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Vegan Shepherd's Pie with Lentils and Creamy Mash

Vegan Shepherd's Pie with Lentils and Creamy Mash

I made four individual shepherd's pies, but we only need three of them. Would you like one?

I often make shepherd's pie with soya mince, but this time I made it with lentils. Green lentils to be precise, but I've also made a shepherds pie with red lentils before and that was rather good too. This beauty is made with green lentils, mushrooms, onions and carrots in a rich tasty gravy and topped with a creamy mash and baked until golden and bubbling. YUM!

We love comfort food like this, especially on a cold day. It's the perfect dish to make ahead and freeze, but I have to admit I never do get around to freezing this. I don't have enough room in my new freezer, which is rather small and to be honest I'm rarely organised enough.

Busy weeknights

Spiced carrot, lentil and spinach soup

During the week when we get home late and tired after a busy day of work or school I'm looking for a quick recipe so I make simple meals like Spinach and Coconut Dal with toasted pitta bread, Spiced Carrot, Lentil and Spinach Soup, a simple Tomato and Basil Sauce for pasta or a toastie and salad.

Weekend slow cooked meals

Cheesey Vegetable Puff Pie. Vegetarian and vegan recipes.

At the weekend I make slow cooked meals like shepherd's pie. It's more of a treat because we don't eat like this all of the time and it's nice to make something special for your family when the end of the week comes and it's time to relax. So if you me visit on the right day, you'll be sitting down to a pie, a nut roast or a bake with lots of veg or some salad and garlic bread, depending on what what I've made as the main event.

Here are some of my weekend bakes

Vegan Shepherd's Pie with Lentils and Creamy Mash

Vegan Shepherd's Pie with Lentils and Creamy Mash

What is shepherds pie?

Shepherds pie and it's counterpart cottage pie are both traditional Scottish dishes. Cottage pie was originally made from beef and shepherd's pie from mutton or lamb. They are both frugal peasant dishes made with scraps of meat or lamb, teamed with onions and carrots (staple Scottish crops) in a rich gravy, topped with mashed potato. I say topped with mashed potato, but before potatoes arrived in bonnie Scotland, these pies were topped with pastry.

How do you make a vegan shepherd's pie?

To make a vegan shepherd's pie you just have to replace the meat with soya mince or lentils, You aren't trying to make a dish that tastes like meat, rather a twist on a traditional dish that is the ultimate comfort food, with lots of vegetables in a rich gravy with a mashed potato topping.

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Vegan Shepherd's Pie with Lentils and Creamy Mash
Vegan Shepherd's Pie with Lentils and Creamy Mash
An easy and comforting shepherd's pie made with mushrooms, onions, carrots and lentils in a rich gravy topped with a creamy dairy free mash.
  • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 2 tbsp mustard seeds
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 large celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 large cloves garlic, crushed
  • 4 large carrots, chopped
  • 250g chestnut mushrooms, chopped
  • 400g tin green lentils
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 vegetable stock pot
  • 3 tbsp HP brown sauce (or a BBQ sauce)
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 tsp cornflour
  • a good grinding of salt and pepper
  • 1 kg potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 50g dairy free spread (or butter)
  • a splosh of unsweetened soya milk (or standard milk)
1. Heat the oil in a large heavy bottomed pan and add the mustard seeds. Leave them for a couple of minutes until they start making popping sounds, then add the onion, celery and garlic. Saute until soft.2. Add the carrots, p the lid on and leave to cook gently for 5 minutes.3. Add the mushrooms, the lentils and the thyme. Cover again and allow to cook for a further 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.4. Add the stock pot to a measuring jug and top up with boiling water to the 400ml mark. Stir well until dissolved and then add to the pan, along with the HP sauce, which gives the gravy a great flavour and the tomato puree.5. Add a little water to the cornflour, to make a runny paste. Add this to the pot and stir well. This will help to thicken the gravy.6. Cover the pot and leave to simmer gently for 30 minutes until the vegetables are tender and the gravy is thick.7. While this is cooking, boil the potatoes until soft, then drain and mash with the dairy free spread, then season with salt and pepper.8. About 10 minutes before the end of cooking, pop the oven on to heat. 200c/180c fan/gas mark 6.9. Ladle the savoury lentil mixture into 1 large or 4 individual pie dishes. Top with the mashed potato and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden.10. Enjoy!
Total time:
Yield: Serves 3-4 

If you liked this lentil dish, try my Veggie Sausage, Lentil and Red Pepper Bake.

Veggie Sausage, Lentil and Red Pepper Bake


  1. Having read an article about shepherd pie once, but find that your Vegan Shepherd's Pie with Lentils and Creamy Mash is really great to try. It looks so yummy, Thanks Jacqueline Meldrum for sharing, I love it.

  2. Oh my. That sounds good. My hubby is especially fond of shepherds pie. Bookmarking this one to try. xo

  3. Delicious. Thanks for the tip about addng corn startch to the gravy to thicken it - I'll try that next time. If I'm not using TVP and using lentils instead, also put some cooked barley into the 'meat' layer for some extra chewiness.

  4. One of my favourite dinners! I haven't made it for a while, just bookmarked this recipe and will let you know if I make it :-)

  5. I love shepherd's pie esp with lentils but I have found that the mashed potato is not as good if kept overnight so I sometimes make smaller shepherd's pie and keep the base as leftovers and make fresh mash to put on top when I serve it. Love all the crispy bits of potato on top of yours - mmmm great comfort food.

  6. To the mean with your delicious main course I would also add some soup e.g. this light and delicious green pea soup

  7. You cannot have a shepherd's pie or a cottage pie without meat, what you are making is a vegetable casserole topped with potatoes, why do vegetarians hide behind dishes made for carnivores

  8. Made this recipe yesterday, with a few changes. I didn't have any mushrooms, so doubled down on the carrots and celery. And for the mash, I threw in half a cauliflower and 4 whole cloves of garlic for some variety (and because I had them in the fridge too long). I also added some zip to the mash by throwing in some powdered English mustard. Overall, came out great - even better the next day after all the flavors had mingled further. Thanks for the recipe!

  9. I just happen to have some slow cooker green lentils 🥳 and I love this kind of healthy yummy meal. Thank you for all the inspiration 🌱


I love reading comments, so thank you for taking the time to leave one. Unfortunately, I'm bombarded with spam, so I've turned on comment moderation. I'll publish your comments as soon as I can and respond to them. Don't panic, they will disappear when you hit publish. Jac x