This Vegan Caramelized Brussels Sprouts Casserole is an instant classic. It plays on the creamy, crispy, savory perfection of America’s favorite Thanksgiving side dish, but brings a whole lot more to the table with the addition of perfectly caramelized Brussels sprouts and homemade vegan cream of mushroom soup.
I’m gonna go out on a limb here, and guess that everyone’s favorite Thanksgiving side dish is the Green Bean Casserole. I mean, I get it. It’s one of my favorites, too.
What’s not to love? Tender-crisp green beans, decadent cream of mushroom soup, crunchy and salty French Fried Onions. The dish does it all! It feels indulgent, yet kinda healthy.
When coming up with recipes to veganize and feature in my Thanksgiving side dish roundup, I didn’t want to just give everyone the recipes that people would expect to find. I wanted to give people foods that they were sure to love, that felt like the foods they grew up eating, but with a slight twist on the ordinary.
Green Bean Casserole is perfect exactly how it is (aside from the fact that it’s not normally vegan), but what could I do to it to maybe turn things up a bit?
Brussels sprouts are in season this time of year, so what better vegetable to feature in a holiday side dish? The thing about sprouts, though, is that they can be quite divisive. Many people love them, but for most, they’re still the poster-child for disgusting veggies.
Like most vegetables that people hate, it’s not the vegetable that they are repulsed by, but the way in which they were cooked. Sprouts need to be fresh, not frozen or canned, and they are always better when a bit charred or blackened instead of steamed or boiled. If your experience with Brussels sprouts is based on the overcooked canned variety that your mom would force upon you, then you owe it to yourself, and to the world of cruciferous vegetable to give this casserole a shot.
For this recipe, I call for you to saute the sprouts in a bit of oil until they are perfectly caramelized, slightly crispy, and just “al dente” enough for you to go back in for a second taste. Before they get too tender, you’ll bathed in a thick cashew-based Cream of Mushroom Soup base that will erase any memory of the canned variety that you grew up eating.
And speaking of that Easy Vegan Cream of Mushroom Soup Base, what could be better than caramelize mushrooms and onions contributing their delicious fond to a complex and deeply savory cream soup base. If you absolutely refuse to eat Bussels sprouts, then you can still enjoy this tasty side dish with green beans, if you must. The Easy Vegan Cream of Mushroom Soup Base doesn’t care what you put it on, because it knows that you’ll love it any way you serve it.
More Delicious Vegan Holiday Side Dishes:
- Vegan Funeral Potatoes (Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole)
- Vegan Pecan Crusted Sweet Potato Stuffing
- Vegan Wild Rice and Butternut Squash Salad
- Vegan “Oyster” Stuffing (Scalloped Mushrooms)
- Caramelized Brussels Sprout Casserole
Vegan Caramelized Brussels Sprouts Casserole
The perfect holiday casserole with all of the nostalgia of a green bean casserole, but made vegan, and with Brussels sprouts.
- 16 to 20 ounces fresh Brussels sprouts, the smaller the better
- 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 batch Easy Vegan Cream of Mushroom Soup Base (recipe below)
- 1 cup French Fried Onions
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Remove any brown, or tough ends from your sprouts. Cut them in half, or into quarters, depending on their size.
- Heat an 8-inch oven-safe skillet to medium heat, and add a drizzle of olive oil. Add the sprouts, and allow the sprouts to cook and to caramelize before turning, and continuing to cook and to caramelize. Allow the sprouts to cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until they are browned throughout, and they are just soft enough to eat.
- Pour on the Cream of Mushroom Soup Base, and stir to coat. Using a spatula, even out the surface of the casserole, and top with french fried onions.
- Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. If they top browns too quickly, top with a lid or foil for the reminder of the cooking time.
- Serve warm.
The sprouts can be cooked in a different pan than you plan on cooking your casserole. This recipe makes enough for an 8×8 pan, but could easily be doubled and baked in a 9×13 pan. In these directions, I cook the sprouts and bake the casserole in an 8” cast iron skillet.
Easy Vegan Cream of Mushroom Soup Base
Quick and easy vegan version of everyone's favorite canned cream of mushrooms soup base.
- 1/2 yellow onion, diced
- 5 ounces button or cremini mushrooms, chopped in to 1/4 inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons vegan butter or olive oil, plus more as needed
- 1 cup raw cashews, soaked for a few hours or overnight
- 2 cups water + 2 teaspoons Mushroom Broth Powder OR 2 cups vegetable broth
- 2 tablespoons tapioca starch
- 1 tablespoon Bragg’s Liquid Aminos or low sodium soy sauce
Add a bit of oil to a medium-sized pot. Chop onions and mushrooms, and add them to the oil. Allow the mushrooms and onions to cook together until quite browned and caramelized, about 8 to 10 minutes.
In a high-speed blender, combine the water or broth, soaked cashews, Liquid Aminos, and tapioca starch. Blend until there are no bits of cashew, and the mixture is very creamy. Set aside.
When the mushrooms and onions are caramelized, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil or vegan butter along with 2 tablespoons of all purpose flour to the pot. Stir to combine, and then continue to cook for another minute. Slowly add the cashew cream, stirring constantly to remove the fond from the bottom of the pot. Continue to stir to prevent the starches from clumping. As soon as the mixture is thickened, turn off the heat and set aside.