Since convincing my family to transition to a plant-based diet, I often get requests for food my family loved before being vegan. For instance, my husband asked if I knew how to make a vegan lobster roll. Without hesitation, I said, "sure, I can do that." My mom, who lives in Michigan, uses a vegan meal service that delivers to her house called Aratham, and every Friday, I order her meals online. Last week, she ordered a vegan lobster roll. Although I didn't have a recipe, I used Aratham's idea to make my vegan lobster roll recipe.
Often, my ideas for recipes come from vegan restaurants I frequent or veganizing a recipe my mom or grandma used to make. Because I live in Arizona and my mom is less than computer literate, I asked her about the lobster roll she ordered and to tell me what she liked about it. Then, using my Chickpea Tuna Salad Recipe as a base, I created my version of a lobster roll, which is now a "keeper," according to my husband.
But, first, I needed to make vegan lobster. Unfortunately, vegan lobster doesn't exist, but the heart of palm, which is similar in texture and color, works perfectly as a vegan lobster version.
What is heart of palm? Where does heart of palm come from?
Heart of palm is a white vegetable obtained from the center of specific palm tree varieties. It's prized for its culinary versatility.
When harvested, young trees are felled and debarked to expose their edible, white inner core, then cut into lengths for further processing.
While most commonly added to salads, the heart of palm can also be eaten on its own or used as a vegan meat replacement. It has a slight crunch similar to white asparagus, though its flavor is comparable to artichoke hearts.
This unique veggie also packs several beneficial minerals and antioxidants.
Heart of palm nutrition
A 3.5-ounce (100-gram) raw serving contains:
- Calories: 36
- Protein: 4 grams
- Fat: less than 1 gram
- Carbs: 4 grams
- Fiber: 4 grams
- Potassium: 38% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Phosphorus: 20% of the DV
- Copper: 70% of the DV
- Zinc: 36% of the DV
Due to its reasonably low carb and fat levels, this veggie has very few calories. Additionally, it offers small amounts of several other nutrients, including iron, calcium, magnesium, and folate.
Lobster Roll Ingredients
Because I wanted my vegan lobster roll to look like a lobster roll, I combined ingredients commonly used in lobster roll recipes. I veganized those ingredients for a healthier vegan sandwich.
- Red bell pepper
- Green onion
- Seaweed or Dulse
- Heart of palm
- Whole-grain Hoagie bun or vegan bread of choice
- Arugula or greens of choice
Other suggested toppings
- Sliced tomatoes
- Green pepper
The key to making a lobster salad is a combination of textures to make it delicious and inviting.
To begin, cut the heart of palm into bite-sized pieces and set them aside. Then, pulse the chickpeas in a food processor. Avoid over-pulsing the chickpeas; instead, grind while leaving some whole or cut in halves, as shown below.
Next, combine the ingredients in a large bowl.
Also, I suggest making the lobster roll salad in advance to cool in the refrigerator, which helps enhance the flavors.
Lobster Roll Sauce
The lobster sauce always makes or breaks the vegan lobster roll recipe. I love sauce, and sometimes, it takes some trial and error to get it right.
- Vegan Cashew Mayo or vegan mayo of choice (for a nut-free version, replace the cashews in the recipe with white beans of silken tofu)
- Lemon juice
- Apple cider vinegar
- Dijon mustard
- Smoked paprika
- Old bay seasoning, or creole seasoning of choice
Once combined, whisk the ingredients, pour over the vegan lobster roll recipe ingredients, and stir to coat. Refrigerate for about an hour before serving.
How to make lobster rolls
To make a vegan lobster roll, broil or toast your Hoagie roll. To find a whole-grain bun or bread without oil, read the ingredients. Then, shop in the fresh bakery section rather than the bread aisle.
Often, fresh bread contains only flour, yeast, salt, and water.
Is imitation crab vegan?
- No! Stay clear of Imitation crab. It is made from surimi, which means "ground meat," which isn't vegan or even close!
What does heart of palm taste like?
- Heart of palm's flavor and texture are similar to white asparagus, artichoke heart, and water chestnuts. However, its creamy, tender flesh is similar to lobster in texture and color.
Where to buy fresh heart of palm?
- Although fresh heart of palm is often challenging to come by, some Asian markets carry it fresh, and once I found heart of palm at Whole Foods Market in the produce section, however, the canned heart of palm in water or brine is common, or it is packed in glass jars.
I served my lobster roll with Mediterranean Salad with Chickpeas and fresh fruit salad. Or, here is a list of other great ideas to accompany this lobster roll recipe.
- Coleslaw with Apples
- Salad with Corn
- Steamed vegetables like green beans, asparagus, or broccoli
- Cucumber Tomato Salad
- Cashew Mac and Cheese
- Healthy Mac and Cheese
- Charred Corn Salad
- Vegan Clam Chowder Oh My!
- Potato Salad
- Scalloped Potatoes
Vegan Lobster Roll
Vegan Lobster Salad
- 1 15 ounces can chickpea rinsed, drained, and lightly food processed
- 14 ounces can or jar of heart of palm in brine or water drained and cut into bite-sized pieces
- ½ cup diced green onions
- ½ cup diced red bell peppers
- ¾ cup diced celery
- 5 cups arugula or greens of choice
- 8 small whole-grain Hoagie rolls or bed of choice
- ½ cup vegan cashew mayo] or vegan mayo of choice
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 Tablespoons dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1 clove garlic. minced
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
Vegan Lobster Salad
- Drain and rinse chickpeas.
- Place chickpeas in a food processor with a large blade and pulse until crushed. Do not over-pulse. The chickpeas should be broken, not mashed.
- Drain the heart of palm and cut it into bite pieces.
- Dice celery, red bell pepper, and green onions
- Crumble the sheet of seaweed or use a small food processor to crumble, or use 1 Tablespoon crushed dulse.
- Place all the ingredients in a large bowl.
- Combine ingredients in a small bowl and whisk.
- Pour sauce over the lobster salad and stir to combine
- Cover the salad and refrigerate for about an hour.
- Assembling the lobster roll
- Turn on the broil feature on the oven at a low temperature
- Place buns on a baking sheet, open to toast the inside of the bun.
- Broil for 5 minutes.
- Remove from oven.
- Add a generous portion of arugula or green choice
- Add the lobster salad to the center of the bun.
- Cut in half and enjoy
Hi! My name is Kathy, I am a retired high school English teacher & vegan enthusiast and blogger. My entire blog is fully plant-based vegan. I truly believe what we eat & how we live determines our health & the preservation of our planet! 🙂