Green Beans and Lentil Casserole with Homemade Toasted Bread Croutons
I asked my mother the other day, what is the best way to cook green beans? They can be tough and chewy if you try to steam them in the microwave, but can be limp, soggy, and watery if you boil them on the stove. She agreed. We weren’t sure.
How about baked green beans in a vegan casserole? Sounds like a great dinner idea.
Apparently green bean casserole is a thing. I needed to try it, and after testing it out, green beans in a casserole is my favourite way to cook green and yellow beans.
First you blanch the beans in salted boiling water for 5 minutes, then bake them in the casserole for 20-25 minutes in a rich savoury bubbling lentil gravy sauce. The result? Tender, flavourful green beans, really nicely done. Sprinkle them with toasted croutons and almonds before baking, and you get a combo of crunchy, soft, and creamy textures, plus flavours of a holiday meal like Christmas or Thanksgiving. Quite a delight.
Because of the homemade toasted bread croutons, and the rich lentil gravy base, this classic Thanksgiving side dish could be a light main course on a regular night, lots of protein here. But, if you are like us, you probably will crave more carbs, so consider serving it with mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce, or my tomato parsley quinoa salad.
I think you should try making a warm and nicely textured green bean casserole too, the beans will be not too tough, and not too soggy, they will be just right.
Hopefully you choose this whole-foods plant-based green bean casserole recipe to try first. 🙂
FODMAP recipe rating – this is a low FODMAP recipe except for the croutons – use wheat free bread to make low FODMAP croutons.
Green Bean Casserole With Croutons
Instructions and Ingredients
- 24 oz green beans fresh or frozen
- 4 cups Brown Lentil Gravy prepared, see recipe
- 8 slices wheat bread or gluten free bread
- 1 tbsp green onions chopped fresh or chives
- 1 tsp sage chopped, or dried
- 1 tsp thyme leaves chopped, or dried
- 1 tsp rosemary chopped, or dried
- 3 tbsp almond flour or blended or crushed almonds
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp black pepper freshly ground
- Heat the oven to 375 degrees F. Take out a large sized casserole dish, no lid required.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil with a large pinch of salt to season the beans nicely; add the green beans. Cook for about 5 minutes, the beans should still be crisp, they will be cooked more in the oven.
- Prepare a batch of my 10 minute lentil Gorgeous Vegan Gravy.
- Drain and put the green beans into the baking dish, pour the lentil gravy over top and stir to cover the beans.
- Prepare topping: in a small bowl, combine chives, sage, thyme, rosemary, almond flour, pepper, and salt.
- Prepare croutons: Toast whole grain bread, pile on a cutting board, and cut into medium sized squares, with a long bread knife. Bread with seeds or crunchy bits in it adds another lovely texture element if you have any. Use wheat free (low FODMAP) or gluten free bread if desired.
- Top beans with the croutons, and sprinkle the herb mix overtop.
- Bake uncovered, until everything is hot and bubbling, about 20 to 25 minutes.
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