I can NOT stop thinking about this “chicken” Milanese!
This vegan chicken Milanese is a little more time consuming than my normal recipes. I went back and forth on if it was too much or not. However, it being one of the most delicious things I have ever eaten, I decided I had to share it with you all, because I love you! The “chicken” patties are incredible by themselves, but then pour this vegan creamy Tuscan sauce over the top and you will be completely amazed!
The “chicken” patties are made from chickpeas and vital wheat gluten. Then you form the patties, dredge in flour, then brown in a pan, then bake. While the patties are baking, you make the super simple creamy Tuscan topping. Sauteed garlic, sun dried tomatoes and spinach. Then add to that a VERY creamy cashew sauce!
I like to serve this vegan chicken Milanese over pasta, then pour the amazing sauce over the top of everything. The “chicken” patties are so crispy, that they can be covered in the sauce and stay nice and firm and crispy for a really long time!
Don’t be intimidated by the thought of making your own vegan chicken and cashew sauce from scratch. Even though this is more time consuming, each step is pretty easy. The chickpea dough is very easy to make. As is the sauce. The texture of the “chicken” is super on point and is pretty much the most amazing thing ever. This Tuscan sauce just makes it to die for!
Creamy Tuscan Vegan "Chicken" Milanese
- 2 Cups Chickpeas, canned or already cooked(drained)
- 2/3 Cup Vegetable broth
- 1/4 Cup Soy sauce
- 1 Cup Vital wheat gluten
- 1 1/4 Cups Panko bread crumbs
- 1 Teaspoon Poultry seasoning( usually contains sage, thyme,rosemary,nutmeg and black pepper)
- Pinch of Salt and Pepper
- 1 Cup All purpose flour for dredging the "chicken"
- 3 Tablespoons Olive oil or enough to coat the bottom of the pan
Creamy Tuscan Sauce
- 1 Cup Raw cashews, soaked
- 1 Cup + 3/4 Cup Vegetable broth, divided
- 2 Tablespoons Nutritional yeast
- 6 Cloves Garlic, chopped
- 1 Cup Sun dried tomatoes
- 3 Cups Fresh spinach
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Make sure to soak the cashews first for at least 8 hours. If you are in a pinch, you can soak them in boiling water for 20-30 minutes.
- When you are ready to make everything, preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
- Now, make the patties. In a large mixing bowl, add the drained chickpeas. Then mash all of the chickpeas either with a fork or a potato masher. Then whisk the vegetable broth and soy sauce with the mashed chickpeas.
- Then add the vital wheat gluten, panko, poultry seasoning and a pinch of salt and pepper. Begin to stir to combine, then once it gets hard to stir, begin to knead with your hands.
- Continue to knead until the mixture comes together into a nice dough ball and no longer crumbles. It may take a few minutes.
- Pull a piece of the chickpea mixture from the ball, however large you want the patties to be. Knead the small piece in your hand and press into a ball. Then flatten the patty out pretty thin so it will get nice and crispy. Repeat with the remaining dough.
- Now, put the all purpose flour and a pinch of salt into a large bowl. Stir. Then put a patty into the flour and coat one side, then flip and coat the other side with flour. Pat off any excess. Repeat with all the patties.
- Then heat the olive oil on medium in a large non stick skillet. Place the patties in the pan and brown on one side for 2-3 minutes. Then flip and brown the other side for 2-3 minutes.
- Place each chickpea patty on a baking sheet and bake at 425 degrees for about 20 minutes or until the patties are very firm. Flipping them after about 10 minutes.
- While the patties are baking, make the sauce. Drain the soaked cashews and add the cashews to a blender. Then add 1 cup of broth, the nutritional yeast and a pinch of salt and pepper. Blend, scraping down the sides as needed until the cashew sauce is completely smooth.
- Heat the same pan you used to brown the patties on medium, if you need a little more olive oil, add a bit more to the pan.
- Then add the chopped garlic, saute, reducing heat as needed. Saute for a minute, then add the sun dried tomatoes. Saute for a few more minutes to brown the tomatoes a bit.
- Now, add the spinach. Reduce heat to low and toss to wilt the spinach. Then pour the cashew sauce into the pan. Stir to combine.
- Then pour the remaining 3/4 cup of vegetable broth into the pan. Stir to combine. Season with another pinch of salt and pepper. Simmer the sauce for 2-3 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning.
- Once the patties are done and the sauce is done, serve immediately. Over pasta if you want!
Kathleen @ Produce On Parade
Wow!! You always do such a wonderful job making your food look absolutely amazing. I bet this is even better tasting than it looks! I think our tastebuds are one in the same, Laura. Your food is always right up my alley. Yum!
Thank you so much!
I agree. She’s an amazing cooking goddess! I love everything I’ve tested from her site. Truly a gifted person in the kitchen. All of our tummy’s thank you!
It was AMAZING!!!!!
I seriously cannot get enough of this recipe!! Absolute vegan heaven 🙂
Could I skip frying them in the pan first? I don’t use oil in my cooking, but this looks so delicious I want to try it out!
Sure! You can just skip coating them in flour and bake them!
Hi Lauren, BEAUTIFUL recipe! Thank you😋🙌 I am not fond of spinach. Could you suggest a substitute? Thanks!
You can leave it out if you want, it would still me amazing. Or I think some good substitutes may be olives, maybe broccoli, any other greens you may like.
Perfect! Thank you!!
Hi Lauren, is there a substitute for Vital wheat gluten. I’ve sourced all the grocery stores in my area and health food shops and nothing. Going to order online but that means I have to wait 10days to try this!!!!
So vital wheat gluten is pretty unique. The texture it gives recipes is hard to replicate. A lot of people who are gluten free have told me they have used a combination of rice flour and flax. Which they say works great! I have not tried to make a version without the vital wheat gluten, so I can’t guarantee that the texture and flavor would be the same. I’m not sure if that was super helpful.:) If you have rice flour and flax you can try it out! If you are willing to wait for vital wheat gluten, I would recommend that.
I tried this recipe today and it was delicious, although the chicken patties were a little tough. I’m wondering if I overworked the dough or baked them too long. Just wondering if anyone can share some insight on that with me.
I’m glad it tasted good! I would say for the patties, maybe they were baked too long. Your oven might run a little hotter than mine. Maybe just try not baking them as long, they shouldn’t be tough. I would just check them after half the baking time, and press the center with your finger to see how firm they are. If they feel good to you, you can take them out of the oven! I hope that helps and thanks for giving the recipe a try!
It has been delicious but my patties were tough too. Will try less oven time next time
I found this issue as well. We made this another two times and completely skipped baking them. Pan fry to cook em all the way through.
Nikki Shay Hendricks
Another amazing dish!
I made this tonight and the first thing my husband said after taking a bite was, this is from that Rabbit website isn’t it!
I have a binder full of your recipes that are my “go to dishes for when I want to impress non vegans! Thank you so much!
You totally made my day! I legit couldn’t stop grinning after I read this! I’m so glad you are enjoying my recipes! 🙂
This was amazing. Great recipe.
I have made your salisbury steaks, and I now freeze the patties after I fry them, they freeze great! I am now going to make this. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your recipes, and so does my very picky husband!
I can’t wait to try this! Looks amazing! My husband isn’t a huge fan of sun-dried tomatoes. Is there something you’d recommend as a replacement? Thank you
You can always leave them out, or I think olives would be great, or maybe artichokes. If you guys like either of those!
Lauren, it was absolutely amazing!! Such a great recipe. This will definitely make the rotation. This was my first time using wheat gluten and was amazed at what it could do. So happy I found your blog. I haven’t been disappointed with a recipe yet! Now, what recipe to try next.
Yay! This is definitely one of my current favorite meals! I’m so glad you enjoyed!
Someone may have already asked this, but can I make the “chick’n” dough ahead of time and fridge it until I bake? I don’t use VWG often, so I haven’t tried that yet. Looking forward to sharing this recipe with my community. I am going to bake them without oil. Will let you know how they turn out! Also, I am adding some mushrooms to the sauce. HUGS FROM TEXAS! This is my son and DIL’s favorite vegan website.
I do put my dough in the fridge every once in a while to prep ahead of time. The dough will stay good in the fridge for a day or 2, but not for a super long time. It starts to get hard. I really hope you enjoy and I think adding mushrooms to the sauce sounds AMAZING! Hugs back from Florida!!
This recipe was delicious! Thank you for sharing it. All of your recipes look SO good!
I do have a question. It was so creamy at first but the sauce hardened/thickened as I was eating it. This has always been an issue with other cashew-based sauces I’ve made. Do you know how to keep it creamy? Thank you!
Another home run! These were so so good. BOTH of my picky kids loved the chicken patties. And my husband thought the entire meal was delicious. We didn’t use cashews (food allergy) but instead used 6 oz silken tofu and half cup soaked almonds for the cream sauce. Which at first doesn’t taste like much but once you mix it in with the garlic and sun dried tomatoes OMG (we also added extra garlic because we love it and some lemon juice-personal preference). After this meal my husband remarked how much better this was than so many vegan meals we have had out at restaurants. This is truly an outstanding meal.
This was sooooo good! My meat eating husband loved it too. Just like all of your recipes we were really impressed. Definitely will be making again.
Okay so I can’t speak to the “chicken” because I used actual chicken, but the sauce is spot on perfect. I’m dairy-free and this recipe was amazing. I’ve been raving about it all day. Thank you!
Truly my favorite recipe and dish! My family of four all LOVED this…even my ultra-picky 13 yr old son! Thank you for this! Def a little more work involved but seriously this would impress at the dinner party. Enjoy with a nice glass of red wine and ur golden!
Delicious!! Thank you for introducing me to wheat gluten! This will be made often at our house!
Oh my gosh, SO delicious!
This was delicious!! I have been dreaming of it all week and finally had enough time to make it. This will be a regular in our house. I had never made chicken patties before, this was super easy to follow and incredible. Is there anywhere I can find the nutritional facts?
Thank you! This recipe is amazing!
I appreciate your time and expertise with recipes. I usually have to adjust seasonings (add more) with a lot of recipes I use from books and online. However, your recipes are perfectly seasoned.
Thank you again!
Yum! Just made this for NYE dinner and we can’t stop talking about it. I added some artichokes and it was perfect. Can these patties be frozen? Perhaps after searing them. Then baking them from frozen.
Excellent recipe! Thanks for your hard work
I have made this several times. I also served this at a dinner party …had many compliments The patties freeze well. Thank you! (Wish there were a gluten free version)
Making this tomorrow!!! I am so excited for your cookbook to come out!! I’ve already pre-ordered!!
I’ve been putting off making seitan for a long time. I’ve been burned by a bad, spongy seitan a few times which almost turned me off entirely. I decided to put my reservations aside and gave this recipe a try. This is one of the best dishes I’ve ever tried, no hyperbole. Thank you for sharing and renewing my faith in meat substitutes!
Made it for the second time last night & again: SO DELICIOUS.
Thank you so much for your recipes!
Well worth the effort.
Hubby walked through the door and hurried to find what smelled sooooo good.
I made the sauce one day and that made it easy just to get the patties ready the next afternoon.
Found the recipe and instructions spot on.
The best… Thank you
Hi, I started soaking the cashews with the plan to make this dish tonight. But, I just found out I will have to wait and make this dish tomorrow night. Can I stop soaking the cashews and resoak them tomorrow? If so, how long should I soak them tomorrow? Or should I just keep soaking them until tomorrow? They have been soaking for 6 hours already. Thanks for your help!
Sorry if this is too late to help, but that has happened to me before and I usually drain them, put them in the fridge and then just soak for a few more hours before I use them!
Thank you for this awesome recipe. I have made this many times for guest and also for myself. Always the same reactions ”Wow, this is delicious”!
I have shared your recipe with several friends and family members.
Thank you again,
Insanely good!! WOW!
This was absolutely amazing! I have yet to make anything of yours that was disappointing. I will definitely make this again. I do have a question, will uncooked patties hold in the freezer?
You are a GENIUS! This is amazing, I pretty much followed to a T and got a beautiful dish. Here are a couple of pointers for the uninitiated. 1) The patties should be thin. For me, I made them just under 1/2-inch thick and got a great result. 2) You should check in on your patties when you’re frying them because they may start to brown in less than 2-3 minutes per side. 3) I doubled the spinach in this recipe, and I think you could even quadruple it if you want some extra leafy green punch! It works great. 4) I suggest reserving your pasta water and spooning some in the sauce if it gets too thick, which happened for me (but was entirely my fault). 5) Consider chopping your sun dried tomatoes. Anyway, this is awesome, definitely you should make it, and Lauren, you are the best. Made my night.Woohoo!
This took the place of the traditional Thanksgiving main dish this year. It looked and tasted wonderful. I think the non-vegans were a bit jealous 😉
Was so delicious! I think we didn’t make the patties thin enough so they were a little tougher than they should of been but overall it was so delicious. Even just the sauce and pasta would of been fantastic.
Made this sans the chicken patties, and it was phenomenal – was just wondering if there’s a way to make the chicken without gluten? The sauce however is tops – will definitely be making again. Adding a bit of crushed red pepper kicks it up and bit and next time I’m going to throw in some caramelized onions too! <3
Looks so good. Can you make the sauce ahead of time and can you freeze it. New to vegan cooking and wonder how long cashew sauces last as I would probably want to make big batches at a time.
Thank you for this amazing recipe! I keep meaning to write a comment. It doesn’t feel too labor intensive actually, and it’s so delicious that I honestly feel like a 5 star chef after making it!
The sauce was AMAZING! I want to put it on a bunch of things like manicotti! I think I made my chickpea Pattie’s too thin though since they were very crispy after 15 mins in the oven.. I mixed the spinach with kale and it was super tasty 😋