Crispy on the outside, soft yet not mushy on the inside, perfectly flavored and full off protein! This vegan Thanksgiving stuffing is a flavor bomb like no other!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Ozery Bakery. The opinions and text are all mine.
Hi, I’m Sophia and I hate mushy things. Especially bread. There is nothing grosser to me than soft, wet, mushy bread. Just looking at it gives me the heebie jeebies. So when Thanksgiving rolls around and someone has so graciously brought their family stuffing recipe to the table, I cringe in anticipation.
Most of the time, I don’t even dare take a scoop. I mean, I think I am more worried about the mushy nastiness than I am the ingredients. That’s how much I hate squishy bread. So I sat myself down and said, it’s about damn time you get yourself a stuffing recipe that puts the rest to shame. And that I did.
Stuffing is all about the quality of bread, ratio of liquid and the spices.
Let’s start with the bread. In my personal opinion, your run of the mill sandwich bread does not work for stuffing. I like a hearty bread with a bite to it. Dense, flavorful, wholesome ingredients. So when Ozery Bakery got in touch and said, “Hey, we’d love it if you partnered with us this holiday and created a healthy awesome recipe with one of our products,” I jumped at the opportunity.
You are going to be SO happy that I did! (Note: child 2, aka sticky fingers, tried stealing my bread)
Ozery Bakery products are legit friends.
They have a variety of baked goods, one of which are these awesome thin pre-sliced sandwich buns called One Buns. They come in a variety of types: multigrain, whole wheat 100 calorie (yes they are!), organic wheat and multigrain slider. These are no wimpy sandwich bun, they are substantial, dense yet chewy, hold a great bite and full of flavor.
The great thing about their products is that they are made with real ingredients. Yep. Actual stuff you have heard of! And you can taste the flavor.
Which brings us full circle to stuffing. If you make stuffing with bland flavorless bread, that’s what you’re going to get. But, if you make stuffing with delicious bread that has a flavor in and of itself (like these One Buns!) then your stuffing is going to be the BOMB DIGGITY! Just look at that Parmesan crumble…drool.
Out with mushy bread! In with perfectly textured stuffing!
Other than amazing bread, you need a good liquid ratio in your stuffing. Now you may like a little more moisture than I do, but please do not tell me you like mushy stuffing or we may not be able to share thanksgiving dinner together.
In reality though, it may seem you need more liquid than you really do. I made this multiple times and this liquid ratio was the point when I declared this stuffing spot on perfect! And the spices, oh the spices for stuffing.
I went with the Italian inspired, sausage like flavors that we personally love. My inspiration actually came from my Chickpea Sausage Crumbles because I wanted that flavor without using real (duh) or even vegan sausage. I really wanted to keep this recipe full of whole foods only. And I hit the nail on the head! Vegan Thanksgiving stuffing perfection.
Side note, I know that out of the turkey it is called dressing by others, but I’m not really a fan of calling it that. It just sounds weird to me, like is it hurt and needs a dressing? Or is it embarrassed and needs clothes? So stuffing it is for me. If you are the food police, I subscribe to a no police policy so mosey along.
So why should you make this vegan Thanksgiving stuffing with One Buns?
- Because it is not mushy and soft and gross.
- It has the added bonus of protein.
- The ingredients are all whole foods.
- The flavor is unreal.
- You can now eat stuffing at the holiday table without gagging or throwing up a little in your mouth (okay, maybe that’s just me).
- 6 cups cubed Ozery Bakery One Buns (I used 6 of the Multigrain sandwich, left to dry out over night)
- 3 cups cooked chickpeas (about 1 ½ cans)
- 3 tablespoons reserved juice from can of chickpeas
- 1 cup sweet or yellow onion , chopped
- 1 cup carrots , chopped
- 1 cup celery , chopped
- 2 tablespoons garlic , finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons sea salt divided (see note)
- 1 cup veggie broth , plus a drizzle of olive oil to sauté if using oil (use more broth for a more wet stuffing)
- ¼ cup white wine (optional for added flavor)
- 2 tablespoons dried rosemary
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon fennel seed , chopped or crushed
- 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper
- ½ cup grated vegan parmesan (optional for added flavor)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Pulse chickpeas in a food processor until chopped into large pieces. If you don’t have a food processor you can also chop them with a knife (although it will take longer and you’ll have to chase the runaway beans).
- Once chopped, place in the bowl with the dried bread.
- Saute the onion, celery, carrots, garlic and 1 teaspoon of salt with a drizzle of olive oil, or if not using oil use about ¼ cup of the veggie broth, and white wine, if using, until they begin to soften.
- Add the rest of the veggie broth, rosemary, thyme, fennel seed and crushed red pepper. Let the mixture simmer for about 5 minutes.
- Slowly add the liquidy mixture to the bowl with the dried bread and chopped chickpeas, mixing as you add.
- Add the reserved liquid from the can of chickpeas to the bowl and mix well.
- Place stuffing into a 9 x 13 baking dish. If using parmesan sprinkle it over the top.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes until nice and crisp on the top.
Make sure to cube and leave your bread out over night. Simply place in a bowl or dish on the counter the day before you make this. You can spread it out on a cookie sheet and slowly toast if you forget, but the texture is best if left out overnight or even for a few days.
If you don’t have One Buns, you can use another dense type of bread. Regular sandwich bread will not give as good of a texture, you need a dense chewy bread like a bagel or a heavy dinner roll.
The amount of salt you need will change depending on if you are using the Parmesan. The Parmesan has plenty of salt so you may want to reduce the amount you use here if you are using it.
Keep in mind this is NOT a very wet stuffing, this is how we like it. You can add more broth if you prefer your stuffing more moist.