Vegan Fesenjan

Recipe and images courtesy of Vandana Chauhan 

Vegan Fesenjan is a delicious plant-based version of the famous Persian dish Fesenjan, also known as Fesenjoon.

This hearty stew has a rich walnut-based gravy which has a very unique flavor.

Ingredients notes

  • Soya chunk: It’s a by-product of soybean oil. It’s sold in dried form and is easily available in Indian grocery stores and online too.
  • Vegetable bouillon cube: Instead of bouillon cube, vegetable stock can also be used.
  • Pomegranate molasses: It’s a thick sweet and sour syrup made with pomegranate juice and sugar. This molasses is used in a lot of Middle Eastern recipes.


Steps 1 and 2: Put walnut kernels into a grinding jar and make a fine powder.

Step 3: Put the walnut powder in a cooking pot.

Step 4: Dry roast on low flame for 3-4 minutes or until the walnut powder starts releasing oil. Keep stirring in between.

Step 5: Add water to the roasted walnuts and let it boil.

Step 6: Once the water starts boiling, add vegetable bouillon, pomegranate molasses, salt, pepper, brown sugar, and ground cinnamon.

Step 7: Mix everything and cook covered for about an hour. Keep checking and stirring in between.

Step 8: After about an hour of cooking, the stew will become slightly thicker and get a rich brown color.

Step 9: While the walnut stew was getting cooked, soak the soya chunks in boiling water for 10-15 minutes.

Step 10: Heat oil in a separate cooking pot and add chopped onion.

Step 11: Cook until the onion starts turning brown. Add turmeric powder and saute for a few seconds.

Step 12: Add chopped potatoes and cook for 4-5 minutes. Keep stirring in between.

Step 13: Squeeze out the water from soaked soya chunks and add to the potatoes.

Step 14: Stir fry for 2-3 minutes and then add around ½ a cup of water. Cook for another 3-4 minutes.

Steps 15 and 16: Add cooked walnut stew and mix everything.

Step 17: Cook for 30 minutes. Keep stirring after every 10-15 minutes.

Step 18: Garnish with pomegranate arils and parsley.

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