Vegetarian Sausage Casserole: A Hearty Meatless Meal Perfect for Any Night
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Who says you need meat to make a mouthwatering casserole? Not me! I’m here to show you how to whip up a Vegetarian Sausage Casserole that will blow your mind. This dish is warm, cozy, and bursting with flavor.
It’s also super easy to make, with just a few simple ingredients and a few minutes of prep time. Plus, this casserole isn’t just about flavor, it’s a nod to sustainability, harnessing high-protein, low-carbon-footprint ingredients. Trust me, once you’ve tasted this meat-free marvel, you’ll see casseroles in a whole new, greener light!
History Of The Dish
The Vegetarian Sausage Casserole traces its roots to the hearty French cassoulet, historically brimming with meaty sausages, white beans, and a tangy tomato sauce. Today’s vegetarian rendition swaps the meat with plant-based sausages and enriches the ensemble with colorful veggies like sweet potato and red pepper.
Accentuated by the smoky note of paprika, a dash of Worcestershire sauce, and the earthy aroma of thyme, this casserole emerges as a warm, hearty stew perfect for chilly nights. Whether simmered on the hob or baked in the oven, paired with creamy mashed potatoes or crusty bread, this casserole is a testament to the evolution of our culinary habits, embodying simplicity, flexibility, and a nod to our commitment to healthier, sustainable choices.
What Can You Serve With Vegetarian Sausage Casserole
Vegetarian sausage casserole is a versatile dish that can be paired with different side dishes to suit your preferences. If you’re looking for something starchy, you can serve your casserole with some mashed potatoes, rice, quinoa, or couscous. You can also make some cornbread, biscuits, or rolls to go with it.
For something crunchy, you can serve your casserole with some roasted vegetables, such as carrots, parsnips, Brussels sprouts, or cauliflower. You can also make some crispy potato wedges, fries, or chips to go with it.
If you’re craving something light, you can serve your casserole with steamed vegetables, such as green beans, asparagus, zucchini, or squash. You can also make some fruit salad, yogurt, or pudding to go with it. Whatever you choose, It’s a dish that will please everyone.
- Olive Oil – used for sautéing, it lends a subtle fruity note to the dish.
- Yellow Onion – chopped, it adds a hint of sweetness and depth to the casserole.
- Carrot – this root vegetable brings a slight sweetness and crunch.
- Vegetarian or Vegan Sausages – cooked and chunked, they provide the hearty, meaty texture without the meat.
- Roasted Garlic Paste – infuses the dish with a deep, mellow garlic flavor.
- Petite Diced Tomatoes – add tanginess and a burst of freshness.
- Vegetable Broth – the base of the casserole, it provides a rich, savory backdrop.
- Worcestershire Sauce – adds a unique umami, slightly tangy flavor.
- Smoked Paprika – imparts a warm, smoky note.
- Brown Sugar – a touch of sweetness to balance the flavors.
- Thyme & Oregano – these herbs add an earthy, aromatic dimension.
- Salt & Pepper – essential seasonings to bring out the flavors.
- Bay Leaf – infuses the dish with a subtle, herbal flavor.
- Cannellini Beans – rinsed and drained, they add a creamy texture and protein punch.
- Mashed Potatoes – a comforting side, perfect for serving.
- Parsley – used for garnish, it adds a pop of color and fresh flavor.
This vegetarian sausage casserole is loaded with flavor and texture, and it’s easy to make with simple ingredients. Here’s how to prepare it:
First, chop an onion and a carrot and heat some olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Cook the onion and carrot until they are soft and tender, stirring occasionally.
Next, add some garlic paste and vegetarian Worcestershire sauce to the pot and cook for another minute, stirring well. This will add some depth and umami to the casserole.
Then, pour in some vegetable broth and canned diced tomatoes, and season with smoked paprika, brown sugar, thyme, oregano, salt and pepper. Smoked paprika will give the casserole a nice smoky flavor, while brown sugar will balance out the acidity of the tomatoes. Thyme and oregano will add some herbal notes to the dish.
Place a bay leaf on top of the mixture and bring it to a simmer. Then cover the pot with a lid and let it cook for 20 minutes. This will allow the flavors to meld and the sauce to thicken slightly.
After 20 minutes, stir in some canned white beans and cooked vegetarian sausages. You can use any kind of vegetarian sausages you like, such as soy-based, seitan-based or mushroom-based. Cook the casserole uncovered for another 10 to 15 minutes, until the sausages are heated through and the sauce is bubbly.
Finally, serve your vegetarian sausage casserole with some creamy mashed potatoes and garnish with some chopped parsley for a pop of color and freshness. Enjoy your warm and hearty meal!
How To Switch This Up A Bit
For a delightful twist on the classic Vegetarian Sausage Casserole, consider varying your beans – kidney, black, or even chickpeas can add a protein-packed punch. Introduce an array of vegetables like mushrooms, celery, bell peppers, or corn for added texture and flavor.
Switch out mashed potatoes for rice, quinoa, couscous or noodles, adding a unique spin to your starch accompaniment. For the final pièce de résistance, consider a blanket of cheese – cheddar, mozzarella, or a vegan alternative – baked to perfection for a tantalizing cheesy crust.
Here are some frequently asked questions about vegetarian sausage casserole and their answers:
How long can I keep vegetarian sausage casserole in the fridge?
You can store vegetarian sausage casserole in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Make sure to reheat it thoroughly before serving.
Can I freeze vegetarian sausage casserole?
Yes, you can freeze vegetarian sausage casserole for up to 3 months. You can either freeze it in individual portions or in a large freezer-safe container. To reheat it, you can either thaw it overnight in the fridge and then bake it in the oven, or microwave it from frozen until piping hot.
What can I do with leftover vegetarian sausage casserole?
There are many ways to use up leftover vegetarian sausage casserole and make it into a new meal. Here are some ideas:
- You can make a pie by topping the casserole with some puff pastry or pie crust and baking it until golden and crisp.
- Make some soup by adding vegetable broth and blending the casserole until smooth and creamy.
- You may also make a sandwich by spreading some casserole on some bread and adding some cheese and lettuce.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 4 - 6 vegetarian or vegan sausages, cooked and sliced into chunks
- 2 tbsp roasted garlic paste
- 1 can petite diced tomatoes
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1 tsp oregano
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 can cannellini beans, rinsed & drained
- mashed potatoes, prepared, for serving
- parsley for garnish
In a large pot over medium heat cook the onion and carrot in olive oil until soft.
Stir in garlic paste and Worcestershire and cook for 1 minute.
Add in vegetable broth, tomatoes, smoked paprika, brown sugar, thyme, oregano, salt & pepper and stir to combine.
Place bay leaf on top, bring to a simmer, then place a lid on the pot and cook for 20 minutes.
Stir in the beans and cooked sausage and cook uncovered for 10-15 minutes.
Plate with mashed potatoes and garnish with parsley
Serve & enjoy!
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 234Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 7mgSodium: 1177mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 5gSugar: 5gProtein: 8g