Crispy on the outside, soft yet not mushy on the inside, perfectly flavored and full of protein! This vegan stuffing recipe is a flavor bomb like no other!
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 I had to create a stuffing recipe that puts the rest to shame.
There are so many options when it comes to stuffing, and many I love like this quinoa stuffing and this rice stuffing, but the bread variety is the hardest to nail. Mostly because they are often soft and mushy. But not this one. It’s perfect.
Can vegans eat stuffing?
Absolutely! Stuffing can be even better when baked in a pan instead of inside a turkey. Vegetables and bread are the basis of traditional stuffing anyway, so no need for the meat!
I like to add flavor without butter or meat based products, spices and seasoning create mouthwatering vegan stuffing.
How do you make dry stuffing moist?
The key to the perfect stuffing, in my opinion, is when the bread is not mushy. The texture of mushy bread literally makes me gag. So this vegan stuffing recipe may not be for you if you’re in camp mushy bread.
In order to get this moist, but not mushy, I used the perfect amount of liquid to bread. While sautéing the veggies, I let the broth and wine cook down enough so that it wouldn’t oversaturate the bread when it mixed together.
Your bread needs to be dry before you use it, so when you are mixing in the wet ingredients, you need to give the bread some time to absorb the liquid. Many people judge too soon and add more liquid thinking it will be too dry.
If your bread is crumbly after a few minutes of sitting with the liquid mixture, add a touch more liquid and let it sit again. You want it moist but not overly wet.
Do you need to dry out the bread before using?
Yes, using dry bread is key to having moist but not soggy stuffing. This is because the dry bread sucks up just enough moisture to regain it’s moistness. If your bread isn’t totally dry, it will suck up the moisture but be too wet.
There are a few different ways you can dry out the bread just enough:
- leave it out on the countertop overnight
- bake it in the oven (I do 350 F/ 175 C for about 30 minutes, or until toasted)
Can you prep stuffing ahead of time?
Yes! You absolutely can. Here is how you can prep it all for a quick and easy vegan stuffing day of:
- chop the chickpeas
- prep the veggie mixture
- dry out the bread (see above for how)
Leave the bread out to dry overnight. Put the prepped veggie mixture and chickpeas in air tight containers in the fridge. Day of, take them out and let them both come to room temperature before putting the stuffing together.
The thing to watch out for is that when you prep the veggie mix overnight, it will dry out a bit. So you will need to add a bit more broth when you mix it with the bread. See the tips above so that the stuffing is the prefect moist texture.
What kind of bread can I use for vegan stuffing?
I like a hearty bread with a bite to it. One with dense, flavorful, and wholesome ingredients. So for this recipe I used the One Buns by Ozery Bakery.
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:
- whole wheat 100 calorie (yes they are!)
- organic wheat
- 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 have an amazing extra depth of flavor!
But there are other options you can use if you don’t have these. You can also use regular bread, but the texture will come out a little different and not as dense. But, the flavor will still be great. Here are my suggestions for other kinds of bread:
- pita bread (thicker is better)
- naan bread
- other dense type bread
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. 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)
How do you reheat stuffing without drying it out?
The best way to reheat something without drying it out or burning the top is to heat it covered. I cover my pan with tin foil, it keeps the moisture in, and then bake for about 30 minutes at 350 F/ 175 C.
Remove the tin foil and bake the last 10 or so minutes without a cover so you get the crisp top. If it seems to dry, add a touch of veggie broth to the stuffing.
It is also important to let the stuffing sit out at room temperature for a while before heating it up. This helps even heating since it is cold from the fridge. It takes less time to heat it up from room temperature as well.
How do you store stuffing overnight?
First, you want to make sure the stuffing is completely cool before storing. Once cooled, either cover it with plastic wrap or foil if it’s in a baking dish, or transfer to an airtight container, and put it in the fridge.
How to Make Vegan Stuffing
This is a pretty simple recipe, easy to prep ahead and make fresh in no time!
- Chop the chickpeas and saute the veggies.
- Mix everything together and pour into a pan.
Tips for what to bake this vegan stuffing in:
Traditionally stuffing is baked in the turkey, but since there is no turkey on my thanksgiving table, I bake mine separately. I like to use either a glass or ceramic baking dish because those distribute heat the best.
A metal one will work too but I find these are better for baked goods.
Other flavor ideas:
If you love this as much as I do, and want to mix up the flavors from time to time, you can! Here are some ideas for making a variation to this vegan stuffing:
- use white beans instead of chickpeas
- use sage instead of or in addition to the other spices
- add some more kick to this with a little cayenne or chipotle seasoning
- add apples
- add nuts like pecans or pistachios
- use leeks instead of onions
- use fresh fennel
- add chestnuts
- add mushrooms
- add your favorite vegan sausage
Protein Packed Vegan Stuffing Recipe
- 6 cups cubed dense bread , I used 6 of the Multigrain sandwich Ozery Bakery One Buns, left to dry out over night (you could also use pita bread, naan bread or a bagel)
- 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 375F (190C).
- 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.
- If you don’t have the 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.
- 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.
- 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.
Recipe by Veggies Don’t Bite, visit our site for more great plant-based recipes.