Seitan (say-tahn) is a food made from the gluten of wheat. It is an alternative to other meat substitutes like tofu. It is used to make mock chicken, beef, or pork

Seitan is high in protein and is very versatile when it comes to cooking. It may be simmered, baked, or fried and it absorbs flavor well.


Other names: Wheat Meat, Gluten Meat, Gluten, Mock Duck.
Translations: 西淡町, سيتان, Seitanleike, Сейтана, Сейтан, 塞伊坦, Сеитан, Seitán

Physical Description

Seitan once prepared looks very similar in color and texture to meat.

Colors: brown

Tasting Notes

Flavors: Umami, Salty
Mouthfeel: Soft, Chewy, Stringy, Spongy
Food complements: Asian foods
Substitutes: Tofu, Tempeh

Selecting and Buying

Choosing: Seitan is available all year round and comes already packaged from stores, or even pre-shaped and cooked.
Buying: Seitan can be purchased in many stores. It comes either pre-cooked, shaped, and flavored, and is packaged in tins or plastic and ready to be used in any form. Seitan can also be made at home by rinsing wheat flour until all that is left is the gluten.

Preparation and Use

Seitan is used very well in Asian foods. Be it simmered, broiled, roasted or boiled, it goes very well with soy sauce and many Asian flavors.

It is commonly used in western cuisine already shaped, often as ribs and chicken, flavored with barbecue or Teriyaki sauce. Wheat gluten, the main ingredient in seitan, can also be added to bread dough to give it a chewy texture.


History: It is suggested that seventh century Buddhists were searching for another meat alternative (as well as tofu). One day they were making a dough out of wheat and flour, the starch rinsed off and they had "wheat meat."

Seitan has been incredibly popular in Eastern countries for centuries, while only recently becoming popular in America, this is though to be thanks to the Mormons


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