Even kids love these Creamy Vegan Scalloped Potatoes, even though they have no cheese or added oil. WFPB: Whole foods plant based and delicious!
Even though she was raised on a vegan diet, my daughter E. doesn’t give her “Kid-Friendly Seal of Approval” to many dishes, particularly those that try to imitate the taste of cheese. Though she’s never eaten real cheese, she fell in love years ago with “Chreese,” a dry mix made by Road’s End Organics. Her tastes are so finely attuned to Chreese that she can detect my attempts at counterfeiting it just using her sense of smell. If it’s not Chreese, a fake cheese sauce doesn’t stand a chance with her.
Until now. Creamy Scalloped Potatoes has passed the ultimate kid-friendly test–The Cheezy, Unfamiliar, Gross-Looking Potato Dish Challenge. It has succeed even though it breaks three of E.’s rules: (1) All Cheezy Sauces Must Use Chreese; (2) No New Foods; and (3) All Potatoes Must be Baked, Mashed, or Oven-Fried. (All kids have rules. And we parents appreciate their long lists of food aversions as signs of their nascent individuality and quirky personalities . . . when we’re not fantasizing about shipping them off to some raw foodist boot-camp in Idaho!)
As I brought E.’s plate to the table, I was greeted with the words, “I’m not eating that!” I returned with the parental standard, “You have to at least try it.” This was followed by much grumbling, which was followed by much eating of the other foods on her plate. Finally, she reached the Cheezy, Unfamiliar, Gross-Looking, Un-baked-mashed-or-fried Potato Dish. She took a bite, then another, then another. “Hey,” she exclaimed, “you have got to put this on your kid-friendly list! I love it!”
So there you have it: a ringing endorsement for a cheezy-sauced recipe. And a list of rules that just got a little shorter.
For a soy-free version, please check out Vegan Scalloped Potatoes with Chickpea Cheese Sauce. And for a ridiculously easy version using frozen hash browns, see Easy Scalloped Potatoes (Vegan Hash Browns Casserole).
Creamy Scalloped Potatoes
- 2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes I used 8 medium
- water to cover
- Paprika or white pepper
- Salt optional
- 1 1/4 cups water
- 1 cup plain soymilk or other plant milk
- 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 2 tablespoons raw cashew butter or tahini (optional, but good)
- 1 teaspoon white miso
- Place a large pot, half-filled with water, to boil while you prepare the potatoes. Using a mandolin, food processor, or a very steady hand, slice the scrubbed potatoes into 1/4-inch thick slices. They need to be a uniform size, so a mandolin is preferred.
- When the water is boiling, add the potato slices and make sure they are covered with water. If not, add just enough to cover. Boil for 5-8 minutes, just until barely tender. Be very careful–they go from raw to falling apart in seconds. You do not want them to fall apart!
- As soon as the potatoes are tender, remove them from the heat, pour them into a colander to remove the water, and rinse them with cold water.
- Preheat the oven to 400 F.
- Prepare the sauce by blending the sauce ingredients together, either in a blender or with a hand blender, until smooth.
- Place the potato slices into an oiled casserole dish one layer at a time. Sprinkle each layer with a little salt and paprika or white pepper before adding the next layer. Stir the sauce, and pour it over all the potatoes. Sprinkle with paprika.
- Bake at 400 F for 20-30 minutes, or until sauce has thickened throughout. Serve warm. Make your kids taste it!
Nutritional info is approximate.
reillyOctober 19, 2009 at 8:30 pm
The sauce was so good but didn't thicken up for me! It reminded me a lot of this Peruvian dish called papa a la huancaina.
HeidiTFMNovember 25, 2009 at 8:30 pm
Made these without the cashew butter (didn't have it) and contemplated the tahini substitution, but hubby said try peanut butter–so I did. I went a little too light on the salt, but these will be delicious (once they are cool enough to eat without burning my mouth).
Kristin B.April 4, 2010 at 11:56 pm
Thank you for this recipe! I am a vegan for health and environmental reasons, but I come from a family of dedicated meat eaters. I was asked to bring scalloped potatoes to Easter this year, and though I often cook things I can't eat for my family, I dreaded cooking this dish that I love and not being able to eat it. So, I did a little surfing and your recipe sounded the most promising, though it took a bit of creative shopping for the nutritional yeast and miso. The only substitution I made was tahini for the cashew butter, and I doubled the recipe. It came out tasting pretty fantastic to me, but I realize that my taste isn't the same as other people's at this point. I decided not to say anything to anybody, and just threw it into the buffet with everything else, secretly hoping there would be some leftover for me to take home. No such luck. The fam polished the whole dish, and my cousin John, self-proclaimed cheese fanatic, came back for seconds. Everybody complimented, and when I filled them in on my little secret, they were quite surprised. Can't wait to try another recipe out on them. Thanks again!
GabrielleApril 24, 2010 at 10:25 pm
I didnt use cashew butter or tahini, so it took longer to thicken, but in the end-it was still amazing, as always 😛
KellyApril 29, 2010 at 8:40 am
My three year old loves this dish! My husband loved it also! Fabulous job on the recipe.
BoyaOctober 17, 2010 at 4:37 pm
This was DELICIOUS! You should post this on the member center of Dr. Fuhrman’s website- they would love it there too!
Lauren DeVainMarch 5, 2011 at 2:10 pm
This was a great low fat version of traditional scalloped potatoes! I made the following modifications: I used half a cup of water and 1.5 cups of plain soymilk. Instead of cornstarch I used 3 heaping tablespoons of flour. I used a little extra salt, and instead of garlic powder I used one close of fresh garlic. Similarly, instead of onion powder, I used one whole green onion. I used vegan margarine instead of cashew butter and skipped the miso because I didn’t have it. I baked it at 400 for 25 minutes and then put the heat up to 450 until the top browned nicely. Delicious! My husband loved it 🙂
ShawnMarch 29, 2011 at 5:50 pm
Thanks for this one, I keep using it over and over! I add fresh onion and garlic delicious!
YvonneMay 25, 2011 at 12:58 am
I tried a recipe very similar to this made with the addition of a small jar of pimentos pureed / blended into the sauce. Gives it a nice golden color like cheddar.
StephanieJune 7, 2011 at 12:26 am
I made this tonight and SCORE! you are so savvy at putting together ‘cheezy’ like facsmiles…wow! I think next time I will add onions….just cause that’s what I had as a kid! 5* from me!! thanks!
Stephanie WinsorSeptember 18, 2011 at 8:14 pm
I made this for dinner – and we both enjoyed it so much. I should have halved the recipe – if we don’t finish it in the next day or so, do you think I could freeze it?
SusanVSeptember 18, 2011 at 9:24 pm
Glad you liked it! I haven’t frozen it before, so I’m really not sure. You may have to try it as an experiment!
ChristineOctober 26, 2011 at 11:00 am
My son is allergic to tree nuts so could you tell me what I can use as a substitution for cashew butter?
SusanVOctober 26, 2011 at 11:10 am
I would use tahini or sesame seed butter.
JennyOctober 2, 2018 at 4:32 pm
Do you think Sun Butter would work? I bought some yesterday for a recipe because of our nut allergies.
Susan VoisinOctober 2, 2018 at 4:47 pm
I think it’d be fine.
KatieNovember 6, 2011 at 6:27 pm
Just posted on your fb page but wanted to leave something for other reviewers or lukers. This recipe is the BOMB!!! I made some changes, nothing big. First off I did use my mandolin! Helped a lot! I have a borner vslicer from amazon! Second, I didn’t have cashew butter but not to worry…trusty ole vita mix will make anything! I threw in 3/4 cup soaked raw cashews. I also used veggie broth for one cup of the water. I don’t use soy products so I used so delicious original coconut milk instead of soy milk. I also don’t have miso. Didn’t replace that one. I didn’t feel like doing multi steps today, vegan cooking is so time consuming as it is! So I omitted the boiling stage. I used a 9×13 glass dish. I also only used 4 med-large potato. Could of used more but hubby already cleaned the mandolin, darn men! I poured some sauce on bottom then started the layering. Potatoes, sauce, potatoes, sauce. Then I covered with tin foil and baked for 45 min @350 degrees. Then I took of tin foil and cooked for 20 min longer or till slightly brown. My only warning is don’t burn your tongue from eating it before cool. Its that stinking good! This recipe is pretty flexible as you can see! My toddler who is beyond picky actually ate a couple bites without me telling him to! Taste like cheesey potatoe goodness!
MarkJanuary 2, 2012 at 9:21 pm
Hey! Not ‘Printer Friendly’ button for this recipe? 🙁
MarkJanuary 2, 2012 at 9:22 pm
Love your site, btw. 😉
Susan VoisinJanuary 2, 2012 at 9:42 pm
Thanks! Just added a print option for you.
MarkJanuary 2, 2012 at 9:43 pm
Wow! You ROCK!! Thanks!!!
Andrea DrummondJanuary 11, 2012 at 11:55 pm
Great looking recipe!
But, I’m not sure if noticed .. but google adchoices displayed Eagle Boy pizza’s prawn skewers for me. I’ve made a complaint to them about how stupid this is – for the viewer & their client.
All the best
KimJanuary 22, 2012 at 7:00 pm
This recipe has been a family favorite for many years. I like adding “browned” fake meat crumbles (veg broth, bbq and other spices cooked until the broth disappears) into the layers. My (carnivore) husband craves this version! Thank you SO much for it.
AndeApril 7, 2012 at 8:39 am
My husband would love this recipe but he is following Dr. Esselstyn’s Prevent and Reverse Heart disease plant-based diet. Can you suggest a non-fat substitute for the 2 tablespoons raw cashew butter?
Susan VoisinApril 7, 2012 at 8:46 am
Just leave it out or add a little extra non-dairy milk.
AliciaJuly 25, 2012 at 12:10 pm
How many fat grams are in this?
Susan VoisinJuly 25, 2012 at 2:39 pm
If you divide it into 6 servings, each one has 4.3 grams of fat.
BerOctober 21, 2012 at 10:30 am
Not wanting to deal with the oven and being hungry I skipped it. Boiled my potatoes in one pot. Then mixed the sauce mix, chopped up a half onion finely and sauteed it in another saucepan and then added the sauce mix and heated till thick. . I drained the potatoes, put them in a bowl, poured the sauce over them and gave them an ample salt and peppering and enjoyed them. Took, 30 min total raw unpeeled potato to breakfast in a bowl. Oh man…. yum!! This will be a regular!
BerOctober 21, 2012 at 10:30 am
Forgot I too skipped the cashews no need for the extra fat.
CindyOctober 25, 2012 at 12:23 pm
Just wanted to chime in… this was awesome, and sadly consumed all too quickly. I also used fresh garlic because I had some and tahini rather than cashew butter. Will add green onions also next time. I used 4 large-ish potatoes and it made two layers in 9×13 pan. Not sure if I should make two batches next time or more layers. Seems like it might not cook enough if there are more than two layers of potatoes. Anybody have cooking times for four layers? Big thanks for another winner! I love this site.
ConnieMarch 13, 2013 at 6:21 pm
I love the story!
This looks great to me but I wonder if my teen will like it because he’s not crazy about things that have too much nutritional yeast.
Do you buy cashew butter or blend cashews to make it?
ConnieMarch 13, 2013 at 6:25 pm
I didn’t see the other comments when I first wrote. I’ll substitute tahini or blend in some cashews.
StellaMarch 13, 2013 at 6:25 pm
I like some of your recipes but am disturbed by what seems to me to be a heavy use soy and soy products (tofu, etc.). Women who have had breast cancer or who are at risk for its occurrence (or recurrence in some cases) are strongly advised NOT to use any form of soy products as soy contains plant estrogens. How does one adapt your recipes when soy is so prominent an ingredient?
Susan VoisinMarch 13, 2013 at 6:42 pm
Soy has been shown to be protective against breast cancer, and I use it in my recipes because I don’t believe the misinformation put out by anti-soy groups. But most of them can be easily made soy-free by using other non-dairy milks.
LilaMarch 13, 2013 at 6:25 pm
Thanks! I think I might have looked on your site for scalloped potatoes recently and didn’t find one. I was given a huge bag of potatoes, and after making my mother’s fabulous potato salad for a pot luck (minus eggs, sub vegennaise), I still have 5 or 6 potatoes left. E’s endorsement is good enough for me!
callieJune 11, 2013 at 7:23 pm
well. i love this blog, and go to it often for recipe ideas. this recipe has finally compelled me to comment. it is a total winner. i left out the cornstarch, because i don’t like the quality it gives a sauce, but my sauce still thickened up beautifully. thank you so much for a recipe my husband and i both like ( major achievement), tastes sinfully good, and that will be a regular in our house.
RobinApril 14, 2014 at 2:18 pm
These were absolutely wonderful!!!! Thank you!!! What a sauce!!!!
livinrsdAugust 29, 2014 at 3:40 pm
Made these a few days ago and am just getting a moment to comment. Mandoline used, five layers made. Used raw cashews ground in magic bullet to paste but short of butter stage. Added extra nooch as we enjoy what it adds to things like this. Cooked about 7-10 minutes longer to thicken. Fantastic in taste and texture. Missed scalloped potatoes but will now enjoy on a regular basis. My beloved has enthusiastically eaten them for days, with overlefts mixed with vegetables upon reheating.
Your hard work is so very appreciated. You make cooking ffv a joy. Than-q.
BrittaDecember 10, 2014 at 4:36 pm
It didn’t thicken up for me either.
JenniAugust 6, 2015 at 1:27 am
This recipe was perfection! The sauce would even be fit for a vegan mac n cheese or nacho cheese sauce. Waaaay smoother than using raw blended cashews. I topped mine with Pablo instead of breadcrumbs and sprayed with a little olive oil. I also added some melted earth balance butter to the sauce to make it richer and it was sooo..YUMMMM!!!
JenniAugust 6, 2015 at 1:27 am
JustineDecember 23, 2015 at 3:05 pm
These just knocked my socks RIGHT off. They are fantastic!! I can’t say it enough. The only little changes I made were I used a full tsp of garlic powder instead of 1/2 and I added a sparse sprinkling of mozzarella Daiya shreds between each layer (except on top). I describe them as creamy cheesy scalloped potatoes with a hint of sour cream. Divine! THANK YOU.
emilynSeptember 20, 2017 at 10:13 pm
Hi, is the miso necessary?
Susan VoisinSeptember 20, 2017 at 10:33 pm
No, it just contributes to the flavor. You can leave it out or add salt.
Kristine ClementsNovember 26, 2020 at 11:32 am
Wondering if I can put it together early and put the whole thing in the fridge until ready to cook?
Susan VoisinNovember 26, 2020 at 3:51 pm
Yes, that should work fine.