Try this budget-friendly, plant-based meal by Adam Liaw

29 June 2024

Australian cook, television presenter and author Adam Liaw
  • Adam Liaw shares a cost-effective, plant-based pumpkin and green bean stew that highlights the flavours of seasonal vegetables while being gentle on your wallet
  • The stew is made by caramelising green beans and pumpkin, then simmering them with spices, onion and garlic for a rich, flavourful dish that serves four and is easy to prepare
  • This versatile stew can be made in large batches and freezes well, ensuring you always have a nutritious and tasty meal ready for those busy or budget-conscious days

Save money with veggie-packed dinners

It’s no secret: in-season vegetables taste better and are much easier on your wallet, not to mention the environment. Adam Liaw’s pumpkin and green bean stew is designed to let the veggies shine and maximise their flavour. He starts by frying off the beans and pumpkin to give them a lovely caramelised colour and flavour then he builds the base for his stew with spices, onion, garlic – all the good (and cheap) stuff. The secret to his stew is not adding too much liquid, which could dilute the flavour. The other great thing about this budget-friendly recipe is that it freezes well. Make a double batch and pop half in the freezer so you always have dinner at the ready when time – or grocery budgets – are tight.

Video: On The Brighter Side Adam Liaw shares a veggie-based recipe that takes pressure off the food bill without compromising on taste.

Adam Liaw shows you how to make a plant-based weeknight meal that’s budget-friendly and perfect for batch cooking and freezing. His pumpkin and green bean stew is packed with fresh flavours and serves four.

“Fresh, vibrant and colourful veggies aren’t just easy on the eye. They’re easy on the environment and easy on the household budget, too,” says Adam.

 “Beautiful, delicious, on-trend and I guarantee you, nobody is going to miss the meat.”

Adam Liaw’s pumpkin and green bean stew

Adam Liaw’s pumpkin and green bean stew

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 60 minutes

Serves: 4-6


  • 1⁄2 cup vegetable oil
  • 200g green beans, tailed
  • 1⁄4 kent pumpkin, peeled and cut into 5cm chunks then cut each chunk in half (so that they are about 2.5cm x 5cm)
  • 1 brown onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp paprika, plus extra to serve
  • 3 tomatoes, diced
  • salt, to season
  • 1⁄2 cup mint, torn, to serve
  • pita, to serve

Salted yoghurt

  • 300g thick yoghurt
  • 1 clove garlic, minced


  1. Heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan and fry the green beans in batches until wrinkled. Remove to a bowl. Fry the pumpkin until browned and remove together with the beans.
  2. Remove a bit of the oil from the pot, leaving about two to three tablespoons in the base and add the onion and garlic. Fry for a minute, then add the coriander, turmeric and paprika. Add tomatoes to the pot and mix. Return the pumpkin and beans to the pot. Stir well then add a tablespoon of water and season well with salt. Cover tightly and simmer on very low heat for about 20 minutes.
  3. While the vegetables are simmering, mix the yoghurt with the garlic and season well with salt. Spread the yoghurt onto a serving plate, add the beans and pumpkin on top and scatter with the mint and a little more paprika to serve. Serve with warm pita.

For more recipes that are big on flavour but gentle on the household budget, don’t forget to tune into The Brighter Side every Saturday at 6pm. We’ll be adding new recipes here online every week so you can try them straight away! 

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