This Vegetarian Cassoulet Recipe is one of the best vegetarian comfort food recipes ever! It's a vegetarian twist on a classic dish, packed with hearty and delicious flavors. And it's dairy free, making it vegan as well.
I love how rich and creamy cannellini beans taste -- even on their own. They one of the keys to the comfort in this rich and delicious vegetarian dish.
Once you learn how to cook the beans, you'll be making all kinds of delicious recipes with them. Cannellini Bean-Tuna Salad Recipe with Lemon-Caper Balsamic Vinaigrette is one of my favorites.
And here in this recipe, they're starring in one of the most amazing vegetarian comfort foods: Vegetarian Cassoulet Recipe!
What is Cassoulet?
- Cassoulet is a rich, slow-cooked bean stew or casserole originating in the south of France.
- Traditionally it includes white kidney beans, pork sausages, pork, goose, duck confit and sometimes mutton. (Duck confit is duck cooked in its own fat.)
Not exactly what you're going for if you're a vegetarian. Clearly!
I'm not always sure people realize that there are just as many wonderful vegetarian comfort food recipes, as there are ones with meat.
Other than the beans and slow-cooking method, there's nothing traditional about this Cassoulet recipe. It's vegetarian, after all!
In fact, the title, "Vegetarian Cassoulet" is pretty much an oxymoron.
What vegetables are in Vegetarian Cassoulet?
- artichoke hearts
- and Cannellini beans (a legume) and tomatoes (a fruit)
It's these healthy, tasty ingredients plus sherry, stock, and herbs, that make this such a satisfying, comforting, and incredibly tasty dish.
Frequently Asked Questions About this Vegetarian Cassoulet
Q: Can I use raw garlic instead of roasted garlic?
A: Yes, but if you do, use half of the amount as it will be stronger.
Q: Can I use spinach instead of kale?
A: Yes. If you use spinach, use about 1 ½ times the amount you would kale -- it's tends to shrink down a lot more. You can also use swiss chard or collard greens.
Q: Do I have to cook the Cannellini beans myself, or can I used canned?
A: Absolutely you can use canned. If you do, be sure to drain them well.
Q: Do I need to use the full amount of olive oil.
A: Yes, if you want the results we're going for, which is for the consistency to mimic that of a classic cassoulet as closely as possible, (considering it's vegetarian). 😉 The oil and the long cooking time are what make it so rich and creamy, and utterly delicious.
Q: Can I use gluten-free breadcrumbs instead of Panko, to keep the dish gluten-free?
Q: Do the vegetables become soggy with the long cooking time?
This Vegetarian Cassoulet does take a good amount of time. If you've been following my recipes for a while, you know I love the process as much as the results.
It's the cooking time that allows for the flavors and textures to marry together so perfectly here.
Though please note that the majority of the time is inactive.
What are you doing this weekend, anyway? Cooking the beans? Perhaps discovering one of your favorite vegetarian comfort food recipes? 😉
Enjoy every last bite!
Oh, and if you want a cassoulet with meat, you'll want to try this Chicken Sausage Cassoulet.
Vegetarian Cassoulet Recipe
*You can cook dry beans ahead of time (here's how), or use canned, draining them first.
*Please note that the majority of the cooking time is inactive.
- ¾ cup olive oil
- 2½ cups yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons roasted garlic, roughly chopped
- 2½ cups carrots, peeled and cut into ¼ to ½-inch rounds
- 5 cups packed kale (preferably Lacinato), washed and dried, tough stems removed, roughly chopped
- 1½ cup oil marinated artichoke hearts, drained, roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh oregano, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 1¼ cup canned tomatoes, peeled, chopped
- ½ cup cream sherry
- 2¼ cups vegetable stock
- 3¾ cups cooked Cannellini beans
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Use about 2 tablespoons of the olive oil to coat the bottom of a large (about 3½ quart), heavy-bottomed pot (A Dutch Oven is perfect). Place the pot over medium-high heat and add the onions. Stirring every few minutes or so, cook the onions until they are very tender and are beginning to become brown, about 15 minutes. Add the roasted garlic and stir to blend.
- Add the carrots and cook until they begin to brown, about 5 minutes. Then add the kale and cook until it’s completely wilted, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the artichokes, oregano and thyme, and cook for a couple of minutes, until it’s very aromatic.
- Deglaze the pot with the tomatoes, sherry and stock. Use a flat-bottomed wooden spatula to scrape any stuck bits of food from the bottom of the pot, back into the mixture.
- Preheat the oven to 300°F.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Then uncover the pot, turn the heat to medium and cook to reduce the liquid by about half. This should take about 20 minutes.
- Fold in the beans and season generously to taste with salt and pepper. (Here's How to Season to Taste.)
- Pour the mixture into a 9 x 13 x 2½ inch baking dish, or two 9 inch pie dishes.
- Sprinkle the bread crumbs evenly on top and then drizzle with the remaining olive oil.
- Bake uncovered in the preheated 300°F oven for 1½ hours. Then cover loosely with foil, and bake for another 30 minutes. (If the top isn't as golden as you'd like, you can place it under the broiler for about 30 seconds.)
- Let it rest for at least 15 minutes before serving.
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Tori @ The Shiksa in the Kitchen
This also sounds really delicious! Could I sub spinach for the kale? I know kale is super healthy but it's a little bitter for me...
Thanks so much, Tori! Yes, spinach would be fantastic -- I'd use twice as much since it shrinks more than the kale. 🙂 xo
Do you think this could be freezer-friendly? If so, would you freeze before or after baking?
I think you could freeze this after baking it. Place it in the refrigerator the at least 24 hours before you want to reheat it. Enjoy! 😀
Try as I might I just don't care for Kale. Is spinach an OK substitute?
This Vegetarian dish looks great! I'm loving all of the flavors and that crunch on top!
This dish looks amazing! Vegetarian or meaty this will get gobbled up in my home!!
Yay! Enjoy it!
Looks so delicious and comforting! Perfect for a healthy balanced dinner ♥
Indeed. Hope you try it. 🙂
Love all the ingredients in this recipe, can't wait to make it with some of my fresh herbs and veggies!
Thank you, Noelle! Hope you love it.
What a lovely warming comfort meal. I love how many veggies you have managed to pack in to it too.
Thanks so much, Dannii. 🙂
I'm with you about Cannellini - definitely my favorite bean. (My husband is allergic to chickpeas so hummus, minestrone, you name it, we make with Cannellini instead). Cassoulet is one of my favorite comfort foods. Love the idea of a vegetarian version!
Here's to Cannellini! 😀 Good thing your husband's not allergic to those. Thank you, Marissa, for visiting. Hope you have a lovely (and delicious) weekend. 🙂
Mmmm....Cannellini Beans are also my favourite and I am a recent convert to Kale, much to the delight of my daughter. I think it all came down to how I cook it and I've found several lovely dishes....and this one I can add to the collection. Lovely Valentina.
Thanks, Kathyrn. It took me a while to get into kale, too, and I generally prefer it cooked. Enjoy! 🙂 ~Valentina
Gerlinde @ Sunnycovechef
Making cassoulet is on my to do list , maybe I start with your vegetarian version. It looks fantastic and is so much healthier.
Thank you, Gerlinde! It's yummy. Enjoy!
*smile* After decades of regularly cooking cassoulet avec duck and sausage it will feel slightly different doing your version. Looks good tho' I shall stay with spinach, use dry sherry and artichoke hearts for the first time . . . interesting trying . . .
Yes, it's quite different from the traditional duck and sausage (which I also love). I hope you find this delicious. Thank you for stopping by and I hope you're having a lovely weekend. 🙂
Healthy and comforting! I love that crusty topping.
Thank you, Angie! 🙂
Well, as you know, I just posted on cassoulet and I think a vegetarian version is a great idea! While I love the duck and pork version, it’s not exactly heart healthy! And all the ingredients in this are lovely! Thanks so much, Valentina!
Thank YOU, David. Non heart healthy is okay too -- in moderation, right!? 😉 Enjoy all the versions.
Looks so good. I'm sure it will be great without the duck fat, seems like there's a ton of flavor here!
Thanks, James! Enjoy!
A wonderful variation of a classic dish that I quite enjoy. But as David pointed out, cassoulet is not particularly heart healthy. Truth be known, I think the classic dish can be a bit too rich for me, so this is great. Love, love cannellini beans and veggies of all types. Can't wait to give this a try, but I might sneak in a piece of grilled chicken on the side Thanks for sharing.
Happy you like this, Ron. Hope you love it and it would be excellent with a "side" of grilled chicken. 😀
What a delicious recipe. I am going to try this tonight.
Great! I hope you love it!
Kelly | Foodtasia
Valentina, this cassoulet looks amazing! Love how you made it vegetarian. It really is surprising how many vegetarian dishes are tops for comfort food. I definitely wouldn't miss the meat in this. Delicious!
Thank you, Kelly. I agree. 🙂
This sounds absolutely divine, Valentina! Love all the veggies in here. Super hearty and perfect for meatless Monday...or any day really! That golden brown crispy top looks so tempting, I can practically hear the spoon crushing into now 😉 Have a fabulous week ahead!
Thank you, Dawn! Ooooh I do like the sound of that spoon going in. 😀
David @ Spiced
We made cassoulet not too long ago, and it was quite tasty! But now I'm totally intrigued by this vegetarian version. This one sounds delicious as well! The artichoke hearts + roasted garlic are both calling to me here!
Thanks, David! Yes, those artichokes and roasted garlic are soooo good! Enjoy!
I adore Cassoulet and this vegetarian version is absolutely brilliant!!! So adding to my "must make" list!!!
Yay! Hope you love it, Nancy. Thank you!
Oh dear ! We love cassoulet and your twist is so lovely and refreshing spring version. Thank you so much !
Thanks! It is indeed a tasty twist. 🙂
John / Kitchen Riffs
This is really different! And good, I'll bet -- certainly the combo of ingredients sounds really tasty. Neat recipe -- thanks.
Thanks for checking it out, John. The combination of flavors and textures really works well for this. In my humble opinion, of course. 😉
I absolutely love this idea! Although it's a vegetarian version, it's still got lots of protein from the beans and I just LOVE beans! I think cannellini are my #2 favorite (borlotti=1) 🙂
Cannellini are my no. 1 😀 Thank you, Christina! XO
WOW! This looks delicious!
Thank you! 🙂
Jeff the Chef
When I was growing up, I never imagined that I'd be one of those people who'd know what cassoulet is, let alone who'd say, "Well, the best cassoulet I've ever had was in Toulouse." But, look at me now. Anyway, I've never had a veggie version - it looks delicious.
Lucky you to have been in Toulouse! Let alone to have been eating a delicious cassoulet there. 🙂 Sounds lovely. Enjoy!
Healthy and delicious food. I must try this!
Thanks, Stella! Enjoy. 🙂
Thank you for this AMAZING recipe!! It was so flavourful and delicious and everyone loved it.
I'm a full time caretaker in my home for my Mom with Dementia so I am quite limited in my time for cooking so I just put all the ingredients together in a dutch oven with the lid off (except the spinach and bread crumb topping - I added that the last 15 min or so) and cooked the pot for 1.5 hours at 400 degrees.
I also added in 4 vegetarian Beyond Meat sausage that I pre cooked in a frying pan which gave it an amazing flavour. Since my husband is Irish I HAD to throw in a couple of potatoes as well. LOL
Definitely being added to my favourites!! 🙂
Hi Rose. Thank you so much for this lovely comment. I so appreciate it. I'm so happy you loved this recipe, and the way you cooked sounds great, and I love that you added potatoes. Yum! I admire you for being a caretaker for your mom. I have helped take care of my parents on and off over the years, but with help. I know how hard it can be with help, so you're amazing doing it full time. Sending love and warmth to both of you. And thank you for checking out my recipes and Cooking On The Weekends. 🙂 ~Valentina
Can you cook the whole thing In a Le Creuset and omit transferring to a pie dish
Yes! Excellent idea! Thanks for writing in. 🙂 ~Valentina
Angela W Broyles
I made this for lent and it was so delicious! I used homemade veg. stock and all fresh herbs, but did not put on the breadcrumbs and olive oil. I also added some vegetarian italian sausage. Such a rustic, beautiful meal!
Hi Angela, thanks so much for writing in. I'm so happy this dish was a success for you, and I think adding the vegetarian sausage was a great idea! You made my day. 🙂 ~Valentina
Hi, I am wondering, does this freeze well, do you know? I am vegan but have been really craving a cassoulet and this looks like it would fit the bill. It sounds amazing. But with only 2 of us eating it, it would be fiddly to try and reduce it to just 2 servings. Thanks and can’t wait to kook this! 🙂
Hi there, Thanks for writing in. Yes, it will freeze well. I would portion it into serving sizes to freeze, wrapped very well, so no air can get in. I think it would freeze well this way for up to a month. Defrost it in the refrigerator about 24 hours before you're ready to reheat it. Enjoy! 🙂 ~Valentina
Am going to try this but ai don’t have sweet sherry and we only buy the dry. Would port substitute well or do you have any other suggestions? Thanks Vicki
Hi Vicki, you can actually use the dry sherry. The cream/sweet just adds some subtle sweetness, but the flavor of the sherry will still work well with the dry. I think I'd do that before using the port because that would likely be too sweet. Enjoy! 🙂 ~Valentina
I made this tonight and it was great. I had to make several substitutions because I am moving and didn’t have everything. I didn’t have broth, so I used a whole can of tomatoes, a whole can of artichokes (in water) including the juice, a cup of white wine instead of sherry. And I completely left our any spinach or kale. It turned out fantastic! I saved the recipe to try with the correct ingredients in the future, but either way this is a keeper. Thanks for sharing it.
Hi Brynna. Thanks so much for writing in. I'm so happy enjoyed this recipe, and so great you went ahead with it with the substitutions. Love that that worked out, and hope you like with the other ingredients too. This is definitely a good one that you can switch it up with. Thanks for checking out my site and recipes, and have a great day. 🙂 ~Valentina
Can you just keep it in the dutch oven for the whole cooking time? I don't understand why you need to transfer it to a different pan. Please advise. Thanks!
Hi Kathy. Thanks for writing in. 🙂 Yes, you could do the whole process in the Dutch oven -- however, since there's a topping/crust, it's better to have it in a shallower baking dish. This way most of the bites include the crust. In a deeper dish, like the Dutch oven, There's less crust on top of a very deep stew. It presents more like a pie or casserole, instead of a stew. All of that said, it'll still be very tasty either way. Enjoy! 🙂 ~Valentina
The slow cooking really concentrates the flavors - very nice vegan recipe. I did not use the artichoke hearts. Instead I soaked about 0.5 oz of dried mushrooms (shitake) in a cup of boiling water. Sliced them and put them instead of artichokes. and used the soaking water as part of the broth. And I added miso to broth.
Hi Erin. Thanks so much for writing in and for trying my recipe. I'm so happy you liked this cassoulet so much. The addition of the mushrooms sounds fantastic, and so smart to add the soaking liquid. I love it! 🙂 ~Valentina
Fabulous! This is a perfect dish for me, since I don't eat much meat. Of course a little bacon would work, too. But I love it!
Thanks, Mimi. Enjoy! And a little bacon would definitely work. When doesn't it!? 😉 ~Valentina