Bring this year onto your table a vegan meat alternative that is also suitable for your gluten and soy free guests: this turkey(less) roast is as aromatic, flavourful and meaty as the real thing, just minus the cruelty!
Please NOTE: If you make this recipe or any other inspired by the ingredients used DON’T FORGET to link and quote “a Veg Taste from A to Z” on your blog or social media posts.
If you don’t like, you can’t eat, or you are just bored of seitan search no more, you’ve just found the perfect recipe for the holidays or your Sunday roast, if you are a British fellow.
It is super easy to make and you can prep it and shape it up to 3 days ahead, leave it in the fridge, then cook it on the day, or even in advance.
It’s also way cheaper to make than any store bought pre-made vegan roasts that serves only a few people, and is a great alternative to Thanksgiving or Christmas turkey!
Perfect to be served with this Red Wine, Onion and Shiitake Gravy and crunchy and fluffy roasted potatoes, a vegan green bean casserole, some roasted Mediterranean Veggies, or this Easy Romanesco Stew, Bell Peppers and Jackfruit and a refreshing Vegan Coleslaw on the side, I’m sure this vegan “turkey” loaf will bring a big smile to everyone (vegans, gluten free and not) around your table.
Apart from eating it whole and accompanying it with vegetables and gravy, there are hundreds more uses for this turkey(less) loaf. You can:
– wrap it in (gluten-free) pastry and upgrade it to a Wellington;
– dice it or tear it and use in stews, stir fry, pasta dishes, casseroles, curries and so on;
– slice it thinly and turn it into deli slices to be served on a vegan charcuterie board or in a sandwich;
– slice it thicker for steaks;
– mince it (just roughly chop and pulse blend);
– use the leftovers or off cuts for pies and many other fillings.
How to Make this Turkey(less) Roast
For this completely vegan friendly, soy and gluten free version we are going to need (and maybe invest) in some products that are the best ally in making meat (and fish) substitutes that are also suitable for those that are allergic to gluten and soy.
First we have Pea Protein Isolate. The main ingredient also used in the Beyond Meat products, very familiar to those that regularly enjoy protein shakes. You can purchase this essential ingredient online or in health shops. When purchasing pea protein isolate, make sure to get the unflavoured version, as many can be added with vanilla or cocoa.
Konjac Powder (or flour). Also known as glucomannan, konjac is an herb that grows in parts of Asia used in Western continents as a weight loss supplement (is very rich in dietary fiber that keeps you full for longer) or to help lower cholesterol. In cooking, especially plant based, it is both used as a gelatin substitute and to thicken or add texture to foods. The last is the reason why we are using konjac in this recipe. I also tried agar agar instead of it, but it doesn’t work as well I’m afraid. As well as pea protein, you can buy it both online or in health shops.
Kappa Carrageenan. You might already have discovered this ingredient if you followed my Vegan Mozzarella recipe. It is another thickener An additive, natural ingredient that comes from red seaweed used to thicken, emulsify, and preserve foods and drinks. In this recipe it is essential to achieve a solid and firm texture.
When purchasing this ingredient make sure to look for Kappa Carrageenean. You can buy it online here, and it will last months or even years.
Tapioca Flour (or starch). Delivers an extra chewy texture to the loaf.
Nutritional Yeast. Our beloved nooch for flavour depth. Don’t worry, the loaf will not taste “cheesy” because of it!
Liquid Smoke. For a smoke-y flavour. You can substitute it with smoked paprika if you don’t want to use it.
Maple Syrup. Or any other syrup or sugar. It gives more character, helps with the caramelization and gives a nuttier flavour. It won’t make the loaf taste sweet though, don’t you worry!
Spices and Seasonings. The spice mix used in this recipe delivers a turkey-like flavour. However you can play around and personalize the loaf with your favourite spices and aromas.
Now that we understood all the ingredients going into this loaf, let’s see how to actually make it.
Making it is not that far away from a seitan loaf made with Vital Gluten.
However, this requires even less effort, as it doesn’t need any kneading (no gluten needs to be developed here) and also less cooking time.
All we need to do is to weight the dry and the liquid ingredients separately, and then pour the liquids on the dry ones.
Mix together until it comes together into a (rather sticky) dough, wrap and boil.
Easy peasy, isn’t it?
I would say that the only down side of this recipe is to actually invest in what I am aware are not day-to-day ingredients in anyone’s pantry.
But on the bright side, considering the actual amount going into the recipes, it is only a small investment that will yield pounds and pounds of products, that singularly they will cost you only a bunch of cents!
If you want to discover more recipes with this ingredient combo, stay tuned as I will be posting all of my latest experiments, that I’ve been perfectioning in the last couple of years, like my Ultimate Vegan Pepperoni (that actually took me 2+ years of trials and fails to nail!!!) coming next on the blog.
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Turkey(less) Roast | Vegan & Gluten Free Recipe
Ingredients (for about 1/2 kilo-1 pound loaf):
350 g vegetable stock (or water + 1/2 tbsp bouillon)
60 g Pea Protein Isolate
15 g Tapioca
15 g Konjac Powder
10 g Kappa Carrageenan
1 1/2 tbsp Nutritional Yeast
1 1/2 tbsp Liquid Smoke
1 tbsp Maple Syrup
1 tbsp Sage
1/2 tbsp Onion Powder
1/2 tbsp Garlic Powder
1/2 tbsp “Chicken” Seasoning
1/2 tbsp Sea Salt
1/4 tbsp Celery Salt
1. Measure the dry and the liquid ingredients in two separate bowls, and mix the content of each bowl well.
2. Pour the liquids on the dry ones and combine until they come together into a (rather sticky) dough.
3. Bring at least 1 liter of water to a boil.
4. Wrap the dough tight into some cling film within the desired shape.
5. Boil for 30-45 minutes in water.
6. Turn off the heat and allow the loaf to cool completely in the water. It will be still soft to the touch at this point but don’t worry, it will thicken as it cools down.
7. Once the turkey(less) loaf is at room temperature, remove from the film and slice or use as you please.
Turkey(less) Roast | Vegan & Gluten Free
- 350 g (1.48 cups) Water
- 60 g (0.56 cups) Pea Protein Isolate
- 15 g (1.01 tbsp) Tapioca
- 15 g (1.01 tbsp) Konjac Powder
- 10 g (2.03 tsp) Kappa Carrageenan
- 1 1/2 tbsp Nutritional Yeast
- 1 1/2 tbsp Liquid Smoke
- 1 tbsp Maple Syrup
- 1 tbsp Sage
- 1/2 tbsp Onion Powder
- 1/2 tbsp Garlic Powder
- 1/2 tbsp "Chicken" Seasoning
- 1/2 tbsp Sea Salt
- 1/4 tbsp Celery Salt
- Measure the dry and the liquid ingredients in two separate bowls, and mix the content of each bowl well.
- Pour the liquids on the dry ones and combine until they come together into a (rather sticky) dough.
- Bring at least 1 liter of water to a boil.
- Wrap the dough tight into some cling film within the desired shape.
- Boil for 30-45 minutes in water.
- Turn off the heat and allow the loaf to cool completely in the water. It will be still soft to the touch at this point but don't worry, it will thicken as it cools down.
- Once the turkey(less) loaf is at room temperature, remove from the film and slice or use as you please.
I am SO GRATEFUL for this recipe!!! But I’ve had a problem with it! Other than the first time I tried it, I’ve had the cello wrap burst and the loaf dissolve or partially dissolve into the boiling water. This happened the first time & I thought it was because I did a double recipe and the first loaf was fine. The others burst. I thought maybe it had expanded more or something from sitting. Today I boiled it right away and it burst. Any ideas?
Hi Dharma, I’m glad for your comment and sorry because this recipe didn’t seem to work out for you.
I might suggest wrapping it in a more generous layer or simply change the brand of the wrap (please make also sure it is suitable for cooking food, those suitable for microwaving are perfect). To be completely honest with you I’ve been cooking with this method for years and I’ve never experienced any bursting…
I wish you luck if you’re planning to try it again 🙂
Hi, looking forward to trying this. Quick question, when you say let it cool down to room temperature, do you mean leave it in the water until the water is room temperature or take it out of the water after the water is no longer at boiling temperature?
It should be rested in the water until it cools down, as the loaf will be still soft-ish when hot.
I made a taste test batch of this “turkey” to try before thanksgiving and I’m so happy I found your blog!
It’s such a valid and easy recipe, can’t wait to have it again! It will definitely be on our Thanksgiving table.
Thanks for thinking about us coeliac vegans Adriana!!!
Thank you so much Christina for your lovely feedback!
Happy vegan Thanksgiving 🙂
Is there a special kind of plastic wrap to use? Plastic wrap in boiling water doesn’t seem right or healthy.
a good quality plastic won’t be a problem.
Water boils at 100c(212f) and good quality plastic wrap has a melting point between 120 and 140c(250 to 290f). The melting point and safe temperature should be indicated on the carton upon buying.
Hope that helped 🙂
Hi Adrana Z,
So excited to find this recipe. I am nearly all my years and Gluten free Celiac 21 years. I used to eat veg deli slices growing up but once Dx’d with Celiac Disease I never had them again. As they all contain Gluten here in the states!
I have 2 questions please?
1) Can I use Garbanzo bean flour for the Pea Protein Isolate? They look near identical and I am wondoring how different the isolate process makes the end result.
2) In the Nutrition facts…is the 68 calories and all the rest of the following nutrition info for 1 slice? I know it is for a serving size but what is considered a serving size? Thank you! I can’t wait to make this! ☺️👍
I’d love to make this in an Instant Pot. How long do I cook it for and with what pressure setting? Thanks
Hi, I’ve just recently purchased an IP and was planning to try this and the salami in it.
I would personally go for 20 minutes on high pressure, quick release, and allow to cool down completely before moving it (because it will be still mushy as the gelling agents start setting at room temperature).
Let me know how it turns out if you spare a moment.
Happy new year!
Hi Adriana, Love this recipe but have made it twice now and had the same problem both times where the top never fully cooks. It is still mushy even after cooling in the water and then on a cutting board until room temperature. Any idea why? Is it supposed to be submerged in the water in order to fully cook? I know the water said 4 cups but thinking maybe I should have used more so it is submerged. Any advice you have would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
Hi Patricia. The water amount of the recipe has to be mixed in the loaf. Upon cooking, the loaf should be completely covered in water in order to fully cook. I’m sorry for the inconvenient, I’ll try to make the instructions more clear.
I’m chuffed you liked it despite the issue though! <3
How did you have it?
Hello Adriana thank you so much for sharing this recipe! 🙏🏼 Would the boiling time limit differ if I double/triple the recipe? And also can the recipe be steamed as well as boiled?
Yes to both questions.
I haven’t tried myself to make a bigger batch (we’re only two in the household and this is enough for a few meals), but I’d assume it will need more time, as the carrageenan needs to hit 90°C to be activated. So I’d suggest to increase the cooking time of at least 20 minutes if you’re doubling the recipe, and double the time if you’re planning to make 3x.
Same cooking time will apply for steaming.
If you have one, you can also use a pressure cooker or instant pot and reduce all cooking times by half.
Hope you’ll enjoy it and happy Holidays!
That looks gorgeous!
Can I make it with seitan instead of pea flour though? I just have plenty of gluten to use up..
Hi Jonny and thanks for commenting.
I wouldn’t recommend to just substitute the pea flour with vital gluten; instead you can follow this recipe for the seitan loaf https://avegtastefromatoz.com/vegan-seitan-wellington/ , omit the beetroot and flavour it with the spice mix of this turkey loaf to make a roast out of seitan (I haven’t tried it myself, but I cannot see why it wouldn’t work).
Let me know how it turns out if you try it 🙂