Is it time to start thinking about what vegetarian main dish you will serve for the holidays? If so, then this Vegetarian roast is for you. It is one of the vegan holiday meals that vegans and non-vegans love equally!
We're talking about a vegan roast made with nuts and mushrooms that can be served as a vegan holiday dinner's main dish. This vegan roast recipe is perfect for Christmas or Thanksgiving dinners and tastes delicious!
The vegetarian savory roast has a rich, savory flavor with just enough sweetness to satisfy even the pickiest of palates.
Even meat-eaters are always pleasantly surprised with this great recipe that can sit head to head with a traditional holiday roast which you can also add to your Sunday dinner recipes arsenal.
Why you will love this vegan holiday roast
- This vegan holiday roast recipe is a great vegan holiday dinner main course. It makes a wonderful addition to any Christmas or Thanksgiving dinner and can even be made ahead of time for stress-free entertaining!
- It is vegan and gluten-free.
- The recipe includes helpful tips for preparing your vegetarian roast to have the best results possible when serving this dish as part of your festive meal.
- A plant-based nut roast can make an excellent vegan alternative to traditional meat roasts at Christmas time and Thanksgiving gatherings. They're easy to prepare, too: you just need to mix everything and bake it with no crusts or layers.
- Concerned about protein? This roast is a high-protein vegan meal!
- It is super easy to make, and no kitchen skills are needed.
We had this for Christmas this year, and our Italian neighbors who kept the leftovers told us two days later that now they understand why we are always so energetic. Hearty filling and healthy food.
They are still amazed how they ate so much on Christmas eve and the day after, and they felt fantastic!
Nut roast ingredients
- Mixed nuts (walnuts, almonds, and sunflower seeds)
- Dried porcini mushrooms
- Cremini mushrooms (or portobello)
- Chia seeds (or flax meal)
- Spring onions
- Garlic cloves
- Fresh herbs (rosemary and sage)
- Tamari sauce (or soy sauce)
- Nutritional yeast
Tomato paste and dried cranberries.
How to cook a nuts roast
Make the chia eggs. Add 3 tablespoons of warm almond milk for every tablespoon of chia seeds and let it sit for 10 minutes. This will add extra moisture and will hold our plant-based nut roast together.
Chop the onions and garlic. In small dices. Preheat the oven.
Prepare the porcini mushroom. To make this vegan holiday roast plant-based, just substitute the chicken broth with vegan stock. Cut the dried porcini mushrooms into small pieces and soak them in hot water.
Blend the nuts. In a food processor, add your choice of nuts and grind them. Continue adding the chia eggs.
Stir fry. Add the chopped spring onions and garlic to the pan. Add the chopped herbs and cook until the onions are translucent and slightly golden brown. Then add roughly chopped mushrooms and finely chopped sage and rosemary. Sauté for a couple of minutes and turn the heat off. You can use a tablespoon of olive oil or simply add a tablespoon of water if the onions and garlic start sticking.
Mix. Add the chopped nuts, chia eggs, tamari sauce, nutritional yeast, and dried porcini mushrooms stock. Combine in a large mixing bowl until a dough is formed. Then adjust the seasoning with salt and black pepper.
Bake. Line a parchment paper or baking sheet into a baking dish (9” (23 cm) loaf pan). Spoon evenly onto the parchment paper already in the baking dish. Slightly oil it if unsure about the quality of the parchment paper to ensure a smooth demolding.
Bake the vegetarian roast for 30-40 minutes until the top looks golden brown.
Demold. Let the vegan roast sit for at least one hour before demolding to allow it to fully come together. This will prevent it from falling apart when cutting it.
Optionally plate it with mushroom gravy and veggies.
Storing and freezing
Store the roast in an airtight container. I like to place a piece of parchment paper on the roast's top and bottom for easy handling when thawing.
Just thaw overnight and pop it into the oven before heading out for family celebrations on Christmas dinner or Thanksgiving morning.
Then re-heat on a pre-heated oven at 300ºF (150 ºC) for 15 minutes, as it has already been cooked; you just need to warm it evenly.
What to serve with vegan roast
You could serve this vegan nut roast recipe as part of a vegan holiday with vegan gravy and vegan mashed potatoes, along with some other veggies like maple glazed carrots, or Brussels sprouts for a complete vegan holiday meal.
We love also serving it with our delicious spiced cranberry sauce, easily made with dried cranberries.
Tips for making nut roast
Make this recipe the day before so that you have less to do on Christmas or Thanksgiving morning. - If desired, add mixed vegetables such as peas and corn to the plant-based nut roast mixture when assembling it in step two of this recipe’s directions.
Ensure to soak the nuts in water overnight before cooking them so they are easier to digest - this step is also known as activating the nuts! Then drain and rinse them well.
Also, ensure that there aren't any un-hulled almonds or other pieces of shell in your mix (yes, it happens!). This vegetarian roast recipe calls for chia seeds mixed into almond milk, which helps bind everything together.
You can find dried porcini mushrooms at your local grocery store or online, but you should check out an Asian market for a better price.
Dried cranberries. Although it is unnecessary, we like adding dried cranberries to add some extra acidity and festive flavors.
Fresh herbs. We love the combination of rosemary and sage on this vegetarian roast, but you can also use parsley and thyme or any combination of these four. Just keep the total amount of herbs proposed in the recipe, so all other ingredients can also shine.
Want more veggies in your roast? You can certainly add more veggies to your Vegan holiday roasts. We suggest opting to stir in a small carrot and/or celery stick to the mix. Just chop them finely and cook them with the onion and garlic, until soft.
You can also add a diced boiled sweet potato to the mix. If you decide to add more veggies, ensure you also adjust the seasonings, so your finished product doesn't taste bland.
What can I replace meat with in a roast?
The roast ingredients that will make up for the meat texture and flavor are
Porcini mushrooms - provide meaty and umami flavors. Also, they have a meaty texture and, when chopped, resemble ground meat.
Nuts are fatty and packed with protein; once soaked and ground, they complement the porcini mushrooms' texture.
Chia seeds - once soaked in almond milk, they also add texture and help to bind everything together, as ground meat would naturally do.
What is a vegetarian alternative to steak?
A plant-based alternative to steak is a plant-based nut roast, which can be made from nuts and other plant-based ingredients. Making your own vegan steaks at home allows you to experiment with different types of plant-based meats as well as marinades that go well with them.
Tofu steaks are a great meat alternative. We love making a marinade and letting the tofu absorb the flavor for 15 minutes and then grilling it; check the recipe. For a festive version, check out our Maple Glazed Baked Tofu.
Another great option to cook tofu is making maple-glazed tofu baked in the oven. It makes a great main dish and can be paired with roasted veggies, like roasted green beans, roasted butternut squash, or even with delicious vegan mashed potatoes.
Benefits of mushrooms
Since we are using lots of mushrooms in this recipe, we thought you might want to know more about why adding mushrooms to your diet is a great idea, especially if you are vegan!
Mushrooms' benefits are endless; they can lower blood pressure and help reduce the risk of heart disease. They also may play a role in cancer prevention since some types contain nutrients with antioxidant properties.
They are also a great vegetarian source of fiber and very low in calories.
In addition, they're also high in selenium, which helps protect us from free radicals that can damage cells and lead to disease.
Mushrooms contain essential amino acids that help our bodies produce DNA and build muscle tissue, making them an excellent vegetarian option for people who want to build up their muscles or recover after a workout at the gym since these nutrients support recovery.
They also have properties that boost immunity helping you fight off infections during cold weather months when we tend to be more susceptible. Mushroom extracts have been used by cancer patients with positive results too!
Some mushrooms have antiviral qualities that help reduce the risk of a viral infection such as the flu.
Mushrooms are a good vegetarian option for vegans since they contain vitamin D, which helps our bodies absorb calcium from other food sources, so it's an easy way to boost your daily intake of this essential nutrient that is important for strong bones especially in children.
If you are into mushrooms, take a look at our Creamy Vegan Mushroom Risotto, straight from our home in Milano!
Also, our stuffed portobello mushrooms recipe, Argentinean mushroom empanadas, and the herbs stuffed pioppini mushrooms are recipes that are continuously present on our table since they are very easy to make and packed with flavor.
More vegan holiday recipes
Check our Vegan Christmas Holiday Menu
⭐ If you try this recipe, let us know! 💬 Leave a comment, rate it, and don't forget to tag us @ourplantbasedworld on Instagram. Cheers!
Perfect Holiday Vegetarian Roast | Gluten-Free
- 1 oz dried porcini mushrooms in 3.5 oz water or vegetable stock
- 10 oz mixed nuts walnuts almonds, and sunflower seeds
- 9 oz cremini mushrooms or portobello
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- 4 spring onions or onion/red onion finely chopped
- 5 garlic cloves finely chopped
- 2 rosemary sprigs
- 3 sage leaves
- 2 tablespoons tamari sauce or soy sauce (if don't mind ot not to be gluten-free)
- 3 teaspoons nutritional yeast
- 6 tablespoons almond milk or water
- Salt and pepper
- ⅓ cup vegetable stock
- Make the chia eggs. Add 3 tablespoons of warm almond milk for every tablespoon of chia seed and let it soak for 10 minutes.
- Soak the nuts in water.
- Preheat the oven to 400ºF (200ºC).
- Chop the onions and garlic. In small dices. Also, celery if you decide to use it.
- Prepare the porcini mushrooms. Cut the dried porcini mushrooms into small pieces and soak them in hot water or vegetable stock.
- Blend the nuts. Strain the nuts and blend them in a food processor. Continue adding the chia eggs - Preheat the oven to 400 ºF (200ºC).
- Stir fry. Add the chopped spring onions and garlic to the pan (add chopped herbs, celery, and tomato paste (if using). Stir-fry until translucent and add roughly chopped mushrooms and finely chopped sage and rosemary. Sauté for a couple of minutes and turn the heat off.
- Mix. Add the ground nuts, chia eggs, tamari sauce, nutritional yeast, dried porcini mushrooms stock and mix, and combine until a dough is formed and adjust it with salt and black pepper. Add dried cranberries if using.
- Bake. Line a parchment paper or baking sheet into a baking dish (9” (23 cm) loaf pan). Spoon evenly onto parchment already in the baking dish. Slightly oil it if unsure about the quality of the parchment paper to ensure a smooth demolding. Bake for about 30-40 minutes or until the top looks golden brown.
🌡️ Food safety
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking points to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice. See our full Nutritional Disclosure here.
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