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Vegan Philly Cheesesteak Sandwiches

You’d be surprised how easy it is to recreate a classic Philly Cheesesteak with all-vegan ingredients. In this recipe, the homemade seitan and cheesy sauce harmonize so well you’d want to see them get married. So go and make this vegan Philly Cheesesteak Sandwich now!

Vegan Philly Cheesesteak Sandwiches

I have very fond memories of the first Philly Cheesesteak I’ve ever had. It was 2012. 6 years ago! It was one of the first [intentionally] vegan things I ate, in a Loving Hut in San Francisco. And it was super yummy! So this is my turn on a vegan Philly Cheesesteak Sandwich.

The main components of the vegan Philly Cheesesteak:

  • Homemade Seitan (it’s super easy to make with a food processor! You don’t have to knead it at all!)
  • Cheesy Sauce (I’m using my go-to vegan cheese sauce)
  • Sandwich Bun (I used a store-bought one for this one, but you can even make your own by using this basic white bread recipe)

How to make Seitan that isn’t spongy/rubbery/tough?

Recently, I experimented a lot with homemade seitan. My #1 super secret ingredient for seitan that has just the right balance of soft and firm is sparkling water! It’s just a simple substitution with a huge effect. Trick #2 is to use canned chickpeas instead of chickpea flour. This makes the seitan soft (even the next day or the day after!).

Bell peppers and onions are a classic add-in for Philly Cheesesteaks. I’ve added a mix of green and red bell peppers to add more colors.

More Seitan Recipes you will love

I hope you’ll enjoy this vegan Philly Cheesesteak Sandwich as much as I do! 

Let me know if you give this recipe a try! I’d love to hear how it turns out for you.

If you don’t want to miss out on new recipes, subscribe to my weekly newsletter and follow me on Instagram and Facebook!

Cheers, Bianca

Vegan Philly Cheesesteak Sandwiches

Vegan Philly Cheesesteak Sandwiches

Elephantastic Vegan
You’d be surprised how easy it is to recreate a classic Philly Cheesesteak with all-vegan ingredients. In this recipe, we create our own seitan and cheesy sauce that harmonize so well you’d want to see them get married. 
4.62 from 18 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Vegan
Servings 2 servings
Calories 668 kcal


Ingredients for the seitan

  • 1/2 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1/2 large white onion chopped
  • 1 garlic clove chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/4 cup cooked chickpeas
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup sparkling water
  • 3/4 cup vital wheat gluten

Ingredients for the cheesy sauce

  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil or vegan butter
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika powder
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 cup water

Additional Ingredients

  • 1 white onion peeled, halved and sliced
  • 1/4 green bell pepper cut into strips
  • 1/4 red bell pepper cut into strips
  • 2 sandwich buns


  • In a large pan with canola oil, sautée the chopped onion and garlic cloves until soft. Add the cumin and fennel seeds. Let it cook further until the spices are toasted.
  • In a food processor, add the chickpeas, onion-garlic-spices mixture, tomato paste, salt, thyme, smoked paprika, soy sauce, and sparkling water. Pulse until it’s saucy. Then add the vital wheat gluten and pulse again until it comes together in a ball.
  • Prepare a large pot (filled with a couple of inches of water) with a steaming basket and bring to high heat.
  • Divide the seitan into 8 equal chunks. Add the seitan chunks into the steaming basket and let them steam for about 40 minutes, flipping them after 20 minutes.
  • In the meanwhile, you can prepare the homemade cheesy sauce: Heat the coconut oil or butter in a small pot over low heat. Add the salt, turmeric powder, curry powder, and paprika powder. Add in the flour and whisk. Add nutritional yeast, whisk again until clumpy. Add the water and whisk on low heat for 1-2 minutes until it gets gooey. Set aside. If it gets too thick later on you can add a little bit more water and whisk again.
  • Let the seitan cool off a bit before slicing it into thin strips.
  • Bring a large pan with olive oil to high heat, toss in the white onion and let it cook until translucent. Then add the bell pepper and seitan strips and let it pan-fry for 3-4 minutes until the seitan is crispy on the edges and the bell pepper is softened. Add more salt to taste.
  • Fill the sandwiches with crispy seitan and add the cheese sauce on top. Enjoy!


Calories: 668kcalCarbohydrates: 70gProtein: 49gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 13gSodium: 1695mgPotassium: 583mgFiber: 7gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 1010IUVitamin C: 40.1mgCalcium: 150mgIron: 7mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @elephantasticvegan or tag #elephantasticvegan!

This post was first published on November 12, 2014. Updated on September 14, 2018.

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Recipe Rating


Friday 28th of June 2019

Does the recipe only make enough seitan for two sandwiches or will there be some leftover?


Sunday 3rd of March 2019

I made this dish today and it was *AMAZING*. I love the noochy cheese sauce. I did bake the seitan at 350 for two hours rather than steaming. I could not believe how tender it came out- definitely my most tender seitan I've attempted so I'll definitely be making this again.


Thursday 7th of March 2019

Yeay! I'm glad you liked the cheesy sauce and seitan :)

francesco caselli

Monday 17th of September 2018

This is delicious! I will prepare this evening for my partner. Thank you very much 


Tuesday 18th of September 2018

Thank you so much! I hope you guys enjoyed it! :)