Cheesy Vegan Mexican Rice Casserole with roasted poblano peppers and corn is a warm, comforting casserole perfect for the colder weather.
Warm, cozy casseroles have a special place in my Midwestern heart. I grew up eating lots of casseroles. Broccoli and Cheese Casserole and Green Bean Bake were two staples growing up. After becoming Vegan almost a decade ago, casseroles were a very rare appearance on my dinner table. This year I wanted to create Vegan casseroles that were worthy enough of becoming family favorites that would make regular appearances on the dinner table. I have a good feeling that this Cheesy Vegan Mexican Rice Casserole will soon become a staple.
The casserole starts with simply steaming some white rice. After the rice is cooked, roasted poblano peppers and corn are mixed into the rice. The rice mixture is poured into a casserole dish and then is topped with some Vegan cheesy goodness. A layer of my Basic Cashew Crema is spread over the rice. It is common to spread a layer of Mexican crema over a baked rice dish in Mexico. I learned this technique from my Husband. His Mom Adela would always use a layer crema in her baked rice casseroles.
Now comes the cheesy part, the Vegan Mozzarella Cheese. For this recipe I used the Fresh VeganMozz from Miyoko’s Kitchen. I thinly sliced the cheese and placed it over the crema. The casserole goes into the oven until all the cheese has melted. If you are using a Vegan shredded mozzarella cheese like Daiya, it probably won’t take as long to melt.
My favorite part of this casserole is the cashew crema layer. It adds a creamy element to the casserole and compliments that cheese layer. It also adds a tangy element to the casserole that I just love.
- 1 Cup Extra Long Grain Rice
- 2 Cups Water
- Salt and Pepper
- 2 Roasted Poblano Peppers, seeded and diced
- 2 Cup Frozen Corn, thawed
- ¼ Cup Cashew Crema
- 8 Ounces Vegan Mozzarella Cheese, thinly sliced or shredded
- In a medium saucepan add the rice, water and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, stir then reduce to low and cover. Cook until all the water has been absorbed and the rice is tender, about 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and let sit for 5 minutes then fluff the rice with a fork.
- While the rice is cooking, pre heat the oven to 375.
- In a large mixing bowl add the cooked rice, diced roasted poblano peppers and corn. Stir everything together. Season with salt and pepper.
- Transfer the rice mixture to a 1½ quart casserole dish. Pour the Mexican Cashew Crema over the rice and use a spatula to evenly spread the crema over the rice. Add the thinly sliced or shredded vegan mozzarella cheese. Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until the cheese has melted. For added brown spots, broil the casserole for 5-6 minutes, keeping a close eye on it so it doesn't brown too much. If you are using shredded cheese, it probably won't take as long to melt as Miyoko's Mozzerrella sliced.
- Let the casserole cool 10-15 minutes before serving.
For the Cashew Crema, I used my Basic Cashew Crema.