A delicious vegan meatloaf made with chickpeas and covered with a homemade maple bbq sauce. It’s so EASY to make and is absolutely delicious.
It’s Autumn and comfort foods are the expectation among family and friends. One of the most common and popular forms of said comfort food is the meatloaf. But, for those of us who no longer eat dead flesh, there needs to be a satisfying plant based alternative. Does such a thing even exist? Yes, it does.
We all know there are tons of vegan recipes for “meat” loaves. And, some can be rather bland and mushy. You want/need something hearty, savory, and doesn’t fall apart at the mere sight of a fork. In other words, you need this Chickpea Vegan Meatloaf.
This chickpea vegan meatloaf recipe will satisfy everyone sitting around the table at dinner time. So, make this part of your Autumn vegan meal plan. Because if you don’t, you risk watching your self-esteem go down the toilet because everyone laughed at your “mush” loaf.
How Do I Make Vegan Meatloaf
Start by cooking the onion, carrots, and celery in a large nonstick pan altogether over medium heat. I LOVE my GreenPans and they are perfect for oil free cooking. Cook until the onions are a little soft. Remove your pan from the stove and set aside.
Drain and rinse your chickpeas, add them to a large mixing bowl, and mash them with a potato masher. Toss in the bread crumbs, soy sauce, vegan Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke, and all remaining ingredients. Mix very well until everything is combined.
NOTE: You can use a food processor to mix everything. But, don’t overmix everything. You still want a bit of texture. And, you may also have to work in batches because of the quantity.
Scoop the mixture into a nonstick loaf pan, silicone loaf pan, or loaf pan lined with parchment paper. Press the mixture down firmly and evenly, cover with aluminum foil, and bake it for 25 minutes.
After the 25 minutes, take the vegan meatloaf out of the oven, remove the aluminum foil, and spread the maple bbq sauce glaze on top.
Return the loaf to the oven and bake for another 15-20 minutes.
Finally, remove from the oven and let the chickpea vegan meatloaf sit for about 15 minutes or so. It will firm up even more as it cools.
Slice, serve and enjoy!
Not a fan of the chickpeas? There’s always the lentil. Try my other vegan meatloaf recipe made with lentils and oats. It has a few more ingredients, but it’s just as delicious and savory!
What To Serve With Vegan Meatloaf
- Creamy Vegan Mashed Potatoes
- Green Bean Casserole With Onion Rings
- Vegan Sweet Potatoe Casserole
- Creamy Vegan Scalloped Potatoes
- Vegan Cranberry Sauce
- Apple Walnut Salad
You will love this Chickpea Vegan Meatloaf! It’s…
- Easy to make
- Perfectly seasoned
- Perfect for November
- Full of protein and fiber
- & Delicious!
Did you make this recipe? Please leave a comment below with a star rating. And, be sure to share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #shaneandsimple. I want to see your work!Print
Chickpea Vegan Meatloaf
- Prep Time: 10 mins.
- Cook Time: 40 mins.
- Total Time: 50 minutes
- Yield: 8 slices 1x
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Vegan
- Diet: Vegan
A delicious vegan meatloaf made with chickpeas and topped with a homemade maple bbq sauce glaze. It’s so EASY to make, bakes up perfectly, and is absolutely delicious.
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 2 medium carrots, chopped
- 2 15-ounce cans low-sodium or no salt added chickpeas
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs or whole wheat bread crumbs
- 3 Tbsp ground flax seed
- 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 Tbsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp. ground sage
- ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp vegetarian Worcestershire sauce
- 2 Tbsp ketchup
- 2 tsp. liquid smoke
BBQ Maple Glaze
- ¼ cup ketchup
- 2 Tbsp maple syrup
- 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
- 1 tsp. smoked paprika
- Preheat your oven to 375 F˚.
- In a nonstick pan, that has been preheated over medium heat, cook your chopped onions, carrots, and celery until the onions are a little soft. Once they are finished cooking remove the pan from the heat and set aside.
- Add the drained and rinsed chickpeas to a large mixing bowl and mashed with a fork or potato masher. Toss in the cooked vegetables and remaining ingredients. Mix everything together unitl it is all well combined.
- Scoop the chickpea vegan meatloaf mixture into nonstick loaf pan, silicone loaf pan, or line a loaf pan with parchment paper. Firmly and evenly, press the mixture into the pan. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 25 minutes.
- While the veggie loaf cooks go ahead and make the maple bbq sauce glaze. Simply add all the ingredients to a small bowl and whisk together.
- Take the veggie loaf out of the oven, remove the aluminum foil, and spread the maple bbq sauce glaze on top. Place the loaf back in the oven and cook uncovered for an additional 15 minutes.
- Remove the chickpea vegan meatloaf from the oven and let it cool in the loaf pan for about 15 minutes before serving. The longer it sets, ther firmer it gets.
- Slice, serve, and devour! Cover leftovers and store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
This Chickpea Vegan Meatloaf is a great “make ahead” dish as it freezes very well. It can be stored in the freezer for several weeks until you’re ready to cook.
- Serving Size:
- Calories: 164
- Sugar: 11.3 g
- Sodium: 394.7 mg
- Fat: 2.5 g
- Carbohydrates: 29.9 g
- Fiber: 6.1 g
- Protein: 6.7 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
Keywords: vegan meatloaf, chickpeas, vegan, plant-based, no oil, healthy recipes, vegan recipes, vegan chickpea meatloaf
P.S. I just realized what to call us … we’re all the community. (Just saw it at the start of comment section on another recipe.) I’m happy to be part of your community. 🙂
Lentil meatloaf … wonderful recipe. My first time making it; I hope to make it again soon so I can benefit from familiarity and personal tweaking. This time around, I learned to make Ezekiel bread crumbs and feel like a more competent cook. Next time I’ll have tomato paste ready. Thank you for all the tips; it’s a huge plus to be able read comments and your response to people’s questions about variations. I appreciate your efforts to not only come up with easy, tasty dishes, but spending the time to stay engaged with your audience/fans/students/network … not sure what we should call ourselves, but you’re a teacher. 🙂
This is by far the best vegan loaf I ever had. I almost gave up making them because I am always disappointed. Not with this one. I did double the sauce as some others suggested, but I probably won’t double it next time I make it.
Thank you so much and so glad you enjoyed it!
Hi Shane, made this last night, it is delicious!!
Next time I am going to double the BBQ sauce, my hubby requested,he liked it sooo much. Thank u for recipe. Oh, I didn’t have celery on hand so used red bell pepper. 😇
So glad you enjoyed it!!! (I usually double the sauce at times as well😉)
The flavours really melded wonderfully overnight in the fridge, and made this loaf even better!! Well done! This recipe is a keeper! And it freezes well, for easy meals later.
Our favorite “meatloaf”!
Is there a substitute for nutritional yeast?
There is not. But, you could just leave it out if you wish. It’s a flavor ingredient so it is not essential in order for it to cook.
Another big hit, Shane! Your recipes are all winners – reliably and consistently. I’m so appreciative of you and this resource! I made this scrumptious loaf last Thanksgiving and plan to do it again – this time traveling. I understand that it can be made, frozen, and then cooked from frozen. but what about making, refrigerating, and cooking from refrigerated? I don’t need to make it so far in advance that it makes sense to freeze it, and I’m not traveling far (ice chest distance). I just prefer to bake at the destination on turkey-alternative day. How many days ahead do you think it would be safe to keep it refrigerated – unbaked – before taking it on the road? Also, how might you adjust the cooking time to bake it from refrigerated vs. room temperature? Thanks so much!
Thank you so much and I’m pumped and honored you’ll be making it again. You could make it a couple of days in advance and then cook at the normal time and temp. That won’t change. Happy Thanksgiving!
Oh my, this was scrumptious. My husband loved this. The sauce was out of this world. I doubled the sauce. I will definitely be making this again.
Made this 3 times and it is absolutely delicious.
Nice and thank you!
I really enjoy your recipes! Thank you for sharing with the world so I could learn and enjoy! I like it that your recipes are easy and tasty, The carrot cake is a knock out! I love it and so do others! Thanks again! I will be trying more of your creations!
Thank you so much, Barbara!
Gotta try this, Shane.
Just moved to a university campus to start studies in the fall.
I hope your move goes well — mine didn’t….I had to stay three days in a hotel to recover…lol… Big tip — packing up the kitchen takes a lot of time. I liked using smaller boxes so that I didn’t have to lift heavy boxes of kitchen items like plates or applicances.
Best of luck. Thanks for all you do.
Thank you and good luck!
I made your chickpea vegan meatloaf this afternoon. Easy to make and delicious to eat!!!
Thank you so much!!!
All love and best wishes coming your way for an easy, happy move for you and your family. Thank you for all you do for all of us!
Judy N. 🇨🇦
Love the meatloaf Shane, and regarding your moving woes….Don’t worry about nothing, ‘cause ever little thing is gonna be alright 🎼
My daughter made this for me after I had shoulder surgery (she asked for a few web sites I regularly use) and it was fantastic! She also made Shane’s scalloped potatoes and roasted veggies. Not able to cook for a while, i really appreciated this! Some was frozen (freezes well) A keeper for sure! Flavor was great and it was moist and kept well for a few days in the fridge.
I make this all the time. I make a large loaf.
I use my grandmother’s old meatloaf blue enamel pan. Just shape it with my hands and cover with Barbecue sauce. Yum!! So good the next few days for sandwiches!
Really delicious! I served it with your easy sauteed kale and kamut. It was a great dinner and the leftovers this week are even better. Thank you.
Shane, I got lucky when I stumbled onto your site. This is just what I need. Now, about the 2 T. of maple syrup, can you recommend something else? I can’t afford maple syrup and you can’t buy it in 2-tablespoon quantities! Many thanks. Is the function of the syrup to provide some thickness? If so, I should think that the thick liquid that appears after you cook your chickpeas (from raw) would do that trick; or maybe some starch boiled in water. Or is it the sweetness that’s the issue? I can’t use honey. Any suggestions?
Hi, Bettie! Yes, it helps to caramelize the top and adds a bit of sweetness. I would recommend just using your favorite BBQ sauce or simply add 2 extra Tbsp of ketcup. Hope this helps. Blessings.
I made this today as written. Delicious!! And much easier to make than my lentil loaf. My teen liked it as well.
Thank you ,thank you!!
That’s great, Terri!
Hi Shane, I’m new to your blog but already loving it. Hubby was diagnosed with atherosclerosis recently and has opted to follow a WFPB diet in lieu of medications. It’s already working wonders on him! I discovered your site and all the recipes I’ve tried so far have been fantastic! This meatloaf was very easy and delicious. The BBQ sauce especially is to die for! We made two batches because it just tasted amazing for dipping as well as caramelized on top of the loaf…Thank you so much!
Wow, that’s awesome, Kirsten! I’m pumped to hear about your husband’s progress. Please keep me updated and never hesitate to reach out with a question or comment. Blessings to both of you.
This chickpea loaf is amazing! Just made another loaf last night to take to my cardio nurses that want to try it. Btw they absolutely loved your chickpea salad I made for them (made with dill relish instead of sweet)
Keep the delicious recipes coming Shane!! 😁
Awww, thank you so much!
This tastes great but every time I make it, it is very very soft. I cook it 15 minutes more and let it sit 20 minutes before cutting it but no luck. The next day it is firm but I don’t always want to make it a day ahead. Any thoughts? Thanks and thanks for the amazing recipes!!
Hi, Joan! It always firms up once it sits for a bit, even if just for an hour. You could add 1 cup of wheat bread crumbs as that will absorb some moisture. I’m glad you like it and I hope this helps!!! Merry Christmas!
I made this for my husband and myself for our Thanksgiving meal. It was fabulous! I will definitely be making it on a regular basis! Thanks for all your recipes!
Wow, Leslie! That’s so great to hear. Thank you so much!!!
Made this the day before and took it out of the fridge and sliced two slices to reheat for dinner. It didn’t hold together and while delicious, it fell apart. I wonder if I should increase flax or bread crumbs? I tried to chop everything quite small so don’t think that was the problem.
Anyway, combined with your scalloped potatoes it was a very tasty meal. Thanks.
Plan on making this for Thanksgiving 2020. Is it okay to prep the night before I plan on baking it?
This looks and sounds absolutely amazing!
I would like to make this tonight for my family.
We are not 100% vegans. I have read other vegetarian recipes that use egg, is this recipe capable of using egg in the recipe, if so how many would I use?
Also, what is a good substitute for the liquid smoke?
It’s not a regular ingredient for me, and I do want to make it tonight. I do have smoked paprika on hand, what would you suggest?
Smoked paprika or chipotle chili powder are good smoky alternatives.
I’m looking for a good meatless meatloaf, and I’ve never been a big fan of real meatloaf, so which one of your vegan “meat” loafs would you recommend I start with??
The chickpea “meatloaf” would be my go to:)
Simple and delicious, this is now my favourite loaf recipe!
I make both this meatloaf and the lentil one. Love them both. Don’t remember how I found your website but I use it all the time.
I didn’t have celery so I used finely chopped green cabbage instead. Also omitted soy sauce, and upped the liquid smoke. Delicious!
Thanks for all the great recipes.
Marleen in 't Veld
This was delicious!
Wonderful! Next time we’ll make in muffin tins. Thank you!
Sounds great, Heather! Thanks so much.
Thanks for another great recipe! My husband and I really liked it, unfortunately my son did not. I will definitely try using the food processor next time to speed up prep and hoping my son will like it better without chunks.
Thanks, Jen! Sometimes it takes some a little longer and that’s ok. And, even if they don’t like it at all, that’s cool too. I’ve got tons more recipes:) Blessings.
This is the second recipe of yours I’ve made and I can’t believe how good it turned out!
I think I used a little to much carrot but it was yummy
Thank you so much!
Thank you so much, Mel!
This meal made my teenagers emerge from their bedrooms, the wonderful aroma of the bbq sauce filled the entire house and drew everyone to the dinning room even before I called them for dinner, Do you know how hard that is? A very rare occurrence. The only modifications I made was using less vinegar and syrup. Thank you, simply delicious!
Phenomenal! Made this in cupcake tins instead of in a loaf pan. Everyone loved it.
Thank you so much, Tom! I’ve seen people making this in a cupcake tin and now I must try it:)
quick question- on the 2nd to the last step, do you mean removed the chickpea loaf from the oven (and leave in the pan) to cool, or remove from the pan first and then cool it?
Hi, Karin! I went back and edited a bit. Here’s how it should read: “Remove the chickpea vegan meatloaf from the oven and let it cool in the loaf pan for about 15 minutes before serving.”
Hope this helps.
Qthis just came out of the oven. My kitchen smells amazingly! I took a bite and am delighted by the taste. Can’t wait to eat my lunch now! Thanks for the recipe!
Thank you so much, Cheryl! Enjoy your lunch:) Blessings.
Made this for supper tonight! I have been craving meat and this satisfied my envie’ ! My non -vegan husband asked for a second helping! Score with this recipe! I will make the bbq sauce x 3 or 4 next time! It was yummy!
Thank you for this amazing recipe!!!
Milissia, that is so great! And, pumped y’all enjoyed it. (I love the bbq sauce too) Happy Holidays!
Could I use less onion? Also, can I use the processor to blend it all together instead of having pieces in the loaf? And anything in place of liquid smoke or could I omit completely?
Hi, Jessica! Yes, use any amount of onion you prefer. The food processor works well, but you may have to work in batches because of the amount…no big deal. And, you could use smoked paprika or omit completely. Totally what your tastebuds prefer:)
I made this tonight. By far our (all fam members) favorite loaf recipe, Shane. It held together so well and the flavor was great. Great job, thanks!
Kim, thank you so much! I’m so glad you enjoyed it. If you get a chance, I’d really appreciate you giving it a “star rating”. It helps me out with Google a ton:)
As I sit here eating this now…..I have a hard time digesting any type of flour. I switched out the bread crumbs for 1 cup of thick rolled oats (not oat flour) and it came out great!
Jill, that is awesome! I love hearing stories of people making these recipes work for them. I’m so glad you enjoyed it. Try replacing the bread with cooked rice as well. Very nice:) But, I do love my oats. Blessings.
I really enjoy this recipe. I have made it several times and it is my go-to vegan meatloaf recipe. I change it up sometimes with different seasonings, but tonight was as written. Served with garlic mashed potatoes, roasted cherry tomatoes and sauteed garlic spinach, yum.
Cat, that sounds delicious! I’m so glad you enjoyed it and thanks for reaching out and rating it. Blessings.
Can I just say “keep them coming”. My word! This was amazing. What a beautiful band of flavors. Thanks so much for sharing!
Mindy, thank you so much! It’s one of our faves too. Thanks for reaching out and for the rating. Happy Thanksgiving!!!
Is there a good substitute for the flax seed if that is something I am unable to have? I would assume it is the binding agent? Thank you!
It is the binding agent, but you could Ener-G Egg replacer, Bob’s Red Mill Egg replacer. This article also has some more suggestions. https://www.simplyquinoa.com/vegan-egg-substitutes/
Hi Ciel. I am allergic to flax & have always just used ground chia seeds instead.
Nicole’s answer is also a great solution. Thanks, Nicole, for having my back:) Blessings.
I had this at my sister’s house and loved it. Just made it for myself and it was tedious. I must remember to put in my food processor next time. I can see that it would make it very simple by doing just that simple step. When I removed this from the oven the glaze on top seemed a little too runny so I poked holes, with a skewer, into top of loaf hoping that it would absorb some of the glaze. Smells soooo good. I plan to slice and wrap individual slices for the freezer and then reheat in a fry pan.
Marlynn, that sounds wonderful. And, I’m so glad you enjoyed the meatloaf. Thanks for reaching out. Blessings.
I made this. I baked it as individual servings using silicon muffin pans. My rational is that as the sole WFPB eater that best offers the opportunity for storing and enjoying. I found it a bit dry most likely due to the smaller bulk. I think that next time I will reduce the baking time. The sauce makes it quite tasty and I think it is a keeper.
Hi, Nick! Yes, smaller bulk should be cooked in shorter amount of time. You can add a bit more veggie broth as well if needed. (the sauce is my favorite…shhh) Blessings.
Sounds yummy. When you freeze it are you freezing it not cooked or freezing it after cooking? Which works best? Thank you.
If you want to freeze it, I would do it before cooking it. But, it wouldn’t hurt to do afterward.
I can’t have soy. What could I use instead?
I would try coconut aminos.
Could you use Chipotle chili in adobo sauce? instead of liquid smoke? i’m usually not a big fan of liquid smoke.
Absolutely, why not? I’d love your feedback after doing it. I also love chipotle peppers. Good luck!
I assume, in your glaze, that it is 1 T low sodium SOY sauce? Thank you for sharing your recipes!
Yes, Cheri! Thanks for catching that. All updated:)
Does it work it work as meatballs? Looks so good, I soak and cook my own beans; estimate 2 cups per can?
I think it would be a sin not to try:)
I use Beanitos BBQ crushed chips instead of Panko crumbs to make it gluten free.
I think it’s too much sugar. What can I substitute from those ingredients to get less sugar?
You could use tomato paste in place of the ketchup. That would could it down quite a bit. You could also use the ketchup and leave out the maple syrup. It will make the glaze more savory without the sweetness. Hope this helps.
When you freeze it, do you it thaw it first and then bake it? I’m also looking for easy freezer meals to make ahead 🙂
Hi, Deborah. You could do it either way.
Frozen: Preheat your oven to 350 / Remove any wrapping / Place it an oven-safe baking dish (prefarbly what you cooked it in) / Bake for 1 1/2 hours.
Thawed: Preheat oven to 350 / Remove wrapping and place in loaf pan or baking pan / Cook for 45 mins. – 1 hour
Hope this helps!!!
This is another winner in my book! I figured I would end up freezing at least half of it since I am the only one at my house who will get anywhere near chickpeas, but I have been eating it on sandwiches until there’s now only two slices left. That glaze…oh so yummy. I think the next time I make this I’ll leave out the carrots and substitute green bell pepper which will make it even more like my traditional meat loaf.