October 11, 2011

Scalloped Potatoes And Eggplant Bacon

by IsaChandra

Serves 8
Time: 1 1/2 hours || Active time: 30 minutes

It’s casserole season! Time to spend a little more time in the kitchen, time for potlucks and gatherings, time to sit in front of the TV watching Little House On The Prairie reruns and eating an entire casserole by yourself, am I right?

The original inspiration for this was my boyfriend’s description of Scalloped Potatoes and Ham. Not something I ever had as a child, but I can see the appeal. Cream of celery soup, tender layers of thinly sliced potato, browned on top, what’s not to love? Well, besides that ham. This casserole is creamy, dreamy, rich and made smoky with the addition of Eggplant Bacon.

I actually see a world of possibility here…swap the potatoes out for root vegetables or sweet potatoes, add roasted red peppers or fennel, use tempeh bacon instead; this casserole is your template! And if you’re simply just searching for a perfect scalloped potato recipe, this might be it, so go ahead and leave the bacon out. These would be perfect for any holiday table, or anywhere mashed potatoes would be appropriate.

The key to perfectly cooked potatoes is to slice them thinly – aim for between 1/8 and 1/4 thick. And seal the casserole in tinfoil until potatoes are easily pierced with a fork, then (and only then) do you uncover the casserole to let everything get nice and brown.

Other notes for this recipe:
~Slice the potatoes when the onions are cooking, that way they don’t turn brown while you’re waiting for everything else to be ready.

~You can actually use roasted cashews here if you like. I usually use unroasted to make cashew creme, but I was out of it and the roasted ones worked just fine!

~If you’re making the eggplant bacon, this will take considerably more time, so add 30 minutes to your cooking time.

~If you’re looking for a gluten-free option, I love to make breadcrumbs out of gluten-free pretzels. You can also sub the breadcrumbs with 2 tablespoons cornstarch.

~If you don’t have a rectangular 2 quart casserole, square will work, too.

1 cup whole cashews soaked in water for 2 hours or up to overnight
2 cups vegetable broth

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
3 ribs celery, thinly sliced

1/4 cup store-bought breadcrumbs (if using homemade, increase to 1/3 cup)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Fresh black pepper

3/4 teaspoons salt

2 lbs russet potatoes, peeled, thinly sliced (about 3 large)
1 recipe Eggplant Bacon

Chopped flat leaf parsley for garnish (optional)

Place the drained cashews and vegetable broth in a food processor and blend until completely smooth, scraping the sides of the food processor with a spatula occasionally to make sure you get everything. This could take 5 minutes.

In the meantime, preheat a large pan over medium heat. Saute the onions and celery in the oil, along with a dash of salt. Cook until onions are nice and brown, about 10 minutes. Add the breadcrumbs and toss to coat onions and celery. Cook until the breadcrumbs turn a few shades darker, about 3 minutes.

Now is a good time to preheat your oven to 350 F.

Pour the cashew mixture into the pan and lower heat a bit. Mix well. Add lemon juice, several dashes black pepper and salt. Let cook for 2 minutes, it should begin to thicken. Taste for salt and adjust seasoning if needed.

Now we’ll put this baby together!

Lightly spray a 2 quart casserole rectangular with cooking spray (or lightly grease with olive oil). Pour half of the sauce into the casserole. Now arrange potatoes and eggplant into the casserole, dredging potatoes in sauce a bit as you layer. They should be in slightly overlapping layers, with a slice of bacon in between each potato.

Pour the remaining sauce over the potatoes. They should be mostly submerged. Use a rubber spatula to spread the sauce on if needed.

Seal tightly with tin foil and bake for about 45 minutes, or until potatoes are easily pierced with a fork. Remove foil and bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes, until nice and brown.

Garnish with fresh chopped parsley and serve!



  • October 11, 2011 at 6:46 pm: Shelly

    Aaaaaaaaaaaoooooooooh, that looks sooo amazing!!

  • October 11, 2011 at 6:55 pm: Tessa

    I was JUST THINKING I wanted scalloped potatoes…you are both a genius and a mind reader. Can’t wait to try them! Super curious about the eggplant bacon, so that was on the list before, but this sounds like a great use…

  • October 11, 2011 at 7:05 pm: Monica

    Looks delicious! (And glad to hear I’m not the only one who is all about some Little House reruns, haha!)

  • October 11, 2011 at 7:14 pm: Solveig

    This reminds me a bit of Moussaka, I will definitely give it a try!

  • October 11, 2011 at 7:22 pm: Alyssa

    Oh I cannot wait for these. My CSA has been pumping out the potatoes and I have an old-style crank slicer/grater that creates perfectly even potato slices (thanks, Mom who recognizes the importance of scalloped potatoes and is better at eBay than I am). Thanks Isa!!

  • October 11, 2011 at 7:30 pm: Arielle (Your Vegan Girlfriend)

    OMG this looks RIDICCCCCC. Eggplant is my favorite vegetable on the planet (as seen by my numerous recipes on my blog) but this takes the cake. You da best!!!

  • October 11, 2011 at 7:55 pm: Jojo

    Wow, that looks seriously amazing! I might have to try to find the time to make this before MoFo’s over!

  • October 11, 2011 at 8:43 pm: B'klynHeart

    Every recipe here is Christmas for me. Can’t wait to try this, have a feeling this will be on my holiday menus. And other menus. Ah, much <3

  • October 11, 2011 at 10:51 pm: Catalina

    My sister and I were just talking about scalloped potatoes and ham. I never liked my mom’s because she used velveeta and the sauce would always break so it was potatoes and ham with curdled cheese sauce. So I look forward to making this version.

  • October 11, 2011 at 11:40 pm: FoodFeud

    I made your scalloped potatoes recipe from VWAV one year for Thanksgiving and totally freaked out over the slicing of the potatoes to 1/4-1/8 inch. I brought my plastic Garfield ruler into the kitchen.

    • October 12, 2011 at 4:32 pm: IsaChandra

      Haha, yeah, I think it’s not a bad idea to measure once, but the more you prep stuff the easier it is to gauge the thickness without measuring.

  • October 12, 2011 at 1:34 am: Katrina

    This is brilliant! Yum.

  • October 12, 2011 at 12:46 pm: Amanda

    We have Appetite for Reduction and we make the eggplant bacon a lot! Yum! I love the idea of it with scalloped potatoes. Mmmm!!

  • October 12, 2011 at 4:21 pm: Allison Dubya

    You seriously are a mind reader! I just made a scalloped potato recipe last week… I (am pretty sure that I) invented pumpkin scalloped potatoes. I used russet and sweet potatoes and used a roux, almond milk, pumpkin, nutmeg, cinnamon, garlic, onion, and other yummy stuff to smother it in.

    This sounds amazing! And coincidentally, I just bought a bunch of potatoes and some eggplant yesterday. It’s fate! Can’t wait! (Rhyming was unintentional…)

    • October 12, 2011 at 4:29 pm: IsaChandra

      I love that idea! So the pumpkin was pureed in the bechamel?

  • October 12, 2011 at 8:53 pm: Brandy

    The minute this went up I made it. You would think my son had never had a potato in his life the way he ate this. Wonderful recipe. I am already planing on taking this to the Thanksgiving potluck this year.

  • October 14, 2011 at 5:00 pm: Vanessa

    this looks sooo amazing. i must try this! thanks for the recipe PPk. =)

  • October 14, 2011 at 8:04 pm: ann

    Recently diagnosed as Lactose and Soy intolerant. Its great to find a creamy recipe I can enjoy. Sunday dinner will be scalloped eggplant and bacon.

  • October 15, 2011 at 2:31 pm: K

    I am confused! What do I do with the onion/celery/breadcrumb mixture? Is it combined with the cashew mixture in the saucepan?

    • October 15, 2011 at 4:27 pm: IsaChandra

      Yes, the cashew creme goes into the pan with the mixture. It says “Pour the cashew mixture into the pan and lower heat a bit.” Is that confusing? Maybe because in the interim the oven is being preheated?

  • October 15, 2011 at 4:34 pm: cecil

    I was also a little confused whether the pan I would pour the creme in was the pan that had the onion, etc, but after reading further down the recipe and finding no more mention of the onions on their own, assumed that had to be the one. Maybe just edit to say “Pour the cashew mixture into the pan with the onion, celery and breadcrumbs.”?

  • October 16, 2011 at 3:37 am: faerain

    These were INCREDIBLE!!
    The eggplant bacon was so amazing by itself – (I can totally imagine them in a BLT)
    but the potatoes were so creamy and perfect!

    I almost went up for 3rds XD

  • October 16, 2011 at 1:49 pm: Lisa

    FAB-U-LOUS! just plain – no eggplant bacon – and it was outstanding! I can’t wait to make the eggplant bacon!!

  • October 16, 2011 at 4:09 pm: V

    I made this and it was absolutely delicious! I couldn’t have enough. And when my husband took his first bite, he paused and his eyes bulged out of his head … that’s how good it was.
    The eggplant bacon is so good I could hardly believe it. I had to make a second batch because I kept eating them while prepping the rest of the recipe. I used Bragg’s instead of regular soy sauce and it was wonderful.
    Isa, all I have to say is: I have been cooking vegan for 9 years now and I was getting tired of the same old same old. A friend has a couple of your books and recommended your blog to me. YOU are revolutionizing my kitchen! You rock and you are sick (in a good way)! Every time I taste one of your concoctions, I am filled with indignation because it tastes so good that NO animal should EVER have to be used for consumption in ANY way. In light of your deliciousness, using animal products for human consumption is absurd! Your vegan food knocks every animal-based meal out of the park. There, I’ve said it.

    • October 16, 2011 at 7:28 pm: IsaChandra

      Whoa, easy there! We don’t want eyes bulging out of heads.

  • October 16, 2011 at 6:21 pm: Suburban Snow White

    Naughty. I love it!

  • October 17, 2011 at 12:58 am: Dawn

    Have you been spying on me or does everybody watch Little House and consume large quantities of casserole? That looks amazing!

  • October 17, 2011 at 2:52 pm: in2insight

    Out of this world good! I forgot to get an Eggplant, so used a box of pre-breaded frozen Eggplant slices for the “Bacon” and left out the bread crumbs in the sauce.
    One of the best casseroles I’ve ever.
    Thank you.

  • October 18, 2011 at 2:32 pm: Eliza

    Made this last night for dinner and it was amazing! I am not usually a fan of “cheezy” or creamy sauces, but I always loved scalloped potatoes–this sauce is incredible! And so easy to make. I took a few liberties with the recipe–I didn’t have a yellow onion or celery, so I used 3 leeks instead, and I made tempeh bacon from the Vegan Brunch cookbook in place of the eggplant bacon. I also threw in some broccoli just because I had to use it up. It was outstanding! Thanks Isa for yet another delicious recipe.

  • October 18, 2011 at 3:44 pm: Kierstan @ Life {and running} in Iowa

    And this is going on my “must make now” list! Amazing.

  • October 19, 2011 at 1:31 am: The Hungry Birdie

    Wow this looks incredible! i thought cashew cream was so much harder than this, must make!

  • October 19, 2011 at 11:34 am: Whitney

    Looks incredible! I want to make this for Thanksgiving, but I would have to make it ahead of time. How does it taste the next day?

    • October 19, 2011 at 4:02 pm: IsaChandra

      Can you assemble a day in advance and just bake the day of? Mine was still yummy the next day, but a little dry. The other thought I have is to add maybe 1/2 cup extra broth to the sauce to make it extra saucy.

  • October 19, 2011 at 4:35 pm: Allison

    Oh boy. I’m going to have to make this. A lot.

  • October 20, 2011 at 1:50 am: Jon

    Thank you for showing me eggplant bacon. The possibilities are endless…

  • October 21, 2011 at 12:10 pm: Heather

    Sooooooo delicious! I accidentally forgot to add the breadcrumbs and the sauce still thickened up just fine after the lemon juice, and it was still creamy and delectable the next day, so maybe consider that if you’re making it ahead of time. Yum!

  • October 23, 2011 at 9:25 pm: Christine

    I made this yummy dish. The eggplant got “lost” and the sauce was a little too thick. I’m going to make it again and I’m going to add a half cup or so of stock. I really LOVED the flavor!!
    Thanks!

  • October 24, 2011 at 2:00 am: meg

    Okay I had a couple issues making this.

    1) My eggplant didn’t get crispy at all – it’s supposed to get a little firm/crispy, right!? My pieces were all floppy, even after baking longer than recommended.

    2) I had 2 lbs of potatoes, 3 potatoes total. I only had room for two!

    3) Related, after laying down my potatoes and eggplants I barely had enough sauce to cover the top. The recipe said it should be submerged. I feel like somehow the ratios are weird or something because I’m confident I followed the directions to the letter, though next time I would only buy 2 potatoes, and make half again as much sauce to cover everything.

    Well those are my questions; the casserole is currently baking, so I’ll let you know whether in the end it tastes as great as others are saying! =)

  • October 24, 2011 at 2:02 am: meg

    Oops, looking at your photos I think I used a deeper casserole dish than yours, which might explain the weird ratios. Derp!

  • October 24, 2011 at 1:27 pm: meg

    And FINAL comment (I swear!) this turned out incredibly delicious! INCREDIBLY! My boyfriend, my two roommates, and my visiting friend (all omnivores) said it was great and ate it up. Thank you so much!

    • October 24, 2011 at 4:54 pm: IsaChandra

      Great! Thanks for letting me know.

  • October 24, 2011 at 7:09 pm: Candace

    Question, if you are cooking the eggplant bacon with the sauce and potatoes, then im assuming its going to be slightly soggy anyway. Does it really matter then if your bacon is made the day before? I know you said it was soggier the next day. I know your probably like, “just make the damn casserole”…but I thought id ask :)

    • October 24, 2011 at 7:25 pm: IsaChandra

      You’re probably right, it will get soggy, so make it the day before and ignore me.

  • October 25, 2011 at 2:02 am: Letícia

    This recipe is amazing! Like Meg, my omnivore boyfriend and friends ate it all up! It was absolutely delicious.

  • October 27, 2011 at 3:11 am: Willow

    You’ve definitely outdone yourself with this one Isa. I love, love, love it. I’ve never been a fan of scalloped potatoes because they’ve always been too soupy and bland. But I decided to give them a shot because I was hoping you had revolutionized scalloped potatoes, and I absolutely can’t get enough eggplant bacon. Well the combo was ridiculously amazing. The sauce was nice and thick, a real “stick to you bones” meal…thank you so much for being such a rock star in the kitchen!

  • October 27, 2011 at 9:05 pm: missbear

    Made this tonight and it is divine, first time I’ve used cashew cream and I love it. Hubby is a meat eater and thought it was the bees knees too. I had similar issues as another post above in not being able to get the “bacon” crisp despite cooking it longer etc but it’s my first time making it AND it will only go soggy in this recipe so not bothered as it tasted awesome. For reference I followed tips from forum and used smoked paprika (half teaspoon) in place of liquid smoke and it worked like a dream (uk impossible place to just buy the smoke). Thanks for another stunning recipe, looking forward to making the pumpkin chocolate loaf and pumpkin cookies (AfR) this weekend.

  • October 29, 2011 at 5:28 am: Gretchen

    LOVE YOU ISA!! DELICOUS!!

  • November 1, 2011 at 1:20 am: Amanda

    Yum! I made this tonight for dinner and it was so good!! I’ve been struggling to find vegan recipes my husband enjoys but he loved this and went back for seconds! He even told me I can make this again!! Thanks so much! I definitely have to try more of your recipes!!!

  • November 1, 2011 at 2:41 am: Mandy

    Isa, you out did yourself on this one. Since I have a wheat allergy I added 2T of super fine brown rice flour to the cashew/veggie broth mix. This recipe rocks. Love the eggplant bacon. Thanks.

    • November 2, 2011 at 4:19 am: IsaChandra

      Thanks for making a gluten free version! I’m sure others will appreciate it.

  • November 10, 2011 at 4:33 pm: Amanda

    I would love love to have that creamy sauce again, but a lot of those recipes use cashews and I have a nut allergy. What would you suggest as a substitute for the cashews? Thanks. :)

    • November 10, 2011 at 6:56 pm: IsaChandra

      Are you allergic to all nuts? Sunflower seeds, too? Sesame seeds? Pinenuts?

  • November 13, 2011 at 7:51 am: Gwen

    Wow. this was awesome!!! We tested it for Thanksgiving, and it is officially on the menu. Most thought it was perfect as is, but my dad thought the sauce was a little too thick, and could be a bit more liquidy (like traditional scalloped potatoes). I may add a bit more almond milk next time I make it… it could be cuz I live in Arizona though, ingredients can get dried out. Also, I was a little unsure about the celery being in this recipe, but it fit well in this dish! Thanks!

  • November 14, 2011 at 8:35 pm: Amanda

    Just cashews and pistachios, Isa.

  • November 16, 2011 at 6:04 pm: Ry

    YUM, made this last night for dinner and it was so good (the eggplant bacon is like crack!), I’m eating the leftovers for breakfast! Next time, were adding some sliced olives and thyme to the cashew sauce for an update to the dish.

  • November 17, 2011 at 5:56 pm: Natalie

    I’ve been wanting to make scalloped potatoes but was so intimidated! Thank you!

  • November 21, 2011 at 3:57 am: Sarah

    This really hit the spot. I have to admit, after prepping the eggplant bacon I wolfed down every piece in record time, so I wasn’t able to include it in the dish. To compensate, I added soy sauce and seitanbacher’s vegetable broth powder to the cream portion of the dish. I used 1 mori nu tofu + 1/2 cup cashews instead of 2 cups cashes, and I also added Kale. I never liked scalloped potatoes in my pregan days, but I really dug this!

  • November 22, 2011 at 1:35 am: Katie

    Turned out amazing! I followed as is. No changes! Delicious! Soul food!

  • December 4, 2011 at 1:49 am: Brent

    This is the second time I’ve made this recipe now. There are NO leftovers with my family when this is served. This actually tastes much better than the ‘traditional’ way of using cream of mushroom.

  • December 5, 2011 at 1:25 am: Allison

    I’ve made this 3 times already this holiday season. I took it to 2 different potlucks as well as Thanksgiving dinner. Everyone loved it!

  • December 5, 2011 at 4:01 am: carolbrowne

    I made them tonight. DELICIOUS! I agree with Brent – this does taste better than cream of yuck soup. My hubby agrees. Thanks for this recipe! I’ll be making it again.

  • December 8, 2011 at 2:52 pm: Jen

    Do you think this would not cook properly if the potatoes were left unpeeled. If unpeeled should it be handled any differently, or cooked any differently? I know this question is late, sorry. Thanks.

    • December 8, 2011 at 7:22 pm: IsaChandra

      I prefer the texture of peeled here, but unpeeled would work with no other adjustments.

  • January 16, 2012 at 8:19 pm: Emily

    This was so delicious!!! I made it last Friday for dinner, but didn’t have cashews so I used a simple gravy mix (almond milk, earth balance, and flour with some seasonings to add a bit of flavor) and mixed that with the vegetable broth. It worked out well.

  • February 18, 2012 at 10:39 pm: Therese

    Had this or dinner tonight… Thank you for another delicious recipe, Isa! =)

    Had some silken tofu in the fridge that needed using, so 3 tablespoons went into the sauce, and used roasted fennel (mmm!) instead of eggplant. It needed an extra 30 minutes in the oven at 450 F (gas mark 8) – I think I may have packed my potatoes a bit tightly into a smaller casserole dish (also used fewer potatoes). The potatoes were sliced very thinly, but they were standing pretty much up-right to fit in the dish… Will use fewer potatoes next time or invest in a larger casserole. =) I left the potatoes unpeeled and they were great (Sante variety).

    Totally awesome served with roasted parsnips, carrots and broccoli and your Italian seitan sausage. ^_^

  • April 6, 2012 at 11:29 pm: Julia

    This recipe satisfies my nostalgia for scalloped potatoes (haven’t had them since I cut out dairy from my diet). The smoky flavor of the eggplant marries perfectly with the creamy texture of the cashews and potatoes so nicely. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this recipe. A meat-eating coworker tried it at work the next day and told me, “That’s frickn’ delicious!” I could seriously tuck in to the whole casserole by myself for dinner it’s so tasty. This is a keeper for sure. I had to force myself to eat some greens with it and not just have potatoes for dinner.

    YUM YUM YUM, ISAY!

  • May 6, 2012 at 8:38 am: Stefanie

    I must admit I was a bit skeptical at first because this was my first foray into using cashews to make a creamy sauce, but the end result was sooo delicious! I made the eggplant bacon, which added a nice richness to it, but I think it would work equally well without because the recipe is already so flavoursome. I loved this and will certainly be making it again.

  • May 11, 2012 at 3:50 am: Jessie

    I went with your encouragement to use this recipe as a template, and used sweet potatoes instead, as well as some broccoli. Next time, I will just use the template. :) I think the sweet potatoes didn’t let the sauce shine enough–when I tasted the sauce before assembling, it made me weak in the knees it was so good. I’ll also just serve the broccoli steamed alongside. Next time!!

  • July 20, 2012 at 1:34 pm: Laura BEth

    Are the cashews raw or roasted? Does it matter? I have a hard time finding raw cashers where I live.

  • August 3, 2012 at 12:41 am: jessiker

    My meat loving family loved this last Thanksgiving. Im already looking forward to making it a tradition! :)

  • August 28, 2012 at 8:40 pm: Kimmay

    Making this as soon as I can. SO EXCITED!

  • September 23, 2012 at 11:57 pm: Lisa

    Made this today for a wedding shower, such a huge hit! Devoured completely by the omni’s. Will be sure to make this for all future get-togethers. Thanks so much for coming up with this recipe and sharing with us.

  • November 24, 2012 at 7:49 pm: Nancy

    Just made this for my husband’s birthday! He LOVED it.

  • December 20, 2012 at 2:03 am: Caiti

    This was excellent!!! I was a bit concerned about the sauce consistency when I realized after adding it to the onion and celery mixture that I never added in the bread crumbs. I toasted them on the side and stirred them in and it turned out well, but maybe a bit thicker than it was supposed to be. Bringing this to Christmas Eve dinner!

  • March 29, 2013 at 6:35 pm: TtheV

    Another omni potluck pleaser …u always do me right, grrl! I’m slowly converting my office to V thanks to PPK. The peeps appreciate my constant goodies so much they are going out of their way to veganize their recipes to share with me! Big up homes, love & light to u :)

  • November 14, 2013 at 6:21 pm: Jono

    It would be great if people actually commented AFTER they make recipes. All of the recipes I’ve viewed have very favorable comments, all based on soley the recipe, and not actually preparing and eating the dishes.

    C’mon people! Go cook!

  • December 2, 2013 at 3:48 pm: Valerie

    My friend just made this for Thanksgiving, and gave me some leftovers. WOW, creamy, smoky goodness. This is comfort food for sure, but looks so elegant too- perfect to bring to an omnivore holiday!

  • December 8, 2013 at 12:40 am: tofulish

    This was seriously amazing! I made it with half cashews and half sunflower seed because I ran out of cashews, and it was delicious. My husband and I couldn’t stop eating. I love the way the eggplant bacon (I added a splash of maple syrup to my marinade) rehydrated in this and yet had its own texture apart from the potatoes and the creamy sauce. I was worried it would all melt together, but the elements stayed distinct and delicious. The only note I will make for last time is to test the potatoes fully, as we had a few that didn’t cook perfectly, but that was the fault of our oven not the recipe, which is perfection!

  • December 23, 2013 at 5:54 pm: naomi

    As I pull up this recipe for the millionth time, I thought I should write a quick comment singing its praises…this is by far my most requested dish and something I make for both thanksgiving and xmas…it’s been known to wow even the most rigid dairy-loving carnivores…delicious!