A perfect centerpiece for your holiday meal, this Vegan Turkey Roast won’t disappoint! It’s a fuss-free recipe and can be made ahead of time. Every bite is full of flavor and meaty texture! 

a loaf, browned on the top with herbs, partially sliced on a white plate

Serve this vegan roast with the best dang vegan mashed potatoes, easy vegan gravy and perhaps some roasted brussels sprouts for the most amazing feast!

Impress your family and friends with this seitan based loaf, made completely from scratch. Sure, you could always purchase one since there are now plenty of options available (Field Roast being my favorite if you go that direction), but why not make your own at home? You’ll be surprised how easy it is.

More seitan based vegan meats you will love: Vegan Chicken and Vegan Pepperoni!

This vegan “turkey” roast is full of wonderful holiday savory flavors thanks to all the herbs and flavorings added. Leftovers make a wonderful sandwich, too!

Ingredients needed

  • Chickpeas – Drained and rinsed
  • No-chicken broth – You could also just use vegetable broth, but the no-chicken Better than Bouillon is my favorite here, it has a great flavor and is light colored, adding to the turkey look of the finished loaf.
  • Olive oil
  • Nutritional yeast
  • Low sodium soy sauce – Tamari would also work.
  • Dried sage
  • Dried thyme
  • Dried rosemary
  • Onion powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Vital wheat gluten – No substitutes here, this loaf can not be made gluten free.
  • Vegan butter + more soy sauce – For browning in the pan.

How to make a vegan turkey roast

  1. To a blender or food processor, add the chickpeas, broth, olive oil, nutritional yeast, soy sauce and herbs. Blend or process until smooth.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, then add the vital wheat gluten.
  3. Start to mix with a spoon, then use your hands and mix until combined.
  4. Sprinkle a little vital wheat gluten on a clean counter, add the mixture and knead about 10 times. Shape it into a loaf. It will be quite small, but expands while it cooks.

collage of how to make seitan roast, step by step

In a steamer basket, with the broth in the bottom of the pot, add the loaf, cover and steam for about 1 hour on low-medium heat. You want the broth simmering well, but not boiling hard.

After an hour, the roast will look a bit larger. Remove it from the steamer. Either in the same pot you used for steaming, or another skillet, melt the vegan butter over medium-high heat. Add the soy sauce, stir, then immediately place the loaf in the skillet. Let it brown on all sides.

a vegan turkey loaf being browned in a white pot with butter

Place on a cutting board or serving platter, sprinkle with more herbs and serve immediately.

Make ahead option

If you want to make this a day or two before a holiday meal, you can. Prepare it up until the point it has steamed for an hour. Let it cool, then refrigerate wrapped in plastic or in a large container.

When you are ready to serve, remove from the refrigerator and wrap in foil. Place in the oven at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes to warm throughout, then transfer to the skillet for browning with the vegan butter/soy sauce. Slice and serve.

Instant Pot option

You can steam the loaf in an Instant Pot instead of the stovetop, if you would prefer. Your Instant Pot needs to be large enough to fit the loaf (probably a 6QT or larger). Place the trivet for steaming inside the pot, and add broth to the bottom. Place the loaf inside, seal and cook at high pressure for 50 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes, then carefully release any remaining pressure manually.

It will be hot, so be careful removing the loaf. Then brown either in the IP on sauté mode with the vegan butter/soy sauce or on the stovetop and serve.

looking down on a vegetarian loaf, partially sliced with sage around it

Want more vegan holiday main dish ideas?

square image of vegan turkey loaf on white plate

Vegan Turkey Roast

A perfect centerpiece for your holiday meal, this Vegan Turkey Roast won't disappoint! It's a fuss-free recipe and can be made ahead of time. Every bite is full of flavor and meaty texture! 
5 from 2 votes

Ingredients

For the Loaf

  • 15 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 3/4 cup no chicken broth, I used Better Than Bouillon, may use veg. broth
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 cups vital wheat gluten
  • 3-4 cups additional broth, for steaming

For browning

Instructions

  • In a food processor or blender, add the drained chickpeas, broth, olive oil, nutritional yeast, soy sauce, sage, thyme, rosemary, onion powder and garlic powder and blend or process until smooth.
  • Transfer the blended mixture to a large mixing bowl, getting all the last bits with a spatula. 
  • Add the vital wheat gluten and start to mix it into the wet ingredients with a spatula or spoon, then use your hands and mix until it starts to come together. Sprinkle a little vital wheat gluten on a clean surface, transfer the mixture to the surface and knead about 10 times. Carefully shape it into a loaf.
  • Get out a large pot with a steamer basket (flat bottom preferred, see Notes if you don't have steamer basket.) Place the loaf on the steamer basket with 3 cups of broth on the bottom for steaming.
  • Cover, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat so it’s simmering but not boiling too hard. Steam for 1 hour, and make sure to add more broth if it evaporates too soon. You can pour some additional broth over the roast halfway through.
  • Remove the pot from heat and open the lid so the loaf can cool for a few minutes.
  • To brown the outside, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat (you could use the same pot you used for steaming). Add the vegan butter and let it melt, then add the soy sauce and stir. Place the cooked loaf in the pan and let it brown on all sides. 
  • Place on a cutting board or serving platter, sprinkle with herbs and slice thinly. Serve immediately with vegan gravy and mashed potatoes.

Notes

  1. If you can I highly recommend using Better Than Bouillon's No Chicken Base for the broth. It has a wonderful flavor for this recipe and is lighter in color than most broths, which will give you a lighter colored roast.
  2. If you don't have a flat steaming basket or insert, you can make your own by placing a few balls of foil on the bottom of a large pot, then add a heat safe plate that the loaf can sit on. It works quite well in a pinch!
  3. Instant Pot: Steam the loaf in your IP by placing a trivet in the pot, as well as the broth for steaming. Seal, and cook for 50 minutes, then let pressure come down naturally for 10 minutes. Release any remaining pressure, carefully remove the loaf, then sauté to brown in the vegan butter/soy sauce.
  4. Make a day or two ahead of time: Prepare it up until the point it has steamed for an hour. Let it cool, then refrigerate wrapped in plastic or in a large container. When ready to serve, remove from the refrigerator and wrap in foil. Place in the oven at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes to warm, then transfer to the skillet for browning with the vegan butter/soy sauce. Slice and serve.
  5. The loaf can be frozen if needed, but I recommend serving fresh for special holidays as it will taste better.

Nutrition

Serving: 1of 8 servings, Calories: 193kcal, Carbohydrates: 9g, Protein: 19g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Sodium: 426mg, Potassium: 101mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 314IU, Calcium: 43mg, Iron: 2mg

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