vegan • plant-based • dairy-free • gluten-free • paleo option

It’s true, the good old-fashioned nut roast is a bit of cliché for a vegan Sunday lunch or Christmas dinner, but it’s satisfying, tasty and nutritious. It can be dressed down or up for everyday staples or special occasions all year round.

Rather than a traditional loaf, this recipe makes six individual nut roasts – especially useful for family meals with carnivores, as all you need is some accompanying vegetables.


About the ingredients

The recipe calls for nuts that have been soaked. The weight given is the dry weight – i.e. before they’re soaked.  More about the chemistry of soaking soon, if you’re not sure why or how to do it. You can use any type or combination you like here. Generally we soak all types for 7-12 hours – i.e. overnight – the exception is cashews, which only need 2-6. Give them plenty of fresh water and a good pinch of salt, then make sure you rinse them well before using.

It also calls for a few chestnuts, which have a higher proportion of starchy carbohydrate than nuts, so they’re lower in protein and fat. You may want to adjust the balance of nuts to chestnuts in the recipe, depending on your dietary preferences. Along with the chestnut flour, they do add a lovely sweetness and decadence though, so it’s worth trying to get hold of some.


Simple Nut Roast

Nut roast method

To keep it quick and easy, everything goes in the mixer at once – ideally a traditional food processor with an S-blade, rather than a high-speed blender – and it’s important not to leave it on too long. If you end up with a paste, the roasts will end up quite doughy and heavy.

If you prefer a chunkier texture, or if you don’t have a mixer, you could chop everything by hand and combine it in a bowl. You just won’t be able to shape the mixture as smoothly, so it’ll look a bit more rustic.

For a paleo option, you can leave out the dusting of polenta. It does give a lovely crunch though, so if you don’t mind treating yourself to a little more starch on special occasions, it’s worth adding. We tried coating one in coconut flour, but it burned at the edges before it was done in the middle.

You can make them any shape you like. I prefer circles about 2 cm high, so I can sit some vegetables around the outside. If you go for a thinner or thicker shape, you’ll need to adjust the cooking time accordingly.

Simple Nut Roast


Which sauce to serve?

I like the dry crunchy coating of these roasts, but if you prefer a more traditional no-meat-and-two-veg, you could serve them with gravy.

They also go well with apple sauce.

Either way, you can’t beat the sour-bitterness of cranberry sauce to balance the rich flavour and texture. Meridian do a lovely ready-made jar, which you can get all year round. If you’re feeling adventurous, and can find some fresh cranberries in winter, have a go at making your own – it’s very simple, and really packs a punch of flavour. We get cranberries from Abel & Cole. Here’s our version:

Sugar-free cranberry sauce recipe »


Simple Nut Roast

Simple Nut Roast

Yields6 ServingsPrep Time30 minsCook Time30 minsTotal Time1 hr

 2 large onions
 2 tbsp coconut oil
 350 g mixed nuts, soaked
 3 tbsp fresh rosemary or sage, finely chopped (or 3 tsp dried)
 1 tsp salt
 dried polenta for coating (optional, for a non-paleo version)

1

Fry the onion in the coconut oil on a medium heat, stirring frequently, until it looks translucent but not browned.

2

Drain and rinse the nuts.

3

Pre-heat the oven to 180°C (360°F).

4

Put all the ingredients in the mixer with the S-blade, and add 150 ml of water.

5

Use the slowest speed and turn it off as soon as the dry ingredients have been incorporated – the mixture will start folding in smoothly to the middle.

6

Divide into 6 equal portions and shape them with your hands.

7

Sprinkle a handful of polenta onto a plate and coat each portion evenly. The mixture will be a bit loose, so if you find it hard to manage, you can chill it in the fridge for a few minutes first.

8

Lay the roasts out on a baking sheet – lined or unlined. Bake for 30 minutes, turning the pan around after 15 minutes to ensure an even colour.

Ingredients

 2 large onions
 2 tbsp coconut oil
 350 g mixed nuts, soaked
 3 tbsp fresh rosemary or sage, finely chopped (or 3 tsp dried)
 1 tsp salt
 dried polenta for coating (optional, for a non-paleo version)

Directions

1

Fry the onion in the coconut oil on a medium heat, stirring frequently, until it looks translucent but not browned.

2

Drain and rinse the nuts.

3

Pre-heat the oven to 180°C (360°F).

4

Put all the ingredients in the mixer with the S-blade, and add 150 ml of water.

5

Use the slowest speed and turn it off as soon as the dry ingredients have been incorporated – the mixture will start folding in smoothly to the middle.

6

Divide into 6 equal portions and shape them with your hands.

7

Sprinkle a handful of polenta onto a plate and coat each portion evenly. The mixture will be a bit loose, so if you find it hard to manage, you can chill it in the fridge for a few minutes first.

8

Lay the roasts out on a baking sheet – lined or unlined. Bake for 30 minutes, turning the pan around after 15 minutes to ensure an even colour.

Simple Nut Roast





Have you tried this recipe? How did it go?

Got any tips or questions of your own about making vegan nut roast?

Leave us a comment below, we’d love to hear from you.

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