This Vegan Turkey Roast has mouthwatering savory flavors and a meaty texture, making it the perfect main dish for vegan Thanksgiving or Christmas!

Want more recipes for your Thanksgiving vegan dinner? Try my Creamy Vegan Mashed Potatoes with Easy Vegan Gravy, Vegan Green Bean Casserole, and Sweet Potato Casserole.

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

The best way to impress your family and friends during the holidays is with this mouthwatering Vegan Turkey Roast. Just like my Vegan Chicken and Vegan Glazed Ham recipes, it’s a seitan-based vegan roast flavored with classic poultry herbs and seasonings to help it taste just like a real Thanksgiving turkey. Slice it up and enjoy it with your favorite holiday side dishes or layered in a sandwich!

Why this is the best vegan turkey recipe

  • The best holiday centerpiece – This seitan turkey is not only easy to make from scratch but it’s also more impressive than a store-bought loaf or bland tofu turkey.
  • Moist, flavorful, and meaty – A mix of no-chicken broth and classic poultry seasonings gives the meaty seitan Thanksgiving turkey the most realistic flavors and textures.
  • 50+ 5-star reviews! – Don’t take my word for it! There are over 50 5-star reviews for this epic vegan turkey, proving that it’s always an instant holiday hit.

How to make vegan turkey

Add the drained chickpeas, broth, olive oil, nutritional yeast, soy sauce, sage, thyme, rosemary, onion powder, and garlic powder to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.

Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, then add the vital wheat gluten. 

Gently mix until the dough comes together.

Turn the dough out onto a clean surface sprinkled with some vital wheat gluten. Knead until it turns into a smooth loaf.

collage of how to make seitan roast, step by step

Place the loaf in a large pot with a steamer basket, then pour in 3 cups of broth for steaming. Cover, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Steam the seitan roast for 1 hour.

Did all of the broth evaporate? You can pour more broth into the pot if it evaporates before the cook time is up.

When it’s done, set the seitan turkey aside to cool while you heat the vegan butter and soy sauce in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Place the cooked loaf in the pan and let it brown on all sides. 

Transfer the golden brown roast to a cutting board and slice it thinly. Serve the slices with your favorite vegan holiday recipes and enjoy!

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

Instant Pot instructions

Steaming the vegetarian turkey in the Instant Pot is easy but you must use a 6QT or larger model. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Place the trivet for steaming inside the pot, then pour in the broth. 
  2. 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.
  3. Carefully remove the loaf from the pot, then brown it either in the Instant Pot on sauté mode with the vegan butter/soy sauce or on the stovetop. Slice and serve.

Frequently asked questions

Can it be made gluten free?

Unfortunately, no. Vital wheat gluten is a crucial ingredient and without it, the roast wouldn’t be as meaty, firm, or tender.

What can I use instead of chickpeas?

You can use another type of white bean or pinto beans instead.

I don’t have a steamer basket. What can I use instead?

No problem! You can make a DIY steamer basket by placing a few balls of aluminum foil on the bottom of your pot. Place a heat-safe plate on top of the balls for the loaf, then steam as normal.

Can you make it ahead of time?

Yes, the turkey roast can be made 1 to 2 days ahead of serving. To do so, make the loaf and steam it as normal. Let it cool before wrapping it in plastic or transferring it to an airtight container and storing it in the fridge.

Before serving, wrap the loaf in a layer of foil and warm it in a 350ºF oven for 20 to 30 minutes. Brown it in a skillet with the vegan butter/soy sauce, then slice and serve.

How do you store the leftovers? Can you freeze them?

You can keep the leftover slices or the whole loaf in an airtight container in the fridge for 2 to 3 days. It can also be frozen but I prefer the taste and texture when it’s fresh.

Leftover idea: The leftover vegan turkey slices are fantastic in sandwiches with a little leftover gravy, stuffing, and cranberry sauce!

looking down on a vegetarian turkey loaf, partially sliced with sage around it
square image of vegan turkey loaf on white plate
4.99 stars (63 ratings)

Vegan Turkey Roast

This Vegan Turkey Roast has mouthwatering savory flavors and a meaty texture, making it the perfect main dish for vegan Thanksgiving or Christmas! Stovetop and Instant Pot instructions included.
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 1 hour 10 minutes
Total: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 8 servings


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


  • 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.


  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.


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
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Author: Nora Taylor
Did you make this recipe?Mention @nora_cooks_vegan_ or tag #noracooks!

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Read my full disclosure here.

Posted In: , , , , , , , ,

you may also like:


  1. This is absolutely the best vegan turkey roast I have tasted, and it is so easy to make, 1,2,3 and you are done. I made it tonight to taste before TG and oh boy I could hardly stop eating it. I did use the no-chicken better than bullion and I used not quite 1 tablespoon to the 3/4 cup of water. This recipe is a keeper, and I will be making it often. I imagine this will be great for sandwiches too. Thank you Nora, and keep up the good work!

  2. The best. I had given up on sriram and vital wheat gluten after countless time wasting flavorless disasters.

    This was very good. I ordered a vegan thanksgiving dinner that included a ham so looks like I’ll be having both. Thank you for all the recipes. I love all of them from dessert to main course. You have saved me from going unfulfilled in my vegan flex lifestyle 🥰❤️

  3. Hi,
    I am making this for work thanksgiving lunch. Would it be ok to roast it before hand and then warm it again before serving? Thank you

  4. I have made this for the holidays (and for fun!) for the last couple of years and it is absolutely delicious. I was intimidated at first but it really is a simple process, so thank you! 😊

    I was wondering if you know if the recipe can be doubled to make a larger loaf. I’d like to essentially make 2 loafs but would it work to make it as one super loaf? 🤔

    1. Hi Sarah. I’m really happy to hear you are loving the turkey roast! I haven’t tried making a double, large roast so I’m not sure. I’d stick with making two separate roasts. I’m afraid the texture will not turn out as good if making one large one. I hope this helps!

  5. I’m very excited to try this but forgot to pick up low sodium soy sauce. I will go back to the store if I must but I thought I’d ask first if anyone had made it with regular soy sauce and how it turned out!
    Avoiding another trip into town!
    Thank you

    1. This roast is amazing and I’ve made it the last 2 years even the carnivores like it!!! I have never used Low-sodium soy sauce…

  6. Did a trial run for Thanksgiving and YUM!! Even my picky kids like this. My husband and I love it. So happy we’ve finally found a holiday roast we all enjoy. Thanks so much for this recipe!

  7. We had an early vegan Thanksgiving because our son will be traveling next week. We made your, turkey loaf, mashed potatoes, cornbread stuffing, gravy and pecan pie. It was all amazing. Only thing is I used more sage. AND the extra broth used to steam the turkey loaf , I used it to make the gravy. Very clever of you to toast your cornbread before making the stuffing. All of it was outstanding

    1. Hi Carly. Vital wheat gluten makes great vegan meat substitutes. Nothing else can be used here, unfortunately. Sorry!

      1. Hi Nora! I am excited to try this recipe but have a few questions. If using instant pot, do I cook it on low or high pressure? And for both stove and IP cooking methods, would I wrap the loaf in foil for the steaming portion? Thank you!

        1. Hi Genevieve. Cook at high pressure for 50 minutes in the instant. You do not have to wrap the loaf, however you could if you want. Enjoy!

    2. Without the vital wheat gluten the texture is entirely different and doesn’t remotely resemble turkey. If your goal is trying to replicate the texture of turkey breast the gluten is critical.

  8. Most recipes I have read say it’s much better to store in the fridge overnight to firm up what are your thoughts?

    1. I haven’t tried it so I’m not sure, but I don’t find it necessary. You can certainly try it if you want. Thanks!

  9. If I wanted to wrap this in rice paper to make a “skin” could I bake it for a little after I brown in it the pan? 

  10. Can this be made oil-free?  We try to follow the advise of Dr Esselstyn and avoid oil.  Is there a good substitute for the oil?

  11. Hi! Lovely recipe! I just tried it at home and it tastes amazing but I can’t slice it as if it was turkey because it’s very moist and sticky in the middle! I let it cool down a bit but hasn’t changed! Any advice? X 

    1. Hmm, sounds like it was slightly undercooked. You could leave it in the fridge for a few hours to help it set in the middle or even try baking it in the oven for a few minutes.

  12. Looks great! Can you make it ahead of time and freeze it and then defrost and do the oven step or would it change the texture?

    1. I think that would be fine, but I haven’t tried it so I’m not totally sure. The texture will likely still be fine though after freezing.

  13. Wow! This roast was so easy to make and it tasted so good! My husband had no idea that I had made it from scratch. Thank you for a man amazing recipe, Nora!

  14. Wow. I just made this for Thanksgiving dinner and we were very impressed. It’s got great holiday flavor and was perfect with some cranberry sauce!!

  15. Wow! Amazing recipe! This is my first vegan thanksgiving, so I’m doing trials of a bunch of recipes and this was my first and will be my last vegan “turkey” trial because it’s perfect!! The texture is surprisingly turkey-like, the taste is delicious, and it was not even very hard to make. I steamed it in the instant pot on pressure cook (low pressure) non venting for 50 minutes and it turned out just right. Thank you!!

  16. This is by far the best vegan turkey loaf I’ve ever made. I made this on two occasions once in the instant pot and once on the stove top and I will say that I feel as though it turns out a little less chewy if it’s done on the stove top. Doing in the instant pot is great if you just want to set it and forget it. It tastes amazing warm and equally amazing cold out of the fridge. I will be making this for Thanksgiving and maybe Christmas this year. Thank you for sharing. If you have a vegan brisket recipe somewhere that would be great too.

    1. Thank you for sharing your wonderful review and comments! I’m glad you love the turkey roast! I’ll put the brisket recipe on my list!

  17. Hi Nora,

    I made this recipe for thanksgiving last year and LOVED IT! Now i’d like to double it! Do you have any recommendations or know how it’ll turn out?

    1. I haven’t tried making a double, large roast so I’m not sure. I’d stick with making two separate roasts. I’m afraid the texture will not turn out as good if making one large one. Glad you love it!

      1. This looks so good!! Can this be refrigerated after cooking and then heated up when you need it? I’m going to a Christmas dinner and want to make this, but the oven at the house I am going to is taken by the turkey.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.