Vegan Hamburger Helper

Seriously upgrade that boxed dinner from childhood with an amazing one-pot vegan hamburger helper recipe everyone will enjoy. This cheeseburger macaroni has all the flavor you know and love, but is made with plant-based ingredients – so it’s meatless, dairy-free, and has no packet of questionable seasonings!

vegan hamburger helper in a large pot with wooden spoon

I’m not even going to ask, because of course you remember old school Hamburger Helper.

In case you hadn’t noticed, this childhood favorite has recently made a comeback in the recipe world. Once word got out that it’s actually super easy to prepare from scratch – with no box or seasoning packet needed – there was no going back.

My version of the one-pot wonder dish is entirely plant-based, but tastes almost identical to the classic stuff!

This vegan hamburger helper recipe is simple and quick to make in just over 30 minutes, including prep time. It’s sure to be your new go-to meal plan for busy nights when you need something comforting and delicious on the table!

ingredients - impossible beef, cheese, oat milk, seasonings on a board


  • Olive oil
  • Onion
  • Impossible beef – or other plant-based beef substitute
  • Garlic cloves
  • Paprika
  • Chili powder
  • Oregano
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Salt
  • Tomato pasta
  • Arrowroot powder
  • Vegetable broth
  • Water
  • Oat milk
  • Small pasta
  • Shredded vegan cheese
  • Fresh parsley
4 easy steps to make meatless cheeseburger macaroni

How to Make the Best Vegan Hamburger Helper

Meatless hamburger helper is as easy to make as it is tasty to eat. Prep time is only about 10 minutes, and then everything cooks together in one pot of happiness for only 35 minutes.

Follow these steps to make the BEST plant-based cheeseburger macaroni:

  1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add diced onion and cook until soft. Then add the Impossible beef. Crumble the beef with a wooden spoon as it cooks.
  2. Add the seasonings and stir well. Mix in the tomato paste and arrowroot powder.
  3. Next add the broth, water, and oat milk. Stir and bring to a low boil.
  4. Then add the pasta, and cook for about 25 minutes. Stir frequently.

Once the pasta is cooked and tender, remove the pot from the stove and stir in the cheese. This creates the rich and gooey cheese sauce.

bowl of vegan hamburger helper up close with chopped parsley

Serving Suggestions

Enjoy homemade meatless hamburger helper warm. Top with cracked black pepper, plus chopped parsley for some freshness. Or go the other direction and sprinkle on vegan bacon bits for extra flavor and crunch!

This classic comfort food main dish goes great with just about any side. It’s hearty and filling, so I typically serve bowls of vegan hamburger helper alongside a lightly cooked green veggie.

Steamed broccoli or peas, roasted green beans, and fresh spinach salads are all delicious options to balance out the cheesy goodness of the pasta!

overhead view of bowl with cheeseburger macaroni with red napkin in the background

Vegan Hamburger Helper Recipe Variations

  • Give this hamburger helper recipe a spicy kick by using vegan chorizo for heat.
  • Speaking of spice… You can also sub shredded cheddar with vegan pepper jack cheese!
  • I prefer oat milk because it is super creamy and rich. But feel free to use any plant-based milk you like! Cashew and soy are also tasty in this recipe.
  • Any type of small pasta can be used here. I like shells but elbow macaroni, cavatappi, or other varieties are great.
  • Arrowroot powder is naturally gluten-free, but you can make this a completely GF-friendly dinner recipe by using your fave gluten-free noodles.
up close view of bowl with vegan hamburger helper and seasonings

How to Store Vegan Hamburger Helper

This is one of the BEST meals for leftovers. The flavors just get more yummy-fied as the seasonings and creamy cheese sit together!

Let the leftover hamburger helper cool completely, then transfer to a container that seals. Store in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Reheat in the microwave in short 20-second bursts, stirring between each burst, until the pasta is warmed throughout.

pasta with meatless beef and plant-based cheese sauce on a fork close up view

If you tried this vegan hamburger helper recipe, let me know in the comments below and share a photo using #mindfulavocado. I’d love to hear from you! Want to see more recipes? Let’s get social! CONNECT WITH ME on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

up close view of bowl with vegan hamburger helper and seasonings

Vegan Hamburger Helper

Vegan Hamburger Helper is a delicious plant-based twist on classic cheeseburger macaroni. Ditch the box and make this easy one-pot vegan dinner recipe!
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Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American, Vegan
Keyword: easy vegan dinner, impossible meat recipe, meatless hamburger helper, one pot meal, recipes with impossible beef, vegan cheeseburger macaroni
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 513kcal
Author: Amanda


  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 1 12-ounce package Impossible beef can use any plant-based beef substitute
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 Tablespoon arrowroot powder
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups oat milk can substitute with any plant-based milk
  • 1 pound pasta of choice I prefer small pasta shapes like shells, elbows, cavatappi, etc.
  • 1/2 cup shredded vegan cheddar I like Follow Your Heart brand
  • 3 Tablespoons fresh parsley finely chopped


  • In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium heat.
  • Add onions and cook until soft (about 5-7 minutes).
  • Add the Impossible Beef and cook (about 7-10 minutes). Crumble the beef with a wooden spoon as it cooks.
  • Add garlic, paprika, chili powder, oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt. Stir well.
  • Add tomato paste and arrowroot powder. Stir well.
  • Add vegetable broth, water, and oat milk. Stir well and bring to a low boil.
  • Add pasta, stir and let cook for 25 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Turn off heat and stir in vegan cheese. Once melted, stir in fresh parsley. Serve with fresh cracked pepper and more fresh parsley.



Let the leftover hamburger helper cool completely, then transfer to a container that seals. Store in the fridge for up to 3 days.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 513kcal | Carbohydrates: 14.9g | Protein: 21.3g | Fat: 18.9g | Sodium: 693mg | Fiber: 3.2g | Sugar: 8.2g | Calcium: 247mg | Iron: 5.2mg

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