Growing up Italian-American, holiday meals for us skewed more towards the Italian side of our heritage than towards the classic holiday dishes Americans have come to love. Instead of butternut squash soup, we feasted on lasagna or manicotti as the first course. Sweet potato casserole topped with marshmallows never graced our table; instead it was roasted potatoes with rosemary. My mother tells me that she made the classic green bean casserole with french-fried onions once or twice; sadly, I don’t remember it. But as I was thinking about my line-up of blog posts for the holiday season, I knew I’d be remiss if I didn’t include a gluten free version of it since so many people enjoy it. In fact, the stores have had the cardboard displays stacked high with French’s onions front and center now since Halloween.
My version is not only gluten free, but it’s homemade and bursting with fresh green beans and tender mushrooms. And while the casserole is baking, you’ll have plenty of time to prepare the fried onions, which bring the whole dish together.
Green Bean-Mushroom Casserole with Gluten Free Fried Onions
- 2 12-ounce bags green beans, trimmed and ready to cook (microwave about 120 seconds each bag).
- Cut open the bags immediately and dump beans into a bowl to cool.
- 16 ounces sliced white mushrooms, pre-washed if you can find them.
- 1 medium shallot, cut into rings then chopped in half
- Holland House cooking sherry
- Olive oil, about 2 Tbsp for sautéing mushrooms and shallot
- 2 Tbsp. butter for sautéing mushrooms and shallot
- 1 18-ounce can Progresso Creamy Mushroom soup (which is gluten free)
- 1/3 cup tap water whisked with 1 Tbsp. cornstarch
- 2 medium onions, sliced into thin rings (for the fried onions topping)
- Gluten free beer
- Canola oil for frying
- Gluten free baking/pancake mix, 3/4 cup
- Step 1 In a large frying pan, sautee shallots in olive oil, then add mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper. When mushrooms have released most of their liquid, add a splash of Holland House sherry wine. Reduce slightly so the mushrooms aren’t too liquidy.
- Step 2 Next, add the can of soup. Pour into mushrooms and simmer, stirring often. Add the cornstarch and water mixture and stir, allowing the sauce to thicken. Don’t cook too long, remove from heat promptly. Stir in the green beans.
- Step 3 Place in a buttered casserole dish. Cover with foil. Bake at 350 degrees for about 1 hour until bubbling and green beans are tender.
- Step 4 For the onions:
- Step 5 Place in bowl and cover with buttermilk (about 1 cup) and a couple splashes of GF beer (I used RedBridge).
- Step 6 In a separate bowl, combine 3/4 cup GF baking/pancake mix and season with salt and pepper. I used Birch Benders because it’s what I had on hand.
- Step 7 Remove the onion rings with tongs and place in a gallon ziplock bag, draining off most of the excess liquid.
- Step 8 Slowly pour the buttermilk-beer mixture into the bowl with the baking mix and stir well, removing any lumps, until you achieve a pancake batter-like consistency. Add to the bag with the onions and zip closed
- Step 9 combine well with your fingers massaging the bag.
- Step 10 Fry in batches in hot canola oil until golden and crispy, draining on paper towels.
- Step 11 Top the casserole with the fried onions.