Végé Meat Loaf

Growing up my stepmom made a mean meatloaf, a food I look back on fondly to this day. In the past, I’ve tried to make a vegetarian meatloaf from one of my favorite books and found the effort-to-taste ratio to be lacking. So recently, when my stepmom sent me a nut loaf recipe to try, I was intrigued and ready to give it a go. It came out extremely well and inspired me to develop my own vegetarian meatloaf recipe.

The base of the recipe, like most meat substitutes, is seitan, made with vital wheat gluten. If you’ve never made seitan before, don’t be intimidated, it’s super easy! We elevate the flavor of the seitan with a few things, first and foremost by adding red wine to the recipe to mimic the flavor found in many beef dishes. We also add in walnuts to add some more fat and texture to the recipe. Lastly, in this recipe it calls for whole milk. Your preferred milk of choice will work, recently I have tried a new product called Not Milk, essentially the equivalent of Impossible Meat but for milk, and I have to say I’m impressed! Definitely give it a try if you see it in store and are intrigued. 

I would suggest serving the Faux Meatloaf with a starch on the side such as mashed potatoes, mashed sweet potatoes or corn bread. Additionally, pairing it with one of your favorite vegetables will create a wholesome and delicious dinner with lots of leftovers. I would recommend garlic green beans or brussel sprouts. Enjoy!

Active Time 30 minutes

Cook Time 45 minutes


  • 4 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/4 cup red wine

Seitan dough

  • ½  cup water
  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 1 tbsp soy 
  • 1/2 tsp liquid smoke 
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder 
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup vital wheat gluten 


  • ⅓  cup walnuts
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • ¾  cup milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ½  cups panko bread crumbs 
  • Tsp vegan worcestershire
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Black pepper
  • More ketchup, to top 


  1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Heat a large pan on medium low heat. Add a drizzle of neutral oil and sauté the shallots and garlic with a pinch of salt for 5-6 minutes, until soft. 
  2. After the shallots and garlic have softened and are fragrant, add the red wine and let the alcohol evaporate off, another 3-4 minutes. When done, set aside.
  3. While the shallots are cooking, prepare the dough. In a medium mixing bowl combine the water, oil, soy sauce, liquid smoke, onion powder, garlic powder and salt and stir to combine. Then, add in 3/4 cups of the vital wheat gluten and combine with a fork by whisking. After, add in the rest of the vital wheat gluten and continue to mix with the fork. The resulting dough should be stringy.
  4. Heat the same pan used for the shallots on medium-high heat. Add another drizzle of neutral oil and pan fry the dough until it gets a deep browning on all sides.
  5. While the dough cooks, set up a foot processor with the blade attachment. Add the walnuts, nutritional yeast, ketchup, milk, eggs, bread crumbs, worcestershire sauce, salt, lots of freshly cracked black pepper and the shallot mixture. Finally, once the dough has browned on all sides, add it into the food processor and process for about 45 seconds to a minute, until it looks like ground meat and is fairly uniform. 
  6. Line a loaf pan with parchment paper and carefully spoon the mixture into the pan. Tap it down on the counter to remove any air bubbles. Finally, add some ketchup over the top and spread it evenly. Bake for 45 minutes and let rest for 15 minutes before cutting into. Enjoy!

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