Cheezy Potato Casserole w/ vegan Cream of Celery Soup
It’s not easy being green (but I guess it is easier than being Kermit.) But if you’re vegan, and trying to save the planet, well, you just have to soup-it-up when you want to make some of your favorite Thanksgiving dishes! So here comes a vegan version of the classic Cheesy Potato Casserole, including an awesome recipe for vegan cream of celery soup!
If you aren’t vegan or American, you might not know what I’m talking about, haha, but I think most of us grew up watching Sesame Street and eating cheesy potato casserole on Thanksgiving. Not that the two have anything to do with each other – that’s just the way it ended up in my, “special” mind. There are of course quite a few different versions of this classic recipe, but all of them call for a “cream of something” soup. I shared my vegan cream of mushroom soup recipe in the previous post. And cream of chick… Nah, not going there.
So this time around we’re going to make some cream of celery soup! Now before you even go “Ewww, celery?!?!”, let me tell you, I nevvvver used to like celery. So two things you should know about this recipe: 1. This soup is incredible, really. 2. Most people who dislike celery do so due to its texture, and that’s not a factor here. 3. (Yes, OK, there are three things.) Believe it or not this soup really doesn’t have a strong celery flavor. 4. (I know, I know. Sorry.) Even if you don’t want to eat it on it’s own, this is by far the tastiest “cream of _____” soup to use for this specific recipe.
After you make the soup, the rest of this recipe is a snap. But just to be sure, let’s take a quick look at some of the ingredients. The main ingredient is frozen, hash brown potatoes. If you live outside the US, you might have a hard time finding these. In past years, I found frozen hash browns at Lidl, a low-price German-owned supermarket. This year, I used Swedish “rösti” potatoes, which have a little onion in them, and I gotta tell you that I am loving them in this casserole! So head to the frozen spuds section of your local supermarket and be adventurous!
Then we have some sour cream/creme fraiche and also cheddar-style vegan cheese. Hopefully you can find ready-made commercial versions of these where you live! Sometimes I take for granted, the amazing variety and abundance of vegan products that are available to me here in Stockholm. But I did a little googling, and brands like Follow Your Heart, Tofutti, and Daiya have your back and are just a handful of the companies that make these kinds of products, so I’m sure you’ll find something that works for you!
A lot of these classic, old recipes, first appeared on the packaging and labels of products from companies like Kellogg’s, Kraft, Pillsbury etc. The old version of the recipe I have for this says to use Ritz crackers – but of course any salty cracker is going to work just fine!
Ten days and counting! Hopefully I’ll have time to share another recipe or two to help you celebrate your vegan Thanksgiving, but for now, you can go get started on your cream of celery soup and this fantastically yummy Cheezy Potato Casserole!
Vegan cream of celery soup
- 2½ cups (6 dl) – water
- 4 celery stalks – finely chopped
- 4-6 oz (ca 100-150 g) – celeriac, peeled and chopped
- 2 medium potatoes, cubed
- ½ leek, chopped
- 2 Tbsp (30 ml) - vegan margarine
- ½ onion, diced
- 4 oz (ca 112 g) – mushrooms, diced
- 1 clove – garlic
- 2 Tbsps (30 ml) – olive oil
- 2 Tbsps (30 ml) – flour
- 2 cups (4.8 dl) – nut milk
- 1 tsp (5 ml) – vegetable bouillon powder
- 1½ tsps. (7.5 ml) – oregano
- salt and black pepper to taste Cheezy potato casserole
- 2 lbs (ca 1 kg) – frozen hash browns or similar, partially thawed and cubed
- 16 oz (454 g) – plant-based crème fraiche or sour cream
- 10 oz (180 g) – cream of celery soup
- 1 cup (2.4 dl) – vegan cheddar-style cheese, shredded
- ½ cup (1.2 dl) – vegan margarine, melted
- ½ cup (1.2 dl) – salty crackers, crushed
- Salt and pepper to taste
InstructionsVegan cream of celery soup
- Boil water in large pot.
- Add the first 4 ingredients, lower the heat, and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft.
- Meanwhile, heat the margarine in a frying pan, add onions and sauté on their own for a few minutes. Then add the mushrooms and garlic, and heat for 5 more minutes.
- Remove from heat and collect the remaining water by pouring the mixture through a strainer.
- Pour a little olive oil onto the onions, mushrooms and garlic. Add half the flour and stir. Repeat.
- Now pour the celery water onto the mushrooms and whisk until smooth.
- Pour in the celery mix on top and stir.
- Slowly add the plant milk while stirring. Stop when you are happy with the consistency. (You might want up to ½ cup more/less).
- Add the vegetable bullion powder, oregano and salt/ pepper.
- Simmer for 15 minutes.
- Remove ca 10 oz (about 1/3 of the soup) for Cheezy Potatoes and blend smooth with wand mixer.
- This should leave you with, roughly, 2 x 10 oz portions, with potato chunks, for eating now. Cheezy potatoes
- Combined the potatoes, sour cream, celery soup, half of the butter, and the salt and pepper into a casserole dish.
- Then top with the crushed crackers and drizzle the rest of the butter on top.
- Bake 40 mins at 350 F (175 C).