Vegetable crumble with cheesy pesto topping
This bean and vegetable crumble has heaps of flavour, with loads of veggies and a cheesy pesto crumb! It’s a great fridge clearer – use whatever veg you have to hand.
If you ever wanted an excuse to sprinkle cheese over some veggies and call it a meal, this bean and vegetable crumble is it! It’s got tons of different veggies, topped with a crispy, cheesy, herby crumb. It’s insanely delicious, and makes a beautiful comforting dinner, but is also packed with goodness from all those veggies! It’s the perfect compromise – comfort food made healthy(ish).
You know those times when you look in the fridge, and it’s full of random bits and pieces? A few slightly wrinkly mushrooms, half a head of broccoli, a random pepper… A fridge-clearing recipe is what you need – something that will use up all those odds and ends, no matter what they may be. I usually go for a frittata or stir fry, but it can get a bit samey when you make the same thing week after week. Delicious, but samey.
This bean and vegetable crumble is the answer!
Stick in whatever veggies you have lingering in the fridge, add a tin of beans, and you’ll end up with a beautiful dinner.
What veggies could I use?
My vegetable crumble contains broccoli, peppers, mushrooms, onion, and marinated artichokes (I had a jar that needed finishing!) – but just use whatever you have handy. Courgette (zucchini), aubergine (eggplant), sweetcorn, asparagus, cauliflower, spinach, kale… I mean, I’m not going to list every single vegetable in the world, but you get the idea. Anything in the fridge that looks like it will work – go for it.
I stir fried all my veggies together in one pan before assembling my crumble, but just bear in mind that some vegetables do take longer to cook than others. If you’re going to use a particularly hard veg like carrots, it’s probably best to boil them for a few minutes first, before adding them to the pan. Vegetables that don’t take much cooking, like spinach, can be added right at the end.
Cheesy pesto crumb
All those fresh veggies are then topped with a super simple savoury crumble mixture. It’s just like the topping you’d put on a fruit crumble, but without the sugar, and with more cheese! I also added a dollop of basil pesto, which adds loads of flavour.
Stick the vegetable crumble in the oven for half an hour or so, until it’s nice and golden brown and crispy on top, and you’ve got the perfect dinner! The crispy bits of cheese on top and around the edges are the best.
How can I serve my vegetable crumble?
We had our vegetable crumble with just some salad on the side, but since it’s already packed with veggies, don’t feel you necessarily need to serve it with any more! I actually think it would be pretty wonderful with some roast potatoes, maybe a little drizzle of gravy? Or even just some bread and butter!
The recipe makes 4 decent servings, so I’ve actually frozen the leftovers to make a few quick dinners for the baby. This is just the kind of hearty dinner that it’s great to have in the freezer for a cold night when you come home late and don’t want to have to cook!
Bean and vegetable crumble with cheesy pesto topping
For the vegetable mixture:
- 1 tbsp oil
- 2 bell peppers, sliced or diced (I used yellow and red)
- 1 red onion, sliced or diced
- 1 small head broccoli, cut into bitesize florets (~ 140g / ~ 1 1/2 cups when chopped)
- ~ 8 medium mushrooms, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 280 g (~ 1 cup) marinated artichoke hearts, drained and cut into bitesize pieces
- 400 g tin pinto beans, drained (240g, or ~ 1 1/4 cups, when drained) - or any other kind of tinned bean
- 1/2 tbsp basil pesto
- 50 g cheddar cheese, grated (~ 1/2 cup when grated)
- Black pepper
For the crumble topping:
- 50 g (~ 1/4 cup) plain flour
- 35 g (~ 2 1/2 tbsp) butter
- 35 g (scant 1/4 cup) rolled oats
- 60 g cheddar cheese, grated (~ 2/3 cup grated)
- 1/2 tbsp basil pesto
- Black pepper
- Fresh parsley (optional)
- Heat a dash of oil in a large frying pan, and add the peppers, onion, broccoli, and mushrooms. Cook over a medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring regularly, until the vegetables are fairly soft, but still have a little bit of bite (the broccoli will probably still be quite crisp).
- Add the garlic, artichokes and beans, and cook for a few more minutes, then remove from the heat. Add the pesto and cheddar cheese, and mix thoroughly. Season to taste.
- Heat the oven to 190°C (Gas Mark 5 / 375°F).
- To make the cheesy pesto crumb, use your fingertips to rub together the plain flour and butter in a mixing bowl. Stop when the mixture resembles breadcrumbs - you don't want it to come together into a ball (it doesn't matter if it's not perfectly mixed - don't overwork it). Add the oats, grated cheese, and pesto, along with a pinch of salt and pepper. Use a fork to mix everything together - again, it doesn't matter if it's not perfect, just try to mix the pesto through as best as you can.
- Transfer the vegetables to a baking dish, and top with the cheesy crumble mixture. Bake for around 30 minutes, or until the topping is golden brown and crispy. Serve topped with fresh parsley, if desired.
Note: Nutritional information is approximate, and will depend on exactly what ingredients you choose. Information above is for 1/4 of the recipe.