Vegan Lobster Roll

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Heart of palm and smashed chickpeas take the place meat in these vegan lobster rolls. Super easy to make and perfect for summer lunches!

I’ve never had a conventional lobster roll — I stopped eating meat pretty young. In fact, I’d never even heart of a lobster roll until recently! I grew up in Pennsylvania and apparently lobster rolls are more of a New England thing.

But I didn’t let any of that stop me from making a vegan lobster roll! Lobster, from what I know, has a mild flavor and flaky texture. A mix of heart of palm and chickpeas seemed like the perfect stand-in. And while I honestly can’t tell you how these stack up to non-vegan lobster rolls, I can promise that they’re delicious!

What You’ll Need

  • Heart of palm. You can usually find this in cans or jars, either near where canned vegetables or olives and pickles are sold at the supermarket.
  • Chickpeas. We’re using canned or precooked chickpeas.
  • Celery.
  • Vegan mayonnaise. Look for brands like Vegenaise, Just Mayo, or Hellman’s vegan.
  • Lemon juice.
  • Fresh chives.
  • Fresh dill.
  • Old bay seasoning. Look for this in the spice aisle of your supermarket.
  • Paprika.
  • Salt & pepper.
  • Hot dog buns. Traditional lobster rolls are made with split top hot dog buns, but finding vegan ones is tough (assuming they even exist?). So I went with regular hot dog buns.
  • Vegan butter. This is normally sold near the regular butter or in the natural foods aisle. Look for brands like Earth Balance or Miyoko’s.

How to Make Vegan Lobster Rolls

The following is a summary of how to make this dish. Scroll all the way to the bottom of the post if you’d like to skip to the full recipe!

  • Roughly chop your hearts of palm — think ¼ to ½ inch chunks. Roughly mash the chickpeas and add them to a bowl with the hearts of palm. Add everything else but the hot dog buns and butter. Mix it up, taste-test, and adjust the seasonings as needed!
  • Melt your vegan butter and heat up a grill pan or nonstick skillet on the stove. Brush the butter all over the outsides of your hot dog buns, then briefly grill them in the pan, turning them every few minutes so you get crisping on all sides.
  • Stuff your heart of palm mixture into the buns. You can top them with an extra sprinkle of paprika and chives if you’d like!

Leftovers & Storage

Leftover vegan lobster roll filling will keep in a sealed container in the fridge for about 4 days.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can these vegan lobster rolls be made gluten-free?

Sure! If you can get ahold of vegan gluten-free hot dog rolls, use them. If you can’t find vegan gluten-free rolls, substitute another type of gluten-free roll, or even bread — the filling will make delicious sandwiches even if they’re not technically rolls.

Is there a substitute for heart of palm?

I haven’t tried making this recipe with any substitutions, but I suspect artichoke hearts or young green jackfruit might work.

More Cool Vegan Sandwich Recipes

  • Vegan Chicken Salad Sandwiches
  • Vegan Tuna Salad Sandwiches
  • Smashed Chickpea Salad Sandwiches
  • Vegan Egg Salad
  • Curried Tofu Salad Wraps

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Vegan Lobster Roll

Heart of palm and smashed chickpeas take the place meat in these vegan lobster rolls. Super easy to make and perfect for summer lunches!

CourseSandwich CuisineAmerican Prep Time 10 minutes Cook Time 8 minutes Total Time 18 minutes Servings 4 Calories 332 kcal Author Alissa Saenz


  • 1cupcooked or canned chickpeas,drained and rinsed
  • 1(14 ounce or 400 gram) can or jarheart of palm,roughly chopped (¼ to ½ inch chunks)
  • 1medium celery stalk,diced
  • 2tablespoonsvegan mayonnaise
  • 1tablespoonlemon juice
  • 2tablespoonschopped fresh chives
  • 1tablespoonchopped fresh dill
  • 1teaspoonOld Bay seasoning
  • ½teaspoonsweet paprika,plus more for topping
  • Salt & pepper,to taste
  • 4hot dog rolls
  • 2tablespoonsvegan butter,melted

US Customary – Metric


  1. Place the chickpeas into a large mixing bowl and roughly mash them with a fork or potato masher. You want about half of them to be smashed.

  2. Add the heart of palm, celery, mayonnaise, lemon juice, chives, dill, Old Bay, and paprika. Gently stir the mixture until the ingredients are evenly distributed.

  3. Taste-test the mixture and season it with salt and pepper to taste. Adjust any other seasonings to your taste.

  4. Place a medium skillet or grill pan on the stove over medium heat.

  5. Brush the sides of one of the hot dog rolls with butter, covering the entire outer surface with a thin coating, then place the roll in the skillet. Repeat and add another roll (or as many as you can fit in a batch).

  6. Toast the hot dog rolls in batches, toasting each roll for 1 to 2 minutes per side.

  7. Stuff the filling into the buns and serve.

Nutrition FactsVegan Lobster RollAmount Per Serving (1 lobster roll)Calories 332Calories from Fat 123% Daily Value*Fat 13.7g21%Saturated Fat 2.9g15%Sodium 1011mg42%Potassium 293mg8%Carbohydrates 43.8g15%Fiber 5.7g23%Sugar 4.2g5%Protein 10.1g20%Calcium 81mg8%Iron 4mg22%* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.« Spicy Jackfruit TacosVegan Coconut Cake »

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This recipe is fairly tasty but not much like lobster. Lobster is a bit rubbery in chunks, and definitely NOT flaky. The seasoning is good tho.


  • I did something like this, but I marinated the hearts of palm for a really really long time (4 days?!) in layers of seaweed (sushi style) in the fridge, which finally gave it that fishy taste. The Old Bay seasoning and dill are a really good touch. Add capers?

    It’s difficult to imagine a plant texture that you could turn into the rubberyness of lobster. possibly jackfruit, but it’s too stringy and citrusy


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    Hi, I’m Alissa! I’m a former attorney turned professional food blogger. I love creating vegan recipes with bold flavors!

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