One Skillet Vegan Hamburger Helperjump to recipe
Guys, I’m back, and I totes know you missed me!!! Since being back from my (stressful) vacation at Disney World, I needed to catch up on a lot of things…mainly sleep. I am one that has learned sleep is and needs to be a priority because without it, our bodies do not function how they are suppose to, and putting yourself into overdrive burnout mode benefits no one. So while I was catching up on some z’s, school work (readings and papers), I didn’t forget about all you Healthee’s out there. No matter where I go, I’m always looking for inspo, and being in Disney, plant based, can be rough. I made a list of all the things I wanted to reinvent when I got back. Hence this One Skillet Vegan Hamburger Helper.
I know the original hamburger helper is a completely processed mess. I don’t even know if the meat in that thing is real. Either way it’s something a lot of peeps or parents around the world still eat because it’s cheap and convenient. But in all honesty how convenient is it really when you’re piling yourself up with junk food, we all know where that road leads to…so anyway.
I turned this one hit wonder around and made it not only healthy but vegan. Instead of using chop meat or beef, I used tempeh. Instead of using cheese I used my best vegan cheese sauce recipe. With all the right spices, and I don’t mean to toot my own horn here (toot toot 🚂), this is actually better than the “original” (<~~~bleh, yuck).
What’s so amazeballs batman about this recipe is that I used ingredients I have on hand all the time. Peppers, onions (yellow and green), elbow pasta, potatoes, carrots, and tempeh. As a plant eater, these are the norm to have, usually. Tempeh is great replacement for meat. Especially if you’re coming from being a meat eater and looking for alternatives. You prepare it the same way you would if it were beef, except it’s cruelty free, and won’t clog your arteries. I mean that last part right, pfft, always a good thing. 😊
How freakin’ delicious 😍
Since it’s been a minute since we last chatted, I’ve been working on a few things. One, school is almost over which will leave me with more time to write and post here on the blog. I’ll be able to post more frequently and hook you up with other cool and awesome things happening. Secondly, I’ve been working on my mediation post, and lastly, I’ll have a whole blog post up on my vacation in Disney. There will be my do’s and don’t’s as a vegan, where you can eat, where to avoid, my personal experience and yada yada yada.
Also when I returned home, I had some fun and super cool gifts waiting for me like this snazzy fork made by my friend Chloe of Sweet Mint Handmade Goods (see below).
Love Love Love my NeuroticMommy Spoon! 💕
How cool right, I get to eat my plants with my plant eating fork! Her shop on Esty is amazing and I encourage you to check her out. Her vintage flatware can be engraved with almost anything you’d like. It’s a fun way to eat and I personally just feel ultra cool having handmade vintage flatware. So do you think if I brought this fork and spoon out with me people would know I’m a plant based mommy? I mean totes obvi right?! LOL
To round everything up, I’m back from vaca, this One Skillet Vegan Hamburger helper is going to be your new BFF doesn’t matter if you’re a carnivore or not, I got cool new vintage utensils, oh and one last thing that is like uber important. And uber as in super not uber as in uber driver. When I was on my road trip from Florida back to home, one of my BFF’s Olivia of OrganicOlivia texted me and told me that The Truth About Cancer was going to be airing it’s 9- hour docuseries for free again on April 12th!!! When she told me that I knew I had to spread the word out to you guys via social media. So although my internet connection in some parts of the south were sketch pad central, I found a way to get online, send out an email, and do a few posts. If you didn’t have a chance to catch that, you can go here to watch the trailer and be sure to sign up for the free screening. It’s legit life changing.
The docuseries covers everything you need to know or didn’t know about cancer. There are some of the world’s leading experts, doctors, scientists, researchers, and survivors talking about and going over all you need to want to know about this disease, how to prevent it and even perhaps cure it. When I watched it back when it aired the first time, I was floored by just how much we can do to prevent this disease but also so many other chronic illnesses we see on the rise today.
Take just a minute to watch this awe inspiring trailer for The Truth About Cancer – A Global Quest. I really think you will benefit from the knowledge you get from it and will just really love it. I believe this is the era in which cancer can be wiped out so our future generations will not have to suffer from this disease. Don’t forget to sign up!
Now that we got all that wrapped up you can get started on your Friday night dinner with this easy peasy, 1-2-3 recipe. The vegan cheese, the tempeh, the love, the flavor…Mmm, I promise, it’s damn good. Happy Weekend!
One Skillet Vegan Hamburger Helper
- 2 cups organic elbow macaroni
- 8oz organic tempeh
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup marinara sauce
- 1 1/2 cup vegan cheese sauce
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp parsley
- salt/pepper to taste
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 yellow onion, diced
- 1 cup green onions, diced
- Prepare the vegan cheese sauce ahead of time, set aside.
- Chop up tempeh into small pieces and place in skillet with extra virgin olive oil.
- When the tempeh is easily broken down into small pieces (you can do this while it's in the skillet using a spatula to break it up) add in marinara sauce and all the spices.
- Cook elbow macaroni according to package instructions.
- When the pasta is done add two cups to the tempeh mixture along with 1 1/2 cups of the vegan cheese sauce, yellow and green onions and red bell pepper.
- Mix everything well and adjust seasonings to your liking if need be. Keep mixing around on low to medium heat for 5 minutes.
- Serve immediately and Enjoy!
- Keeps well in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- Store vegan cheese sauce in an air tight container.
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P.S. If you love the trailer, be sure to register for the whole series. After this free screening you will be able to purchase the series but I encourage you to watch it for free while it’s airing. Trust me, you don’t want to miss this!
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Is this two cups of cooked pasta?
Yes! Cook pasta according to package instructions then add it. 🙂
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2 cups cooked pasta, right? Love the cheese sauce!
Hi sorry if I’m late to this but yes cook it regular in water first.
Tastes great but caused horrible heartburn/acid reflux in everyone who tried this for dinner. It is the first time we have ever had tempeh so we are wondering if that was the cause.
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Do you know if this would freeze well? I also have leftover cheese sauce, can that be froze?
Hi Cindy, you can leave it in the fridge up to five days.
Does that mean you don’t think it would freeze well?
So, are you saying it wouldn’t freeze well?
Hi Cindy, I haven’t had to freeze it yet but I know others said you can freeze it then just reheat it when ready to use. Let me know how it turns out for you so others on this thread will know if freezing works or not!! Xx
ok, and I loved it by the way!! I am newly vegan, and this is the first vegan recipe that I’ve made and truly liked!! Thank you sooo much!!!
Cindy that is so awesome to hear thank you super amounts! If you ever have any questions I’m here! Xx
This recipe was really delicious, the only thing that I would change is the recipe for the cheese sauce she linked to. The ingredients seemed spot on for the cheese sauce but the amounts were really off. I had to doctor mine up quite a bit to be able to use it in the recipe. That said, this recipe was delicious! I’ll be using my own cheese sauce recipe though for future batches.
would it work to use tofu instead of tempeh?
Sure I don’t see why not. Let me know how it turns out.
Has anyone ever made this without the tempeh? Just wondering how it would turn out, consistency wise. Thanks!
I know this is a year late reply lol but just made this tonight with soy crumbles instead of tempeh and it turned out great!
Jenny that is so awesome to hear! I love using tempeh so I may give this a go using that too, thank you! Xo
Made this for dinner tonight. Whoa! So delicious! Tastes like just hamburger helper too. =) I was really impressed with the “cheesy” sauce. I’ve tried making many substitutes and this one was the closest yet. I’ll be sure to that “cheesy” sauce for other recipes. Oh, and my daughter LOVED it! =)
Hey! I used this recipe for the first time I ever cooked with Tempeh! Man was it good! I have a quick tip for those of you with kids though…. cook off those yellow onions first, at least for the last few minutes as you are cooking the tempeh. Kids hate raw onions!
I also had a lot of cheese sauce left over and found that it went really, really well the next day on nachos! The spices in the recipe complimented the salsa and nachos so well. Mmmm I think I may go make up a plate now!
Awesome! And great tip. So glad you enjoyed it!
Was surfing the web for recipes for my 2 year old vegan son. This looked great. However the condescending attitude of the author towards people who eat meat killed it for me . I will look elsewhere. Lead by example and you will totally get more followers
Hi Ian, it’s unfortunate that you won’t make this recipe because you read my blog post and spun it into something it is not. When I read your comment I went back and read my entire blog post again. Not once in there was I condescending towards people who eat meat. My posts are always playful, fun, and informative. I didn’t grow up vegan, I grew up on a hardcore Spanish and Italian diet that was all meat and cheese so I know first hand how hard a transition from that to veganism can be and I’m super sympathetic to that and also extremely supportive. Maybe you came here in a bad mood and you’re taking your frustration out on my post. There is no need to come here and take something that’s innocent (my post) and turn into something argumentative so you can fulfill a need to battle. If that’s the case well then you landed on the wrong site because I won’t tolerate insults, rudeness, or passive aggressiveness or trolling of any kind. Take care!
Made this tonight for our “meatless Monday.” I can say that this is literally the only time our oldest (3 yo) asked for seconds on a Monday! What a great recipe! And no problem for my dairy sensitive tummy!
Hi Nate…Yaaay this is so awesome to hear, glad everyone loved it!!
Im new to the vegan eating and this is a very good starting point recipe! Taste great even though i think my taste buds are adjusting and my kids ate it up… Didnt even know they were eating a whole lotta goodness!
Hi Nicole, that is so good to hear! If you ever have any questions feel free to drop me a line. 🙂
I made this tonight with Miyoko Schinner’s Chipotle cheese sauce and it was awesome!
That’s so awesome to hear Cecilia! Glad you enjoyed it 🙂 Xx
Ooops…I meant those smileys to be frownies in my last comment!
Aww ok I can fix that no worries.
Hi, Jennifer! Hope you had a great time at Disney! Love this recipe…I definitely want to try. I have been thinking about Cancer a lot lately. 🙁 My 32-year old niece was just diagnosed with breast cancer. 🙁 I think you are doing really important work! 🙂 XO!
Hi Kristine, I’m so sorry to hear about your niece. Definitely watch the docs-series so you can get as much information as possible. You’re going to love this recipe. People are still sending me snaps about it! Sending positive vibes your way!! Xx