Easy Vegan "Pot Roast"

Hey ya'll! I'm back with a food post that is not what you'd normally expect from me: something vegan. Well I'm on a 21 day detox and that requires me to eat vegan, no alcohol, no sugar (or other sweeteners), and only whole grains. It is difficult to say the least, but worth it, as I'm already seeing my skin and body react to getting back on track. Why am I detoxing? Well, I went to my school's homecoming (GHOE to be exact) and I went in. Drinks on top of drinks with plates of fried fish and more drinks. It was epic, but so bad for my body. Not to mention leading up to the event, I had a wicked sweet tooth which strikes me with that intensity about 3 times a year. All of that led to oily skin, crazy bloating, breakouts and just feeling tired. So I thought, what can I do? I remembered I hadn't completed a yearly fast that I always do because of stress and decided to do it and get the needed benefits both spiritually and physically. Enter: vegan recipes!

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I've been experimenting with a lot of different veggies and ways to make them that I normally do not. I'm not a big meat substitute/tofu/tempeh/TVP person, so I don't ever try to mimic dishes I love from that perspective. Instead, I go for flavors of dishes I love, with enough sustenance to keep me satisfied the way animal protein does for me. So when I was making a pot roast dinner for my family, I decided that I didn't want to miss out! I knew building the flavor of a sauce/gravy would be easy. Most of that comes from the seasonings and a good broth as a base. It was finding what could I make that wouldn't leave me starving in an hour that had me stumped. I thought portobello, but I'm not a huge fan. Then I though eggplant, but was afraid it would turn to mush in a slow cooker. Then there was squash and I even considered going for the tofu. But then I came back to portobello.

So much delicious flavor in this one bite. BRB, going to reheat leftovers!

So much delicious flavor in this one bite. BRB, going to reheat leftovers!

I always see it used as a meat substitute and I knew tons of people on the internet couldn't be wrong. My love for mushrooms has been growing since I really started to let their flavors shine, so I thought,  "Why not?" I set out on my journey for pot roast and with this I had a hit. Even my mom, who likes NOTHING remotely healthy (and is a tough food critic in general) liked the dish. She ate beef for dinner, but at least she tried! 

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This dish has all of the comfort you expect from a braised dish, with tons of deep flavor and richness, but none of the meat or meat by-products. This is great for a Meatless Monday dinner or for hosting friends who may be vegan/vegetarian. It is also a great dish to have on Thanksgiving as a meatless main course option as well. I served this on top of vegan mashed potatoes so I could get all of that delicious gravy when the main was done!

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Get the full recipe below:


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Easy Vegan "Pot Roast"

  • Author: Monique Manning
  • Servings: 4-6
  • Nutrition (per serving (4): 275 calories, 3.8g fat, 38.5g net carbs, 9.2g protein
  • Cooktime: Active - 30 minutes | Inactive - 4 Hours
  • Equipment Used: Skillet, Slow cooker (I used an Instant Pot)

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 large Portobello mushroom caps
  • 4 carrots
  • 2 parsnips
  • 10 mini creamer potatoes
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 large shallot
  • 1 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 3 3/4 cups good Vegetable Broth, divided
  • 1 tbsp vegan Worcestershire 
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp fennel
  • 1/2 tsp caraway seeds
  • 1/4 tsp grains of paradise
  • 3 sprigs of thyme
  • 3 sprigs of rosemary
  • 3 leaves of sage
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch/arrowroot starch

METHOD:

  1.  Prepare the vegetables. Slice portobello mushrooms into thick, 1/4-1/2" slices and set aside. Halve the potatoes, skin the carrots and parsnips and cut into quarter-sized chunks, set aside. Chop the garlic, slice the shallots and set aside.
  2. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil. When the oil is very glossy and appears to ripple, add in mushrooms. Saute them until they release their water and the water evaporates. Then add to your slow cooker.
    • *If you are using an Instant Pot, you can do this in the Instant Pot set on saute*
  3. In the same pan, add the other 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil and saute carrots, potatoes and parsnips. Saute until you begin to get some caramelization on the carrots. Add in shallots and garlic and cook until shallots soften. Deglaze the pan with a splash of vegetable stock and get all of the brown bits from the pan. add to slow cooker.
    • If drinking, you can use wine to deglaze the pan and add another flavor dimension!
  4. Add spices to slow cooker and mix to coat all vegetables.
  5. Pour in 3 1/2 cups of vegetable stock and Worcestershire sauce and cover. Set to cook on high for 4 hours.
  6. In the final hour of the cook, mix together remaining 1/4 cup of vegetable stock and 2 tablespoons of thickener of choice. Mix until you get a smooth liquid and add to the slow cooker, being sure to stir as it combines. Cover and cook remaining hour.
  7. Once done, serve hot, over rice, cauliflower mash/rice, mashed potatoes or butternut squash for even more fall flavor!
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Enjoy!