polenta parm with mushrooms

Polenta is an incredibly versatile food. It originated in northern Italy and is made of coarsely-ground yellow cornmeal. I always have a tube of polenta available to create a recipe. You can make polenta from scratch if you have the time, but having a tube of polenta at the ready is certainly easy.

My polenta parmesan with mushrooms, onions and butterbeans dish is light, flavorful and low in calories as well!

If you enjoy this recipe, you will definitely want to check out another tasty dish featuring polenta: roasted polenta topped with mushrooms and scallions. It’s an excellent appetizer.

To Healthy Eating!


PS: Be sure to check out my newly-published Power of 5 Test Kitchen Cookbook: Caregiver Edition! Here’s a bit about it: Full of recipes, helpful hints, and the tools you need to promote safe and meaningful engagement for those challenged with an illness. Your kitchen can be a place where fun and health flourish, no matter the challenges you face.

The Power of 5 Test Kitchen Cookbook: Full Edition will release in Fall 2021 with many more time-tested, healthy Power of 5 recipes. There’s even a section for healthy Power of 5 dog treats! Stay tuned.

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Polenta Parmesan with Mushrooms, Onions and Butterbeans

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Main Dish, Side Dish
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 Servings
Calories 237 kcal


  • 2 Tbsp. Olive oil Other cooking oils can be used, such as sunflower, canola, or vegetable oil if you prefer.
  • 1 tube Polenta Refrigerated or shelf-stable brands work fine.
  • 1 15 oz. can Butterbeans White beans are also an option.
  • 1/2 cup Mushrooms Sliced or chopped.
  • 1/2 med Onion Diced or chopped.
  • 2 1/2 cups Tomato sauce Divided; I love Rao brand homemade marinara sauce.
  • 1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese Shredded; I use VioLife vegan cheese.
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese Grated; I use vegan parmesan cheese.
  • Arugula
  • Basil Fresh or chopped for garnish. Can substitute with oregano if preferred.


  • Preheat oven to 375-400º F.
  • Slice polenta into one-inch rounds, about seven slices.
  • Warm olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add sliced polenta.
  • Brown each side of the sliced polenta, heating about five minutes on each side.
  • Remove the polenta from the pan and place temporarily on a plate. If you used an oven-safe pan for heating the polenta, you may reuse it for the oven bake portion of this recipe as well.
  • Layer butterbeans, mushrooms and onions in the pan. Add half of the marinara sauce.
  • Blend the sauce with the vegetables.
  • Layer the polenta over the vegetables, and then add the remaining marinara sauce on top of each slice.
  • Sprinkle mozzarella cheese over the marinara sauce, then layer on parmesan to top the dish off.
  • Place the pan in the oven, uncovered, for 20-25 minutes until the cheese is melted and the dish is bubbling.
  • Remove from oven, let cool for a few minutes, then serve over a plate of arugula.
  • Garnish with basil (or oregano), then serve.


Melissa's Modifications: 
This light Italian dish can be easily changed up by varying vegetables. If you are not a mushroom fan, swap them out for spinach or kale. The butterbeans can be swapped out with white beans. Instead of marinara sauce, you can use a spaghetti sauce of your choice. Additionally, if you are not dairy intolerant, use regular cheese instead of vegan cheese.
Nutritional Value:  237 Calories; 14.5g Fat; 4.4g Saturated Fat; 0 Cholesterol; 893mg Sodium; 23.7g Carbs; 3.3g Fiber; 3.9g Protein


Calories: 237kcal
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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