Roast vegan no-turkey turkey (or chicken!)

Note: this recipe was originally made last year using a chicken flavour seasoning that is no longer vegan so the name has been removed. I’ve also made an updated version of this recipe!

Got my slightly flat seitan no-turkey turkey (or chicken, what have you) recipe sorted for a very merry vegan christmas. 👌


Below are links to some of the products that I use. These are affiliate links, and as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. So if you wanted to buy any ingredients through here I would be very happy!

Massel chicken flavour stock powder

Amazon UK link

Amazon US link

Vital wheat gluten

Amazon UK link (this is the one I use)

Amazon US link (I see this one recommended all the time)

The wet mix
  • 1 packet of firm tofu (396g net weight)
  • 4 tbsp good quality, low salt, chicken flavour seasoning
  • 1 tbsp Massel chicken flavour stock powder
  • 3 tbsp oil
  • About 1/4 – 1/2 cup of water
The dry mix
  • About 1½ cups vital wheat gluten
  • 1 tsp baking powder
The simmering broth
  • Water
  • About 2 tbsp massel stock powder
  • About 3 tbsp chicken-flavour seasoning
  • A whole bulb of garlic (if you like garlic!)
  • About 1 tbsp each of parsley/sage/thyme/marjoram/whatever other herb you like with your no-bird bird


Step 1. Pop unpressed tofu in a blender (I use a NutriNinja 900w) with seasoning, stock powder, oil, water and mix until smooth. Only put just enough water so the tofu can be mixed, it should be quite thick. Start with 1/4 cup and add more if needed.


Step 2. Pour tofu sauce in a bowl, add baking powder and start mixing in your vital wheat gluten. You will have put enough vital wheat gluten when the dough is still very moist, but firm enough for you to just be able to knead it lightly.
You might need more than 1 1/2 cups depending on how liquid your tofu sauce is.

Step 3. Now, take a small handful of the dough and pop in your blender. For my Ninja I normally pulse for about 30sec -1min in total (pulse 1-2 secs, stop, pulse another 1-2secs, etc).

If using a food processor you can put bigger pieces of dough in and let it run for longer.

Stop to unwrap the dough off the blades if the engine starts struggling (almost set mine on fire first time I made this!). You’re done mixing when the dough is super smooth and kind of feels like soft chewing gum. Sticky, warm, elastic and smooth. Repeat with the rest of the dough pieces.

How each batch should look once processed:

When they’re all mixed, just gently push them together in a bowl to make the seitan more uniform. The dough pieces should be sticky enough to attach to eachother. Don’t knead too much, you want the gluten fibres going in different directions.

This is how my dough looks once it’s all processed, pre-shaping:


Step 4. Prepare simmering broth. Use a pot that isn’t too much wider than the seitan to prevent it from expanding too much sideways. Fill it up with enough water that you know would cover the seitan. Pop all broth ingredients in and bring to a simmer.
Taste the broth. It should be chickeny, but not salty! This is important as the broth will be used later on.

Step 5. Once the broth is simmering, take a sharp knife and stab the seitan all over. No mercy. We want the simmering broth to reach all the way inside. Then pop the seitan in the broth and let it simmer (make sure it’s a low simmer!) for about 2hrs. Turn dough a couple of times during the simmering process and as you do, stab the seitan a few more times in the middle to make sure broth keeps getting in there.

The seitan is done once you check on it and it’s suddenly gone ‘poof’ and turned into a sponge. Worry not. This is good.
Now gently transfer seitan to an oven dish roughly the same size as the seitan, cover and set it aside to cool. I put mine outside in the snow for an hour or two.

Step 6. As seitan is cooling, mash up the garlic cloves inside the broth. Taste to make sure it’s not too salty. If it’s too watery you can reduce it a bit.

Step 7. Turn the oven on, quite high. About 200-210C fan / 220-230C conventional (which is like a bazillion (430) in fahrenheit).
Pour about 1/2 cup of the broth over the seitan. Save the rest for something fun (like gravy). Then rub a couple of tablespoons of oil, a teaspoon of soy sauce and teaspoon of chicken seasoning on it. This + the high heat will make the skin.
Finally put seitan in the oven, until top has a nice colour. Take it out, flip it around and brown the other side too if you want. The seitan will now be much firmer than its previous sponge state.

Step 8. When the seitan is done and out of the oven, flip it around in the broth so it gets juicy all over. Then, sorry guys, pop it in the fridge overnight. It will firm up beautifully and really soak up all the juices.

When it’s time to eat, I’d recommend slicing the roast cold, dipping slices in broth and then letting them heat up by pouring hot gravy all over your plate. 👌

I love it when my recipe is shared, but please do it by linking here instead of copying the recipe. :))

40 thoughts on “Roast vegan no-turkey turkey (or chicken!)

  1. Any idea how I could replace the tofu? We have a soy, corn, legume, lentil, millet and some other allergies so unfortunately can’t do the tofu and I can’t replace it with chickpea like many would.


  2. I just tried this recipe and something went horribly wrong. I followed all the steps and during the simmering process I went to flip the seitan and it fell completely apart (it had been simmering for at least 35 minutes).
    What could I have done wrong?!


    • It either didn’t have enough vital wheat gluten added, wasn’t processed for long enough or simmered at too high a heat. Or a combination of all three. ☹


      • Same thing happened to me, though tried to follow the instructions to a t: processed the dough in small batches in a food processor for minimum 2-3 min per batch until consistency looked like in the photo, simmered at 1 (lowest possible heat) etc. Still hoping something useful will come out of it in the oven though – would hate to throw it away though it definitely will not be perfect. Glad I started testing options for Xmas dinner this much in advance!


      • How much vwg did you use? I’ve found sometimes people put exactly 200g, which is really just an estimate.
        Also, did you use a high power blender like the nutri ninja, or a food processor? For a food processor it would take longer. 🙂


    • Kimmee, were you able to get something out of it? I think I’m having the same issue. 😦 Trying to see if I should bail on it now or stick it out. Pretty sure I didn’t have enough vwg/didn’t process long enough.


      • FYI, I tried it again and got everything to turn out correctly. I had originally found this recipe on The Anticarnist website and they listed way too little Vital Wheat Gluten. The amount listed on this page is correct and worked great. Just goes to show always go to the original source.


  3. Hi this recipe looks AMAZING I can’t seem to get any of the Massel stock powder what would be a good substitute please ? Many thanks ! x


    • Has anyone tried this without the added oil? I’m trying to stay as low fat as possible and the stock I’ll be using ( can’t get the Massel stock powder here) has oil in it. Thank you!


  4. What was the brand of the chicken flavour seasoning? I’m not sure exactly what that is if it isn’t stock powder and would like some kind of reference. Thank you!


  5. Hi. What is the difference between the stock powder and the chicken seasoning? I ask because I usually use Osem Chicken flavour stock for chicken soup and all things chicken related. It has everything in terms of flavour so does the stock powder or seasoning add something different? Apart from that I’m all set to try this tomorrow 😊


  6. In the USA poultry seasoning is a blend of Blend of rosemary, oregano, sage, ginger, marjoram, thyme and pepper ground to a fine powder. Is chicken seasoning the same as poultry seasoning?


    • Ah brilliant. Thanks for that. So here stock is the powdered gravy base and the seasoning is what we’d call mixed herbs. That explains it exactly. There can be things called chicken seasoning to sprinkle on the outside of a roast, which can be with spices like paprika and salt as well but it would probably have similar things to the stock powder as well so I wanted to check I’m not just doubling up. The herbs mix makes sense 😊. Thanks


    • I realised after I posted a reply that you were asking a separate question not answering mine I think. But you inadvertently answered mine so thank you 😊


  7. I’ve read through this several times and I don’t see how long it’s supposed to be in the oven, aside from saying to let it go until it’s brown and crispy.

    I’m asking a bit late because I’ve had it in the oven an hour already but if I fail miserably, I’d like a clue for next time. 😏

    I did mine in the Instant Pot, BTW. Looks great so far!


  8. I’m wondering similar to some other commenters what the difference is between “not-chicken” stock powder and chicken flavour seasoning?


  9. Malin! I discovered your recipe when you posted in one of the Seitan FB groups, and I am already presently making my second batch since Thanksgiving. Bless you for this!!


  10. Really enjoyed making this. It is the first time for me getting the strands ( I was overjoyed) .
    Definitely making again.
    Thank you so much


  11. Approximately how long should it be in the oven? And how much oil would you rub on it? I’ve had mine in the oven for about 45 minutes but it doesn’t look right at all…


  12. I have never replied on a recipe before but my goodness, I had to say thank you from the bottom of my heart for this. It is the best seitan I’ve ever made. Honestly, there were nearly tears, it’s so good. We made the original recipe so next time I’ll try the ‘improved’ one. Used my own ‘chicken rub’ made from nutritional yeast and herbs, as well as vegetable stock cubes, as that’s what I had, but it’s so, so good.


  13. I made this in December 2020 and this was the best vegan meat recipe ever. When I made my turkey I used Orrington Farms vegan chicken broth. I use their products a lot and it’s delicious!


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