The new wave of cold weather has me craving a hearty pasta sauce. I’ve also been working hard to sneak extra veggies into Cheryl. This Slow Cooker Vegan Bolognese is easy to make and gets a ton of veggies into your picky eater without a fight.
Saturday is the perfect day for slow cooking. Life is more relaxing once you know what you’re going to have for dinner. It’s even better when you have it cooking ahead of time.
This sauce may look like its meaty namesake, but instead it’s full of cauliflower, eggplant, mushrooms and carrots.
I like to buy my cauliflower and eggplant at Trader Joe’s when it’s not available at my farmers market. The best deal is that you pay per item and not per pound for most of the vegetables. I always walk out of there with the largest eggplant, butternut squash or head of cauliflower that I can find.
When you add everything to your 4 or 5 quart crockpot, it may seem a little drier than you expect. As the veggies cook down, they will add more liquid, but if you like your sauce thinner, you can add some broth or a little water. I like mine super thick.
Serve over cooked brown rice and quinoa pasta or zoodles for a traditional pasta night. Sometimes, I pour some sauce over a thick piece of whole grain toast for a fast and satisfying lunch. What’s your favorite pasta sauce? Is it something you grew up on or a recipe you created yourself?
Slow Cooker Vegan Bolognese
Use your food processor to make quick work of the prep work then cook all day in your slow cooker. This makes a large batch so you'll have some for now and plenty to freeze for later
- 1/2 head cauliflower, cut into rough florets
- 10 ounce container of mushrooms
- 2 cups shredded carrots
- 2 cups eggplant chunks
- 2 (28 ounce) cans crushed tomatoes
- 6 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons agave nectar or sweetener of your choice
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons oregano
- 1 tablespoon basil
- 1 1/2 teaspoon rosemary
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Add the cauliflower florets to the food processor and pulse until it looks like couscous. Scrape out into your 4 or 5 quart slow cooker.
- Now add the mushrooms to the food processor and pulse until small, then add those to the slow cooker. Repeat with carrots and eggplant, until all the veggies are minced and in the slow cooker.
- Mix in the crushed tomatoes, garlic, tomato pastes, agave nectar, balsamic vinegar, oregano, basil and rosemary. Cook on low 8 to 9 hours on low or 4 to 5 hours on high.
- Before serving add salt and pepper to taste and add more oregano, basil or rosemary if you feel that the flavor faded some during cooking. I almost always add a little extra boost.