Green Bean Casserole

Green Bean Casserole

Ah, the classic Green Bean Casserole.  As a kid, I absolutely hated it.  Once I got older, I learned to appreciate it.  Once I started to cook, I learned to love it.

I think anyone who’s ever made a Thanksgiving meal is familiar with the famous condensed-soup version of this recipe, but making this from scratch tastes so much better!  And, of course, it’s also better for you.  I’ve tried a few different recipes for this over the last couple years, but this year I decided to try my hand at making my own version.

Just to be really fancy schmancy I used shallots instead of onions, and a mixture of chanterelle and cremini mushrooms.  You can use whatever wild mushrooms you can get your hands on, and if all you have is an onion, you can certainly use that too.

The version pictured was a test run, so for the actual recipe I’ve scaled it up to serve more people.  I had a little too much sauce for the amount of beans and mushrooms I used, but I think the proportions below should be better.  I also think that when I make this again, I’ll add half a bouillon cube and melt it into the butter for the sauce, just to add even more flavor.  (I’ve added this to the recipe)  If there are any other changes that I come across when I make it next week, I’ll be sure to add an update.

Green Bean Casserole

1 1/2 pounds green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
4 Tablespoons non-dairy margarine, divided
8 ounces mixed wild mushrooms, chopped
2 huge, or 4 smaller shallots (you could also use a small onion)
1 – 2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 (or enough for 1 cup of water) vegetable bouillon cube
1/4 cup Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
2 Cups non-dairy milk (unsweetened)
salt and pepper to taste
about 1 – 2 cups fried onion pieces (I use Trader Joe’s)

Set up a steamer basket and steam the green beans until they are cooked through. Set aside.

Heat 1 Tablespoon of the margarine over medium heat in a medium sized, deep skillet.  Add the shallots and a pinch of salt, and saute for a few minutes, or until softened.  Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about a minute or so.  Add the mushrooms and stir to coat with the margarine.  Let them cook for a while, stirring only occasionally so that they take on some color.  Once they’ve released their moisture and are caramelized, remove the mixture from the pan, and set it aside.

Melt the remaining 3 Tablespoons margarine and the bouillon cube in the same pan you used for the mushrooms.  Whisk in the flour to make a roux.  Keep whisking the roux until it’s bubbly and smooth.  Slowly whisk in the non-dairy milk, and continue to stir to avoid lumps.  Cook the sauce until it bubbles and thickens.  You don’t have to stir constantly, but be diligent about checking it, because it can burn if you’re not careful.

Once the sauce is thickened, check it for seasoning and add salt and pepper.  Mine was pretty bland at this point, which is why I think the bouillon cube will help.  You’ll need to adjust your seasoning depending on how salty your bouillon is. Alternatively, you could substitute vegetable broth for some of the non-dairy milk.

Add the mushroom mixture and beans to the sauce, and give it a good stir.  Pour the mixture into a 2-quart or 8 x 11 casserole dish, and sprinkle the fried onion pieces over the top. The amount you need will depend on your dish – you basically want a good coating over the whole top.

Since everything is already cooked, you don’t technically need to bake this, but you can certainly keep it warm in the oven.  If your sauce is a little thin, you can thicken it up in the oven as well.  You can make this ahead of time and throw in it in the fridge, and then heat it in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes or so, or until heated through.

UPDATE: I adjusted the amount of mushrooms after making this again – I think 8 oz works better than a pound since the main focus should be the green beans.  The bouillon cube worked great for flavoring the sauce, but again, different brands have different salt contents so be sure to check for seasoning.  I also changed the dish size from 9 x 13 to 8 x 11, which is pictured above.  The adjusted amounts fill the dish perfectly.

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34 Responses to “Green Bean Casserole”

  1. Great twist on an old holiday classic! :)

  2. Yum, green bean casserole is one of the true reasons we have holidays :) Thanks for veganizing, I’m now very, very hungry.

  3. I’ve never had green bean casserole (and I’m surprised, because my mother loved cooking with cream of mushroom soup), but I bet I’d like it!

  4. Margaret Bilos 18. Nov, 2009 at 9:52 pm

    Looks great- we will try it this Thanksgiving and think of you! We have a new vegetarian favorite at our table I’d love to get your opinion on it – it’s Hungarian cold cherry soup- yum!

  5. WOW! That looks gorgeous! I’m sure it is so much better than the processed crap filled version. I’m going to send the link to this recipe to all my family and friends so they can have more vegan friendly dishes on their Thanksgiving table. Thanks!

  6. I can’t say I’ve ever had Green Bean Casserole, but this looks GOOD!

  7. Hi, Margaret! That soup sounds soooo good. I love cherries!

  8. I had just discovered your bakeshop and didn’t realize you had a blog too! This casserole looks delicious!

  9. I love green bean casserole from scratch! That sounds so good with shallots and a mixture of chanterelles & creminis. How long now til Thanksgiving? It seems like it’s taking forever.

  10. I think I’ve had the “traditional” green bean casserole maybe once in my life, but this looks SO delicious and comforting!

  11. You know, I’d never even heard of green bean casserole until last year and when I did hear about it, it certainly didn’t sound appealing. Your casserole, on the other hand, looks delicious…I’m salivating just a little!

  12. Thank you so much for this recipe! My whole family LOVED this dish. I will be making this every Thanksgiving from now on!

  13. Made this green bean casserole for thanksgiving and it turned out great!! The left-overs the next day were wonderful and even my non-vegan family members loved it! thanks for the recipe :)

  14. We make a green bean casserole every year but usually use a vegan mushroom soup we get at Whole Foods. This year I’m going to try your recipe – sounds delicious!

  15. Thanks, Leigh! I hope you like it!

  16. Just made your recipe. Absolutly Delicious!! Thank you for posting!!!

  17. I loved this casserole! very authentic and tasty. I used Garbanzo bean flour instead of half the regular flour and added a sponful of nutritional yeast. Very healthy and yummy!!

  18. We tried the Green Bean Casserole with our Bordeaux last night. A little French bread. A little Piaf. Perfect.

  19. Hi, Vegan Sommelier – sounds like heaven!

  20. Just made this recipe, it is amazing (even to some non vegan eaters)! Definitely going to make this again. Thank you!

  21. So glad you liked it, Jasmine! Thanks for letting me know!

  22. I’ve used this recipe for 2 thanksgivings in a row, and now my omni hubs is requesting it again for xmas. It’s barely more effort than using storebought mushroom soup, and much more flavorful.

  23. I’ve never made green bean casserole. But I gave this recipe a try for Thanksgiving and now I am making it again for Christmas due to demand. Thank you so much!

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