Since I nailed the foie gras recipe, I thought it would be a breeze to make a vegan version of rillettes. But I was wrong. Achieving a good texture and getting the flavors on point required many more tests than I thought. Anyway, I didn’t give up, and I’m finally delivering the recipe to you folks!
The result is a tender, flavorful pâté that is delicious spread on bread, toast, or crackers. It’s savory, creamy, and slightly crumbly, like real rillettes!
This recipe relies on tofu mixed with pulled jackfruit and cashew butter. Tofu makes the base, jackfruit adds up by bringing a meaty texture, and cashew butter help make the whole pâté creamier and spreadable. It also adds a fattier mouthfeel, just what you want for rillettes!
To make it taste like the real deal, I used a mix of different seasonings. First, we have some shallots that add a subtle sweetness. Then cognac is responsible for that “country-style pâté” flavor. It’s essential in this recipe, so do not omit it. If you don’t have cognac on hand, you can also use Porto.
It took me a few batches to figure out the perfect combination of spices and herbs. It’s a mix of rosemary, thyme, bay leaf, and parsley combined with a French four-spice mix and a pinch of nutmeg. Try to use the exact measurements for the spices and herbs. It’s the mix of these aromatics that makes it taste like rillettes.
Now, back to the recipe, you start by processing all the ingredients together in a food processor, except the jackfruit. Once your mixture is almost smooth and creamy, transfer it to a bowl. Then, you can stir in the chopped and mashed jackfruit. After processing the other ingredients, we add jackfruit to keep its “meaty” texture.
Once this is done, you press it into a small baking dish or glass terrine jar and bake for about 40 minutes. Let cool completely, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before eating.
Let me know in the comments if you try this recipe!
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- 7 ounces firm tofu
- 1/4 cup cashew butter or almond butter
- 3 tbsp cognac
- 2 tbsp melted coconut oil
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- 2 shallots
- 3/4 tsp thyme
- 3/4 tsp rosemary
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp nutritional yeast
- 1/2 + 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/4 + 1/8 tsp four spice
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/8 tsp nutmeg
- 1 20-ounce can young green jackfruit
- Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
- Add the tofu, cashew butter, cognac, melted coconut oil, maple syrup, and shallots to the bowl of a food processor. Process until you get a paste and all ingredients are well-combined, about 10-15 seconds.
- Add thyme, rosemary, bay leaf, chopped parsley, onion powder, nutritional yeast, salt, spices, and black pepper. Process for another 3-5 seconds. Transfer the paste to a large mixing bowl and set aside.
- Drain and rinse the jackfruit. Chop off the hard, core part of the jackfruit and discard it. Cut each piece of jackfruit in half, then mash them using a fork until you get a "pulled pork" kind of texture.
- Add the pulled jackfruit to the tofu mixture bowl. Using a spatula, mix until the jackfruit is well incorporated.
- Transfer the mixture to a small deep baking dish, or glass terrine jars. Press down firmly to pack the mixture. I filled two terrine glass jars.
- Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 40 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 7-10 minutes. Let cool completely before placing it in the refrigerator.
- These rillettes are best served cold or at room temperature. It will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Delicious spread on toast with a glass of red wine on the side! It makes a great appetizer but can also be used in sandwiches, tortillas, etc.
- If you don't have four-spice blend you can make your own. Mix together 1/4 tsp ground white pepper, 1/4 tsp ginger, 1/4 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp nutmeg, and 1/4 tsp ground cloves.
About the Author
Thomas Pagot is the founder, photographer, and recipe developer behind Full of Plants. He created the blog in 2016 as a personal cookbook for vegan recipes. Through years of recipe development, Thomas has successfully grown Full of Plants into a trusted resource for plant-based recipes.