Vegan Butternut Squash Gratin with Kamut Berries, Smoked Tofu and Spinach, nut-free recipe, can be made gluten-free
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Vegan Butternut Squash Gratin with Kamut Berries

This butternut squash gratin a really creamy flavourful dish with a mouthful of textures from the kamut grains and beautiful flavours from the butternut squash, smoked tofu and rich cheesy bechamel sauce. This is a complete meal in itself, although you may serve it as a side dish as well. It’s nut-free and can be made gluten-free by omitting the kamut. It’s easy to make ahead — great for special occasions and gatherings.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time1 hr 30 mins
Soaking Time12 hrs
Total Time1 hr 50 mins
Course: Main Dish, Side Dish
Cuisine: Vegan
Keyword: butternut squash gratin, kamut berries, kamut recipes, vegan gratin, vegan squash gratin
Servings: 2 mains, or 4 sides
Author: Teenuja Dahari -


  • 200 g dried whole kamut grains [1 cup], use brown rice for gluten-free
  • 2 - 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 550 - 600 g butternut [about one large] peeled and sliced into thin discs
  • 400 ml coconut milk [1 can]
  • ½ teaspoon vegetable bouillon powder
  • 180 ml water [3/4 cup] or use vegetable stock and omit the bouillon powder
  • tablespoons tapioca starch or potato starch
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast if not using vegan cheese, add an extra ½ tablespoon
  • ½ teaspoon salt adjust to taste
  • 100 g smoked tofu [about ½ block], or just regular firm tofu, sliced thinly - see notes
  • 50 g spinach [1 cup]
  • 4 - 5 sprigs thyme
  • Vegan grated cheese optional
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Prepare and cook the kamut grains:

  • Soak the kamut grains in plenty of water for at least 12 hours or overnight.
  • The next day, drain and rinse the grains. Place in a deep pot and add 2½ cups of fresh water. Bring to a boil then lower the heat to medium and cook for about 1 hour or until the grains are gorged and tender.
  • Alternatively, you can cook the kamut in a pressure cooker (at maximum pressure) for 22 minutes. Then let the steam go down naturally before opening the cooker.
  • Drain the remaining liquid and set the kamut grains aside.
  • You may do this in advance and freeze the grains. Then defrost and use whenever needed.

Prepare the butternut squash:

  • Preheat the oven to 200 C / 400 F.
  • Meanwhile peel and slice the butternut squash into discs.
  • Drizzle some olive oil onto the butternut squash. Toss to coat them evenly then place them in a baking dish and bake for about 30 minutes until almost done.
  • While the butternut squash is roasting, make the creamy white sauce.

Make the creamy white sauce:

  • Place all the ingredients for the white sauce in a saucepan and heat on medium temperature.
  • Stir regularly and more constantly when the mixture start to thicken.
  • Once thick and creamy (about 10 - 12 minutes), remove from the heat and set aside. Do not allow this mixture to boil.

Make the casserole:

  • Slice the tofu thinly or cut into chunks.
  • Remove the butternut squash from the oven and remove one layer of squash from the dish, set aside.
  • Drizzle ¼ of the white sauce onto the first layer of squash then top with the thyme leaves.
  • Layer with half of the boiled kamut grains then top with a few spoonfuls of the sauce and vegan cheese (if using).
  • Add the spinach leaves, a few spoonfuls of sauce followed by a layer of tofu and some more kamut grains. Drizzle some more sauce.
  • Add a final layer of the butternut squash and top with the remaining sauce.
  • Sprinkle with some more thyme and some cracked black pepper.
  • Bake (uncovered) for about 30 - 35 minutes until golden.
  • Remove from the oven and let stand for about 8 - 10 minutes before serving.
  • Enjoy as a main dish or side dish.


If using regular tofu (instead of smoked), you may want to lightly pan-fry it with a little soy sauce first for more flavour and texture.
Link to original recipe - Vegan Butternut Squash Gratin with Kamut Berries -