This Vegan Green Bean Casserole is creamy, crunchy & savory! It’s so close to the traditional version, that you’ll have to keep saying, “yep, it’s vegan!” to your holiday guests.
Oh my, the big day is literally around the corner – Are you guys ready? If not, don’t worry, because you still have a week to prepare (Ok, it’s a little less, but no pressure). You still have time to get your list ready and you can get most of your shopping done this weekend. Oh, and remember to pick up the green beans for this “almost traditional”, Vegan Green Bean Casserole.
This dish is so easy to veganize that it’s almost criminal not to!
Your guests won’t even know the difference. They will be astonished that you don’t need dairy to make such a creamy and flavorful holiday dish – Or, that you don’t need a dead turkey to celebrate thankfulness.
My Meatless-Meatloaf w/ Ketchup Glaze is always a big hit for everyone and noBody had to die for it. Sounds like a win-win to me!
You can show them how to enjoy the traditions of Thanksgiving but in a kinder way. I love inviting omni friends to dinner and watch their faces go from skeptical to amazement.
Who can resist tender & crisp veggies nestled in a mushroom cream sauce, and topped with homemade crispy fried onions? I sure can’t!
What’s Vegan Green Bean Casserole made with?
You won’t be needing condensed mushroom soup on your list (a.k.a heart attack in a can) because you’ll be creating your own rich, creamy & savory mushroom sauce.
The magic ingredient is cashews and they will turn this dish into a dreamy delight. It’s so darn quick to make and hella delicious, too!
This vegan green bean casserole is warm, comforting, creamy, satisfying, holiday-y, traditional, bubbly & golden brown.
Those crispy fried onions – they sound fancy and all, but they are really easy to prepare. I know, it’s easier to top this casserole with store-bought fried onions, but why not try to make them yourself this year?
It’s really not that much more work and they are quite tasty. You just soak the sliced onions in a vegan buttermilk for 20 minutes, dip them in seasoned flour and fry until golden & crispy. Not too hard, right?
Now frying onions isn’t the healthiest thing to do, but I think it’s fine on occasion. I use quality cooking oil with a high smoke point, and just lightly fry them.
If you feel more comfortable, you can always bake them in the oven, too. If you do buy the store-bought variety, just make sure to check the label for vegan ingredients.
Ever have green bean casserole with limp beans? Ugh, it’s the worst! For this recipe, I use fresh green beans and quickly blanch them in boiling water for 5 minutes. Then I rinse them off with cold water to stop them from cooking.
The results – a green bean that’s vibrant, slightly tender and crispy. Your vegan green bean casserole will have lots of texture and will be far from mush.
I added thyme, sage and a pinch of nutmeg and together, they enhance this dish with their warm aromatic flavors. I also add a bit of soy sauce for depth. My mouth is watering just thinking about it!
Oh yeah, don’t forget to add wine to that shopping list. Yes, for drinking and for cooking! Now you’ll have an excuse to have that open bottle on the counter 😉 . I added white wine, which really balances out the flavor of this dish. It gives it that extra bite, too.
Can I make Green Bean Casserole ahead of time?
Yes, you can make the casserole the day before up until the baking step. Also, it’s best to make the onions the same day so they’re fresh and crispy. You can slice and soak them overnight in the fridge so they’ll be ready to fry right away.
The casserole will take longer to heat up, so cover it with foil and bake for about 40-45 minutes. Now top with onions and bake for 15-20 minutes more.
Most holiday dishes can be prepped ahead of time to make life easier. This is what I do:
- I make my Apple Cranberry Sauce 1-2 days before and store it in the fridge. It will be chilled, fresh and ready for the table, so forget about that can-shaped jelly blob.
- My Meatless-Meatloaf w/ Ketchup Glaze can be prepped 1-2 days before, too. You can either fully cook it and reheat, or just prepare the mixture and put into your loaf pan and cook the next day.
- I make my Sourdough Bread Stuffing (up until the baking step) the night before and store it in the fridge. The next day I cover it in foil, add more veggie broth if needed, and bake. It never comes out soggy or dry and I feel like the flavors have infused better.
- For my Roasted Sweet Potatoes w/ Pecan Crunch, I will roast the potatoes the day before, let them cool a bit and store them in the fridge. Then I make the crumble and store it in a container on the counter. The next day, I just pop the potatoes in the oven with vegan butter, fresh cranberries and top it off with the crumble. Easy-peasy!
- My Gluten-Free Corn Bread Muffins are made the day before and stored in a container on the counter. They don’t need to be heated up, but you can warm them a bit in the oven if preferred
I want to wish you all a wonderful, warm & safe holiday!
- 1 large onion , sliced (*See note)
- 1 cup soy milk (or any plant-based milk)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice (sub apple cider vinegar)
- 1 cup all-purpose flour (gluten-free if preferred)
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- Oil for frying (I started with a 1/4 cup of coconut oil and added as needed)
- 1/2 cup raw cashews , soaked in filtered water for 2-4 hours (or overnight)
- 1 1/2 pounds green beans , cleaned and trimmed
- 2 tablespoons vegan butter or olive oil
- 1 medium onion , diced
- 3 cloves of garlic , minced
- 10 ounces of mushrooms , chopped or sliced
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground sage
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt , more to taste
- Fresh ground pepper , to taste
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (GF if preferred)
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth (low sodium) *See note
- 1 tablespoon tamari sauce or soy sauce (GF if preferred)
- 1 cup soy milk , unsweetened
Combine the milk and lemon juice in a bowl (this makes a vegan buttermilk). Add the onions and let them sit for 20-30 minutes (or in fridge overnight).
- In a large zip lock, combine the flour, salt and garlic powder. Close bag and shake well.
- Remove the onions from the milk and drain off excess liquid. Place the onions in the bag and gently shake around until all onions are coated.
Place oil in a large pan over medium heat until hot. You can test if it's ready by placing the edge of a prepared onion in the oil. If it sizzles, you are ready to start frying
Fill the pan with the onions, but don't overcrowd them, because this will cause steam between them (you'll likely need to fry them in a few batches). Fry evenly on both sides, until light golden brown (about 1-2 minutes each side). Add more oil as needed. These cook quickly so keep a close eye so they don't burn. When done, place on a large paper towel-lined plate to absorb excess oil.
Preheat oven to 350 °F (177 °C)
In a large pot, bring salted water to a boil and add green beans. Cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and rinse with cool water to stop them from cooking further. Drain well and set aside.
- Blend the soy milk and cashews (discard soaking water) together until very smooth. Set aside.
In a large pan, heat butter over medium heat. Add onions and sauté until translucent, about 3-4 minutes.
Add mushrooms and sauté until their liquid releases and cooks down. Brown them a bit for about 5-6 minutes.
Add minced garlic, salt, pepper and spices. Cook 1 minute.
Turn heat up to med-high and add the white wine. Once it simmers, lower back to medium heat. Cook down liquid about 4-5 minutes.
Add flour to the pan and stir constantly for 30-60 seconds. Now slowly add the vegetable broth while constantly stirring. Stir in soy sauce. Let it simmer and thicken for 6-8 minutes.
Turn heat to low and add the soy milk and cashew mixture. Stir constantly to prevent burning. Cook for 1-2 minutes. Taste for seasoning and add as needed.
Add green beans into the pan and fold to combine. Add green bean mixture into a lightly greased casserole dish. Cover with fried onions and place in the oven. Bake uncovered for 20-30 minutes until heated throughout. Enjoy!
* Prep time doesn't include soaking time for onions or cashews.
*I like to have extra onions for the table, so I use two large onions. I double the recipe above. They are a big hit every year.
If you make this recipe, I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below and let me know what you think. It would really make my day. You can also follow me on Instagram and share your creation with me, Just tag me @veganhuggs and hashtag #veganhuggs.