-roast it a bit and just finish it off the day of, that should work too. For leftovers, we'd reheat at 350F wrapped in foil or in a covered baking dish for 15-20 minutes or until just heated through. Hope you enjoy it!
  14. How well does this keep? I’m considering making it for an event but would need to prepare it the night before.
    1. Hi, Chelsie! If you're preparing it the night before, I'd suggest storing it in the fridge in an air-tight container after you take it out of the slow-cooker and do the roasting portion the day-of. You can also partially roast it the night before and just finish it off in the oven the next day. We've had good results with both!
    1. Hi, Joanne! Unfortunately, it can be tough to make a good gluten-free seitan, but there are quite a few recipes out there if you'd like to experiment with it a bit! Just type "gluten-free seitan recipe" into Google. You may also want to look up Skye Michael Conroy's book on seitan because I believe he includes quite a few soy-based vegan meat recipes that don't include gluten. I hope that helps! :)
  15. Thank you Brittany! Sounds good! I'm making 2 of them 1 today another tomorrow. Gotta have leftovers for a vegan Reuben! Jenny
  16. Thanks for very tasty, easy recipe! Turns out good each time. For today, I left it on low in slow cooker overnight, just to try it, so maybe 6 hours total. Then baked as directed. Less marinade to spoon over while baking, yet still moist, & flavorful.
    1. Yay, Bernadette! I'm so happy to hear how much you enjoyed this recipe and thank you for sharing the tip about cooking it overnight! SO helpful, especially for a busy week.
  17. I'm in the crockpot stage right now! I only have an 8x8 dish. Do you think it's going to make a difference? Should I put less liquid in just to be safe?
  18. This was great! Definitely the best texture of any seitan I’ve ever made! Only change I’d make would be leaving out the brown sugar and maybe adding a little soy sauce to make it a bit more savory. Other than that, I loved it!
  19. Made this today for St. PD and it was a hit!! It was my first time making seitan and this was a super easy recipe to follow! After reading some comments I added a little less cinnamon than you called for...I have to admit to me it didn’t have a strong corned beef taste, but I think I may have also gone a little too shy on the mustard and allspice! Loved the taste and texture so much however! Thanks for sharing it 😊
    1. CONGRATS on making your first seitan, Tara! I'm pumped to hear how well it went for you. Feel free to play around with the spices a bit and let us know if you come up with something cool. We love hearing new ideas!
  20. Thanks so much for this kickass recipe! It was super easy and turned out amazing! I have a pic but cant seem to post it
    1. You are so welcome, Nancy! I'm so happy to hear how much you enjoyed the recipe; it's possibly my favorite. :) If you use Instagram, tag @theplantpowercouple in the photo or send it via DM. I'd love to see it!

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