Cheesy Quinoa & Broccoli Casserole (Vegan)

This dish was inspired by one of my very own clients:)

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I heard the word 'casserole' and immediately thought of warming comfort food. I knew I had to create my own version of this! Not to mention broccoli and cheese go famously together which takes this dish to a whole new level. We're obviously not using cheese in this recipe as it's entirely vegan but we are using nutritional yeast which gives it that savoury, cheesy-ness that we're after.

It's vegan, gluten-free, protein-rich & works as an entrée or side dish. It's 100% drool-worthy and you'll want plenty for leftovers for lunch the next day.

This dish is all about the veggies! You're even getting an extra serving in the cashew cheese sauce alone!

Cheesy Quinoa & Broccoli Casserole (Vegan)

serves: 4

2 tbsp olive oil

1/2 red onion, diced

1 clove garlic, minced

2 cups broccoli, florets

2 peppers (orange, yellow or red), diced

1 cup quinoa, dry

sea salt and pepper

Cheese Sauce (Vegan)

1/2 cup raw cashews (soaked 2-4 hours or overnight)

1/2 cup raw almonds (soaked 2-4 hours or overnight)

1 cup carrots, peeled and chopped

3 tbsp nutritional yeast

2 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon

1 clove garlic

1 tbsp olive oil

1 1/4 tsp sea salt

3/4 tsp chilli powder

1/2 tsp onion powder

dash cayenne

1 cup nondairy milk (maybe more), for thinning out

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Prepare a casserole dish and set aside.
  2. Steam carrots until tender.
  3. Make the cheese sauce. First, drain and rinse the nuts. Then, in a blender combine carrots, cashews, almonds, nutritional yeast, lemon, garlic, olive oil, sea salt, chilli powder, onion powder, cayenne and rice milk. Blend on high until fully combined and smooth. You may need to add additional rice milk or water to thin it out as needed. Taste carefully for salt and adjust accordingly.
  4. In a sauce pot combine 1 cup dry quinoa with 1.5 cups water and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook covered for 15 minutes or until all water is absorbed. Season with sea salt and pepper then set aside.
  5. In a large saute pan heat 2 tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Add diced onions and cook for 5 minutes until translucent. Add garlic and sauté for a minute longer.
  6. Add to the pan diced peppers and sauté for 5 minutes. Add broccoli florets and sauté until just tender (you don't want your broccoli mushy). Remove from heat.
  7. In your casserole dish combine quinoa, sautéed veggies and top with cheese sauce (add as much or as little of the sauce as you'd like). Give it a stir until it's well combined. Top with fresh cracked pepper and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.

Enjoy:) - Valerie

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