Nutrition & Recipes

Holiday Recipes: Vegan, Gluten-Free Stuffing with Carrots, Fennel, and Apple

Holiday Recipes: Vegan, Gluten-Free Stuffing with Carrots, Fennel, and Apple
Stuffing seems to be synonymous with the holiday season. Over the years since we’ve become the hosts for holiday dinners with family, my husband and I have worked on a healthy vegan and gluten-free stuffing recipe. One that is not only vegan and gluten-free, but also oil-free. We’ve finally found one that we’re happy with, and there are many variations and ways to change it up for various occasions.

It seems the second half of the autumn season is upon us, ushering in cold temperatures and winds, and I’ve had a particular sense of nostalgia recently. One tradition, or perhaps more of a daily practice for us, is that we take walks as a family every day. I try to dedicate our walk times to really taking in what is around me.

My husband is a wonderful example of teaching me to do so. He will often just stop to admire a beautiful tree. It could be a tree that I may have walked right past, but he stops, acknowledges it, and admires its beauty. I’ve been making it a practice to do the same.

This season, I’ve observed so many beautiful vibrant colors on the trees. The red, oranges, and yellow hues of autumn are very vibrant right now, and create a sense of warmth amidst the colder winds.

Vegan, Gluten-Free Holiday Apple Stuffing

Photo by April Duckworth.

As this stuffing baked in our home one fall weekend, that nostalgia became even more pronounced. I thought more on the traditions that we are establishing as a family, and the ways that we can share them with others.

Serves 8 to 10


  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 3 medium carrots, diced
  • 3 stalks of celery, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tbsp dried sage
  • 1 tbsp thyme
  • 1 tsp ground fennel
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp liquid aminos
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 1 apple, diced
  • 1 loaf of gluten-free bread, cut into 1-inch cubes


  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Sauté in large skillet onion, carrots, celery, and garlic together until they release their juices.
  • Add sage, thyme, and fennel, and continue stirring until floral, 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and add 3 tablespoons water, apple cider vinegar, liquid aminos, apple sauce, and apple.
  • In a mixing bowl, add bread cubes and sauté mixture. Stir to combine well.
  • Return to skillet, cover, and cook for 45 to 50 min.
  • Serve warm.

As I observed people decorating for the autumn season, taking walks, and talking to one another, I imagined that they might feel the same sense of holiday nostalgia that I’ve been feeling, and it made me smile.

I hope that this recipe is one that you enjoy and include in your holiday seasons for years to come. May the warm and inviting scents of these and spices bring a smile to your face, as you reflect upon traditions both old and new.

Anchor yourself this season with balancing Ayurvedic practices that support a healthy mind, body, and spirit with Winter Holiday, a four-part program with Dr. Sheila Patel, available now in the Chopra App.