vegan broccoli casserole

This week brought another stellar selection of produce in the Relay Foods Bounty Share. While I appreciate all produce equally for the unique nutritional profile they bring, there’s something uniquely special about each bounty. This week we enjoyed beautiful blueberries and perfectly ripe strawberries. I typically stick to frozen strawberries since grocery store selections leave me disappointed but clearly fresh from the vine, these strawberries were sweet, juicy, and behold, a deep red all the way through!

Our Bounty Share had all of our family favorites. While I’m smitten over local fruit, the share included my husband’s favorite asparagus, and our son’s favorite vegetable: broccoli. As much as Julian tolerates more vegetables than I ever did as a kid, he gets downright excited over broccoli. As the weather warms up, our meals become a little more simple. While we are typically happy steaming or roasting vegetables for a side dish, this time of year, our side dishes are often the meal. I wanted to focus on broccoli for the Bounty Share recipe and wanted to make it into something hearty but still not heavy and went with a Broccoli and Bulgur Casserole.

vegan broccoli casserole broccoli casserole (4)

Although a side dish, we served our casserole with a salad for a complete meal. The casserole relies on one of my favorite whole grains, bulgur. It’s high in fiber and protein, but doesn’t have a chewy texture like other fiber-rich whole grains – but you can substitute your favorite cooked grain. I then made a flavorful sauce to pour over the bulgur and broccoli mixture made from a sweet potato base, another nutrient dense vegetable. It’s more affordable and lower in fat than cashew-based cheese sauces, rounding out the casserole for a well balanced dish. The sauce isn’t quite a “cheese” sauce, but with hints of a cheesy-flavor, it’s rich and flavorful, reminiscent of the canned cream soups common in casseroles. You can always increase the protein by adding in a seitan-meat, tempeh bacon, or beans either in or on the side. I find I’m mostly mixing in a package of Beyond Meat Grilled Chick’n Strips. 

You can find the complete recipe for the Creamy Broccoli and Bulgur Casserole below or over on Relay Foods here where you can then instantly add all of the ingredients needed right to your cart for local pickup or delivery.

{this post was sponsored by Relay Foods but all opinions here are my own and I’d never promote any product or business I do not stand behind.} 

CREAMY BROCCOLI AND BULGUR CASSEROLE
Serves 6
Casseroles are hearty and comforting but often leave you feeling heavy. Try this lighter version with protein and fiber rich whole grain bulgar, broccoli, and a creamy, cheesy tasting sweet potato sauce.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
Ingredients
  1. 1 small sweet potato (about 3/4 lb), peeled and cut into bite sized pieces
  2. 2 1/2 cups water, 1 1/2 cups for sauce and 2 cups for the bulger
  3. 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  4. 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  5. 2 tsp salt
  6. 1 tsp onion powder
  7. 3/4 tsp tamari
  8. 1 cup dry bulgur
  9. 1 Tbsp olive oil
  10. 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  11. 1 large head (about 4 cups) of broccoli, cut into florets
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. In a steamer basket, steam the potatoes until fork-tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from basket and mash with a fork.
  3. To a blender, add 1 cup mashed potato, water, yeast, lemon juice, salt, onion powder, and tamari. Blend until smooth. Set aside.
  4. In a small saucepan over high heat, bring the bulgur and remaining water to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to low for 10-15 minutes, until the bulgur is tender and the liquid has been absorbed. Fluff with a fork and set aside.
  5. While the bulgur is cooking, in a large oven-safe pan, add oil and onion. Sauté for about 5 minutes, until translucent. Add in the broccoli and a splash of water and cover, allow to steam for about 10 minutes, or until the broccoli is fork-tender.
  6. Add in the cooked bulgur and sauce to the pan. Stir well to combine, and smooth the top out with a spoon.
  7. Bake for 30 minutes, or until bubbly and lightly browning on top. Serve immediately and enjoy!
Notes
  1. Mix in beans, tempeh, or Beyond Meat Grilled Chick'n Strips for a complete meal.
Cara Schrock http://caraschrock.com/