Skip to Content

Crockpot Vegan BBQ

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure here.

This sweet and tangy crockpot vegan bbq is out-of-this-world! Perfect for summer outdoor gatherings or any time of the year. Serve with slaw, corn on the cob, or air fried potato wedges. 

vegan barbeque sandwich on cutting board with bbq sauce in background

We absolutely LOVE barbecue, and I remember the first July 4th holiday, after we went plant-based, was when I found this crockpot vegan bbq recipe in a book by Dr. Neal Barnard, president of Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine

Vegan BBQ is so good because it’s…

  • smokey
  • tangy
  • hearty
  • perfect for July 4th
  • great summer picnic food
  • simple & delicious
vegan bbq on green leaves with bbq sauch and bbq sandwich in background

Every year, on July 4th, the small North Carolina town I live in has a festival with rides for kids, music, crafts, and fireworks. The volunteer fire department makes barbecue and sells it, and we always used to go eat lots of barbecue sandwiches. 

That was a problem after we went plant-based because our new-found knowledge told us that animal products are loaded with artery-clogging saturated fat and cholesterol. And, that’s when I ran across this recipe and decided to give it a try.

We absolutely love it and make it all year round–no special holiday needed! You’ll be amazed at how good it tastes, and it’s not difficult to make either. 

black crockpot full of vegan bbq with tin cup of bbq sauce beside

How to make vegan bbq

The first step in making this recipe is cooking the seitan, and I know some of you have never even heard of it before.

Seitan is becoming more and more popular in vegetarian, vegan, and plant-based communities as a meat substitute. It has a look and texture amazingly similar to cooked meat.

Making seitan

I sometimes make my own seitan, because it’s quite easy to make. Check out this article I wrote called Seitan How to Cook it and Recipes. It can also be purchased already cooked at Whole Foods and other health food stores.

sliced seitan on wood cutting board with knife

It’s quite simple and fun to make a batch yourself. It’s made with vital wheat gluten and just needs water and spices to prepare.

Assemble the dry ingredients of wheat gluten powder, spices, and herbs. Combine in a large bowl and whisk together.

stainless steel bowl with flour and baking ingredients with whisk

In a medium bowl, mix together the remaining ingredients of water, tamari, “oyster” sauce, and tahini.

Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture. It will thicken very quickly. Begin to knead everything together for approximately 3 minutes.

Set to the side and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Then knead another 2-3 minutes. The longer you knead, the chewier the seitan will be after baked.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and press seitan into the pan. Bake at 325°F for 40 minutes.

Remove from oven, cut in half, and place in a crockpot with barbecue sauce. Allow to cook on low for 1 hour. By allowing the seitan to cook slowly in the barbecue sauce for at least an hour, it achieves a tender, pulled texture.

BBQ sauce

The barbecue sauce in the recipe card below is simple and delicious. However, if you’re short on time or just don’t want to make your own bbq sauce, a good store-bought sauce is Bone Suckin’ Sauce available on Amazon by clicking the link.

Remove the seitan from the crockpot. Use a couple of forks to pull and shred the seitan apart. This can be shredded in a food processor, but I like mine chunkier and do it by hand. Then place back into the crockpot with barbecue sauce and cook 6-8 hours on low.

overhead of crockpot full of vegan bbq with white spoon

Serve warm on whole grain buns. We added fresh spinach leaves and sliced onion to ours. Delish!

overhead shot of bbq sandwich, bbq sauce, and corn on cob

Note: These sandwiches can also be made with Soy Curls instead of seitan if preferred for those that are gluten-free.

*Originally published May 2015.

Tips for making vegan bbq

  • At first glance, I know this recipe seems a bit labor-intensive, but believe me when I say it will be well worth the effort.
  • After you’ve learned to make seitan for this barbecue, you’ll feel more comfortable making it for other recipes like recipes that use seitan.
  • If you decide to purchase precooked seitan and bottled bbq sauce, this dinner can come together in about 10-minutes flat. Simply combine the cooked seitan with the bbq sauce and heat and eat.

SUBSCRIBE for Recipes

Other great burger recipes

vegan barbeque sandwich on cutting board with bbq sauce in background

Crockpot Vegan BBQ

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

This sweet and tangy crockpot vegan bbq is out-of-this-world! Perfect for summer outdoor gatherings or any time of the year. Serve with slaw, corn on the cob, or air fried potato wedges. 

Ingredients

Baked Seitan

Barbecue Sauce

  • 1 cup yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 2 cups fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup prepared yellow mustard, not ground mustard, but liquid
  • 2 Tbsp black strap molasses
  • 2 Tbsp agave or maple syrup
  • juice from one lemon
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 2 Tbsp chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp liquid smoke, optional

Instructions

Baked Seitan

  1. Vital wheat gluten can be found in the baking section of most grocery stores.
  2. Assemble the dry ingredients of wheat gluten powder, spices, and herbs. Combine in a large bowl and whisk together.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix together the remaining ingredients of water, tamari, "oyster" sauce, and tahini.
  4. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture. It will thicken very quickly. Begin to knead everything together for approximately 3 minutes.
  5. Set to the side and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Then knead another 2-3 minutes. The longer you knead, the chewier the seitan will be after baked.
  6. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and press seitan into the pan. Bake at 325 for 40 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven, cut in half, and place in a crockpot with barbecue sauce. Allow to cook on low for 1 hour. By allowing the seitan to cook slowly in the barbecue sauce for at least an hour, it achieves a tender, pulled texture.
  8. Remove from the crockpot. Use a couple of forks to pull and shred the seitan apart. This can be shredded in a food processor, but I like mine chunkier and did it by hand. Then place back into the crockpot with barbecue sauce and cook 6-8 hours on low.
  9. Serve warm on whole grain buns. We added fresh spinach leaves and sliced onion to ours. Delish!

Barbecue Sauce

  1. Over medium heat, saute the onion and garlic in 3 Tbsp of veggie broth until it softens. I cook a little longer to caramelize.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients, simmering for another 5 minutes.
  3. Pour mixture into a blender and puree until smooth. Add to crockpot with seitan.

Notes

Detailed instructions, in-process photos, and my personal helpful tips can be found in the article above.

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn a small percentage from your purchases at no cost to you. Thank you!

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 151Total Fat: 3.5gCarbohydrates: 13.1gFiber: 1.9gProtein: 11g

To obtain the most accurate representation of the nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator. You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information provided is accurate, complete, and useful.

Did you make this recipe?

Please rate and leave a comment because I love hearing from you. Remember SHARING IS CARING!

Plant-Based Vegan Starter Kits $27

Vegan Plant Based Starter Kit
Click photo to see Plant-Based Started Kits available.
collage of meal delivery service photos
photo collage for vegan bbq for pinterest
photo collage for vegan bbq for pinterest

sugar free chocolate cupcakes
Best Chocolate Vegan Cupcakes
← Read Last Post
vegan grilled cheese sandwich with tomato and lettuce
Ultimate Vegan Grilled Cheese Sandwich
Read Next Post →
Skip to Recipe