Vegan Stuffing with Cranberries and Sausage is perfect for festive gatherings or cozy family dinners. This stuffing brings the rustic charm of sourdough, the wholesomeness of plant-based ingredients like nuts and cranberries, and the convenience and texture of your favorite vegan sausage together for a delicious side dish or main course.
Over the years, I have experimented with various stuffings, not just during the holidays. It became a beloved dish when my kids were young, and I had ample opportunities to fine-tune it according to our preferences.
Although vegan sausage and cranberries are not necessary, I consider stuffing to be a decadent delight with sweet and savory notes, so for me, vegan sausage and cranberries are indispensable ingredients. For your pick of delicious homemade sausages you can easily make today, visit 15 Delicious Vegan Sausage Recipes.
Why You'll Love This Vegan Stuffing Recipe
- Full of Flavor: The tangy notes of sourdough bread cubes, combined with aromatic fresh herbs and spices, create a symphony of flavors.
- Vegan-Friendly: Absolutely no animal products, making it a perfect choice for vegan diets and those looking to reduce their meat intake - and the added bonus - meat eaters love it too.
- Customizable: Easily adaptable with various substitutions to suit your palate.
- Casserole: This dish is a casserole, making it ideal for feeding a large group of people and perfect for a buffet-style setup.
Here is a quick snapshot of the ingredients.
- sourdough bread cubes - I use one whole sourdough boule
- pecans - substitute with walnuts or almonds
- vegan sausage
- vegetable broth
- olive oil or vegan butter
- fresh parsley
- dried cranberries (optional; substitute with fresh diced apples)
There are many great vegan sausages on the market. You can find them in various flavors, textures, and shapes. Vegan brats, Italian-style, or bulk vegan sausage crumbles all work, so pick your favorite.
Use sourdough bread that is a bit past its prime, about two to four days. I like to use a sourdough boule, a round or ball-shaped bread found at all major grocery chains. The crispy crust, chewy interior, and distinctive tangy flavor that comes from the sourdough fermentation process are perfect for this sausage and cranberry stuffing recipe.
To Prepare: Heat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Cut the sourdough into small cubes. Finely dice the onions, celery, and carrots, and mince the garlic.
Let's get cooking! Here is a visual strip for those who want to see what they'll be doing. For all the delicious details, see the recipe card.
Apply a sprinkle of salt to the sourdough and toast in the oven on a rimmed baking sheet for about 10-15 minutes. (optional: spray a little oil on the sourdough)
Toast the pecans. I place these in a separate tray because they only take about 10 minutes.
While they bake, sauté the vegan sausage over medium-high heat
Sauté the vegetables and spices in vegan butter or oil. Low and slow is the secret to sautéing mirepoix.
Combine the bread cubes, nuts, vegan sausage, vegetable broth, and vegetable mixture in the casserole and stir in the cranberries if using.
Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes. Then bake without foil for another 20 minutes.
Garnish and Serve: Garnish with fresh parsley before serving.
If pecans are not your favorite, add walnuts or almonds or leave them out altogether.
If the cranberries are particularly dry, you can soak them in warm water for a few minutes to plump them up, then drain them before using.
Use stale sourdough bread for the best texture. It provides a desirable texture and absorbs flavors and moisture effectively. Its firmness prevents mushiness, and its developed flavors enhance the overall vegan stuffing experience. The ideal age is generally around 2 to 4 days old. At this point, it has become somewhat dry and firm, which is perfect for absorbing the liquid and maintaining the desired texture in your stuffing.
Use fresh herbs for a brighter flavor, but dried herbs work in a pinch.
Feel free to use your preferred vegan sausage for this vegan stuffing recipe. Crumbles work wonderfully in the stuffing, just as vegan brats do.
While this dish can hold its own, 'tis the season to spice things up! Here are some festive ideas to take it to the next level.
- Gravy: Serve your vegan stuffing with vegan gravy.
- Cranberry Sauce: A classic pairing, cranberry sauce adds a sweet and tangy contrast to the savory stuffing.
- Roasted Vegetables: Roasted vegetables, such as Brussels sprouts, carrots, or butternut squash, make excellent side dishes. Try these Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Vegan Parmesan or Sheet Pan Oven Roasted Vegetables.
- Mashed Potatoes: Creamy vegan mashed potatoes are a comforting accompaniment to stuffing. They create a hearty and satisfying meal.
- Green Salad: A fresh green salad with a zesty vinaigrette can provide a refreshing contrast to the richness of the vegan stuffing. It adds balance to your plate.
- Vegan Gratin: A vegan potato or cauliflower gratin can be a luxurious side dish that complements the stuffing's heartiness.
- Bread Rolls: Serve your vegan stuffing alongside warm, crusty vegan bread rolls or dinner rolls.
- Vegan Roasts: If you're preparing a holiday meal, consider serving your stuffing alongside a vegan roast, such as a stuffed acorn squash or a plant-based Wellington.
Top your vegan cranberry and sausage stuffing with crispy fried onions for added texture and flavor.
Add chopped apples to the vegan stuffing instead of the dried cranberries. I add them fresh at the end for a delightful crunch and freshness to the stuffing.
You can use gluten-free sourdough bread and ensure the vegan sausage is gluten-free.
Leftover stuffing can be properly stored in an airtight container for 3-4 days.
Yes. Prepare it a day ahead, refrigerate, and reheat before serving.
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- 1 sourdough boule (roughly 8 cups when cubed; should be a few days old)
- ½ cup pecans, chopped
- 4-5 links of your favorite plant-based sausage
- 2 tablespoons of vegan butter (or olive oil)
- 1 large onion, finely diced
- 2 stalks of celery, finely diced
- 3 carrots, finely diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary
- ½ tablespoon fresh sage
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ¼ cup dried cranberries (optional; substitute with fresh diced apples)
- 2 - 2 ½ cups of veggie broth
- ¼ cup fresh parsley, (for garnish)
- Toast the Sourdough and Pecans: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Cube the sourdough bread into bite-sized pieces and sprinkle with a little salt. Chop the pecans roughly. Spread them each on separate baking sheets. Toast the pecans for about 10 minutes and the soughdough for about 10-15 minutes. Transfer both to a large casserole dish.
- Cook the Vegan Sausage: While the bread and nuts toast, chop the vegan sausage into small pieces or crumbles. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil or vegan butter over medium heat in a large skillet. Add the sausage and cook until browned. Then, transfer to the baking dish with the sourdough.
- Sauté the Vegetables: Add 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil or vegan butter in the same skillet. Sauté the diced onion, celery, and carrots until they start to soften. This mirepox will add a ton of flavor, so cook slowly over medium heat for about 10 minutes. Then, add minced garlic, thyme, rosemary, sage, salt, and pepper. Cook for another 2 minutes to toast the spices.
- Combine Everything: Add the sautéed vegetables to the casserole with the sourdough and sausage. Add the cranberries (if using) and gently mix everything.
- Add the Broth: Add moisture to the stuffing by slowly pouring in the vegetable broth, gently stirring as you go. Aim for a moist consistency without becoming soggy, ensuring the bread cubes maintain their shape. Allow a minute for the mixture to soak up the broth. The bread should soak it all up. Add more if necessary.
- Bake the Stuffing: Cover the dish with foil and bake for approximately 25 minutes. Afterward, remove the foil and continue baking for an additional 25 to 30 minutes until the top turns crisp and golden. If the dish hasn't dried up enough or achieved a golden color, broil the stuffing for 4-5 minutes.
- Garnish and Serve: Garnish with chopped fresh parsley before serving.
There are so many vegan sausage products on the market and so many are delicious. I have used crumbles, brat, or Italian sausage in this recipe and they all bring their unique and delicious flavor to the stuffing.
Use stale sourdough bread that is generally around 2 to 4 days old. At this point, it has become somewhat dry and firm, which is perfect for absorbing the liquid and maintaining the desired texture in your stuffing. If it is slightly dry and not overly soft, it can be used for stuffing.
Substitute the pecans with walnuts or almonds.
Start with two cups of the broth. The broth should be moist but not sopping wet. Add more if you think it needs it.
If the dried cranberries are particularly dry, you can soak them in warm water for about 10 minutes to plump them up, then drain before using.
Use day-old tale sourdough bread for the best texture.
I highly recommend using fresh herbs for a brighter flavor. Dried herbs will work in a pinch. Use 1 teaspoon of dried thyme and rosemary, and ½ teaspoon of dried sage.
Nutritional information is only an estimate based on the ingredients I used. To get a more accurate profile using the ingredients and brands that you use, utilize an app like Cronometer.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 45 minutes
- Category: side dish
- Method: stove top, oven
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Vegan
- Serving Size: 1 cup
- Calories: 160
- Sugar: 7.9 g
- Sodium: 602.2 mg
- Fat: 9.6 g
- Carbohydrates: 15.5 g
- Protein: 4.8 g
- Cholesterol: 13.9 mg
Keywords: holidays, Christmas, Thanksgiving, bread, sausage, cranberries