Hearty, savory, and just a little sweet, this Vegan Challah Stuffing is the dressing that Thanksgiving dreams are made from. The solid yet delicious dried out bread chunks soak up all the tasty herby flavor and pair beautifully with any Thanksgiving main, like Seitan Turkey or Lentil Mushroom Loaf.
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Hey Internet, this recipe is a little on the late side this year, but what’s a Thanksgiving in 2020 without a last-minute stuffing recipe?
Okay, it’s a bit of a misnomer to call it stuffing. Stuffing is technically supposed to go *in* something (and we’re not saying what on a vegan site…) and what is cooked separately is called dressing.
So even before I was vegan I guess I was just loving my dad’s homemade dressing all these years. He made it so good, and no store-bought stuffing ever compared.
Well, his stuffing wasn’t vegan at all, but this one is and I gotta tell you it tastes really similar to his. Not sure how, since I didn’t ask him about his recipe (I didn’t want to hear about giblets, much less remember that I ate them).
But this vegan challah stuffing is AMAZING.
It uses my homemade vegan challah and I definitely think that challah is the best bread for stuffing.
Apparently the Internet seems to agree--I did a quick search and people love that challah, an enriched bread, is delicious like brioche but holds up better to the broth it’s soaked in for stuffing purposes.
While you can use any bread, I’m a bit biased that I love the challah. Not only am I Jewish (so I kind of already have a bias about challah), but I made my own bread instead of buying it from the store, so I already believe it tastes better.
If the 2020 bread baking movement taught us anything, it’s that homemade bread is a beast to learn but it’s sooooo worth it.
And challah, surprisingly, is actually a really easy bread to bake. It turns out so soft, and my enriched dough is both easy to work with and delicious when baked.
I highly recommend you check out my vegan challah recipe. You don’t need to be Jewish to make or enjoy it!
So this vegan stuffing is super herby, savory, and solid, but with a touch of sweetness from both the challah and dried cranberries (yum!). I LOVE dried cranberries, but you could sub any dried fruit like raisins or just omit them.
Speaking of the ingredients, let’s get into the recipe.
What You’ll Need
I kind of mentioned it above but you’re going to need a challah. Without vegan challah, it’s not vegan challah stuffing.
However, I did say you can use any other bread and you totally can. French bread, whole wheat loaf bread, sourdough--all are good choices for this vegan stuffing recipe.
The one thing I’ll recommend against, however, is sliced bread. It often comes sliced very thin, and it can disintegrate in the stuffing--I speak from experience here. I really recommend cutting up a loaf yourself, and cutting it into one inch cubes.
Moving on, instead of meat in this recipe, I’ve used butter beans, which are these huge delicious white beans--honestly I think they’re my favorite bean. Any white beans will work, though.
As far as veggies go, I used traditional stuffing veg: onions, garlic, carrots, celery, and I added mushrooms for a meaty and smoky flavor.
If you’re not a fan of mushrooms you can omit them, but you could also just try dicing them really small. You won’t detect them in the final stuffing.
I mentioned that this is an herby stuffing. I used a combination of fresh and dried herbs, which I think is the best of both worlds.
Fresh herbs are delicious but expensive, so I recommend picking 2 of your favorite, most flavorful herbs and buying those fresh, then substituting the rest with dried. Just use half the amount of dried that you do fresh (in this recipe, anyway--dried herbs are more potent than fresh).
Personally, I used fresh oregano and fresh sage, then I used a dried herb blend called poultry seasoning, which is vegan--it’s just a blend of herbs normally used on poultry.
For the broth, I think vegan chicken broth is the best option, though vegetable broth will work. I love using Better Than Bouillon No Chicken Base mixed with hot water, but prepared vegan chicken broth is also really good.
The bouillon stock base is great because it’s more economical, lasts longer than an open carton of broth, and you can choose how much to use in any application.
Finally, I used salt and freshly cracked black pepper and voila! This recipe is simple, wholesome, and delicious.
Tips for Making Vegan Challah Stuffing
- To prepare, cube your challah the night before and lay it out on a sheet pan to dry out. If you forget to do this step, you can toast the cubed challah in a 350 degree Fahrenheit (177 degree Celsius) oven for about 10 minutes or until the cubes are pretty dry.
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit (192 degrees Celsius).
- Start by sauteing your onion, celery, and carrots for a good 5-6 minutes over medium high heat. Add a splash of water every time they start to stick.
- After the first veggies have softened, add the garlic and saute for another minute or two. Transfer to a large ceramic or glass bowl and place the pot back on the stove (no need to wash it).
- Add mushrooms to the pot and saute those for about 5-6 minutes as well, letting them stick for about 10 seconds (if they start to) and then adding a splash of water and stirring. When they’ve softened and browned, add them to the large bowl with the other veggies.
- Add your cranberries, herbs and spices, and dried out or toasted cubed challah to the bowl. Stir everything very well and pour on the broth, making sure to soak all the challah cubes.
- Add everything to a 9x13 deep baking dish and use the back of your spoon to really pack the mixture in there. This helps it solidify and marry the flavors.
- Bake covered for 20 minutes and uncovered for 20 minutes. It will be very fragrant, and lightly browned and a little stiff on top when it is done.
- Sprinkle with more fresh herbs and enjoy!
What to Serve with Vegan Stuffing
Wondering what else to place on your vegan Thanksgiving table? I have a few ideas for you:
- Seitan Turkey
- Lentil Mushroom Loaf
- Vegan Shepherd’s Pie
- Mashed Potatoes
- Quick Vegan Gravy or Vegan Mushroom Gravy
- Vegan Creamed Kale
- Butternut Squash Carrot Ginger Soup
- Pomegranate, Orange and Pecan Thanksgiving Salad
- Pumpkin Risotto
- Vegan Brisket
And for dessert?
As always, I hope you love this recipe–I know I do and so does Mr. Zardyplants, who (each time I made it) asked for seconds, then thirds, then demolished the pan before I knew it.
This vegan challah stuffing is:
- “Meaty” (hold the cruelty)
- Packed with umami flavor
- and for a holiday meal or just a weeknight side. Just ask my husband who ate it as his main dish and loved it.
Let me know in the comments below if you make this recipe or tag me @Zardyplants on Instagram so I can see your beautiful recreations! If you tag me on IG, I will share your post in my stories :)
Also, one quick request: if you love how this recipe looks or tastes, please leave me a 5-star rating and a nice comment–ratings help more people find my recipes which helps me keep providing them! Thank you!