Serves 6 to 8
Active time: 1 hour || Total time: 2 hours
I know. I’m posting a roast recipe on the Tuesday evening before Thanksgiving. I’m sure everyone already has their menus planned and I’m late to the party. But this roast almost drove me to the brink of madness Call of Cthulu style, so I had to defeat it! And defeat it I did.
After about 20 years and twice as many tries I’ve got a fabulous centerpiece stuffed roast that I’m proud to show off to the neighbors. Succulent seitan stuffed with herbed meaty shiitakes and leeks. The seitan is mixed with pureed pinto beans to give it great, juicy texture and even a hint of pink color. It’s really similar to my sausage recipes which I used as a base recipe. The stuffing is coated with bread crumbs, which keep it perfectly packed into the roast when you slice it, instead of falling out all over the place. It all comes together when baked in a familiar tinfoil wrapping.
I don’t know what took me so long to get it right. Maybe someday I’ll be ready to talk about it. But right now, let’s get roasting!
There are a few recipe notes before you begin:
~For best results, use a salty homemade vegetable broth. Salt is integral to the flavor of the seitan, so if your broth isn’t seasoned then add a teaspoon or so of salt to it.
~You’ll also want to spoon broth over the roast before serving, to keep it from being dry. Of course you’re going to be coating it in gravy, too. But the broth is a nice touch. If you’re slicing and serving, ladle on spoonfuls of broth on each individual slice, too. You can’t have too much juice, here!
~This roast reheats perfectly. Refrigerate in its wrapper for up to 3 days before hand. When ready to serve, preheat an oven to 350 F and cook for 20 minutes. This will dry it out a bit, so use the broth hints above for sure!
~Use a steak knife for the easiest slicing.
~I used storebought breadcrumbs but if you use homemade, use 3/4 cup.
~This makes enough for 6 hungry people. If it’s not Thanksgiving or another holiday, and people are not totally stuffing their faces, it serves at least 8.
For the filling:
2 tablespoons olive oil
6 oz shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced (rough ends removed)
2 leeks, white and light green parts only, cut into thin half moons
1/2 teaspoon salt
Fresh black pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons fresh chopped thyme
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup vegetable broth
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
For the roast
3 cloves garlic
3/4 cup cooked pinto beans, rinsed and drained (fresh or canned)
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups vital wheat gluten
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed or finely chopped
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed between your fingers
1 teaspoon dried sage, crushed between your fingers
Several dashes fresh black pepper
First prepare the filling:
Preheat a large pan, preferably cast iron, over medium heat. Saute the mushrooms and leeks in oil until soft, about 10 minutes. Add salt, pepper, garlic and thyme. Cook for about 2 more minutes, stirring often.
Sprinkle in the breadcrumbs and toss to coat. Cook the mixture, stirring very often, until the breadcrumbs are toasty and the mixture is relatively dry. This should take about 5 minutes, and the breadcrumbs should turn a few shades darker.
Drizzle in the broth and lemon juice and toss to coat until moist. If it still seems dry drizzle in a little extra olive oil. Set aside until ready to use.
Prepare the roast:
Preheat oven to 350 F. In a food processor, pulse the garlic until well chopped. Add the beans, broth, olive oil and soy sauce and puree until mostly smooth (a few pieces of bean are okay, but they should be no bigger than a pea.)
In a large mixing bowl, mix together the wheat gluten, nutritional yeast, herbs and spices. Make a well in the center and add the bean mixture. Stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture starts coming together to form a ball of dough. Knead until everything is well incorporated.
Now we’re going to roll out the seitan and form the roast. Place two pieces of tin foil (about 18 inches long) horizontally in front of you. The sheet further from you should overlap the closer sheet by about 6 inches. This way you have enough foil to wrap around the whole roast.
On a separate surface, use your hands or a rolling pin to flatten the seitan into a roughly 12 x 10 rectangle. If any pieces rip, don’t worry about it, just use a pinch of dough from the ends to repair any holes.
Place the filling in the lower 1/3 of the seitan rectangle, leaving about 2 inches of space at both ends. Make sure the filling is compact, use your hands to form it into a nice, tight bundle.
Now roll! Roll the bottom part of the seitan up and over the filling. Keep rolling until in it’s in a log shape. Now pinch together the seam and pinch together the sides to seal. It doesn’t have to be perfect, it will snap into shape when baking.
Place the roll in the center of the tinfoil and roll up like a tootsie roll, making sure the ends are tightly wrapped. Transfer to a baking sheet and bake for an hour*. Rotate the roll every 20 minutes for even cooking.
* I may update the time in this recipe because I’ve gotten a few comments that said it took up to 90 minutes to cook completely! So for now I would say just do a test my poking the roll with tongs. It should feel very very firm. If it doesn’t, then bake further.
Remove from oven and let cool. Unwrap, slice and serve! (See recipe notes for keeping moist and reheating.)
I made this today and couldn’t be more pleased. I will not be buying tofurkey roasts so often now. This recipe was simple, straightforward and easy enough that someone who had never worked with vital wheat gluten didn’t have a problem. Thank you so much for making this available.
Thanks, Isa. This turned out well. My meat eating stepson proclaimed it was “good,” and the vegetarians really liked it. Adding it to next year’s menu now. The best part is that I made it Monday night and just warmed it up on Thanksgiving day.
I made this for Thanksgivng for the second year in a row with one change in method. Instead of baking the roll, I steamed it for two hours. It was very moist and delicious.
Could you explain your steaming process? Thanks so much
Thanks Isa! I just eat this and I love it, I’ll make it for sure in Christmas 🙂
ive only made seitan once I see this recipe does not pre cook in liquid like the recipe I made so does it puff up while baking
Yum. For Thanksgiving, I made curried roasted butternut squash soup served with cilantro leaves, a drizzle of EVOO, NM chile, and a grind of salt (appetizer). The main was chestnut-apple stuffed portobello mushrooms, mashed potatoes, maitake-onion gf gravy, baked sweet potato, baked Brussels sprouts, and live cranberry-orange relish. This looks worth a try!
This is so delicious! I’ll never buy a tofurky again. My husband had 4 pieces and said it was the best roast he’d ever had.
Only change I made was I added craisins to the stuffing. Served it with gravy and roasted mini potatoes. Will definitely make this fit Christmas dinner.
For my family christmas meal, I tried about 6 seitan roasts well in advance. Each of them was either tasteless, super dry or spongy.
This one takes the cake. It was well seasoned, soft and totally delicious. Thank you for saving my christmas!!
90 minutes is too long. 60 minutes is just about right, but the flavor in the seitan isn’t there. However, the filling is on par.
I made this a few days ago and hot damn it turned out so well. The seitan wasn’t chewy or rubbery at all, just soft, moist and delicious. I’m making it again for Boxingmas dinner.
Made this yesterday. it was easy to make, baked for 1 hour, it was perfect!. later reheated for 15 minutes, and it was still juicy, tender and delicious!!
we have tried many other recipes, but this 1 is the best so far.
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Ohhhhhhh, my gurt! This was soooo delish! I made it last week and I’m making it again tonight!
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I’ve just wandered across your blog while trying to find alternative seitan recipes and ways of making it.
I’ve been vegan for just about a year, and until a couple of months ago I’d never made seitan. In point of fact, until this week I didn’t even realise I HAD made seitan! (I made the Jacked-Up Vegan Ribs from the Fat-Free Vegan’s blog quite a few times.)
Anyway, this past couple of days I’ve tried making my own without smothering it in barbecue sauce and baking it for 45 minutes, and I’ve been struggling with the chewy-but-slightly-flabby-feeling texture. (I made it, let it sit over night, steamed it for 45 minutes then sliced it, coated it in flour and cornmeal and tried to make schnitzel. Rubbery crunchy stuff. Last night I cubed the remainder, coated it in poultry seasoning and curry powder and fried it off in some olive oil, then made a curry which was simmered for about twenty minutes. Flabby-but-chewy curry cubes.)
So, here I am, and the very first thing I notice is – PINTO BEANS in the dough!
It’s the Sunday before Thanksgiving, so I am going to have a wee try at this and see how it goes. If I muck it up, it doesn’t matter because my husband refuses to eat anything vegan on the basis that ‘it looks like food, but it isn’t’. (My cooking isn’t THAT bad!)
Thanks, and I will chip in with my results later!
I made this last year and I plan to make it again tomorrow. A beautiful recipe! Thank you so much for making this public! Happy Holiday, Isa!
Well, I’ve just popped the stuffed roast into the oven. It smells amazing already! The stuffing is gorgeous – I thought it seemed a bit soggy once I’d added the stock and lemon juice (I used bought breadcrumbs) so I sprinkled over some more until it was moist rather than claggy.
I mixed up the seitan dough until it was just coming together, then bashed it out with my hands into the requisite rectangular shape, put the stuffing in the middle then folded in either end and rolled it up lengthways.
I’m actually really excited to see how it turns out! I think I will use the seitan dough recipe every time I make seitan, now, it smelled and tasted amazing.
Cooked it for ninety minutes (it felt firm-ish after an hour, but I wanted to make sure.
Left it to cool for 45 minutes, unrolled it, and was a little unsure that it wasn’t a tad rubbery.
It wasn’t at all rubbery. What it was, was tender, tasty, succulent and the best-tasting seitan I’ve made thus far.
In fact, it was downright delicious! And there’s plenty of gravy left over for tomorrow and the day after, to have with the leftovers. (I made a mushroom and onion gravy with no-chicken vegetable stock and some Bisto gravy granules for beef, as seitan is kind of in between chicken and beef.)
Hello- we made this for Thanksgiving and it was DELICIOUS!!! I added a few more spices, tarragon, dry onion, dry red pepper seeds and marmite to the roast mixture. I added craisins and chopped pecans and day old whole wheat rolls to the stuffing. I also replaced some of the veggie broth with Madeira wine. I formed the roast on the foil into a long rectangle with my hands and a rolling pin. I used one long sheet of foil and placed the roast in the middle lengthwise. I spooned the stuffing in the middle of the roast and folded up each long end overlapping a bit and pinched the edges and the end of the roast. I wrapped the foil around it, flipped it over and then wrapped it again with a 2nd piece of foil. I bake it on a cookie sheet for 90 minutes at 350F and turned the roast over every 30 minutes. We served it on a platter dressed with vegan mashed potatoes, roasted brussels sprouts (with roasemary, olive oil, craisins, chopped pecans) and vegan mushrooms gravy. And of course all the other thanksgiving sides. The roast was delicious and had a very nice texture, firm but not at all rubbery. The recipe makes a large loaf plenty for leftovers!!!!!! I will try to send pictures. Thanks again for all the great recipes !!!
We had this for Thanksgiving. Absolutely delicious. The most tender seitan roast I’ve ever had. Not sure if that was because of the beans or the oil. We don’t usually use oil, so next time I’ll try it without. In any case, this is a keeper, and we’ll be having it again next week.
What do you think about using kidney beans? I’m out of pinto and want to make it this week before I go to the grocery store! Thanks! I LOVE this recipe. Oh also, I noticed it comes out rubbery if you don’t knead it enough or roll it tight enough:)
Michelle van Huizen
Is it possible to make Seitan without gluten? WHat do you recommend to repalce: 2 cups vital wheat gluten?
Hi! I’m in Australia and have discovered that pinto bans are hard to find. I can find refried pinto beans but they have salt and spices so guessing not good for this recipe. Are there altenatives? Canned red kidney beans or black beans? Thanks for this awesome looking recipe! I’m getting one of your books for Xmas too – Yay!
I used red lentils and it was fabulous.
You can use any soft beans – it just changes the colour a bit.
Thank you, Isa, for that wonderful recipe! I made the roast for Christmas and topped it with red wine sauce which came out to be a perfect match. My vegetarian brother-in-law loved it, too.
I am not sure if this recipe is identical to the one in your new cookbook, but I made it for Christmas (from the cookbook) and it was really try! I left it in the foil in the fridge overnight then reheated inside the foil, and it was really dry. Not sure what went wrong.
Can this be frozen and reheated in the foil? I’d like to make a few at a time. Why make one when you can make 4?
I’ve cooked one and frozen half of it and it was just as nice once I reheated it
Curious, I have an allergy to garlic. This has TONS of garlic.
Isa, any idea how to make this wtihout galric?
Clyde, see engracia’s post above. You could substitute with onion…
It’s in the oven now and it smells amazing. Every recipe I’ve made of yours has been perfect and I’m confident this one will be too. Thank you, so much, for sharing your delicious creations. <3
We’ve made this the last two Christmas’ with great success. Making it again today for our guests
I would love if u make a video of ur seitan roast stuffed with leaks & mushroms.Easier for may of us who are not familiar with receipies.
Thanks for ur understanding
looks so good…..
can rolled oats be substituted for the quick oats?
or could some chickpea flour also work? (does that just act as a binder?)
I made this the last two Thanksgivings and it was a HIT! No more store bought loafs for this household!
I’m allergic too. Nutritional Yeast isn’t an active form of live yeast. Totally safe for us. For those saying rubbery, the more you knead the tougher so keep kneading to mixing ingredients then stop if you want a softer loaf.
I had high hopes for this. Followed the recipe exactly, it took much longer than expected, held up our meal, and was frankly a huge letdown. Very spongy and spicy. At least the cats like it.
Mine turned out FAB-U-LOUS … BUT instead of using 1 1/2cups vegetable stock called for in the seitan recipe, I made one package of (low sodium) Liptons Onion soup(with 4 cups water) and to that pot added 3/4 cup red lentils and the garlic and let it cook till the lentils were mushy … then added the remaining ingredients: (soya,evoo,w.glueten, n.yeast, fennel, paprika, sage, tyme, bl.pepper) , mixed well and rolled it out. I made the stuffing as per the recipe but after I spread it on the rolled out seitan, i put 1/4 cup dried cranberries on top of the stuffing– and OH MY GOD, WAS IT EVER GOOD. Will definitely been making it again.
Living on the Vedge
Hi! Does this recipe call for 2 cups of Vital Wheat Gluten Flour — or is it referring to 2 cups of pre-made seitan? Hoping to make for Thanksgiving!
I made this for Thanksgiving yesterday and it turned out really well! I followed the seitan portion pretty closely, but winged the filling (see details below), and it came out really tender, tasty, and visually appealing. This worked out better than other seitan roulades I’ve tried in the past, and was actually pretty quick and painless to throw together as the addition of beans to the dough made it less difficult to work with than more traditional seitan which can be hard to stretch and roll-out.
In case anyone is curious about modifications:
We didn’t haver pintos on hand, so I substituted a can of chickpeas. When I blended them with the liquid, it seemed much thinner than I expected (basically the consistency of milk), so I added extra beans, but then it became dry when I combined it with the vital wheat gluten, so I added a little extra liquid to be able to better incorporate all of the dry ingredients. I do make seitan all the time, so knew how to eyeball it, but the recipe seemed pretty forgiving.
As for the stuffing, I just browned mushrooms I had on hand, seasoned them, and combined them with toasted pecans and Thanksgiving herbs. I’m not sure if it would have been the case with this recipe, but I’ve found that stuffing seitan with soft and/or bread-y filling can just make it all feel very bready, and I found the nuts added a needed textural contrast and some umami.
When it was baking, I found that it felt pretty firm after about 40-50 minutes, so took it out and reheated it for about 15 minutes before eating, and the it seemed just right.
Anyway, highly recommend this as a base for your next holiday roast!