Looking for a tasty vegan stuffing recipe for Thanksgiving or Christmas? With bread cubes, vegan sausages, apples, celery and nuts this side dish is loaded with yummy stuff for your festive feast!
This stuffing was a traditional dish at Christmas when I was growing up, but it wasn’t vegan. So we worked our magic to adapt the recipe into this flavourful vegan version for us all to enjoy!
Being English I can’t claim this to be an authentic American Thanksgiving stuffing recipe, but hopefully our many readers across the pond will approve. We certainly find it to be very delicious.
Here’s our handy tips for picking your ingredients:
Bread cubes - Use stale/day old bread. We used a white loaf of bread here, but wholemeal bread will also work or other types such as baguette or sourdough (just make sure your loaf is vegan). We like the cubes toasted in the oven before making the stuffing, which gives a crunchier/drier texture. If you prefer a softer, more moist texture to your stuffing, then you can skip the toasting.
Apple - We like a sour apple for cooking like a Bramley or Granny Smith. The apple gives a nice burst of slightly sweet tartness to the stuffing.
Vegan sausages - Choose your favourite plant based sausages. We used Linda McCartney’s Red Onion and Rosemary sausages for the stuffing pictured. You might like to try Richmond’s, Beyond Sausage, the Meatless Farm range, or Tofurkey Sausages. If using frozen sausages then defrost them first.
Nuts - We always used to use walnuts when I was younger, but now I discovered I like making it with pecans even more! We buy organic nuts in bulk for better value.
Ground flaxseed mixed with water - Helps to bind the stuffing and replace egg in the original recipe. Can be left out for a more crumbly stuffing.
Herbs - We use fresh sage and thyme. The herbs really add a lot to the dish, so don’t skip them. You could even increase the amount if you like a more herby flavour!
The rest of the ingredients are pretty simple. You’ll also need - celery, onion, olive oil and veggie stock/broth.
Step by step
You'll find the full recipe in the card below, but here's a handy visual guide to making this vegan stuffing:
Step 1 - Cut your bread into 1cm cubes and spread out on a baking tray. Toast in the oven at 180C / 350F for around 10-12 minutes until light golden brown.
Step 2 - Dice your onion, celery and slice the vegan sausages, then cook them in a large frying pan with the olive oil for about 10 minutes until sauteed. I like to fry the sausage slices on one side so they can be in direct contact with the pan and get brown well.
Step 3 - Core and dice the apple, roughly chop the nuts and herbs, then mix together with all the cooked vegan sausages, onion celery and black pepper in an oven dish.
Step 4 - Mix in the veggie stock/broth and flax 'egg', then bake at 180C / 350F for 30 - 40 minutes until the top has crisped up to your liking.
Some dried cranberries are a nice addition if you like a touch of sweetness.
If you need to make a nut free stuffing, then you could swap out the nuts for pumpkin seeds/pepitas which would still add a nice crunch and flavour.
For gluten free vegan stuffing, simply use GF bread, and check the ingredients of your vegan sausages and vegetable stock.
If you don’t have fresh herbs, then use about 1 third the amount of dried herbs instead.
Instead of cooking the stuffing in a dish, you could use it to stuff something like a squash. Simply roast the squash for around 30-40 minutes until fork tender, then add the stuffing and bake for a further 30 minutes.
Serving and storage
We usually serve the stuffing straight from the dish it was baked in. Just pop a board or trivet underneath to protect the table.
Making the stuffing in advance
You can do most of the preparation in advance, by combining all the ingredients apart from the broth and flaxseed water (the bread, cooked onion, celery, vegan sausages, nuts, herbs) and storing in the fridge. When you’re ready to bake, mix in the veggie broth and flax ‘egg’ and cook as normal.
You can also bake the stuffing a day in advance then store in the fridge. On the day you can rebake it in the oven for around 30 mins until hot all the way through.
To prevent drying out, you can add some more vegetable stock before reheating. You can also cover the top with a lid or foil to stop the top from burning or becoming too dry. Just remove the cover for the last 5 - 10 minutes to get a crisp crust again.
Keep leftover stuffing in a covered container in the fridge for up to three days.
Leftovers can be served cold, quickly reheated in a microwave - or even tastier cooked in a frying pan or skillet with some oil.
We haven’t tried freezing this stuffing, as we used frozen sausages which are not recommended for refreezing.
- 4 cups (160 g) bread 1cm cubes
- 2 onions diced
- 2 sticks celery diced
- 1 pack (300 g / 10 oz) vegan sausages sliced
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 2 (280 g) apples such as Bramley or Granny Smith cored and diced
- 2 tbsp fresh sage chopped
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1 cup (110 g) pecans roughly chopped
- 1 cup (240 ml) vegetable stock
- 2 tbsp ground flaxseed mixed with 6 tbsp water
- 1 tsp black pepper
- Spread out the bread cubes on a baking tray. Toast in the oven at 180°C / 350°F for around 10-12 minutes until light golden brown.
- In the meantime, heat the olive oil in a frying pan, then add the diced onion, diced celery and sliced vegan sausages, then cook them for about 10 minutes until sauteed and starting to brown. I like to fry the sausage slices on one side so they can be in direct contact with the pan and get brown well.
- In a large oven dish combine all the ingredients (the cooked onion, celery and vegan sausages, toasted bread cubes, diced apple, roughly chopped nuts, herbs, black pepper, vegetable stock and flax 'egg') and mix together.
- Bake at 180°C / 350°F for 30-40 minutes unitl the top is crisp and browned to your liking.