Seitan chicken

Seitan Chicken

This is the cruelty free chick’n substitute you need to have in your kitchen, it shreds, it slices, cubes, tears, chunks and satisfies! This is the base for our Sunday roast dinner chick’n and stuffing joint, chicken shreds for tacos or buritios, Rogan Josh (or indeed any curry!), BBQ skewers, sandwich slices, fried chicken and indeed anything that would ordinarily have chicken as it’s main ingredient. Like most seitan it benefits greatly from being left to cool and even rest in the fridge overnight.

You can use any white beans or chickpeas to make this, I’ve found butter beans give the smoothest finished texture to the product.

This is our recipe for Seitan Chicken. It’s adapted from chick wheat recipe by Avocados and Ales.

Seitan chicken

Seitan Chicken

Seitan vegan chick'n
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Resting time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Course: Main Meals, Snacks, Lunches
Cuisine: Vegan, English
Keyword: chickpeas, seitan
Servings: 2 loaves
Author: Paul


  • Food Processor
  • Stick blender/blender
  • Steamer
  • Table spoon
  • Teaspoon
  • Cooling rack
  • Scales
  • Tin foil
  • Electric Herb/coffee mill – Pestle and Mortar


Wet Ingredients

  • 400g tin Butter Beans (including liquid from tin)
  • 200 ml boiling water
  • 2 tbsp Lemon Juice

Dry Ingredients

  • 4 tbsp nutritional yeast (nooch)
  • 4 tsp stock powder
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp garlic granules
  • 1 tsp onion granules
  • 0.5 tsp mustard powder
  • 0.5 tsp salt
  • 250 g wheat gluten



  • Put all of the dry ingredients except the gluten into a coffee mill/herb grinder. Blitz until a fine powder has formed This is chicken seasoning!
    Vegan chicken seasoning
  • Using a blender or stick blender blitz the butter beans, aquafaba (juice from the butter bean tin), lemon juice and 200ml boiling water into a smooth paste.
    Add the chicken seasoning to this and blitz again.
  • Tip the wheat gluten into the food processor.
  • Turn on the food processor then pour the wet ingredients in as it's running and hold on to the top whilst it does its thing. It's going to get really animated, so hold tight when its on!
  • Now blitz on full for 1 minute
    Stand for 1 minute
    Then blitz on full for 1 minute to finish.
    (You want to achieve a smooth and consistent dough, so depending on your food processor you may need to repeat the steps for longer.)
    *since writing this post our newest food processor is less powerful so we blitz for 2 mins x 3 times, the dough will be warm and smooth when it's ready)

After you've made the dough follow this section

  • Remove the dough and split in half, weigh to be exact.
  • Make each half of the dough into loaves the same width as your steamer pan and place on to an oiled sheet of aluminium foil. ( It'll be approx 440g per loaf)
    Seitan chicken on foil
  • Roll each loaf up tightly, seitan will expand as it steams and we want a nice tight texture for shredding! I use three sheets in total to avoid it splitting out of the wrap as it steams.
    Seitan chicken in foil 2
  • Both loaves should fit in to your steamer side by side.
    Steam for 1.5 hours, make sure to top up your steamer every 30 minutes to avoid boiling dry!
    Seitan chicken in steamer
  • When the hour and a half is up, carefully unwrap the loaves (they will be very hot) and place on to a cooling rack for 30 minutes to cool and firm up. I've sliced the ends off here so you can see the texture inside but yours will have rounded ends!
    Squeeze the loaves, if they feel gelatinous then they will need to be steamed for longer, (another 30 minutes is usually plenty) you are looking for a bouncy consistent texture.
    (Undercooked seitan is like chewing soft gluey rubber, it's the worst!)
    Cooked seitan chicken
  • To make strips/shreds just pull open a loaf with your thumbs in the centre, then peel of strips to suit your dish. Watch out it they are still a bit hot!
    Seitan chicken shreds
  • You can use the chicken pieces in a variety of ways, many of our recipes use it, you can fry it, bake it, stir-fry it and even eat cold as a sandwich slice it's so versatile!
    Fry the pieces in a little oil to get crispy on the outside, or oven bake at 180°C/350°F fan assisted or 200 °C/390 °F regular for 15 minutes to get crispy without oil.
    You can also just cook the pieces in your favourite dish without getting crispy first, enjoy!
    Shredded veganb seitan chicken pieces

Quick method

  • Tip the contents of the tin of chickpeas (including the juice) in to the food processor.
  • Add the rest of the wet ingredients.
  • Add all of the dry ingredients except the gluten.
  • Blitz until smooth.
  • Add the gluten.
  • Blitz for 1 minute on full power.
  • Rest for 1 minute.
  • Blitz on full power for 1 minute.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!


  1. Mary McGrory

    I’ve been trying various seitan recipes in the five years since my son became vegan and I have to say that this is the best one and it is so easy. For the seasoning, I use a vegan friendly brand of chicken flavoured powder and I add one extra teaspoon because I think it needs a little extra saltiness. Otherwise I follow the recipe exactly. Don’t ignore the advice about triple wrapping before steaming – I thought I knew better first time round – turned out I didn’t! I vacuum pack individual portions and freeze them. Shallow fried in a little oil they are absolutely delicious straight out of the pan – so crispy on the outside but soft and moist inside – I’m not a vegan myself but I would happily eat these as a meat substitute.

    • Hi Mary, thank you so much for this glowing review! I’m really happy you’re getting so much out of this, we make seitan chicken regularly and it’s a staple in our house too!
      We set up this blog to help out people wanting to become vegan, already vegan or just interested in the culinary goodness that is a vegan diet. Our core is in the home kitchen cooking for our family so reading that you’re actively supporting your son’s choice make us both so happy.
      I love the idea of using chicken flavour powder, I’ll be trying this myself!

  2. Truly the best shredded chicken seitan recipe in the universe. Tried many, this beats them all. Making a quadruple batch puts at least 16, two-person portions in my freezer! So versatile.
    P.s. the “Dry Ingredients” heading needs to be moved, otherwise Instruction 1, results in an empty blender. ;-))

    • Hi David, thank you, really glad you enjoy the recipe! We make it all time too (we are making it right now for Sunday roast in fact). Thanks for the heads up on the Dry Ingredients heading – we have moved that now.

  3. Pingback: South Indian Vegetable Curry - Super Happy Win Food

  4. This is a fantastic recipe… So tasty that I can just eat it plain too. I steamed for one hour.

  5. I’ve been making seitan for YEARS and have tried loads of different recipes and methods. So far, this is the clear winner. It tears much better than any other seitan I’ve tried and has a much more authentic texture. I use slightly different herbs and spices and add a little soy sauce in as well (to make Asian style meaty strips).

    • Hi Jessie, we’re so happy you like our recipe and method! We played around with it until we got the quality of product vs. amount of faff level just right. We make a lot of this in our house!
      Thanks again for the lovely comments it’s really appreciated x
      Oh one more thing, whilst playing around with fried chick’n yesterday we added 2 tbsp of olive oil to the mix and it had a more fried chick’ny texture.

  6. First time making shredded chickwheat. Turned out beautifully. I did cook mine for 1hr10 (mixed my recipes up. I will definitely make again

    • Hi Q,
      I’m so happy you got great results from the recipe. I really worked on simplifying the process and making it as accessible as possible with the least amount of equipment and fuss.
      Thanks for the feedback!

      Paul x

  7. Benjamin Frazer Blanks

    Delicious! I use these strips for so many recipes. My favourite is slow fried with soy, sweet chilli sauce and rice wine. Topped with sesame seeds and chopped spring onion.

    • Hi Benjamin, so glad you enjoy our recipe. Your suggestion sounds delicious, we will definitely try that! Our favourite is in a curry or in a southern style coating.

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