Creamy Sweet Potato and Vegetable Stew

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  • Makes 6 to 8 servings
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This recipe is reminiscent of the aroma, taste, and comfort of my mama’s traditional stew recipe, but my version is healthier, heartier, and easier to make. The potato, white bean cream, and Worcestershire sauce are key elements in this dish—they give off flavors and textures similar to those achieved by braising (browning food in fat and then stewing). You can soak, cook, and store the white beans in the freezer in ½- to 1-cup portions, which are then readily at hand for thickening soups and sauces. Make sure you place the potatoes on the bottom of the pans, so they will be sure to cook within the suggested times.

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°F.
  2. To make the sweet potato and vegetable mixture, place the sweet potato on the bottom of a large baking dish, and top with the onion, carrots, zucchini, red pepper, cauliflower, green beans, thyme, bay leaf, vegetable stock, and garlic. Season with the salt and black pepper to taste. Cover with a lid or aluminum foil. Place in the preheated oven and bake for 50 minutes, or until the sweet potatoes are tender. (Note that both the sweet potato and vegetable mixture and the mashed potato and mushroom mixture should be placed in the oven at the same time.)
  3. To make the mashed potato and mushroom mixture, place the potatoes on the bottom of a large baking dish, and top with the vegetable stock, mushrooms, shallots, celery, celery seed, white pepper, sage, garlic, and Worcestershire sauce. Cover with a lid or aluminum foil. Place in the preheated oven and bake for 50 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Then coarsely mash them in the baking dish with a potato masher.
  4. To make the white bean cream, place the beans and 1 cup of water in a blender, and process until creamy, adding more water as needed to achieve a smooth consistency.
  5. To assemble the stew, pour the white bean cream into the mashed potato and mushroom mixture, and mix well to combine. Spread on top of the sweet potato and vegetable mixture. Return the baking dish to the oven, and bake for another 10 minutes.


Ingredients:

For the sweet potato and vegetable mixture:

  • 1 large sweet potato, cut into 1½-inch slices
  • 1 small onion, peeled and diced
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch slices
  • 2 medium zucchini, cut into ½-inch slices
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into ¼-inch slices
  • 2 cups cauliflower florets (from about one large head)
  • ¼ pound green beans, trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

For the mashed potato and mushroom mixture:

  • 8 small white, Yukon Gold, or russet potatoes, cut into ¼-inch cubes
  • 2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 8 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 shallots, peeled and minced
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon celery seed
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper
  • ½ teaspoon sage
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 tablespoon vegan Worcestershire sauce

For the white bean cream:

  • 1 cup cooked cannellini or navy beans

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