Meatless Sunflower Sausage

If you read yesterday’s post claiming that Southern classics like biscuits with sausage gravy can be veganized, you may be curious how I approached the “sausage” component of the recipe. Wonder no more.

Vegan soy crumbles are easy to find at most supermarkets by now, but I was interested in making the sausage from scratch. Kristy Turner’s But I Could Never Go Vegan! offers a straightforward recipe that calls for ingredients commonly found in my refrigerator and pantry, so I could get to work without preamble.

Beyond assembling the ingredients on the kitchen counter and lightly sautéing the onions and garlic in a frying pan, the sausage crumbles come together with minimal effort. Thanks, trusty food processor. Since I was using the sausage for the gravy recipe featured yesterday, I fried up the crumbles immediately and mixed them in the gravy. The gravy recipe advises you to use an entire batch of these sunflower sausage crumbles, but I found that half a batch offered the perfect sausage-to-gravy ratio.

Vegan Biscuits with Sausage Gravy
Image by author.

Sunflower Sausage
a But I Could Never Go Vegan! recipe
Serves 4

– 3 to 4 tsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
– 1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped
– 1 garlic clove, minced
– 2 cups raw hulled sunflower seeds
– 1/4 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes (I used the oil-packed version.)
– 2 TBS liquid aminos (I used low-sodium soy sauce.)
– 1 1/2 tsp maple syrup
– 1 tsp liquid smoke
– 1 tsp dried sage
– 1 tsp fennel seeds
– 1/2 tsp ground cumin
– 1/2 tsp paprika
– Salt and pepper to taste

1. Heat 1 tsp of the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until the onion is slightly translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from the heat.

2. In a food processor, combine the sunflower seeds, 2 tsp of the oil, sun-dried tomatoes, liquid aminos, maple syrup, liquid smoke, sage, fennel seeds, cumin, paprika, salt, and pepper. Pulse until broken down and combined. Add the cooked onion and garlic and pulse until the mixture is sticky and no piece is larger than a lentil, pausing to scrape the sides as necessary.

3. You can serve the sausage uncooked or cooked. To cook, heat the remaining 1 tsp of oil over medium heat in the same frying pan used earlier. Crumble the sausage into the pan and cook about 5 minutes, stirring and flipping as needed so it’s evenly cooked. You may need to use your spatula to break up the crumbles if they start to stick together. If you’re not eating it right away, chill in an airtight container for 3 to 4 days.

5 Comments Add yours

  1. Cathy says:

    Sounds really good! I haven’t used sunflower seeds in cooking before, as they tend to just get sprinkled on top of salads, so I will definitely try this. Thanks, and I think I need to take a look at that cookbook too!

    1. gwynnem says:

      Cathy, the texture of these crumbles is nice, chewy the way sausage tends to be chewy. Hope you enjoy!

  2. This sounds delicious! Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  3. This is fabulous! Must pin!

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