Polenta (Cornmeal) Rounds with Roasted Peppers & Basil

gluten free
wheat free
2 spoon difficulty rating

40 minutes

40 minutes plus, depending on whether you use fresh or bottled red peppers.

Serves: 4

Average: 4.1 (16 votes)
Polenta (Cornmeal) Rounds with Roasted Peppers & Basil

This is a nice, simple way of using polenta. It's also low-fat and gluten-free. The yeast flakes add a slightly cheesy taste which is very nice - as well as being a good source of B vitamins.

Will make a meal for 2-4, depending what else it is served with.

Try serving with a big dark green salad, eg watercress, rocket or such - or lightly stir-fried garlic greens, eg spinach or curly kale (plus something more substantial like roast tofu or a bean salad if it's a main course).


  • 175g/6oz/1 heaped cup polenta
  • 1 tsp salt 600ml/20fl oz/2½ cups water (optional: add 1 tsp vegan bouillon or a stock cube but reduce the salt)  
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes - eg Engevita (not to be confused with brewer's yeast!)
  • 2 large sweet peppers or half a large jar of roasted red peppers in brine
  • 4 sprigs basil  



1. Put polenta into a pan (preferably non-stick) with the salt.

2. Add the water, a little at a time – stirring to make a smooth mixture. Add the bouillon or stock cube and stir to dissolve.

3. Bring to boil, stirring as it thickens, add the nutritional yeast flakes then turn heat down low and leave to cook, uncovered, for 20 minutes.

4. Use a heat diffuser under the pan if you have one.

5. Spread mixture into four 20cm/4 inch circles, using small plates as moulds, then lay on a baking tray.

6. Leave to go cold and firm.

7. Meanwhile, prepare red peppers if using fresh. If using peppers from a jar, ignore stages 8-10.

8. Cut them in half, remove core and seeds and put the halves, rounded sides up, on a baking tray or grill pan.

9. Cook under a hot grill for 10-15 minutes or until peppers tender and skin blackened in places.

10. When they have cooled a little, remove the skins if you wish.

11. Cut peppers into little strips.

12. Heat grill, then transfer polenta rounds to the grill pan – or a baking tray that will fit underneath grill.

13. Place the peppers on the top and grill the polental rounds for a few minutes to brown off. Keep an eye on them so they don't catch! Snip the basil with scissors, scatter over the polenta rounds and serve hot.


I have a recipe to make a quick Polenta in the Microwave, which is really nice, so hopefully I'll try this recipe doing it the Microwave style.


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