Vegan Beef n' Cheddar
Arby's is likely never going vegan, so let's show them how it's done with a VEGAN BEEF n' CHEDDAR!
I gotta be honest, I've never been to Arby's much. Mostly because we didn't have one where I grew up, but on top of that, there's that scene in the Simpson's where one of the characters says "I'm so hungry I could eat at Arby's" so I think that might've influenced me too. So to be totally frank, I have no idea how close this is to the original. That being said, it's still frickin' scrumptious as heck and I guarantee you'll like them regardless. The combination of the Horsey Sauce, the House Sauce, the Cheese Sauce and the Roast Beef is pretty incredible!
For the Roast Beef, we are using Seitan! I tested out this recipe a few times, and I was able to get the taste right, but the texture was off. You see I was using tofu since the taste of Seitan can be a little overwhelming for me. Usually I cut it with beans or jackfruit, but I wanted to try out tofu since I've seen a lot of folks doing that. At first I was using soft tofu, but the texture was too soft (weird right).
I found THIS RECIPE by 86 Eats where they use Super Firm tofu, and that did the trick! Check out their site they have a lot of great vegan deli meats (I've never made them but they seem to be quite popular!)
The House and Horsey sauce are pretty straight forward. For the Cheese sauce, we're doing something a little different. My buddy AJ from VeganFoodPlug posted a story where he made cheese sauce by simply melting some cheese and plant milk. His point was that the cheeses already had starches so it's redundant to add flour and butter for a roux, and I think he's right! Not only was it easier, but I think it tasted better too. You obviously need more cheese to get the same amount of sauce, but I think this might be how I make cheese sauces from now on!
Since you need to let the Seitan rest overnight in the fridge, I recommend making the Horsey and House sauce the same day, since they will only get better overnight in the fridge as well. Then the next day, just make your cheese sauce, slice up your roast beef and dig in!
I did use a DELI SLICER to get my roast beef thin like Arby's, but a sharp knife will be good too. You probably won't be able to get them as thin, but it should still be good!
Also, you can throw some CURLY FRIES on this to make it an Arbynator! Super good move!
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Vegan Roast Beef
1 (16 oz) package super firm tofu (make sure it's super firm!)
1 cup vital wheat gluten
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp Better than Bouillon Beefless Broth (or something similar)
1 Tbsp vegan Worcestershire
2 Tbsp mushroom seasoning
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp molasses
1 Tbsp tomato paste
3 Tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp liquid smoke
1/4 cup water
1 tsp red yeast rice powder (optional for color)
12 oz vegan cheddar cheese (grated)
1 cup unsweetened plant milk
Arby's House Sauce
Makes about 1/2 cup
1/4 cup ketchup
1 Tbsp BBQ sauce
1 tsp vegan Worcestershire sauce
1/2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
3 Tbsp water
1 tsp hot sauce
Dash of onion powder, garlic powder and smoked paprika
1 Tbsp brown sugar
Makes about 1/2 cup
1/4 cup vegan mayo
2 Tbsp prepared horseradish
Splash of white vinegar
For the Horsey Sauce, just combine all the ingredients and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
For the House Sauce, combine everything in a sauce pot, then cook on medium low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. I would let this one chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes as well!
For the cheese sauce, I recommend grating your vegan cheese by hand, but either way, simply melt your cheese and add in your plant milk as it melts. Depending on the consistency you want, you'll wanna add in more or less plant milk. I ended up using 12 oz of cheese to 1 cup of plant milk.
Now on to the Roast Beef. Preheat your oven to 350 F.
In a food processor blend up your super firm tofu. Then add in the rest of the ingredients and blend. You might need to break it into two dough balls if your food processor isn't big enough (like I did).
Then just continue to knead the dough in the food processor until it forms a shreddable type of texture when you pull it apart (video link above shows it well). Pull it out and check it every now and again until you get the desired texture.
Form your Seitan into a loaf type shape, then wrap it in some heavy duty foil tightly. I used two layers of foil.
Place on a baking sheet, then bake for at least 1 hour. I baked mine for 65 minutes and that was perfect, but it may depend on your oven.
Let the Seitan cool to room temp, then rest in the fridge OVERNIGHT. This is very important for the final texture.
Slice up your Roast Beef with a deli slicer if you got one, a sharp knife works too! You can also heat up the slices in a pan, but if they are thin don't cook them for too long or they'll get tough.
Serve on a warm or toasted Onion Roll (or Hamburger Bun) slather on as much of the Horsey and House Sauce that you want, pile on that Roast Beef, then douse it in the Cheese sauce!