Walnut Loaf

Walnut Loaf is the perfect dish for any special celebration …which is why we unveiled it for the 7th anniversary of the UC Davis Integrative Medicine Program! Sautéed onions and mushrooms are combined with brown rice, nuts, and dairy-free ricotta then baked, cooled, and sliced. This plant-based entrée works well with any number of salads and side dishes. Use the recipe to wow your dinner guests or spoil your family and friends!


  • 2 cups brown rice or quinoa, cooked
  • 2 cups mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 2 cups walnuts, finely chopped
  • 1 cup almonds or cashews, roasted, finely chopped
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese, dairy-free
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup ketchup (optional)
  • 1/2 cup parsley, fresh, chopped
  • 1/4 cup red wine or sherry (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons flax or chia seeds, ground plus 3 tablespoons water*
  • 2 teaspoons garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1 teaspoon basil, dry
  • 1 teaspoon thyme, dry
  • Black pepper, freshly ground, to taste
  • PREP TIME 20
  • COOK TIME 40
  • Serves 6-8


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line 9-inch loaf pan with parchment paper.
  2. Sauté onion over medium heat until soft, adding a drop or two of water as needed to prevent sticking. Add mushrooms and black pepper then cook until mushrooms are soft and releasing their juices. Add garlic, all dry herbs and liquid smoke.
  3. Cook until the pan dries out, then add a splash of red wine or sherry. Cook until reduced then remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
  4. Combine brown rice and nuts in a large bowl.
  5. In a separate bowl, mix the ground flax or chia seed with water and let it sit for 5 minutes until it forms a gel. Add ketchup, dairy-free ricotta and mix well. When combined, add to rice and nut bowl. Stir in mushrooms and chopped parsley. Mix, taste and adjust black pepper and herbs as desired.
  6. Fill loaf pan with mixture, tapping the sides a few time to release air bubbles. Smooth with a spatula and decorate top if desired (e.g. mushroom slices, bell pepper strips, whole walnuts).
  7. Bake for one hour or until the loaf is firm. Remove and allow to cool for 10 minutes in the pan before removing it. Slice and serve.


After loaf mixture has been prepared (step 5) it can be kept in the refrigerator for up to one day until baking. Cook time will be slightly longer.

Nut loaf can also be prepared using 2 VeganEgg (4 level tablespoons VeganEgg plus 1 cup ice cold water); texture and flavor are improved.