Baked Cheesy Vegan Polenta Fries

I made these as a gluten-free side to a vegetable soup. They’d also be great for parties, snacks, and a change from potato fries for a while. Use a different vegan cheese or omit the bit sprinkled on at the end. Crispy on the outside, moist and delicious on the outside—these are a new favorite of ours!

Cheesy Vegan Polenta Fries (yields about 4 dozen ‘fries’)

4 cups water
1 1/2 cups cornmeal 
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup nutritional yeast (opt)
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp Daiya mozzarella shreds 
1 tsp garlic powder 
salt to taste

Bring the water to a boil in a medium stockpot. Slowly whisk in the cornmeal and continue to stir constantly. Turn down the heat slightly and mix in the salt. Continue stirring until the polenta thickens, about 5-10 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup Daiya shreds and nutritional yeast, if using. Stir until the cheese is melted and is fully incorporated.

Remove from heat and pour 1/2-inch thick onto a lightly oiled baking sheet using a spatula. Chill for an hour or overnight, if making ahead (cover with clingfilm if that is the case). Cut polenta pieces into french fries using a spatula. Place on a new, well oiled baking sheet. Sprinkle with garlic powder and salt.

Bake at 450•F for 10 minutes and flip. Cook for 5 minutes and shake about to free a little and add the remaining Daiya shreds. Return to oven for 5 more minutes. Serve hot alone or with dipping sauce like a vegan ranch or ketchup.


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