Vegetable Moussaka Recipe
An easy vegetable moussaka dish that consists of juicy veggie meatless mince sauce mingling with layers of sweet eggplant (aubergines) and a velvety creamy bechamel sauce. This vegan and vegetarian version of the classic Greek moussaka is hearty and homely yet much lighter, dairy-free and low in carb with gluten-free options.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Total Time1 hr
- 1.8 - 2 kg eggplants (3 medium or 2 large) sliced into 8 mm (1/3 inch) thickness
Veggie Meat Sauce
- 170 g veggie mince meat [1 cup] use cooked lentils for gluten-free
- 180 ml crushed tomatoes [3/4 cup]
- 100 g white mushrooms finely chopped [1 cup]
- 2 stems spring onions finely chopped (optional)
- 1 - 2 garlic cloves finely chopped or minced (optional)
- 1/2 tablespoon fresh ginger root minced/grated, see notes
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon harissa powder or 1 teaspoon harissa paste
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari for gluten-free or use our soy-free soy sauce, see notes
- 1 teaspoon vegetable bouillon powder
- 4 - 5 sprigs fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- Salt if needed
- Pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
Bechamel Cheese Sauce
- 240 ml canned coconut milk thick and creamy [1 cup]
- 240 ml soy milk or water [1 cup]
- 2 tablespoons potato starch
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1/3 teaspoon salt or to taste
Roast the Eggplants
Preheat the oven at 180C / 350F.
Place the eggplant slices on a baking tray lined with parchment paper or greased to keep the eggplant from sticking to the pan. This will also make cleaning up easier afterward.
Brush both sides of the eggplant slices the with some olive oil.
Place in the oven and bake for about 15 minutes (until about half cooked).
There should still be some spongy resistance when you insert a fork into the flesh.
While the eggplant is roasting, make the veggie meat sauce
Heat 1 tablespoon of coconut or olive oil in a skillet or saucepan on medium high heat. Add the garlic (if using) and the minced ginger.
Saute for about 1 minute then add the veggie mince meat.
Add the cumin, harissa and a little black pepper. Stir to combine and saute for about 5 minutes.
When the veggie mince starts to dry up or sticks to the pan, add the soy sauce. Then, add the mushrooms and saute for a couple more minutes.
Add crushed tomatoes, vegetable bouillon powder, spring onions, fresh thyme and dried oregano.Add a little water (but not too much as we don't want a soupy sauce) and stir to combine, cover and bring to a simmer.
Lower the heat and simmer for 12 - 15 minutes while stirring occasionally.
Turn off the heat. Taste and adjust the salt if necessary.
Make the bechamel sauce
Add all ingredients into a saucepan. Whisk to mix the potato starch into the mixture before turning the heat onto medium temperature.
Heat while stirring slowly but rather constantly. After a little while, the sauce will start to thicken and at this stage it will thicken pretty quickly. Keep stirring constantly until a thick creamy cheesy sauce is obtained.
Assemble the moussaka
Grease a 23-cm (9-inch) square baking dish.
Divide the eggplant into 3 batches.
Place one layer of eggplant at the bottom of the pan.
Ladle half the veggie mince sauce to cover the eggplant.
Then top by a second layer of eggplant and ladle another layer of veggie mince sauce.
Top with the final layer of eggplant. Then pour the thick creamy bechamel cheese sauce to completely cover the eggplant.
Spread the cheese sauce out evenly.
Place in the oven and bake for 20 - 25 minutes until nice and golden.
Remove from the oven and let sit for about 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
Enjoy the deliciousness!
Variations: For a heartier meal, replace the bottom layer of eggplant with sliced half-cooked potatoes. You may bake the sliced potatoes in the square baking dish for the same amount of time as the eggplant.
For soy-free version, instead of veggie mince meat, you may use cooked lentils with more mushrooms (portobello variety is a good choice) for meatiness.
Use our soy-free gluten-free soy sauce substitute (https://veganlovlie.com/soy-sauce-substitute-recipe-for-soy/).
Notes: Make your own minced garlic-ginger paste (https://veganlovlie.com/quick-tip-pre-mince-prepare-preserve/)
Link to Vegetable Moussaka Recipe - https://veganlovlie.com/vegetable-moussaka/