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Grain-Free Gumbo

The other day, my brother mentioned to me that I should feature “more meat” in my posts.

So this recipe is for him.

While I happen to enjoy my highly plant-based diet, we do still have a few meat-based dinners in our house every now and then. (Austin and I officially dropped our “vegetarian” labels right before we got married). But I have a secret to share–> I don’t cook any raw meat in our kitchen. I don’t like handling raw meat, worrying about cooking it properly, cleaning up afterward… really, anything about the process. Plus, cooking meat would just mean spending more time in my kitchen!

That’s probably half the reason I was vegetarian in the first place.

If we do have meat for dinner, I usually cheat and buy organic Rotisserie Chickens from Whole Foods. Sure, it’s a little pricier than cooking the raw meat myself, but since we still don’t consume it that often, it’s worth it to me to save the time and stress! Hence, why you don’t see many “meat” recipes on my blog. 

Of course, that doesn’t mean you can’t add meat to most of my vegetarian recipes, for a delicious meat-based meal. As far as I’m concerned, most of the flavor is in the sauces, thanks to fresh veggies and herbs. Which is why this recipe for Grain-Free Gumbo is also delicious, with or without the chicken.

Traditional gumbo recipes call for a roux of flour and butter or oil, to thicken it up, but I had great results creating a “faux roux” by simply blending together a steamed potato with water.

Easier, and way healthier <– just the the way I like it.

Grain-Free Gumbo
Makes 4 servings

adapted from Paula Deen’s Gumbo

Ingredients:

4 cups water
1 large Yukon Gold potato, cut into chunks

1 tablespoon butter, or coconut oil
1 large onion, chopped
8 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
3 stalks celery chopped
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 cup chunky tomato sauce, or stewed tomtatoes
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
sea salt and pepper, to taste

Optional: Meat from half of a rotisserie chicken, roughly chopped

Directions:

In a small saucepan, steam the potato chunks until fork-tender, about 8-10 minutes, then remove from the heat.

In a large stock pot, melt the butter or coconut oil over medium heat, and saute the onion, celery, green pepper and garlic for 10 minutes. 

Add the Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper, and allow to cook for another 10 minutes while you prepare the “faux roux.”

Transfer the steamed potato to a blender filled with 4 cups water, and blend until smooth and creamy.

Add the “roux” to your cooked vegetable mixture, along with the tomatoes, cayenne, nutritional yeast, and chopped chicken, if using. Season with extra salt and pepper, if desired.

Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cover for 30-45 minutes to allow the flavors to develop.

Serve hot, over a bed of cauliflower rice for a traditional gumbo experience.

Well, almost traditional.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Grain-Free Gumbo
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
 
A flourless gumbo, perfect for a chilly evening!
Ingredients
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 large Yukon Gold potato, cut into chunks
  • 1 tablespoon butter, or coconut oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 3 stalks celery chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup chunky tomato sauce, or stewed tomtatoes
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • sea salt and pepper, to taste
  • Optional: Meat from half of a rotisserie chicken, roughly chopped
Instructions
  1. In a small saucepan, steam the potato chunks until fork-tender, about 8-10 minutes, then remove from the heat.
  2. In a large stock pot, melt the butter or coconut oil over medium heat, and saute the onion, celery, green pepper and garlic for 10 minutes.
  3. Add the Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper, and allow to cook for another 10 minutes while you prepare the "faux roux."
  4. Transfer the steamed potato to a blender filled with 4 cups water, and blend until smooth and creamy.
  5. Add the potato "roux" to your cooked vegetable mixture, along with the tomatoes, cayenne, nutritional yeast, and chopped chicken, if using. Season with extra salt and pepper, if desired.
  6. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cover for 30-45 minutes to allow the flavors to develop.
  7. Serve hot, over a bed of cauliflower rice for a traditional gumbo experience.

Hope this gumbo keeps you warm until Spring!

Reader Feedback: Do you cook much meat in your own home? Any tips or tricks?

10 comments to Grain-Free Gumbo

  • I love your clever substitutions! I’ve also drastically cut my chicken intake – I’m pretty indifferent about the prep process – it doesn’t really gross me out but it is a bit of a pain to have to trim the fatty bits off, chop it, scrub the cutting board and knife, then continue with chopping veggies etc. I’ve reduced the amount of it in my diet mainly because of the price and for sustainability reasons, but I definitely make up for it in fish! If I’m not making a meal for blog purposes, I usually use frozen fillets which are super easy to defrost and cook. Oh, or canned tuna or salmon – also very common items in my kitchen! ;)

  • You do have the best substitutions..so creative!! I bet my sweetie would like this one! Have a great day!

  • Thank you for posting this recipe. I’m *thinking* of reducing the amount of grains in my diet. I usually skip grains at dinner time and this would made a perfect dinner for our house. How is your body responding to the no-grain diet?

    • My body is LOVING the no-grain diet so far. I’ve noticed a significant reduction of bloat all over, and clearer skin. Also, my cravings for grains have disappeared, thanks to all my grain-free goodies. :)

  • Made this for dinner tonite and both my husband and I really liked it!

  • Anne

    I made this tonight. Tasty and my husband loves it! He likes a lot of your recipes, which is great because it’s hard to get him to eat healthy foods!

  • Alice

    I am looking for some clarification. Here you said…

    “1 large Yukon Gold potato, cut into chunks”

    then… Here you said…

    “Transfer the steamed sweet potato to a blender filled with 4 cups water, and blend until smooth and creamy.”

    Are you using both kinds of potato or just one? I don’t see a sweet potato in the steamed pot.

    I hope I am being clear but I am a bit confused…

  • Kat

    You have such great substitutions! I have been wanting to make more soups and stew type dishes but haven’t because the roux is so rich. And I too notice that my body feels and looks better when I reduce the amount of grain I take in. I’m going to try the steamed potato and water with a lot of other soup recipes I’ve been wanting to try and see how it works out! I made this last night and added the chicken and shrimp and it was delicious!

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