Taste Test: Faux Turkey Faves

By Holly Nall November 7, 2011 Categories: Taste Test

On the lookout for an un-turkey for your Thanksgiving table? Here’s our roundup of tasty turkey alternatives for the big meal. All but the Wellington are available nationwide at Whole Foods and other natural food stores (details below).

Gardein Savory Stuffed Turk’y

These vegan stuffed cutlets scored rave reviews from VT staffers for their “meaty” texture, breaded crusts, and combination of fall flavors; sold frozen.

What we like: Takes only 30 minutes cook, but guests will think you were baking for hours.
Heads up: No centerpiece roast here, these breaded beauties are individually sized.



Field Roast Celebration Roast

Perfectly precooked, this vegan roast got compliments for its gourmet good looks (brown and luscious) and earthy taste; sold in the refrigerated section.

What we like: The crowd-size 2-lb. Loaf really looks like a feast.
Heads up: Because they’re sold fresh, Celebration Roasts can’t be bought ahead of time; stores often sell out.


Tofurky Roast

The vegan holiday roast has a satisfying texture and is filled with a tasty herbed stuffing; sold refrigerated or frozen.

What we like: The hearty mouthfeel and rich, juicy taste seem to get better every year. Serving sizes are generous enough for leftovers.
Heads up: Allow plenty of oven time—this baby takes 90 minutes.

Quorn Turk’y Roast

For taste-alike appeal, this one wins the most points. Mycoprotein, a product made from, well, fungus, gives it its poultry texture; sold frozen.

What we like: The unstuffed aspect, which means we can use our own stuffing. Plus, it’s soy-free.
Heads up: This roast is on the small size; the egg whites keep it from being vegan.

Native Foods Café Wellington

Side dishes come center stage in this puff pastry masterpiece, filled with seitan and stuffed with portabello mushrooms, yams, and kale; Available for pickup from Native Foods stores (locations in Southern California, Portland, and Chicago) and shipped nationwide from the Native Foods Café store.

What we like: It doesn’t get easier than an entire thanksgiving meal neatly packed into a flaky crust. This is the perfect choice for the busy (or lazy) host who wants to enjoy a “homemade” meal.
Heads up: If you’re ordering online, you’ll have to fork over an additional $55 for overnight shipping. That’s the cost of convenience: your Wellington will arrive on your doorstep the next day, frozen and ready to bake to perfection!

—by Holly Nall and Gabrielle Harradine

Comment below to let us know which faux turkey you’ll be serving this year.

Next Previous | Next Previous



comments

The Quorn roast is my favorite. I like that it has good flavor on its own but also can take some gravy and other toppings. (Unlike the field roast, which was too much flavor for me with toppings on it.)

Kristen Bennett - 2014-11-14 00:39:19

I adore Tofurkey Italian sausage with sun dried tomatoes and basil. For Thanksgiving, I brought a vegan shepherd's pie and gravy to my sister's house and everyone loved it. They still ate turkey, but they're my family and I love them.

Judi Hershel - 2013-12-05 21:55:11

Tofurky can be yummy, but you have to prepare it properly. There are recipes at http://www.tofurky.com/recipes/recipes_list.asp?RecipeSubID=1 The recipe with caramelized onions with cherries is very good. We also make our own marinade and bake it with good success. Quorn is great for people concerned about eating too much soy and eating GMO soy.

Laura - 2011-11-11 16:54:49

There are some vegetarians that love meat but choose to not eat it for the ethical implications. What is so bad about making a product that emulates the meat that they enjoyed eating before going vegetarian? If all it takes to get more people to become vegetarian is make vegan products that look similar and taste the same as the meat product what is the harm. I never understood why vegetarians/vegans get so angry over this. Be glad they are supporting the no meat alternatives. That's how I look at it

Anonymous - 2011-11-10 13:35:51

we usually have 2 tofurkeys and a celebration roast. sooo good.

saney - 2011-11-09 12:18:12

Whole Foods Market South Loop in Chicago carries all the top four -- Tofurky, Gardein, Celebration Roasts, and Quorn -- and many more and have plenty in stock!

Nick - 2011-11-09 11:10:15

I can not understand,why vegetarians likes to eat meat alternative meals??? What kinde of vegetarian you are if you feel need for meat??

Anonymous - 2011-11-09 09:47:51

The nutritional information IS included. Just click on the title underneath the meal you want to know about.

Anonymous - 2011-11-08 22:37:04

I tried the Tofurky Roast the first year I had everyone in both families over and the thing turned out like a soccer ball. It was horrible to cut and bland to look at. Granted, I may have to try it again. The last 4 or 5 years we have done the Quorn Roast. I LOVE those. They remind me of the other turkey roasts my family used to get when the kids were little. So, I love those and get some Hain gravy to go with it. :)

Vivianne - 2011-11-08 20:15:38

This article would have been more helpful if it had included nutrition-information. I have concerns about sodium levels, especially, in processed foods.

Anonymous - 2011-11-08 17:37:45

Actually the Field Roast at whole foods and Wegmans are in the frozen section, so you can buy them ahead of time...even if they arn't frozen you can still freeze them up ^.^

vegyums. - 2011-11-08 17:27:52

have seen 3 of these 5 brands in my area but, have not seen these exact products. when Quorn, Tofurky, and Gardein products cost less than the same size meat, it will improve the lives of vegetarians, vegans, and those looking to try non-meat products.

jacki - 2011-11-08 17:00:23

I've picked up Gardein's Savory Stuffed Turk'y for a try this year. Two individual servings works great: one for work feast, one for home. Tofurky disappointed me in the past.

Angela - 2011-11-08 16:53:26

Great list! I've been compiling my own as well but I did just pick up my very first Tofurky! They had samples at Trader Joes and I was pleasantly surprised by the flavor/texture. Anything but the real thing this TGiving!! -Sarah veggie-kids.blogspot.com

Sarah with Veggie Kids - 2011-11-14 00:04:28