This Vegetarian Gumbo recipe is easy to make, loaded up with tons of savory veggies, and tastes SO rich and delicious. I recommend prepping all of your ingredients before you begin to cook the gumbo, so that you can give your full attention to that delicious roux. ;)
- 1/2 cup butter (or oil)
- 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 medium red bell peppers, cored and diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 1 small white onion, peeled and diced
- 1 cup fresh or frozen chopped okra
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 cups vegetable stock
- 1 small head of cauliflower, cored and chopped into florets
- 1 pound (16 ounces) baby bella or button mushrooms, diced
- 1 (14 ounce) can fire-roasted tomatoes
- 2 teaspoons Creole or Cajun seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne, or more/less to taste
- 1 bay leaf
- fine sea salt and freshly-cracked black pepper, to taste
- optional topping: thinly-sliced green onions
- Heat butter in a large heavy-bottomed pot (I used a Dutch oven) over medium-high heat until melted. Whisk in flour until combined. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, for about 20 minutes, or until the roux mixture reaches a dark amber-brown color. Keep a very close eye on the roux at all times, turning the heat down a bit if it seems to be cooking too quickly or starts to faintly smell burnt.
- Once the roux is ready, immediately stir in the bell peppers, celery, onion, okra and garlic until combined. Continue to cook, stirring every 10-15 seconds, until the vegetables have softened, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the vegetable stock gradually until the broth is smooth. Then add in the cauliflower, mushrooms, tomatoes, seasoning, thyme, cayenne and bay leaf. Stir until combined, and continue cooking until the soup reaches a simmer.
- Reduce heat to medium-low and let the gumbo continue to simmer for 5-10 minutes minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Taste, and season with extra salt, pepper and/or cayenne if needed.
- Serve warm over rice, garnished with lots of green onions. Or transfer to a sealed container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
*If you would like your broth to be extra rich and creamy, feel free to stir an extra tablespoon or two of butter into the broth just before serving. So good!