The best part of the Thanksgiving dinner are no doubt the sides. I say ditch the turkey for sure and just pile on all the yummy side dishes, including this vegan green bean casserole.
I’ve been wanting to recreate this dish for a while. I feel like it was always part of my family’s Thanksgiving meal, but it was never one of my favorites. The flavors were ok but I didn’t like the texture. The classic recipe my mom made calls for canned green beans. In my opinion, canned veggies are just not a pleasant experience. They lose so much of their crispness in the canning process.
The recipe for green bean casserole handed down to me by my mom is a southern style shortcut as everything – the sauce, beans and onions – in the recipe comes out of a can. But I prefer fresh, scratch cooking and in this recipe, fresh green beans are steamed, topped with a vegan version of creamy mushroom sauce and crispy baked onions.
It got rave reviews at my Friendsgiving dinner this year. And even non-vegans enjoyed this recipe for vegan green bean casserole!
“Wow! I don’t like green beans or mushrooms, but this combination really works! It’s so good!”Friend at Friendsgiving dinner, November 2019
Don’t be frightened by the long list of ingredients. And while it takes a little longer than opening cans and layering in a casserole dish, it actually is a pretty quick recipe.
In the recipe I use mushroom powder to create a broth. Mushroom powder is made from dried mushrooms that are then ground into a powder. You simply rehydrate them with a a little bit of hot water and the results are lots of mushroom flavor without all the salt in canned mushroom broth.
Mushrooms have umami, so cooking with them adds a wonderful rich and savory flavor to foods. You can use the powder for lots of different things such as adding it to soups and stocks, sautéed dishes and sauces for some extra umami flavor.
Shiitake mushroom powder is easily available to buy online as shown in the shop this post section, but it comes at a bit of a steep price. If you don’t want to make the investment there are two other options. The first is to buy dried shiitake mushrooms and make your own ground powder. The best source for these dried mushrooms will be a local Asian market. The other option is to simply stick with a pre-made mushroom base or broth.
Corn flour and panko
These two ingredients are part of the crust for the onions and they are what contributes to the crunchiness of the onions. Frying the onions really makes them crispy, but since in this recipe they are baked, the panko and corn flour help to form the crunchy coating the onions.
Corn flour is finer than regular cornmeal though you could use a fine grain cornmeal if you can’t find corn flour. The corn flour I used is a product called P.A.N. which is commonly used in Latin American cooking. It is made from ground cooked corn.
The panko is a very coarse breadcrumb commonly used in oriental cooking. It is great to use to add extra crunchiness when breading foods. You may find it in your local grocery store or Asian market. Please check the shop this post section below for more information on what it looks like and to buy it.
Creamy Vegan Green Bean Casserole
Creamy Mushroom Sauce
- 2 T olive oil
- ¼ cup flour
- 1 cup almond milk or other plant-based milk
- 1 T mushroom powder*
- 1 cup hot water
- 2 cups fresh mushrooms chopped
- 1 T fresh thyme minced
- 2 cloves garlic finely minced
- Salt to taste
Fresh Green Beans
- 1 pound fresh green beans trimmed and cut on a bias
- 1 large sweet onion sliced into thin rings
- 2 T flour
- 2 T corn flour
- 2 T panko breadcrumbs
- ¼ tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- In a large bowl mix together flour, corn flour, panko, smoked paprika, salt and pepper. Stir well until all the ingredients are fully combined. Thinly slice onions and place into the bowl with dry ingredients. Use your hands to toss the onions coating all the pieces entirely.
- Layout onions on a well-sprayed baking sheet in a single layer. Place into a 425 degree oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until browned and crunchy. Move and turn onions at five minute intervals so that all the sides of the onion get browned.
Make mushroom sauce
- Dissolve mushroom powder into 1 cup hot water and set aside. Heat olive oil in a medium sauce pan over medium-high heat when hot, add the flour and stir until a well-mixed paste is formed. Add milk and mushroom broth and continue stirring. Add chopped mushrooms and continue to simmer, stirring until sauce thickens.
Steam green beans
- Bring a pot filled with 2-3 inches of water to a boil. Place beans in a steamer basket and place basket over water. Cover with a lid and cook until beans are tender.
- Place the hot steamed green beans In a bowl or casserole dish and top with sauce. Finish off the dish with the crispy onions. Serve immediately.
Did you try out this recipe for vegan green bean casserole? How did you like it? Tell me about in a comment here on the blog or send me a direct message using the chat function in the bottom right corner of your screen. Be sure to tag @cookeatlivelove in your photos so I can see your creations.
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