How good do those vegan Italian sausages look? I am so excited to be sharing this recipe with you! I really wanted to make vegan sausages because they’re not always easy to find and when you can, they’re often bland or mushy. Enter the perfect recipe for vegan Italian sausages! They are so incredibly easy to make. Don’t believe me? You can have fresh, cruelty-free sausages in less than an hour! That’s right!
The heart of these amazing sausages is textured vegetable protein (known in the vegan world as TVP). TVP is dehydrated soy protein that fluffs up to become chewy and delicious with a little help from vegetable broth. It has a very substantial texture, much like ground beef, and it is enhanced even more so by the addition of vital wheat gluten. I use TVP in my recipe for the best vegan chili.
The second most important component of these sausages is the spice mix. TVP and vital wheat gluten make up the texture and the bulk of the sausages, but they don’t taste like much. The key was to pack a ton of umami-rich foods like tahini, nutritional yeast and soy sauce into the dough, and then further enhance the flavour with more traditional spices like fennel and oregano. Because what’s an Italian sausage without fennel, right?
Everything comes together nicely in a big ball of springy dough. I opted to steam rather than bake the sausages because I found they retain more moisture this way, which makes for a juicier sausage more conducive to grilling. They just need to steam for about 40 minutes and then they’re ready to eat! I like to use a grill pan to get some char on the outside of the sausages before I eat them, but feel free to eat them as is. They are a perfect addition to sandwiches or stews. I even use them to make a hearty Herbed white bean soup.
The sausages will store in the refrigerator for about a week, and can be frozen as well. Just be sure to unwrap them and place in a ziplock bag before storing. If you’re using them frozen, ensure you thaw at room temperature before reheating.
So go on and give these babies a try! If you’ve never tried vegan sausages before, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised. Leave us a note in the comments to let us know what you think!