Vegetarian Turkey

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Posted in FoodVegetarian-and-vegan

Introduction: Vegetarian Turkey

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Want a vegetarian turkey you can serve on thanksgiving that's like a Tofurkey? Want to make it yourself?

The this turkey is for you! This recipe uses vital wheat gluten to get a nice meaty texture and along with some spices and a rice stuffing, even the non-veggies will say "Yum!"

Step 1: Ingredients

For this you will need the following
2 cups of vital wheat gluten
2 cups of veggie broth
3 tbsp rosemary
3 tbsp thyme
1 tbsp seasoned salt (or garlic powder, onion powder etc.)
1 bag of wild rice (about 2 cups)

Step 2: Cook Rice

First you want to cook the wild rice in a rice cooker, if you don't have a rice cooker, get creative with the stove!

Step 3: Mix Dry Ingredients

Mix the spices and the wheat gluten together until well mixed. Add more spices as you want.

Step 4: Add Broth and Knead

Next add the broth to the dry mix. Knead it around until its all wet.

Step 5: Stuff the Gluten

Next you want to get your stuffing into the gluten. For this we are using cooked rice, you could of course use any thing else, but i feel the rice adds a healthy bit to this dish.


Step 6: Boil the Loafs

Next start some broth of soy sauce and molasses (2 tbsp of each) in about 6 cups of water and bring to a boil.

Place your loaf in the water and let simmer for around an hour. They will grow and get puffy.

Step 7: Bake the Loaf

Next you want to bake the loaf. At this point you could freeze it and wait to bake it. Otherwise it will take you about an hour to bake the loaf. Drizzle the loaf with olive oil and add some root veggies around it if you wish

Bake for about an hour or until crisp at 350 degrees.

Step 8: Serve

And that's about it, The loaf after baking is done. Serve with regular thanksgiving fixins' like gravy, mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce

For more great vegan recipes for thanksgiving check out our guide.

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    45 Comments

    I have really enjoyed this discussion. Laughed a lot at both sides. I have been going back and forth from vegetarian to meat and back a few times. All I can say is that somehow meat seems to be a narcotic to me. The "fake" meats as some call them has allowed me to cut back on my use of meat. I am grateful at least for that. BTW, some substitutes are really tasty. You should taste my homemade gluten steaks I make from scratch. They aren't a T-Bone, but they sure taste good and if you ate one you would be back for seconds.

    You can try Soy Curls - they come dehydrated, just add broth or water + seasonings to rehydrate. Best if you incorporate them into other recipes rather than just on their own, but like tofu, hey take on any flavor you give them.
    http://www.butlerfoods.com/products/soycurls.html

    my aunt is allergic to gluten ....... any alternatives

    1 reply


    There's a gluten free alternative here. http://substanceofliving.blogspot.co.uk/2012/07/gluten-free-seitan.html

    Just found this site and was delighted to find this recipe. What I don't understand is why people are criticizing others for looking for recipes which mimic meat. I was told by my doctor to go on a vegan diet to prevent heart disease. I'm learning a lot but so many are critical of these foods. Why are you even looking and COMMENTING on such a site? Remember the old adage of MYOB. You look for your foods and I'll look for mine. I promise I'll never comment on your choices, even if it consists of cockroaches. I expect the same from you.

    I'm not vegetarian but I am excited about making this. Thanks for posting

    I'll eat veg. if that is what is served, but I like some good lean well-cooked meat. I also like to share a little of it with my cats. (If I had dogs, the same.) The cat will -not- touch tofu, and can't digest it anyway. The dog, probably will swallow almost anything. Balance is what's good.

    Just a little note to anyone making this recipe:

    Instead of boxed vegetable stock, I used vegetable bouillon cubes, now, the important thing to remember here is to let the bouillon cool before adding it to the gluten. If not, it becomes a very rubbery mass that's hard to do anything with. I did manage to get it to work but it took a huuuuuge amount of pounding the dough to get it flat enough to put the rice in, and then the ends didn't stick together so i had to put it in a cheesecloth before boiling it. This actually worked really well as my "turkey" retained it's shape.

    Thanks for the recipe!

    You also need molasses and soy sauce not included in the ingredient list

    I haven't eaten beef, pork, or poultry for 15 years -- and that's the *exact* reaction I now have when I see raw poultry! LOL

    I find it interesting (no insult intended) that vegans/vegetarians are constantly trying to simulate meat with vegetables. I'll leave you to ponder the implications of this irony.

    9 replies

    The reason that vegetarians try to simulate meat is several reasons but a couple are:
    1. Because in todays world much of the populations has adapted to the lifestyle of eating meat / animal muscle tissue. Meat eating has been something that all our friends do so in order to "fit in". It is not true that we all used to eat animals back in the olden days and now we are starting to eat more vegetation. actually if you look at recorded statistics you find that in the last 100 years meat eating has rapidly increased - and so has meat eating diseases. Coronary heart disease is now the number one killer in the USA whereas in other "less developed" countries heart disease and meat eating is far less prevalent. Eating meat fills your arteries with fat that plugs up your arteries and when arteries are plugged blood can not get through.

    2. Analog meats or meat simulations allow newer vegetarians to have a means of transitioning to more healthy less diseased food / nutrient sources. Many people that are trying to reduce and avoid the overwhelming risks associated with eating animals, but have still not fully adapted to a plant based diet find that eating "pretend" animals based foods makes the transition easier.

    Here are a couple links
    http://www.streetdirectory.com/food_editorials/cooking/meat_recipes/history_of_human_and_meat_eating.html

    And this one is very good = American Heart Association
    http://www.americanheart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=4478


    I respect vegetarians, just don't expect me to agree. You're talking about modern health problems can certainly have a few causes I would think. Now one could say that meat has more fat than vegetable proteins. I would say that back in the good old days people were working. Sowing the fields. Raising the cattle. And not sitting on their collective butts for 12 hours a day. In modern day America we watch TV, buy our kids video games rather than books, and just have gotten generally lazy. I would venture ti guess that most doctors would agree that having a totally lethargic lifestyle is worse than any protein you put in your body. That being said I have to get packed up to go up to deer camp.

    Nobody said anything about protein being bad for you. The protein in meat isn't what causes the problems. The fat is what causes problems, and particularly the saturated fats. Protein is not exclusive to meat products, it is necessary for life to continue. That is why some vegetarians choose to eat meat substitutes, because they are typically higher in proteins than your average vegetarian fare. Finding complete proteins is the difficulty in a vegetarian diet.

    a couple very excellent sites to get info from people that have really researched this subject are these:
    http://www.fullplatediet.org/ and http://www.drfuhrman.com/ both are sites that are run by people that are there for the primary purpose of helping

    Dansmith, I couldn't agree with you more on both points. We certainly eat way too much meat. However, I feel that meat is healthy in moderation and I have canines.. might as well put them to use, right? =D Also, Japanese have the highest life expectancy.. and eat a lot of fish and seafood. I love fish.

    Um, canines? You're not really comparing those puny little mildly pointed (in most of humyns) excuses for flesh rippers to those brandished by carnivores and true omnivores, are you? Even in other primates, where the canines are quite pronounced, they're there primarily as weapons (in practice, mostly as a threat) against attackers, mostly of their own species. There's no way you could effectively use those for tearing apart a raw carcass of anything much bigger than a mouse and, even in that scenario, it would probably be your incisors and molars (adapted for eating plants) that would be doing most of the work.

    Having canines doesn't make you a carnivore, this is a common misconception. It's true that humans have adapted to have a meat-heavy diet, but this is a relatively (in terms of human existence) recent development (from the Ice Age if I recall correctly). Our teeth are in fact very much NOT made for eating meat. Our canines are blunted and not very sharp, they would not be very effective in tearing up prey and are therefore pretty pointless as an indicator of carnivorism. But even if we did have killer teeth, it wouldn't necessarily indicate a meat-dominated diet: just look at bears!

    The Japanese also eat a lot of varied vegetables. I won't deny the potential benefits of some seafood, but please bear in mind that there's a LOT more to the Japanese diet than just fish.

    Also, another reason vegetarians consume/produce meat analogues is the simple fact that many of our western recipes call for meat! I'm sure the creative and adventurous have no need for this pragmatism, but for some vegetarians the ability to simply substitute non-meat products in a recipe opens up a lot of culinary opportunities.

    It's not necessarily about simulating meat, and this recipe in particular is made with vegetable broth, but seitan doesn't have to be made with vegetables at all. A lot of fake meat is made in the shape of processed meat products. The processed meat products are made into their particular shapes because those shapes are convenient and portable. Thus, processed vegetable and grain products may be made into particular shapes so that they are equally convenient and portable. It's difficult to make vital wheat gluten into a sandwich without first making it into some sort of cohesive shape.

    You may say that there was "no insult intended", but your question was asked in an obviously condescending manner. Please don't be rude. :/ To answer your question, many choose to be vegetarian not because they don't like the taste of meat, but because they do not support meat industry policies. Therefore, they imitate meat textures with vegetables in order to enjoy a particular flavor without encouraging unethical factory farm practices. Also, many people, including omnivores, eat veggie-based alternatives to meat for health-related reasons.