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Vegan Polenta Casserole

Question for all my fashion friends:

chocolate covered katie

When will Christmas bows come into style?

For our Christmas Eve party, I decided on a recipe that originated from a cookbook. But, par for the course when I try to follow a recipe, my impulsive hands had to do their own thing. This is how Polenta Casserole (nicknamed “Christmas Polenta Casserole” for the party) came into existence.

vegan polenta casserole

Polenta Casserole, with a healthy dose of nutritional yeast.
Above, after sittin’ pretty in the oven for a while. Below, the polenta dinner, pre-baking:

polenta dinner

Christmas Polenta Casserole

  • 2-3 bell peppers, chopped (I used 220g)
  • 4 cups zucchini, sliced (I used 560g)
  • 1 onion, chopped (I used 120g)
  • 2T soy sauce (such as tamari)
  • 4 cups kale (or other greens), chopped (I used 110g)
  • 1 tsp each parsley, dill, onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp oregano and basil
  • 2/3 cup (or more as desired) jarred or homemade pasta sauce
  • 1 cup cornmeal (I used whole-grain polenta)
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast, plus more for the top

1. Sauté the first three ingredients, in sautéing liquid of choice (oil, water, or broth), over high heat for 5 minutes. Then cover and simmer 5 more minutes. Add tamari and cook on low (covered) for 5 more minutes.

2. Add all remaining ingredients (except polenta), as well as 1/2 cup water. Stir and cover again. Cook until veggies are soft. Serve over cooked polenta (made with a little salt), and sprinkle nutritional yeast on top, as desired.

*For a true casserole, put the cooked polenta in an oiled pan and bake at 350 for 25 minutes. Then put the veggies on top, sprinkle with lots of nutritional yeast, and bake again for 35 minutes. But I am lazy and therefore will probably skip all these baking steps next time!

polenta nutritional yeast casserole

Amidst all of the lamb and pork and macaroni, this casserole was definitely the most festive-looking dish at the party. I’d say it was the most-tasty, too… but obviously I’m biased.

chocolate covered katie christmas

5/5 (2)

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Published on December 26, 2010

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  1. Thetreadmilldiaries says

    What great pictures of you, Katie. Looks like you’re having a great Xmas time. At my house, fleece & flannel PJ bottoms are what you HAVE to wear. So comfy. Why would I go with anything else?

  2. Carrie (Moves 'N Munchies) says

    ahahhah you are hilarious— i’m so with you on the bows– they aint just fo’ decoratin’ presents, oh no! and the pants- such a winner! you cannot go wrong with some festive fleeces! casserole looks DELICIOUS.. i wish I could have a bite x100

  3. Anna B says

    First-time commenter – I love your blog! And I’ll definitely be making that casserole, I think I’ll be stocking up on some kale in general. We can always use the calcium!

    My favourite is difficult to pick, but I think the fennel and coconut cream soup. It was the perfect start of our Christmas dinner and the omnis gobbled it up 🙂

  4. Disturbed says

    Hmmm, the best thing I ate this weekend was something of mine that I made. It is like a chocolate/caramel date dipping -though I like to just eat it plain.
    Pretty simple to, just bring about 10-12 dates to boil in some almond milk (or whatever type of milk). Once the dates are really soft just dump them into a blender and whip them up till there is no pieces left. Poor into a container and let set for about a minute. It taste more caramel-y if you put some vanilla extract in it. You can also put a tbsp of peanut butter in it for a little bit of a nutty taste.
    So good-or maybe I am just weird lol.

  5. Kiki says

    Haha, I definitely spent half of yesterday with a Christmas bow on my head too! They should be in style, in my opinion 🙂

    ZOMG LOVE POLENTA. I might try this soon. And the best thing I ate over Christmas was some stuffed portobello mushrooms!

  6. Albizia says

    Everything looks good on you so who cares if it’s into style? I’m lucky mo brother didn’t come up with the idea to post the picture he took of me at the Christmas Eve dinner. A sweatshirt and training pants don’t the perfect holiday look 😀 Fleece pants are waaay better.

    Best thing I ate? That’s a tough one. I ate so many delish things and it’s hard to pick just one. Among my favorites were dried peppers stuffed with beans, my pumpkin dessert and your Thanksgiving stuffing which I cooked for dinner today and the whole family liked it very much.

  7. Brandie says

    I LOVE polenta! I wanbt to make this casserole YAY! Since I am just a single lady, with a Beebits, do you suppose it’d work cut in half though? (Or wil it freeze?) 🙂

    You look adorable as usual, I looove the long long hair and the HOHOHO jammies too *giggle* 🙂

    • Chocolate-Covered Katie says

      Yeah, I bet it would! Especially if you omit the baking steps. (Otherwise, just use a smaller pan to bake it in.) I don’t see why it wouldn’t freeze well, either. I looooove freezing food, because then you can just pull it out for a 5-minute meal :).

  8. VEGirl says

    Best thing I ate was the Christmas desert I created! SOOOOO yummy: warm chunky pear sauce with a rownie (round shaped chocolate brownie) topped with a silken tofu whipped topping, drizzled with a pear rosemary reduction sauce and finished with a sprinkle of cinnamon, all layered in a small blue dessert glass. Wow, thats a mouthful! I’ll blog about it soon :). Although my other #1 top favorite is the salted peanut butter popcorn I made for the Chrsitmas holiday. So yummy paired with a banana, too!


  9. Alexandra says

    That polenta casserole looks amazing – officially on the “to make” list (boy is that list getting long…….). At first I thought that our home made bread rolls were the best thing I ate this weekend, but then I remembered my Mom’s chocolate cream pie. Needless to say, the pie took first place. After all, anything with chocolate always wins. 😉

  10. Emma (Sweet Tooth Runner) says

    Well I’m hardly a fashionista, but I think that you’re successfully bringing back the Christmas bow! Love the pants too! 😀
    Great recipe! This could be the vegan main for me next Christmas! Looks yum 🙂

  11. grocery goddess jen says

    Girl, I think you could bring Christmas bows AND fleece pants into style!

    That casserole looks so good, especially since it’s sugar-free. Best thing I ate all weekend…I made a vegan version of The Pioneer Woman’s cinnamon rolls, which were awesome! However, I’m sick of sweets (for an hour or two).

  12. Averie (LoveVeggiesandYoga) says

    omg that looks SO GOOD Katie!
    It’s vegan, it’s GF (minus the polenta part just talking the veggie casserole), there is no garlic (I dont’ like it, i know im in the minority with that one) and it’s got nooch & tons of veggies in it.

    Normally sweet > savory in my book but this savory gives sweet a run for it’s money 🙂

    • Chocolate-Covered Katie says

      Wha? No garlic? LOL we’d be perfect dinner dates, because I could eat all your garlic :).
      On a different note: you could marry Edward Cullen (of those Twilight books). That would make tween girls everywhere very very jealous!

  13. Little Bookworm says

    Love the sound of that casserole! Best thing I ate this weekend – a tie between stollen and chocolate yule log. 🙂 Looking forward to Christmas recap!

  14. Claire says

    Haha, love the new look, wonder how many odd looks you’d get if you wore the Christmas bow on a run 😛 Polenta Casserole looks great for a windy day (ohh look it’s windy and cold today, humm … ;)).

  15. Frances says

    the best thing i ate this weekend? hm… i ate a lot of what i usually eat, which is usually an awesome salad with fig balsamic vinegar, almond butter bananas, nutritional yeast, raw food bars (like love force bars:….but i have to say, i went to a friend’s house for christmas dinner, and he made an amazing effort to keep over half of the feast vegan- and his dishes were great! vegan cassoulet, tomato soup- plus, i made vegan peanut butter truffles!

  16. Gina says

    Love the Christmas bow! I’m not sure when they’ll come into style but they sure are cute. And fleece PJs are so comfy it doesn’t even matter if they’re stylish or not 🙂

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