As a child I just loved potato dishes and scalloped potatoes was one of my favorites. This classic dish is actually very easy to make and adapting it to a vegan recipe was not difficult at all. The trick is to put time into the sauce so you get the taste just as you like it before cooking. If you wish, you can do a “quick” version by just adding all of the ingredients together in your casserole dish and baking for 90 minutes covered in foil, stirring every 30 minutes for evenly cooked potatoes. The taste isn’t as scrumptious as the classic version where the sauce is prepared first, but it works and is great for a quick no brainer meal.
You can use the scalloped potatoes in all sorts of ways aside from a standalone dish. You can serve them in burritos with other fillings, as a stuffing for omelets (try the JUST egg or use all egg whites if you still consume eggs to keep the fat down), as a frittata layer (you can find some really good vegan recipes online, or use your JUST egg), as a topping on a Shepherd’s or pot pie, or try what we did here and repurpose them into an enchilada casserole the next day. It even works for replacing the noodles in vegetable lasagnas! We often take our meal leftovers and create new ones the following day to keep the variety in our diets as wide as possible. It really reduces food waste in our home. Lastly, these will store well in the freezer for later use. Just cool the potatoes before cutting into 2X2 inch servings and storing in the freezer. Thaw them over night in your fridge before warming them in the oven for a quick meal.
3 pounds of peeled and thinly sliced Russet potatoes (use spirals for a fun spin on this dish!)
1 large purple onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 cup of unsweetened plain almond milk (look for varieties with added calcium)
2 cups of vegetable broth
1 Tb quinoa flour (or other gluten free flour; quinoa adds a nice deep flavor)
1 Tb cornstarch
1 tsp nutritional yeast (or more depending on desired taste)
1 tsp salt (depends on sodium content of your broth)
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
*Optional additions: to the initial sauce you can add some rosemary, parsley, and dried chives to deepen the flavor. Adding freshly chopped chives to the final dish will add a pop of color and some great but subtle onion flavor.
*For a much creamier sauce, blend 1/3-1/2 cup of soaked cashews along with the other ingredients. This adds quite a bit of fat.
Steps to follow:
- Preheat your oven to 400°F. Spray a 9 X 13 inch casserole dish with high heat cooking oil such as canola. Set aside until ready to assemble.
- First peel and slice or spiral your potatoes. If slicing, slice into 1/8 of an inch thick rounds for a classic cut. Set aside until ready to assemble.
- In a blender or mixing bowl using a hand mixer, blend the almond milk, broth, quinoa flour, cornstarch, nutritional yeast, salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Heat a large skillet or saucepan on medium heat and spray with high heat cooking oil. Add in your chopped onion and cook until translucent, using a steam-fry method with water. The oil should just be to prevent initial sticking. Add in the garlic and cook 3 more minutes.
- Add the cream sauce you blended to your skillet, stirring to combine all ingredients. Cook on medium heat for 1-3 minutes only to combine and deglaze your pan, but not longer.
- Place half of your potatoes into your casserole dish and add half of the creamy onion and garlic sauce to your casserole dish of potatoes, pouring it evenly over your sliced potatoes. Repeat until all the potatoes and sauce are in the dish. Use a serving spoon to coat all potatoes before covering the dish with foil to help the potatoes steam.
- Bake for 60 minutes, stirring every 20-30 minutes to keep all potatoes coated with your sauce. Keep in mind that this sauce is unlikely to thicken until the 45-60 minute mark and it is easy to keep cooking them until all potatoes are softened as cooking times may vary depending on your oven. If the dish begins to dry out a bit, add some more almond milk and broth, in 1/4 cup increments and stir evenly.
- Your dish is done when the sauce is bubbling, thickened, and your potatoes are easily speared with a fork.
- Set aside the dish to cool for 10 minutes before serving. Always check the temperature of food is tolerable on your inner wrist before serving to an infant or toddler as they tend to be sensitive to hot foods and prefer dishes served warm.
This recipe is a fairly plain tasting recipe, highlighting the creaminess of the potatoes. However, you can add a variety of flavorings to this dish to mix it up and never get tired of the dish. Think of adding in roasted red bell peppers or sun dried tomatoes, peas and broccoli also taste great in this dish, as does chopped greens (spinach or kale) and slices of sweet potato.
To repurpose this dish into an enchilada casserole the next day, follow the recipe below:
The (Repurposed) Recipe
1 cup chopped roasted mild or medium green chili (more or less based on your taste and the spice level)
1 small onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups water
1 Tb cornstarch
1 tsp salt
6 cups leftover scalloped potatoes
*Optional: shredded cheese (vegan cheeses have strong flavors, so use sparingly!), vegan chicken (green chili chicken enchiladas is a popular dish here in New Mexico) or vegan been crumbles (again, these have strong flavors, so use sparingly)
Steps to follow:
- Heat a medium sized skillet or saucepan over medium heat and coat with a high heat cooking oil such as canola. Add in onion and sauté for 3-5 minutes using a steam-fry method with water. Add in the garlic. Cook until onions are translucent. Stir frequently.
- While your onions are cooking, mix the water and cornstarch and salt in a cup. Add to the cooked onions, stir until well combined. Cook for 5-10 minutes as sauce thickens. Stir frequently.
- Assemble your enchiladas in a casserole dish by placing a small coating of the liquid chili on the bottom to prevent the potatoes from sticking then layering the potatoes and chili sauce, along with any other fillings you wish to use.
- Bake at 375°F for 45-60 minutes. Sauce should be bubbling and potatoes warmed through.
- Set aside to cool for 10 minutes before serving. Always check the temperature of food is tolerable on your inner wrist before serving to an infant or toddler as they tend to be sensitive to hot foods and prefer dishes served warm.
This meal is an easy one dish meal, but can be served with a side of fire roasted corn and black beans, or pinto beans, or posole (how we spell it in New Mexico, but you can Google “pozole” for vegan recipes) on a cold day! Enchiladas are great eaten with large tortilla chips (just scoop up a mouthful) and topped with sliced avocado and fresh chopped tomatoes which help with the heat from the chili. For young children, you may cut back on the spice level of your chili and serve it on top of some lime flavored rice as well to help, at least until they get used to eating more spicy foods. It is not uncommon for your infants to eat a wide variety and your toddler to become picky, but keep offering a wide variety of foods to keep them used to it and they will likely come around again to accepting new flavors. You can also try making a creamy sauce by blending some soaked cashews in the blender with an avocado, adding a squirt of lime, and a pinch of salt and pepper. This sauce is also great on tacos and burritos.