Growing up, we would also have a big pan of both my Grandmother Sue Sue’s Asparagus Casserole along with a Green Bean Casserole. My preference was always to get in the Asparagus Casserole line because it was filled with a ton of flavor and crunch. In addition to sharing my grandmother’s recipe, I will also include my NEW Whole30 version that is sure to knock your socks off. Whichever version you choose to make, you won’t go wrong.
As I prepared for this post, my goal was to make a Whole30 version that mimicked the same creamy texture as my grandmother’s casserole. This recipe turned out better than I could have ever imagined. Although I still love the traditional recipe, I have to say that my new Whole30 version is pretty great. Since switching to the Paleo lifestyle, I really love making comfort options that are also healthy.
What are the ingredients used in this Whole30 Asparagus Casserole?
- Fresh Asparagus
- Nutritional Yeast: This is the main ingredient that gives the sauce it’s cheesy and creamy texture. I blend the nutritional yeast with HOT water to get a creamy texture.
- Sauteed mushrooms, water chestnuts and fresh garlic. This is what I add to the HOT water and nutritional yeast to make it into a cream. This is kind of like a cheesy mushroom soup….Y’all, IT’S SO GOOD!
- Homemade Whole30 Crispy onion topping: a large yellow onion slice, soaked in coconut milk and dipped in a almond and tapioca flour mixture and fried to perfection in coconut oil or ghee.
Trust the Process for this Creamy Asparagus Casserole:
As for my Sue Sue’s traditional and full fat recipe, it included some pretty weird ingredients, like boiled eggs but somehow it worked. However, some people will turn their nose up at the thought of this, but somehow, adding the boiled eggs makes the entire recipe come together. In addition to the eggs, she would also use Club Crackers mixed with melted butter as a crust on the bottom and also for another crust on the top, evaporated milk, butter, water chestnuts and mushroom soup. It is so creamy and delicious.
It is important to allow yourself to enjoy your favorite holiday foods without making yourself miserable. For instance, instead of eating 3 plate fulls, fill your plate with a little of all of your favorite foods. Just because it is the holidays doesn’t mean you have to be out of control.
In conclusion, which ever recipe you choose, I hope it fills your heart with love. Even though the traditional recipe is full of not-so-healthy ingredients, I still enjoy having a little during the holidays. Just one big spoonful can bring the spirit of my Sweet Sue Sue straight back to my heart.
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Whole30 Asparagus Casserole
- 2 lbs fresh asparagus (trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces)
- 2 (4 oz) cans mushrooms (drained)
- 1 (4 oz) can water chestnuts (drained)
- 1 tbsp ghee
- 1 cup hot water
- 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
- 1 large garlic clove (minced)
- salt and pepper to taste
Crispy Onion Topping
- 1 large onion (thinly sliced)
- 1/2 cup dairy free milk (I used coconut)
- 1/3 cup almond flour
- 1/4 cup tapioca or arrowroot flour (for Keto, see notes)
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup ghee, avocado or coconut oil (for frying)
- 1/4 tsp onion powder
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp salt
Grandmother Sue Sue’s FULL FAT Version
- 2 lbs fresh asparagus (trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces)
- 2 sleeves club crackers
- 2 sticks butter (melted)
- 1 5 oz can evaporated milk
- 4 large boiled eggs
- 1 10 oz can cream of mushroom soup
- 1 4 oz can water chestnuts
Whole30 & Paleo Version
- Grease a casserole dish and preheat oven to 350F degrees.
- Clean and cut the asparagus into 1 inch pieces. Spread evenly in the bottom of the casserole dish.
- In a small skillet, heat 1 tbsp ghee and add the can of drained water chestnuts along with the 2 cans of drained mushrooms and garlic. Saute together until tender, about 5 minutes
- In a high speed blender add the hot water, nutritional yeast and salt and pepper. Blend together on high for 10 seconds. Transfer the cooked mushrooms, water chestnuts and garlic into the water mixture. Blend again on high speed for 30-40 seconds or until it becomes a thick and creamy texture.
- Pour the creamy mixture over the asparagus slices and spread evenly over the top.
- Transfer the casserole dish to the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes. Remove and top with the crispy onion straws.
Crispy Onion Straws
- Place the sliced onion in a shallow bowl and pour the coconut milk and apple cider vinegar over it. Toss together a few times then allow to sit for 10 mins.
- Prepare a separate bowl with almond flour, tapioca or arrowroot flour and seasoning. Mix with a spoon until combined.
- In a large skillet, pour your ghee, coconut or avocado oil in (I would start with 1/4 cup and add more as needed) over medium high heat.
- Prepare a large plate with layers of paper towels (this is for removing the excess grease). Carefully use a set of tongs to transfer a handful of onions from the coconut milk and apple cider vinegar, then to the flour mixture.
- Coat and be sure to dust off excess flour. Transfer the onions to the skillet for 30 seconds on each side, or until crispy and golden brown.
- Using the tongs, transfer from the skillet to the paper towel. Repeat this process until you fry all the onions, adding more oil to the skillet as needed.
Grandma Sue Sue’s Full Fat Version
- Grease a casserole dish and preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Crush 1 sleeve of club crackers and place in a mixing bowl. Melt 1 stick of butter and pour over the crackers and combine with a spoon. Spread this mixture evenly in the bottom of the casserole dish.
- Clean and cut the asparagus into 1 inch pieces. Spread evenly on top of the cracker crust.
- Slice 4 boiled eggs and drain the can of water chestnuts. Spread the eggs along with the water chestnuts over the top of the asparagus.
- In a small sauce pan, heat the evaporated milk and cream of mushroom soup until it begins to bubble.
- Pour this mixture over the top of the casserole.
- Crush the last sleeve of club crackers and place in a mixing bowl. Melt the other stick of butter and pour over the crackers and combine with a spoon. Spread this mixture evenly over the top of the casserole.
- Bake on 375F for 35 minutes.
If you are not a fan of asparagus, feel free to sub 2 lbs of fresh green beans for the asparagus.
You can also skip the crispy onion topping and just caramelize the onions and add to the top of the asparagus.
This can be made ahead of time and heated right before serving.
- Category: Side Dish
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: asparagus casserole, creamy asparagus, whole30 side dishes, paleo side dishes, paleo, whole30, ket side dishes
Nutritional Facts for Keto Version:
*All nutrition facts are estimates