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Vegan Hamburger Helper in a Bowl

Vegan Hamburger Helper

  • Author: Liz Madsen
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 12 cups 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


Creamy, cozy, and seriously delicious, this Vegan Hamburger Helper tastes just like the original stuff you got in a box, but better!




  • 1 pound dry pasta (use GF if needed)
  • 3 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 batch 10 minute meatless crumbles (or 2 cups vegan ground beef)
  • 3 tbsp ketchup (see note 2)
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard

Cheesy Sauce

  • 8 oz (around 200g) firm tofu (see note 3)
  • ¼ to ½ cup water or unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast (see note 4)
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1.5 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp turmeric, optional (for color)


  • Make the vegan ground beef: If you’re using my homemade meatless crumbles, jump over there and make them real quick. You don’t even need to clean or empty the pot! You can also just use 2 cups store-bought vegan ground beef crumbles.
  • Brown the grounds: Either way, start with your homemade or store bought vegan grounds in a large nonstick pot over high heat, and stir them around for a few minutes so they can start to brown. (If using store-bought, make sure to follow the instructions on the package.)
  • Add more flavor: Then add the ketchup and mustard, stir, and let cook for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Pasta time: Next, add the pasta and vegetable broth. Stir well, turn the heat down to medium, cover, and cook for about 8-10 minutes, or until pasta has cooked through and the liquid has been absorbed. If the liquid is absorbed before the pasta has cooked, add a bit more vegetable broth or use water--you shouldn’t need to, but pasta can differ.
  • Make the sauce: While that cooks, combine your cheesy sauce ingredients in a blender until smooth.
  • Combine: Once the pasta is cooked and the liquid has been absorbed, you can add in the cheesy sauce and stir it well. Let it heat for just a minute or two, then serve it up and enjoy!
  • Store it: Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.


  • Note 1: Packaged vegan ground meat will work fine, but they often give me an upset tummy. So I worked on creating meatless crumbles, just for the sake of this recipe! If you prefer, you can use about 2 cups of prepared vegan ground meat from brands such as Gardein or Beyond Meat.
  • Note 2: I know it sounds weird to use ketchup and Dijon mustard but they just so easily gave it that sweet and tangy kick it needed! Feel free to substitute whatever you’d like. Not a ketchup fan? Use a little tomato sauce.
  • Note 3: The base of the cheesy sauce is tofu (I bulk buy firm tofu so that’s what I use, but you can use less blending liquid if you buy a softer tofu.). You can substitute soaked cashews or sunflower seeds -- or even white beans! -- if you like.
  • Note 4: Nutritional yeast will make this taste super cheesy and delicious. If you’ve tried nutritional yeast and didn’t like it, you should really try it again but you could just use more spices instead.
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Vegan, Oil-Free, Nut-Free, Can Be Gluten-Free, Vegan Pasta, Vegan Hamburger Helper