Polenta Napoleons with Tomato Vegetable Ragout

These savoury vegetarian Napoleons are one of my favourite things to make. I love making them especially when I’m having company over. They look & taste like they took a ton of effort, but are really quite simple to put together. I bake the polenta rounds to create a bit of a crispy crust. Then I sandwich the rounds with a flavourful goat cheese and top them off with a homemade vegetable ragout and fresh basil. The napoleons could be served as an appetizer or as a main dish served along side a nice green salad with a light vinaigrette. 

The vegetable ragout is also delicious served as a pasta sauce or over cooked quinoa. I’ve also served the vegetable ragout over these Mediterranean Quinoa Veggie Burger patties with a sprinkle of Romano cheese. Delicious!

  • 1 roll of store-bought polenta (or homemade polenta cut into rounds)
  • 1/2 cup of cornmeal
  • canola oil spray
  • 8 ounces of goat cheese
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 large zucchini, diced
  • 5 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 1 yellow pepped, diced
  • 1 can of tomato paste
  • 1 cup of vegetable stock
  • a handful of fresh basil, finely chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste


1. Preheat over to 325’F.

2. Cut the roll of polenta into about 14 rounds (about 1/2 inch thick). Press each round into the cornmeal to lightly coat. Spray each round with some canola or olive oil spray. Place rounds on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place in oven and cook for about 20 minutes. Note: the cornmeal crust will give the polenta a nice crunch.

3. Meanwhile, in a large sauce pan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil or canola oil. Add the diced onion and sauté until tender (about 5 minutes). Add the garlic and sauté another minute.

4. Add the diced celery, zucchini and peppers. Sauté for about 10 minutes, or until the peppers start to softened nicely.

5. Mix together the tomato paste and vegetable stock in a small bowl and add to the sautéed vegetables. Allow mixture to simmer for about 5 minutes on low heat. Season with salt and pepper. Add fresh, chopped basil.

6. Assemble: Place one polenta round on a plate then put 1 ounce of goat cheese on top. Press a small basil leaf into the goat cheese. Place a second polenta round on top of the goat cheese. Press down to ensure the napoleon will stay together. Top the napoleon with some of the tomato vegetable ragout. Repeat until all napoleons are put together. Serve warm.

Yield: 7 to 8 napoleons

Source: a Courtney original recipe


  1. says

    what a gorgeous idea! i never buy the premade polenta, but maybe i should since whole foods hasn’t carried the bags of bob’s red mill polenta for ages! i just love polenta..

    • says

      I just discovered polenta about a year ago. I knew it existed, but I was afraid to try it. *hah* I was worried I would not like the texture. Turns out, I love it! Homemade polenta is the best, but in a pinch I’ll buy the store bought kind. Man, I wish we had a Whole Foods here in Winnipeg. *SIGH* I always shop at Whole Foods when I visit Minneapolis, but that’s an 8 hour drive from here. LOL. Too far for a weekly grocery shopping trip. I’ll have to find a way to get Whole Foods here! :)

    • says

      That is a good idea! It would be nice for a brunch. Hmmmmm. Might make that for mother’s day tomorrow. I just started cooking with polenta in the past year. It’s a lot tastier and versatile than I had expected! :) I’m glad to have inspired you to try making more things with polenta :) xoxo

  2. says

    What an upscale-looking appetizer! I’ve been wanting to make some sort of grilled polenta based appetizer for so long but I’m never sure what to put on top of it, plus it’s too hard to bring to parties or potlucks because it should be served warm. I will definitely bookmark your recipe – I’m sure my family would love this!

  3. says

    I just got a cookbook today that I was flipping through and noticed a polenta recipe somewhat similar to this that I wanted to make, but yours sounds even better! I’m just catching up on your blog now and I love every recipe you’ve posted – the quinoa veggie burgers will definitely be on my list to make too!

    • says

      Ooooooo! A grilled polenta sounds amazing. I must try that next time I make these! :)

      I am tempted to try grilled polenta with some Mexican flavours like a black bean/corn salsa and lime crema and maybe some avocado slices. Hmmmm. Time to experiment! :)

    • says

      Awe, thanks Cathleen! :) You are a sweetie! Thank you for stopping by!
      I’ve heard napoleons as a dessert, but it seems like any food in a nice little stack = napoleon in the blogging world :)

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