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Sliced seitan salami on a charcuterie board

Vegan Salami

  • Author: Liz Madsen
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


This delicious Vegan Salami is easy to make at home without any fancy equipment. It makes the perfect for a sandwich, or charcuterie board!


Units Scale
  • 1 medium beet, peeled and diced (see note 1)
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil (see note 2)
  • 4 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 tablespoons red wine vinegar (see note 3)
  • 1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives (see note 4)
  • 1/3 cup brine from kalamata olives
  • 4 ounces firm tofu (1/4 of a 1 pound block) (or sub 1/2 cup canned kidney beans)
  • 2 tablespoons white or yellow miso paste (see note 5)
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fennel (grind if desired)
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt (see note 6)
  • 3 1/4 cups vital wheat gluten


  • 1/4 cup of crumbled tofu from the remainder of the block--work this in to create the speckled fat look. Doesn’t add anything to the flavor or texture.


  1. Note: You’ll need a food processor for this recipe, what a perfect excuse to invest in one if you haven’t already! If you don’t have one, I recommend a Cuisinart food processor or if you cook a LOT, my baby is the Breville Sous Chef 12 Cup and it is AMAZING. I’ve also heard good things about Ninja, though my prior experience was not amazing. You can use a blender if you need to. If that is the case, do everything except add the vital wheat gluten, and transfer the mixture to a large bowl, then add the vital wheat gluten with a strong spoon (it may get stained from the beets if it’s porous, ask me how I know). Mix by hand once it gets too hard to stir until the vital wheat gluten is fully incorporated.
  2. Another note: You’ll also need a steamer pot or a pot fitted with a steamer basket. Make sure your pot has a lid, or you can purchase a universal lid.
  3. Blend the beet: Add the chopped beet, olive oil, tomato paste, red wine vinegar, olives, and brine to a food processor fitted with an S-blade and blend until super smooth.
  4. Add the rest of the ingredients except vital wheat gluten: Add the firm tofu, miso paste, nutritional yeast, black pepper, fennel seed, and sea salt and blend until smooth again.
  5. Add vital wheat gluten: Now add the vital wheat gluten and mix until just combined.
  6. Prepare steamer pot: Add 1-2 inches of water to the base of your steamer pot and start it to boil.
  7. Check the dough: Remove the mixture from the food processor and place in a large bowl. If the dough seems wet or way too soft (it should be somewhat firm but not hard), sprinkle on some more vital wheat gluten (3 tablespoons at a time) and work it into the dough without over kneading it.
  8. Divide the dough: Divide the mixture in 4 pieces. If you’d like to be exact, weigh the mixture on a food scale and divide exactly in 4 pieces. It’ll be fine if you don’t, though, just eyeball it.
  9. Form the vegan salami: On a large piece of aluminum foil (I recommend the extra wide heavy duty aluminum foil), take your first ball of seitan salami and compact it together really tightly with your hands on all sides. Then begin to roll it between your hands or with your hands on top of it on the foil until you get a large log, approximately 3 inches thick. Roll until it looks even, it should be around 6-8 inches long.
  10. Wrap it up: Now wrap it by rolling it up in the foil, smoothing the sides as you go. Roll fairly tightly, but don’t be overly concerned about it. Now take the edges and twist them, kind of like a piece of hard candy. Fold the ends in so they stay and repeat this step with the remaining seitan.
  11. Steam: Once the water in your steamer pot is boiling, add the wrapped salami to the steamer insert and put on a lid. Steam on high heat for 35 minutes.
  12. Chill: When the timer is up, remove the lid and the pot from heat. Let stand for 10-20 minutes, then refrigerate the salami (still wrapped) until cool, at least 4 hours. It is fully edible before it’s chilled, but it will be softer. Cooling the vegan salami fully will allow it to firm up. The rolled parcels will become a little inflated and very firm--this is normal. Just unwrap carefully, discard the foil, and slice the salami preferably with a serrated knife.
  13. Serve: I highly recommend serving this salami with fancy cheese like my vegan brie, vegan camembert, or vegan cheddar and some crackers. You could even feature it in a vegan charcuterie board (coming soon!).
  14. Store: Refrigerate leftovers for up to 4 days in an airtight container. You may freeze the wrapped seitan salami in the foil and in a plastic bag for up to 3 months. If already opened/cut, wrap in plastic or foil and place in a freezer safe bag or container and freeze for up to 3 months.


  • Note 1: Around the size of a baseball... I promise, you won’t taste it! You don’t absolutely need to peel it, but I did to make the product a little smoother. I recommend this vegetable peeler which makes all tasks super easy. I also wore some food prep gloves to protect my hands, and cut the beet on a plastic cutting board I didn’t care about. Cut off the root area, and cut into small-ish chunks so your food processor can chop it up quickly.
  • Note 2: While this vegan salami CAN be made oil-free and will still taste good, I wanted it to to be rich and delicious like salami so I did add some olive oil. Substitute tahini or more tomato paste and some vegetable broth (3 tablespoons each).
  • Note 3: Red wine vinegar adds some necessary almost Italian type flavor. Apple cider vinegar will also work, but I would not use balsamic as that’s a different flavor profile.
  • Note 4: To get that real salami tang, I use something a little strange: kalamata olives and their brine. This does NOT make the seitan taste like olives, but rather just gives it an extra kick of flavor. The fat in the olives also helps the texture and mouthfeel of the seitan. Don’t worry, the food processor will blend up the olives so your seitan won’t be chunky. If you’re a person who hates olives, you won’t really taste it in the salami.
  • Note 5: White or yellow miso paste is a great salty and umami way of flavoring our seitan without just adding soy sauce. Add more salt if you don’t have this or can’t have soy.
  • Note 6: This recipe is a mock version of a cured meat, which is usually cured with salt so we have to use a fair amount of salt to mimic the flavors. Use the amount indicated (1 tablespoon) of sea salt, or if using table salt, decrease to 1 ½ teaspoons since the grains of table salt are finer, making it “saltier.”
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Category: Ingredient, Snack
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American, Deli

Keywords: Vegan, Nut-Free, Sugar-Free, Vegan Salami, Vegan Deli Meat