Gluten-Free Veggie Loaf – Spicy Vegan ‘Meatloaf’

gluten free vegan meatloaf veggie loaf

Here we have a ‘meatloaf’ that is meaty and loafy, but without meat.  Or wheat, eggs, or dairy.  Full of lentils, grains, and vegetables, this loaf is filling and loaded with protein.  This is an American-style meatloaf with a sweet and spicy, ketchup-based sauce.

You can make this veggie loaf part of a somewhat light meal with a green salad on the side, or go the full comfort route with mashed potatoes, some steamed vegetables, and a thick gravy.  You could also serve veggie loaf sandwiches the same night or the next day.


Gluten-Free Veggie Loaf – Spicy Vegan ‘Meatloaf’

Adapted from Healthful Pursuit

Serves: 6
Time: 2 hours

For the quick, dirty, sweet & spicy sauce:

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 2 Tbsp Sriracha
    (use less if you don’t want it too spicy, or replace with more ketchup)
  • 2 Tbsp your choice of mustard
  • 1 cup veggie broth or water
  • 1 Tbsp gluten-free soy sauce

For the veggie loaf:

  • 3/4 cup green lentils, rinsed
  • 1/4 cup brown rice, rinsed
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 2 Tbsp oil + more to oil the pan
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds, crushed
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds, crushed
  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 10 crimini or button mushrooms, diced
  • 2 medium carrots, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, seeds removed and diced
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • pinch of ground cayenne pepper
  • 2 Tbsp potato starch
  • 3/4 cup of the sauce (see above)
  • 1 tsp salt, more or less to taste
  • freshly cracked black pepper, to taste

For the sauce:

  1. In a pan over medium heat, sautée the garlic and bay leaf in 2 Tbsp oil for 1 minute.
  1. Add the ketchup, sriracha, and mustard.  Mix thoroughly while letting the flavours transform over the heat for 2-3 minutes.
  1. Stir in the veggie broth/water.  Let the mixture come to a boil and reduce for 10 minutes to become a somewhat thick sauce.

It bubbles up to become more than just a mix of condiments.

  1. Turn off the heat and stir in the soy sauce.  Discard the bay leaf.  Set sauce aside.

For the veggie loaf:

  1. In a pot, boil the green lentils and brown rice together in 1 3/4 cups water with 1 bay leaf (their cooking times are similar).  Let them cook, covered, over medium-low heat until all liquid is absorbed.  Then discard the bay leaf.

Lentils are so pretty when just cooked.  Quinoa… not so much.

  1. At the same time, cook the quinoa in a different pot.  Use 1 cup of water and boil the quinoa, covered, over medium-low heat with 1 bay leaf until all liquid is absorbed.  Then discard that bay leaf too.
  1. Preheat the oven to 200 °C /400 °F.
  1. In a large skillet over medium heat with 2 Tbsp oil, fry the cumin, mustard, and fennel seeds for 30 seconds.

This might seem like too much, but we need to really get our seasoning on for this starchy recipe.

  1. Add the 2 onions, 3 cloves garlic, mushrooms, carrots, and celery for and cook uncovered for 10-12 minutes, stirring frequently.  The veggies will have steamed off a lot of moisture (we don’t want too much compartmentalized water in the loaf).
  1. Add the bell pepper, thyme, and cayenne, then continue to stir-fry for another 2-3 minutes.  Then turn off the heat.

The veggies soften and shrink to about half of their original volume.

  1. In a large bowl, combine the lentils, rice, quinoa, and cooked veggies using a spatula or clean hands.  (Be careful with the latter, as all ingredients will still be hot.)
  1. Add the potato starch, sauce, salt, and pepper.  Mix thoroughly until all is evenly distributed.  Then mix in 3/4 cup of the sauce.
  1. On a lightly oiled/greased, foil/parchment-lined baking sheet, mould the veggie mix into two free-form loaf shapes.

Not shown: I had some Daiya shreds so I put them on one of the loaves.  It was tasty!

  1. Spoon or brush the remaining sauce on top of the loaf, OR reserve the sauce for topping the finished loaf afterwards as I did.
  1. Bake for 35-40 minutes.
  1. Remove the loaf from the oven and let it cool for 5-10 minutes before slicing, just so it doesn’t fall apart and steam in your face.
  1. Serve slices of veggie loaf with your choice of sides.

2 thoughts on “Gluten-Free Veggie Loaf – Spicy Vegan ‘Meatloaf’

    1. Thank you! It was difficult to not add eggs for binding purposes, but it turned out just as well using potato starch and a bit of mashing instead.


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