This vegan stuffing recipe is a must have on our Thanksgiving table every year! It’s a veganized version of the classic side dish that’s actually pretty easy to make. All you need is some good bread, a vegan butter that you like, some herbs and aromatics, and you’re all set!
This dish pairs well with all of the other Thanksgiving classics such as Vegan Green Bean Casserole and Vegan Scalloped Potatoes. Eat alongside your favorite vegan turkey, top with gravy, and enjoy the holidays!
Ingredients for Vegan Stuffing
- Onion, celery and garlic. These create a super flavorful base for our vegan stuffing. Feel free to add in some chopped carrots too, if you like a hint of sweetness. And you can substitute in shallots for the onion if you’re feeling a bit fancy.
- Day-old bread. Ideally something sturdy, like French or Italian bread, or a rustic sourdough loaf. Avoid anything super fluffy or soft like white sandwich bread; these tend to get soggy. If you want to be super extra, you can bake up a fresh loaf of sourdough bread a few days in advance.
- Vegetable broth. My recommendation is chicken-style veggie broth. I have a few specific brand recommendations below. Regular vegetable broth will work as well but is a bit sweeter and less savory, so you might consider adding a tablespoon soy sauce to boost the umami.
- Vegan butter. Butter is key to achieve that classic stuffing flavor. Make sure to use a brand that you really like, because the flavor will be prominent. There are many vegan butter options on the market these days and they all have slightly different tastes and textures. If you need recommendations, you can check out my Comprehensive Vegan Butter Guide.
- Poultry seasoning. This is a blend of herbs that is so evocative of Thanksgiving and the holidays in general! It’s a little shortcut to packing a lot of autumnal flavor in without much effort.
- Fresh herbs. For extra flavor and a pop of appealing color, chop up and add in a handful of your favorite fresh herbs such as parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme. Use any combination you like depending on your preferences. We are big fans of sage and rosemary in our home, but less so when it comes to parsley, so we add in a few tablespoons of those fresh herbs. You can also leave the fresh herbs out if you like; the poultry spice already contributes a lot of flavor.
How to Make Classic Vegan Stuffing
Dry out the bread ahead of time.
- For stuffing, use slightly stale and dry bread so that it absorbs all of the broth and butter without getting soggy. The night before, tear up the bread into roughly 1″ cubes. (I like to tear it to get irregular craggy pieces that crisp up nicely in the oven, but you can also feel free to use a knife to cut it into cubes.) Transfer the bread to a rimmed baking tray and tent it loosely with foil. Allow it to sit out overnight to stale.
- If you forget to leave your bread out the night before, no worries! You can dry it out by baking it in a preheated 300°F oven for 20-25 minutes, or until slightly golden brown and dry.
Mix together the stuffing ingredients.
- Sauté the aromatic veggies (onion, celery & garlic) in a generous amount of vegan butter until tender and just starting to take on a little bit of color.
- Mix this with the dried bread cubes, poultry spice, and fresh herbs of choice. Then pour in the vegetable broth in parts, mixing after each addition. (If using chicken-style vegetable broth that comes in powder or bouillon, you’ll want to prepare this ahead of time by whisking together with boiled water.)
- You might not need the entire amount of veggie broth — this will depend on how dry and sturdy your bread is. If using a softer bread, you’ll probably need less than if you’re using a more rustic loaf. Just add enough broth so that all the bread is moist but not soggy.
Bake the stuffing.
- Transfer the stuffing to a greased casserole dish or 9×13″ pan and cover with foil. Bake in a preheated 350°F oven for 35 minutes, then remove the foil and finish it, uncovered, for an additional 10-15 minutes, until it’s as crispy and golden brown as you like.
Tips for the Best Vegan Stuffing
Here are a few key tips to ensure that your Vegan Stuffing tastes just like the kind you grew up with (or maybe even better):
- Use a brand of vegan butter that you love. My favorite butter substitutes are the ones by Melt, Country Crock, or (if you’re in the mood to splurge) the cultured butter by Miyoko’s Kitchen. This recipe calls for quite a bit of butter, so make sure you use a brand that you love.
- Use a chicken-style vegetable broth. I highly recommend using a chicken-style broth to make the dish ultra-savory. If you can’t get your hands on any, I recommend adding a tablespoon of soy sauce to your regular veggie broth to add in some extra umami. A few great options for vegan chicken bouillon are:
You can customize this dish in a variety of ways! Cut your bread cubes smaller if you prefer your stuffing to be more like a pudding; keep them large if you like it chunkier (as I do). Feel free to add in other veggies, such as carrots, mushrooms or squash. And finally, add in your favorite fresh herbs if you have them handy! Enjoy.
Can you make this recipe gluten-free?
Yes! Simply use a good gluten-free bread and make sure that your vegetable broth or bouillon is gluten-free as well.
Need More Vegan Thanksgiving & Holiday Recipes?
- Vegan Green Bean Casserole (Gluten-Free Optional)
- Vegan Chicken Pot Pie
- Roasted Beet and Feta Salad
- Scalloped Cheesy Potatoes
- Fall Harvest Stuffing
Classic Vegan Stuffing
- knife and cutting board
- rimmed baking sheet to dry out bread
- 2 quart casserole dish or 9×13" baking pan
- glass measuring cup to prepare vegan chicken-style bouillon
- large nonstick skillet or cast iron pan
- large mixing bowl
- 1 lb stale bread torn or cut into 1" pieces (about 8-10 cups)
- 2 cups vegetable broth plus extra, chicken-style recommended
- 6 tbsps vegan butter
- 1 large white or yellow onion finely diced (about 1½ – 2 cups)
- 2-4 cloves garlic minced
- 4-6 stalks celery finely diced (about 2 cups)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons poultry seasoning
- 2 tablespoons fresh chopped herbs of choice such as parsley, sage, rosemary or thyme
- salt and pepper to taste
Prepare the Bread
- Ideally the night before, tear your bread into roughly 1" pieces. It can also be cubed with a knife, but tearing it creates craggy edges which crisp up nicely in the oven for extra texture. Feel free to go with smaller pieces of bread if that's your preference! Everyone's family makes theirs a little differently.
- Place the bread pieces on a baking tray. Tent loosely with aluminum foil and allow it to sit out overnight to stale.
- If you forget to let the bread get stale ahead of time, you can achieve a similar result by baking it. Lay out the bread pieces in one layer on a baking tray, and bake for about 20-25 minutes in a preheated 300°F oven. Exact time will vary depending on what kind of bread you're using, so keep an eye on it and take it out when it's a light golden brown and has dried out quite a bit.
Make the Vegan Stuffing
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease or butter a large casserole dish or 9×13" pan.
- If you're using a chicken-style vegetable broth which comes in powder or bouillon form, prepare it ahead of time by whisking into water just off a boil.
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt vegan butter. Sauté onion and celery until tender and fragrant, about 3-5 minutes. Add in garlic and sauté for an additional 2-3 minutes until onions are just beginning to brown.
- Transfer bread cubes to a large mixing bowl. (You can technically mix directly in the casserole dish, but it's easier with a very large bowl.) Pour the onion mixture over the bread cubes. Sprinkle poultry seasoning and fresh herbs over bread mixture and toss to distribute vegetables and herbs.
- Gradually pour in vegetable broth a little bit at a time, gently tossing between additions. You may need a little more or less broth than the amount listed — it will depend on how dry your bread is. White breads (like French or Italian bread) tend to require less broth, while a crusty loaf (like a rustic sourdough) will require more. Add enough broth to moisten all of the bread without making it soggy.
- Give the stuffing a taste and season to preference with salt and pepper.
- Transfer to prepared casserole or pan. Cover with foil and bake for 35 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes depending on how crispy you like your stuffing.