American and Canadian

Vegan Gumbo

This vegan gumbo recipe is hearty, savory, filling and warming. With a mix of beans, mushrooms and okra, this vegetarian gumbo is cheap to make and full of flavour. Starting with a dark, rich roux, key herbs and spices, and a secret umami ingredient, it’s hard to believe that this vegan gumbo doesn’t have any meat in it!

This vegan gumbo recipe is hearty, savory, filling and warming. With a mix of beans, mushrooms and okra, this vegetarian gumbo is cheap to make and full of flavour. Starting with a dark, rich roux, key herbs and spices, and a secret umami ingredient, it’s hard to believe that this vegan gumbo doesn’t have any meat in it!

With the exceptional success of my vegan jambalaya recipe, creating a vegan gumbo recipe was a no-brainer. I must have looked at about fifty recipes for gumbo and ended up more confused than I was before.

There’s just so many ways to make gumbo and everyone swears by their own version!

I had quite a few decisions to make when creating my own vegan gumbo recipes, but one thing I was certain about from the start was that I absolutely wanted it to include okra.

If you read along regularly, you’ll know how often I woefully complain about all the normal fruits and vegetables that are very difficult to find in Barcelona. Okra is a happy exception – it’s one of the few things that’s actually more accessible to me here than in Canada.

This vegan gumbo recipe is hearty, savory, filling and warming. With a mix of beans, mushrooms and okra, this vegetarian gumbo is cheap to make and full of flavour. Starting with a dark, rich roux, key herbs and spices, and a secret umami ingredient, it’s hard to believe that this vegan gumbo doesn’t have any meat in it!

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I can buy it in the supermarket, but there is a neighbourhood not far from my home with a large South Asian population where I can get fresh, quality okra all year round.

I absolutely love okra in curries and gumbo is a great recipe to start with if you’re not familiar with how to cook this fruit.

Since okra is used to thicken gumbo, whether or not to do a roux was the first decision I had to make. I decided to go ahead with a roux for the deep, nutty flavour that it would add to a meatless gumbo and sauté the okra to remove most of the slime that grosses lots of people out.

Roux isn’t hard to make, you just need to stand over it stirring for a bit. The deeper colour you let it get to, the more flavour it will bring to the dish. I let mine go to a dark caramel, milk chocolate colour that was a little darker than peanut butter.

If you’re nervous, you can do it slowly over medium-low heat for about 30 minutes, or turn the heat up to medium-high and have it ready in about 15 minutes.

This vegan gumbo recipe is hearty, savory, filling and warming. With a mix of beans, mushrooms and okra, this vegetarian gumbo is cheap to make and full of flavour. Starting with a dark, rich roux, key herbs and spices, and a secret umami ingredient, it’s hard to believe that this vegan gumbo doesn’t have any meat in it!

Next, to add another layer of flavour I added dark miso paste. Miso is what I often use in vegan curry pastes in order to replace shrimp paste and add a savory, umamai note.

It worked wonderfully in this vegan gumbo recipe, adding a meaty, gravy-like flavour without tasting of miso soup. My husband wasn’t able to guess that miso was the secret ingredient!

Finally, I was quite conservative with the herbs and spices, adding just a bit of thyme, bay leaves and cayenne pepper. But you can get creative here if you want and add any combination of Cajun seasoning, smoky paprika or liquid smoke, oregano, nutmeg, allspice, lemon juice, vinegar or filé powder (or whatever else you like in your gumbo).

This vegan gumbo recipe is hearty, savory, filling and warming. With a mix of beans, mushrooms and okra, this vegetarian gumbo is cheap to make and full of flavour. Starting with a dark, rich roux, key herbs and spices, and a secret umami ingredient, it’s hard to believe that this vegan gumbo doesn’t have any meat in it!

However you choose to make it, this vegan gumbo will fill your belly and satisfy all vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike. If you like this recipe, be sure to check out my vegan jambalaya or my smoky Cajun-style black-eyed peas.

Wanna see how to make vegan gumbo? Watch the video and share it on Facebook:

Serves 4

Vegan Gumbo

This vegan gumbo recipe is hearty, savory, filling and warming. With a mix of beans, mushrooms and okra, this vegetarian gumbo is cheap to make and full of flavour.

5 minPrep Time

55 minCook Time

1 hrTotal Time

Save RecipeSave Recipe
    ingredients
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 small green pepper, diced
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 cups (200 grams) okra, sliced
  • 1 can (400 grams / 14 oz) crushed tomatoes
  • 2 ½ - 3 ½ cups vegetable stock
  • 10 button mushrooms, quartered
  • ½ teaspoon thyme
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more to taste)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cups (330 grams) mixed beans or lentils (I used chickpeas, kidney beans, white beans and brown lentils)
  • 1 tablespoon dark miso paste
  • ½ teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Brown rice, to serve
  • A small handful of fresh parsley, for garnish (optional)
    Instructions
  1. Heat a wide saucepan over medium heat. Add the oil and sprinkle over the flour. Stir or whisk continuously until the roux reaches a dark caramel or milk chocolate colour, a bit darker than peanut butter. It will take about 15 – 20 minutes. Don’t let it burn or you will have to start over.
  2. Add the onions and continue stirring continuously until soft. Add the green pepper, celery, garlic and okra. Sauté, stirring frequently for 10 – 15 minutes until the vegetables are soft and the okra slime has disappeared.
  3. Add the tomato, 2 ½ cups of stock, mushrooms, beans, thyme, cayenne pepper and bay leaves. Bring to a boil then lower the heat to medium-low and simmer gently for 30 minutes.
  4. If you like your gumbo a bit thinner and more soup-like, add as much of the remaining stock as you want. Turn off the heat and ladle a small amount of the gumbo into a small bowl and add the miso paste. Stir well to dissolve and add back to the saucepan. Mix well. Taste the gumbo and add salt to taste (depends on how salty your stock and miso are) and pepper.
  5. Serve the gumbo with brown rice and sprinkled with some fresh parsley.
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http://www.cilantroandcitronella.com/vegan-gumbo/

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19 Comments

  • Reply
    Bam's Kitchen
    January 12, 2017 at 1:16 pm Love your recipes! Seen several of them that I can't wait to make for our family on pinterest and wanted to come by and say hello. Would love a bowl of this delicious vegan gumbo coziness on these cold days. Take care
    • Reply
      Melissa
      January 13, 2017 at 11:46 am Thanks so much! I'm also familiar with your blog and enjoy those blogs that share my love of international cuisine. Thanks so much for stopping by!
  • Reply
    Trish
    January 16, 2017 at 1:00 pm I've tried okra twice in my life and it's been a slimy disaster which ended up in the dishes being tossed out. This gumbo looks crazy good though so I'm going to give it another go. Your recipes have never let me down, never. Will report back when I've made this bowl of deliciousness ;) Thanks for all the great recipes.
  • Reply
    Rachel Lestina
    January 30, 2017 at 5:24 am Hello! I was wondering if I am supposed to use 1 cup of dry lentils in the recipe or the equivalent to make 1 cup fully cooked lentils? I plant to use 1 can of kidney beans and the rest lentils. Thank you!
    • Reply
      Melissa
      January 30, 2017 at 8:39 am The lentils are cooked.
  • Reply
    Bhargavi
    January 30, 2017 at 8:11 pm I made this today and it is absolutely delicious! I skipped the miso paste, because I didn't have any, but I think it turned out great anyway :) thank you for the recipe!
  • Reply
    Jocelyn Salvador
    February 5, 2017 at 2:33 pm Thank you SO much for the Vegan Gumbo recipe! However, I omitted the miso paste (I couldn't find it anywhere!), and added a bit of hot sauce and about a teaspoon extra of cayenne pepper and it was amazing! It was the first time I've ever made a rue and I'm going to incorporate it into some of my other recipes! Thank you!
    • Reply
      Melissa
      February 5, 2017 at 9:48 pm So glad you liked it, thanks so much!
  • Reply
    Olivia Marquez
    February 10, 2017 at 12:35 am Ummm this recipe is fookin amazing!¡! Will definitely be making it again. I didn't use to miso paste because the one store that has it near me was closed, so I'm curious as to how the flavor is changed with it. Also, I was so excited for a whole vegan recipe, and then I left for 15 minutes and my dad added in shrimp and chicken buillon when I was gone so much for the excitement. But I imagine it's just as delicious vegan. ¡Gracias para la receta!
    • Reply
      Melissa
      February 10, 2017 at 10:18 am Oh man, dads ... *rolls eyes*, lol!
  • Reply
    Kim Schultz
    February 19, 2017 at 3:38 pm I made this for my husband and I and it is AMAZING!!!!!!! It takes a bit of work (especially the roux) but its totally worth it!!!! I served it with fresh sourdough bread. Highly recommend!!!
  • Reply
    Manny Marz
    June 4, 2017 at 12:53 pm Hello, fresh okra is hard to find where I live could frozen okra work just as good?
    • Reply
      Melissa
      June 6, 2017 at 5:27 pm Yes!
  • Reply
    Asja
    August 20, 2017 at 1:41 am Can I skip out on the Okra? If so are there any other vegetables that can be used to replace it?
    • Reply
      Melissa
      August 20, 2017 at 5:22 pm Yes, you could leave it out or replace it with zucchini but don't cook the zucchini as long.
  • Reply
    Tanya
    August 31, 2017 at 1:55 am Is it safe to assume that this freezes well?
    • Reply
      Melissa
      September 1, 2017 at 1:15 pm Yes :)
  • Reply
    John guido
    September 14, 2017 at 3:44 pm Is it OK to use gumbo file with this recipe ?
    • Reply
      Melissa
      September 14, 2017 at 9:54 pm Sure. I can't buy it where I live so I don't know how much to add but if you do, go ahead.

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