Roasted Italian vegetables with creamy parmesan polenta is a delicious vegetarian meal that is healthy, filling, and packed with flavor!
Parmesan polenta with roasted vegetables
Have you ever tried polenta? It’s my favorite thing to make in the wintertime because it’s heavy, warming, and so delicious! It’s basically the Italian version of Southern grits.
It’s so easy to make and comes together within 30 minutes, which is a huge bonus because this can be eaten as a filling lunch or a meatless dinner.
First, you need some coarse or medium grind cornmeal. Next, you boil the water and milk, then whisk in the cornmeal and let it simmer until it’s thick! Easy, right?!
Polenta is interesting to me. If you let it sit out, it get’s hard. You can easily rewarm it, or you can slice it and grill/fry/or bake it. It really is so versatile!
This parmesan polenta with roasted vegetables is so easy to make and only require 30 minutes of cook time! It’s a great way to get a healthy dose of those veggies and it tastes great!
The parmesan polenta is nice and creamy and tastes great combined with the Italian seasoned roasted vegetables. Every bite I took, I’d scoop a little polenta and a bite of veggies- so good!
You can make this meal with basically any roasted vegetable. My guide to roasting vegetables will help guide you with cook times so you can get the best flavors out of this dish!
If you’re a huge fan of creamy parmesan flavors like me, check out one pot creamy parmesan gnocchi with kale and white beans, easy stovetop parmesan creamed corn, cheesy parmesan potato au gratin, or my personal fave, creamy shrimp scampi with bacon.
Polenta with vegetables ingredients
- Coarse or medium grit cornmeal– Look for cornmeal that is more coarse, it creates a thicker polenta. If you cannot find coarse cornmeal, don’t worry! I’ve made polenta “plenty-a” (get it?! I crack myself up.) times with the cheap cornmeal.
- Milk– You can use whatever kind of milk you would like. I used almond milk and it came out great! The milk adds to the creaminess and gives it more of a flavor.
- Parmesan cheese– The parmesan cheese is added to the polenta after it’s done cooking. It melts quickly into the polenta and gives it a thick creaminess that is unbelievably delicious.
- Vegetables- Eggplant, cherry tomatoes, asparagus, summer squash, and zucchini make this dish packed with colors, flavor, and nutrients! They also have the same roasting time, so it’s a perfect combo!
- Seasoning- Italian seasoning, salt, and garlic powder is just enough to make this dish minimal yet tasty!
Make it vegan
If you want to make this parmesan polenta with roasted vegetables dish vegan, I have a few recommendations! You can add a tablespoon of nutritional yeast, garlic powder, and onion powder as a substitute for parmesan cheese.
You can also use olive oil instead of butter, since you probably already have that on hand! The olive oil will add the perfect level of flavor and sheen to the polenta like butter would.
Make it your own twist
You can use whatever veggies your heart desires. I recommend checking out my roasted vegetable guide to see which vegetables can be cooked together without over cooking them- that part is important.
You can make this dish with strictly root vegetables, or with your summertime harvest. It’s easy to switch it up because this is a basic and easy recipe!
How to make parmesan polenta with roasted vegetables
- Start the polenta. Since the polenta takes the longest to cook, start with it first. Heat the water and milk over high heat in a heavy bottom pot (or dutch oven). Once the liquids are boiling, gradually whisk in the cornmeal, making sure it does not clump. Reduce the heat to low and allow it to simmer with the lid on for 30 minutes. Make sure to stir it occasionally so it does not burn on the bottom.
- Roast the vegetables. While you wait for the liquids to boil to make the polenta, go ahead and preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Cut the vegetables so they all are uniform sizes and place them on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Mix together the Italian seasoning, salt, garlic powder, and olive oil. Brush the olive oil mixture onto the vegetables with a brush, then place the baking sheet in the oven and roast the vegetables for 20-25 minutes.
- Finish the polenta. Once the polenta is done cooking and it’s nice and thick (thicka than a snicka!- said in my Boston accent) add the butter and parmesan to the pot and give it a good stir. The cheese and butter will melt into the polenta.
- Serve. First, place the polenta in the bowl, then top with the roasted vegetables. Add fresh herbs or a drizzle of balsamic for added flavor.
How to reheat polenta
Polenta gets thicker as it cools, so it’s important to add a liquid to it before you reheat it. Add 3 tablespoons of water, milk, or broth to every 1 cup of polenta, then place it over low heat in a pan for 5 minutes. Use a fork to mash up the larger bits.
You can add more butter and cheese once it’s heated up for extra creaminess and flavor.
What to serve with parmesan polenta and roasted vegetables
- Olive and herb focaccia is made quicker than the traditional recipe with a few easy adjustments. This Italian bread is full of fresh herbs, cured olives, and tons of flavor!
- Salt crusted fish is an Italian classic and is ready in 30 minutes! Redfish is crusted in coarse sea salt and baked, making it tender and flavorful.
- This delicious tossed salad is jam packed with all the best Italian sub ingredients and drizzled with a homemade vinaigrette- without the bread!
- White wine, parmesan cheese, fresh lemon, and Italian seasoning make the best stuffing for this Florida pompano fish! In under 20 minutes, you’ll have the most tender, flaky and delicious fish dinner!
Roasted Italian Vegetables with Parmesan Polenta
- Baking sheet (parchment paper lined)
- Heavy bottom pot or dutch oven
- Serving spoon
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup eggplant cut into 1 inch chunks
- 1 cup zucchini cut into 1 inch chunks
- 1 cup summer squash cut into 1 inch chunks
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes
- 1 cup aspragus cut into 1 inch chunks
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup coarse or medium grit cornmeal
- 3 tbsp butter divided
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- Make the polenta. Bring the water and the milk to a boil in a heavy bottom pan or dutch oven. Once the liquids are boiling, gradually whisk in the cornmeal. Reduce the heat to a simmer, then cover and allow it to cook for 25-30 minutes. Stir occassionally to avoid burning.
- Roast the vegetables. While the polenta is cooking, preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Place the chopped vegetables on a parchment paper lined bakign sheet. Combine the olive oil, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and salt in a small bowl. Brush the olive oil mixture onto the vegetables, then place them in the oven and cook for 20-25 minutes.
- Finish the polenta. Once the polenta is thick and done cooking, remove it from the heat. Stir in the parmesan cheese, butter, garlic powder, and salt until the cheese has melted.
- Serve. Put the polenta in the bottom of a bowl, then top with the roasted vegetables. Drizzle with olive oil, blasamic vinegar, or fresh herbs. Mangia!
Nutrition values are estimates, for exact values consult a nutritionist.