Holiday Turkey Recipe (Vegan)

More photos below!!

There are so many reasons to keep turkeys off your plate this holiday season. Turkeys purr like kittens when they’re happy, they’re intelligent and remember faces and places they see.

46 million of these majestic creatures will be slaughtered this year for Thanksgiving, after living out only 4-6 months of their 10 year natural lifespan. Why contribute to that? Especially for a holiday meant to express thanks and compassion for others? (Ironic considering the bloody racist origin of thanksgiving, but that’s a rant for another day).

We all know thanksgiving is about the side dishes anyways, 😉 so just leave the turkeys out of it!

Rant over, on to the recipe ⬇️

This seitan “turkey” is tasty, filling, protein-packed, AND no turkeys were harmed in the making. How much better can it get?

If you’re wondering what seitan is, is basically the pure protein found in wheat. It’s been used in China by Buddhists as a meat substitute since around the 6th century. I have more info on my post here:

Dry Ingredients:

2 1/3 cups vital wheat gluten

1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder

1 Teaspoon Onion powder

1/2 Tsp black pepper

1/2 Tsp Salt

2 Tbs nutritional yeast

Wet Ingredients:

1 can garbanzo beans

1 Tablespoon soy sauce

2 Tablespoons vegetable oil (any oil will work)

2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar.

1 Teaspoon Liquid smoke

Seasoning mix:

1/2 Cup Breadcrumbs (I used homemade croutons that I crushed into breadcrumbs, but any will do)

2 Tablespoons nutritional yeast

1/4 Tsp Garlic powder

1/4 Tsp Onion powder

1 Tsp Dried oregano

1 Tsp Dried basil

+ 1 Tbs oil or vegan butter to brush the turkey

You’ll also need a steamer, cheesecloth, and strong arms (or a kitchen aid)


1. Mix all of the dry ingredients into a medium sized mixing bowl.

2. Pour the chickpeas into a blender, using the liquid too. Add the rest of the wet ingredients to the blender and blend until smooth. You want it as smooth as possible, no chunks.

3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until it forms a dough.

4. Separate the dough into two balls. Knead each ball for about 5-10 minutes. The longer, the better. If the dough is too sticky, add a sprinkle of water. If using a kitchen aid, mix all of the dough for about 20 minutes and then split the dough into two loaves.

5. After you’re done kneading, wrap each piece of dough in a 2″ by 2″ thin tea towel, or double wrap in cheesecloth. let the dough rest for about 10 minutes while you prepare the steamer.

6. Put the steamer on medium-high. You want a moderate amount of steam but if too hot, it will over saturate the seitan with water and leave you with a goopy mess.

7. Once the steamer is ready, place your seitan into the steamer with the lid on and cook for 45 minutes, flipping over halfway. Once the time is up, turn off the burner and let the seitan cool for at least 15 minutes before you pull it out of the steamer and it’s wrap. The ‘turkey’ will be very hot.

The turkey is ready to eat at this point, but we’re going to cover it in breadcrumbs and spices and bake it. If you like, you can do the above steps up to 5 days in advance before you bake the turkey. Just keep your seitan in the fridge until you’re ready to bake it.

Part Two:

1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.

2. Combine the seasoning mix together and pour onto a plate.

3. Brush your turkey in olive oil or melted vegan butter and then roll in the seasoning mix.

4. Place turkey onto a lined baking tray (or wire rack meant for a turkey) and bake until for about —- until the seasonings are crispy and the turkey is hot all the way through.

5. Done! Pull out of the oven and wait 5 minutes to cool a bit before serving.


The recipe will make two loaves like this:

The above video is of the seitan being shredded with a fork to give you an idea of the turkey-ish texture. My apologies for being terrible at taking videos, lol.

-Autumn 💗 follow me on Instagram @autumn.the.vegan

Happy Holidays!

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