Grilled Italian Polenta

Grilled Italian Polenta recipe with mushrooms and olives


I heard a great chef once say, that the world was divided into two great categories: those who are polenta lovers and those who are not. A rather simple way of looking at life, but I suppose it is true. I, for one, am a true polenta lover. Polenta is an absolute staple in Italy. It is a thick corn porridge which is allowed to “set”, making a wonderful bed for various sauces and toppings. Polenta is usually cooked over the stove and continuously stirred until it becomes thick – a time consuming process. This recipe is cooked in a slow cooker, which eliminates the stirring and comes out with a perfect result every time! I pour it into a casserole dish and allow it to cool, then slice it off and fry or grill it, then cover it with this rich Italian mushroom sauce.



2 cups whole grain cornmeal
6 cups boiling vegetable or chicken broth
salt to taste (if using bullion  for broth, no salt needed)


1 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves crushed garlic
1 lb sliced mushrooms
1 medium zuchinni, chopped
1 medium yellow crookneck squash, chopped
1 15 oz.. can chopped black olives
7 ripe roma tomatoes, diced
2 8 oz.. cans tomato sauce
1 tbsp basil
1 tbsp oregano
1 tsp rosemary
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
salt & pepper to taste


PREPARE POLENTA: Spray the walls of a slow cooker crock with non-stick spray and sprinkle in the cornmeal.  Add the boiling broth and whisk until lump free.  Cook on high for 2-3 hours or on low for 7-9  hours until very thick.  Pour and spread into a large bread pan, sprayed with a non-stick spray, and refrigerate until completely cooled and “set.” This may take a few hours.
COOK SAUCE: In a large skillet, heat olive oil and saute garlic for a minute, then add chopped veggies and seasonings and cook, stirring occasionally, until everything is just tender. Add tomato sauce, chopped olives and parmesan. When hot, set aside.
GRILL OR SAUTE POLENTA: Gently turn the loaf pan with the set polenta over.  Polenta should plop out easily.  Slice into ½” to 1” sections.  Grill both sides on a piece of foil until hot or Saute in a bit of olive oil over medium heat for about 5 minutes on each side, or until golden.
FINISH: Place polenta on individual plates and top with tomato mushroom sauce.  Sprinkle with extra parmesan.

2 Responses to Grilled Italian Polenta

  1. Jodi says:

    This is absolutely delicious. I will definitely make it again.

  2. Oooh, I’ve never tried preparing polenta this way before, but it looks awesome. Thanks so much for linking up at What’s In Your Kitchen Wednesday!

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