Perfect for a special occasion or weeknight dinner, this Creamy Wild Rice and Mushroom Casserole is plant-based comfort food at its best! The flavors are so tasty, even non-vegans will love this yummy dish.
When I think of the holidays with my family, my memories usually involve stuffing ourselves full of heavy foods, chatting politics over coffee and cheesecake (my Uncle's favorite), then falling asleep on the couch with football playing in the background. It's quite the event.
I'm the only one who eats a vegetarian diet, which can make things challenging sometimes. My grandmother usually prepares a tray of stuffed shells alongside the turkey or ham, depending on the holiday. The shells are delicious but I've always wanted to see if I can sneak in a vegan thanksgiving version of a classic dish without anyone noticing.
As soon as I tasted this wild rice mushroom casserole, I knew it was the one.
About the Recipe
Made from a base of cashews, almond milk and arrowroot starch, it's just as rich and creamy as it's dairy-laden cousin, minus the heavy feeling that makes you want to pass out on the couch—although you are still welcome to do that.
Cooking the mushrooms with tamari (or soy sauce) and using vegan chicken broth helps to give it plenty of umami flavor, so no one will miss the meat. The whole thing is a plant-based comfort food dream come true.
This Creamy Wild Rice and Mushroom Casserole recipe is...
- Absolutely delicious
- Easily made gluten- and nut-free
- Plant-based comfort food
How to Make Creamy Wild Rice and Mushroom Casserole
- Boil and soak cashews to make sauce.
- Cook rice in vegetable broth.
- Preheat oven and grease a large casserole dish.
- In a large pot, melt butter and cook onion.
- Add mushrooms, garlic, carrot, and celery, stirring to combine.
- Continuing to cook, add tamari, thyme, and parsley.
- Finish making the cashew cheese sauce.
- Add sauce to veggie mixture, and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and add rice.
- Transfer casserole mixture to dish, top with breadcrumbs, and bake.
Full directions for how to make Creamy Wild Rice and Mushroom Casserole are in the printable recipe card at the bottom of the post.
Variations to Creamy Wild Rice and Mushroom Casserole
If you're concerned about allergies, this can easily be made gluten-free by using gluten-free breadcrumbs. You can also make it nut-free by leaving out the cashews and substituting plain soy milk for the almond milk. I prefer it with the cashews for that extra luxurious creamy texture, but they're not completely necessary.
You don't have to use wild rice for this vegan casserole recipe. Use whatever kind of rice you have on hand—or a mixture of different varieties of rice!
I used white button mushrooms for my vegan wild rice casserole, but you can use any kind of mushrooms you want! Shiitake, cremini, portobello, oyster... the list goes on. As long as you have mushrooms, you can make this casserole!
Creamy Wild Rice and Mushroom Casserole FAQs
Can you prep this wild rice casserole ahead of time?
Ave yourself some hassle at your next dinner party and prep this casserole ahead of time. You can assemble the casserole up to 3 days before you plan to serve it.
Wait to add the breadcrumb topping and bake until you're ready to serve your casserole. And voila—you have an easy yet delicious dish!
Can you freeze this vegan wild rice casserole?
If you have leftover casserole, you can easily store it in the freezer for up to 1 month. This is a great option if you don't plan to eat your casserole leftovers within a week or if you want to have an easy dinner ready!
Just go ahead and make the casserole recipe like normal. After baking your casserole, let it cool down before storing in a freezer-friendly bag or container.
When you're ready to eat it, simply reheat the casserole in the oven or microwave until warmed through.
While you're here, be sure to check out our Vegetarian Freezer Cooking Cookbook. We take the guesswork out of freezer cooking with these meatless recipes that were specifically developed to be prepared, frozen, and reheated later. Talk about easy dinners!
For the sauce:
For the casserole:
- 3 ½ cups vegetable broth
- 2 cups wild rice
- 4 tbsp vegan butter or olive oil
- 1 onion finely chopped, about 2 cups
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 16 oz white button mushrooms diced
- 3 garlic cloves minced, about 1 tablespoon
- 3 carrots finely chopped, about ¾ cup
- 3 celery stalks finely chopped, about ¾ cup
- 3 tbsp tamari or soy sauce
- 2 tsp fresh thyme
- 2 tsp fresh parsley
- ½ cup breadcrumbs
- fresh parsley for topping
- In a medium pot, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Place the raw cashews into a small bowl and pour the boiling water over them, so the cashews are fully covered. Allow the cashews to soak for at least 30 minutes.
- While the cashews soak, begin working on the casserole. Place the vegetable broth into the same pot that you used to boil the water for the cashews, and bring it to a boil.
- Add the wild rice, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat, cover with a lid and allow to sit for 15 minutes. While you’re waiting for the cashews to soak and the rice to cook, you can start prepping your vegetables.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and lightly grease a large (about 4-QT) casserole dish.
- In a large pot, warm 4 tablespoons vegan butter over medium heat. Add the onion, salt and pepper, then cook for 3 minutes, until the onions are translucent.
- Next, add the mushrooms, garlic, carrot, and celery, then stir to combine. Cook for a few minutes, then add the tamari, thyme, and parsley. Stir again while continuing to cook for about 5 minutes.
- Once the cashews are done soaking, place them in a high speed blender. Add the almond milk, nutritional yeast, and arrowroot powder, then blend on high for 30 seconds, until smooth. Season with salt to taste.
- Pour the cashew sauce mixture into the pot with the vegetables and stir. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes.
- Turn the heat off, then add the cooked rice to the pot. Stir together until combined. Season with salt to taste. Transfer the mixture to the casserole dish then smooth down with the back of a spoon so that the surface is even.
- Top with breadcrumbs, cover with foil and bake in the oven for 25 minutes. Remove casserole from the oven, uncover and allow to cool for at least 15 minutes before serving. Top with fresh parsley, serve and enjoy!