clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
overhead view of vegan hamburger helper pasta in a large pot.

Vegan Hamburger Helper

  • Author: Lexi
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


This one pot vegan hamburger helper is a healthier, meatless take on a classic weeknight dinner recipe! It's easy to make and comes together in just 30 minutes. Comforting, flavorful and a balanced meal for the whole family.


  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced (1 1/2 cups)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 cups riced or grated cauliflower* (about 1 small head of cauliflower)
  • ⅓ cup quinoa
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • ½-1 tbsp hot sauce
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp cumin
  • 3/4 tsp paprika 
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 15 oz can of diced fire roasted tomatoes with green chilies*
  • 1 cup nondairy milk (we used oat)
  • 3 cups macaroni (elbow) pasta
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 1/2 cups vegan shredded cheddar cheese


  1. Make cauliflower rice (skip if using store-bought riced cauliflower): add cauliflower florets to a food processor. Pulse several times until it looks like small grains of rice. 
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet (or pot) over medium heat. (Note: the pot/pan must be large enough to fit all ingredients!)
  3. Add onion and garlic and sauté for 5 minutes, until softened. 
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together tomato paste, red wine vinegar and hot sauce. 
  5. Add to skillet along with riced cauliflower, uncooked quinoa, and chili powder, salt, cumin and paprika. Stir well and cook for 5 minutes, until the cauliflower starts to soften a bit. 
  6. Add in broth, milk, tomatoes and pasta. Stir well, then bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer until the pasta is al dente and has absorbed most of the liquid (10-15 minutes). Stir occasionally to prevent pasta from sticking to bottom of pan. 
  7. Just before serving, stir in parsley and vegan cheese. The residual heat will melt it. Serve topped with more fresh parsley and enjoy hot. 


*You can make your own cauliflower rice or purchase it pre-riced, typically found in the freezer section or in a bag near the fresh produce. If using frozen, defrost before using. 

*You can also use regular diced fire roasted tomatoes.

Make sure your pan is big enough! You'll need a pretty large skillet or pot to fit all of the broth, pasta and other ingredients. We used a 5 qt. shallow braiser. If you don't have a skillet large enough, use a dutch oven or another large pot.

Storage: you can store this vegan hamburger helper in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat in the microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring well between each interval, until fully warmed. Alternatively you can reheat in a pan, but you may need to add a bit more broth to loosen it up and prevent burning. 

Freezer storage: Let cool completely, then transfer to a freezer safe container and freeze for up to 3 months. For best results, defrost overnight in the refrigerator, then microwave until warmed. 

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 433
  • Sugar: 6.8 g
  • Sodium: 936.3 mg
  • Fat: 15.6 g
  • Carbohydrates: 54.9 g
  • Fiber: 6.8 g
  • Protein: 20.2 g

Keywords: vegan hamburger helper