creamy polenta with thyme roasted tomatoes

last night i got ambitious and did two things i’ve never done but always wanted to: 1. roasted tomatoes 2. made polenta. and now i’m left wondering, what the hell have i been doing with my life?!  roasted tomatoes are the bomb. and this polenta is like a salty, creamy, warm corn pudding. OMG. 

this recipe is a tiny bit more work than i usually put into a meal, but doesn’t require lots of ingredients or planning. and it was totally easy and satisfying so we’ll be having it for dinner many times again and i’m excited to see how i can tweak it to make it even better in the future!  oh, and heads up: this recipe makes enough for a family dinner. or in our case, lots of leftovers!

the what:

4 cups of vegetable stock

2 cups of water

2 cups of coarse polenta (not quick cooking)

1 cup of rice milk (or other unsweetened non-dairy milk)

2 tablespoons of earth balance vegan butter 

EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)


black pepper

sea salt

6 vine ripened tomatoes, cut in half

the how:

– preheat oven to 350 degrees. slice tomatoes in half and arrange on a baking sheet.

– sparingly drizzle olive oil over tomatoes, place two sprigs of thyme on each tomato half and sprinkle sea salt and pepper on the tomatoes.

– bake tomatoes for 1 – 1 1/2 hours, flipping every 15 minutes (they just get better the longer they roast)

– during the last 1/2 hour the tomatoes are baking: bring vegetable stock and water to a boil and slowly whisk in polenta. reduce heat and continue to stir until the polenta has thickened. cover and let simmer until soft (10-20 minutes). 

-stir in earth balance vegan butter, rice milk, and season with sea salt and pepper to taste (don’t be timid with the salt, this dish needs it!) stir and cook a few minutes more.

– when the tomatoes are done, serve over a bowl of polenta and sprinkle thyme over both.

*as a last minute addition to mine, i added a tablespoon of chopped kalmatta olives to the polenta. DELISH! 

if you cook polenta i’d love to hear what you do with it!  i’m looking forward to seeing what other yumminess will come!

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Reader Comments

  1. Tara|

    This sounds delicious! I'm going to try it out tonight. 🙂 Thank you for sharing!!

  2. victoria | vmac+cheese|

    Roasted tomatoes are soooo amazing. Sometimes I like to drizzle a little balsamic over the tomatoes and add some minced garlic too, then roast. The smell should be bottled and sold.

  3. sarah yates|

    thanks so much! and victoria, will try the balsamic and garlic trick! it sounds amazing!

  4. Beth|

    Hi Sarah,

    Feeling a little better, not sure if it is the eating or what but a little better 🙂 I am a believer in the kuzu pudding!!! THANK YOU~
    Made your Polenta last night and everyone loved it!!!! Yummie!!!
    Oh and the Date balls, great!!!

  5. Ruth|

    I'm so glad that I found this blog post! I tried roasting some zucchini and squash the other day, but I just couldn't quite get the texture and flavor right. Can I follow the same heat and time requirements as you listed for tomatoes? Also, do you have any spices to recommend? Thanks for your help! I may have to try roasting some tomatoes, too.

  6. sarah yates|

    hi ruth! you can use the temperature, but you wouldn't want to cook them for this long. the easiest way is to just keep an eye on them and do taste tests along the way to get them cooked to your preference!
    for roasting squash i love using a marinade of orange juice and maple syrup- it really brings out the sweet flavors!
    for zucchini i just use oil and sea salt.
    happy cooking!