Vegan Japanese cream stew is the perfect comfort food to nourish your soul this fall and winter! You'll also be nourishing your body because it's chock-full of vegetables! I've swapped out the chicken with jackfruit, and cow's milk with coconut milk!
What is Japanese cream stew?
Cream stew is a popular dish in Japan that consists of chicken and root vegetables in a savory cream sauce. Many people enjoy this hearty dish in the cold winter months to warm their bodies. Mmm so creamy!
The standard ingredients are onion, potato, carrot, broccoli, and chicken, but I've also added kabocha squash, cremini mushrooms, spinach, and salmon in the past. Basically, you can add any vegetable you like!
Most families prefer the convenience of using a pre-packaged roux, but you can also make it from scratch by making a béchamel sauce. My vegan version is easiest peasiest, as the roux comes together in a blender!
What makes it vegan?
Although I've stuck to the standard medley of root vegetables, I've made a few changes to make this stew not only vegan but also gluten-free!
Jackfruit will shred similarly to the way meat does and is often used to make vegan pulled pork! YUM! This makes Nature's Charm young green jackfruit in brine the perfect replacement for chicken in my Japanese cream stew!
I've chosen to combine cashews with coconut milk, to thicken the stew without using flour. Cashews also add a nuttiness to the stew similar to the original dairy version! Many nut milks tend to be full of thickeners and additives, so I love that the coconut milk from Chef's Choice only has one ingredient: coconut!
Nature's Charm is actually born from Chef's Choice! The brand was founded by two sisters who believe in delivering the best quality plant-based products. Their father, the founder of Chef's Choice, taught them to stay true to good quality products rather than following trends, believing it to be their responsibility to the consumers.
How to make vegan cream stew
Japanese cream stew, even from scratch, is very simple and easy to make! Start by sautéeing the onion and shimeji mushrooms in a pot with some olive oil, giving them a chance to brown and caramelize before adding the carrots and potatoes.
While the vegetables are cooking in the pot, prep the young green jackfruit. Drain the can of jackfruit, rinse with water, and squeeze the water out. The pointy side has a slightly woody texture, which I've seen some people take off. I prefer to leave it on because I think it adds a chicken-like chewiness.
Once the jackfruit and broccoli are added and simmering in the stock, combine the coconut milk and cashews in a blender and blend until smooth. Cashews are often used to make vegan versions of creamy or cheesy dishes (like my cheesecake bites!).
I hadn't had cream stew in a while and this vegan Japanese cream stew really hit the spot! It's creamy, hearty, and warms your soul and body, making it the perfect dish for fall and winter!
More vegan comfort food: Green mac and cheese
Vegan dessert to go with this vegetable stew: Coconut leche flan
Whether you're vegan or not, you have to try this stew! It's delicious and you won't regret it!!
Vegan Japanese cream stew
- 1 tablespoon (15ml) olive oil
- 1 (10.5oz/300g) large onion
- 2 (2.7oz/77g each) medium carrots
- 2 (6oz/170g each) medium potatoes
- 2 packages (3.5oz/100g each) shimeji mushrooms
- 1 (10oz/280g) medium broccoli
- 1 can Nature's Charm young green jackfruit
- 1 tablespoon (15ml) white wine
- 2½ cups (600ml) vegetable stock (reduced-sodium is best so you can control the flavor)
- ¼ cup (37.5g) raw cashews
- 1 Chef's Choice coconut milk
- salt and pepper to taste
- Chop the onion, carrots, and potatoes into bite-size pieces. Cut the base off of the shimeji mushrooms, and separate using your hands. Cut the florets off of the broccoli, and chop the stem into bite-size pieces. Drain and rinse the jackfruit, and squeeze out the water.
- Heat the olive oil in a pot over medium heat. Add the onion and sautée for 3-4 minutes. Add the shimeji mushroom and sautée for an additional 3-4 minutes. Add the white wine and deglaze the pot.
- Add the carrots and potatoes and sautée for 5 minutes. Add the jackfruit and broccoli, sautée for a minute and pour in the vegetable stock. Once it reaches a boil, simmer for 15 minutes.
- While the stew is simmering, add the raw cashews and coconut milk to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Add it to the pot and simmer for another 10 minutes.
- Taste the stew for salt and pepper. You may or may not need any seasonings depending on how strong your vegetable stock is.
SAVE IT ON PINTEREST FOR LATER!
Disclosure - Thank you to Nature's Charm for sponsoring this post! It's a delight to be working for people and a business I find inspiring. I love the values the company is built on, and am proud to be collaborating with them!