This is the best vegetarian version of a shepherd’s pie you’ll ever taste! It's hearty, packed with flavour, and protein-rich. The Cauliflower and Celery Root topping adds extra nutrition as well as flavour. Lentil Shepherd's Pie is a perfect addition to your meatless dinner menu ideas!
Why you will love this recipe
This dish is the ultimate plant based meal. Not only is it easy and healthy but it's also easy on the pocket book! You can make it ahead and either keep it in the fridge for 3 or 4 days before baking or freeze it for a fantastic dinner in a pinch!
- brown lentils
- vegetable stock/broth (low or no sodium)
- olive oil
- fresh garlic
- ground cumin
- all-purpose flour
- tomato paste
- red wine
- Worcestershire sauce
- frozen peas
- salt and pepper t
- cauliflower & celery root puree
HOW TO MAKE THIS RECIPE
- Prepare the cauliflower and celery root puree. This can be made in advance and left, covered until you are ready to use it. Conveniently, it can also be prepared up to 3 days in advance.
- Next, sauté the onions and carrots until the onions are soft and glossy. Then, add the mushrooms and continue cooking until they start to soften. Add the cumin and salt.
- Add the tomato paste and sprinkle with flour. The tomato paste adds a richness and depth of flavour and the flour acts as a thickener. Stir everything together. The flour and tomato paste might start sticking to the bottom of the pan. Lower heat if it is starting to brown too much. Letting some brown bits form on the bottom of the pan is good as it will add more flavour to the finished pie.
- Pour in the wine, bring to a boil, and scrape up all those delicious brown bits that have started forming. Add the lentils here and stir to combine everything.
- Add the stock and Worcestershire sauce then bring it to a boil then lower the heat to a gentle simmer. Then, continue simmering until the lentils are tender. About 20-25 minutes. Check for doneness and continue cooking if necessary.
- Transfer the lentil mixture to a 9.5-Inch Deep Pie Plate or an 8x8 Baking Dish. Scoop several small piles of the cauliflower topping on top and spread evenly with the back of a spoon or an offset spatula.
- Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, if using. Place on a baking sheet to catch any drippings if it bubbles over the edge.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until the filling is bubbling and the top starts forming a crust.
- Optional step - To get a nice brown top, turn the broiler to high and broil the top until golden brown. Be sure to keep a close eye on it so it doesn't burn.
- Serve and enjoy!
- Brown lentils - can be substituted with green lentils, Puy, or black beluga (cooking times may vary). Canned lentils can also be used. Rinse well and continue with the recipe as is.
- Mushrooms - you can simply omit them or bump up the other veggies already in the recipe. You can also add something else like corn instead.
- Vegetable stock or broth - Chicken stock can be used if not making it vegetarian/vegan.
- All-purpose flour - a gluten-free alternative can be used.
- Red wine - you can substitute with water or stock plus 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar.
- Worcestershire sauce - if making this pie vegan, use a vegan brand or substitute with soy sauce or tamari.
- Cauliflower and celery root puree - use an alternate like all cauliflower or classic mashed potatoes. Sweet potato puree would also be delicious!
- Parmesan cheese - For a vegan version, use a vegan alternative or sprinkle with nutritional yeast. Or just skip the topping altogether.
- If you aren't going to finish a bottle of wine that you open for cooking, freeze the remaining amount to use in future recipes.
- If the sauce isn't thick enough for you, mix cornstarch, 1 teaspoon at a time, into a small amount of water to dissolve. Stir into boiling lentil mixture to thicken. Add more if necessary to reach desired consistency.
More recipes you might like to try
- TEMPEH AND ROASTED CHICKPEA CURRY
- SMOKY LENTIL AND BACON SOUP
- WARM LENTIL SALAD WITH ROASTED VEGETABLES AND BACON
- CURRIED RED LENTIL SOUP
Lentil Shepherd's Pie
This hearty, protein-rich, vegan alternative to a classic meat pie just might surprise you!Print Pin Rate
Servings: 6 servings
- 1 cup brown or green lentils, rinsed
- 4 cups vegetable stock/broth, low or no sodium
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 medium carrot, diced
- 227 g 8oz mushrooms, chopped
- 4-5 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoon tomato paste
- ¼ cup red wine
- 2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- ½ cup frozen peas, thawed or frozen
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 recipe Cauliflower & Celery Root Puree
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Prepare the cauliflower and celery root puree. Reserve.
- In a large, deep, frying pan or pot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and carrot. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until onions start to soften and become glossy.
- Add mushrooms and continue cooking and stirring for another 5 mins. Add garlic, cumin and ½ teaspoon salt. Continue stirring and cooking for 2 minutes.
- Add tomato paste and sprinkle with the flour. Stir until combined. Pour in the wine and scrape up any brown bits that have formed on the bottom. Add the rinsed lentils and stir. Add the peas and mix.
- Add the stock/broth and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 25 minutes or until lentils are softened.
- Transfer lentil mixture to a baking dish. Scoop the cauliflower and celery root puree on top and spread evenly. Top with Parmesan cheese if using. Place on a tray in case it bubbles over and bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes. If you want to brown the top, turn on the broiler and keep an eye on it until it’s browned to your liking.
If you are short on time you can use canned lentils and frozen peas and carrots. Drain the lentils and rinse. Add the lentils and frozen vegetables at step # 6 and simmer for 10 minutes or until the sauce has thickened. Proceed with remaining steps. STORAGE: This pie will keep in the fridge, covered for 5 days, or freeze for up to 3 months. See the above post for substitutions and pro tips!
Serving: 1serving | Calories: 294kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 693mg | Potassium: 982mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 8g
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I love this dish! I made it for the second time last night. I did find that my lentils took much longer to cook and I added more water….I think that half of my lentils were pretty old and half were more fresh so the fresher ones cooked in the time, but the older ones didn’t. I made sure they all were soft before putting them in the pan for the oven.I added a little extra tomato paste, flour, and Worcestershire because of the extra water. And of course the celeriac cauliflower mash is absolutely perfect on this. Comfort food at its finest!
I'm so happy you enjoyed it! Definitely, the older ones can take a bit longer to cook. It sounds like you did a great job adjusting!
This was absolutely delicious! So flavourful. I used sweet potato mashed up as the topper and it was so good. Thanks Andrea for all your amazing recipes.
Shepherds pie was my husbands favorite meal before he became a vegetarian. He absolutely loved this version! I think it’s tastier than other shepherds pie that I’ve made. And I love how nutrient rich it is! I couldn’t find celery root at my local grocery store so I made the cauliflower mash with celery instead, which made it slightly stringy. Probably because I used a blender rather than a food processor. Thanks Andrea for bringing shepherds pie back into our lives! Keep these recipes coming!
I'm so happy you both enjoyed the Shepherds pie! I recommend using straight up cauliflower if you can't find celery root. As you discovered, celery stalks won't purée to a smooth consistency.
Loved this recipe - I used the green lentils and found they did not cook quite enough even though they cooked for much longer than the 20 mins called for. They were still a bit chewy but it was so delicious we didn't care! Loved the celery root and cauliflower combo also!
Strange about the lentils not cooking in that amount of time but happy you still enjoyed it!
I’m confused about the lentils. I thought dried lentils had to be soaked overnight. Does the cooking in the broth replace the soaking?
Can’t wait to try it!
Lentils don't require soaking. Just a good rinse and cook!
Janice Winckers says
Mmm… made the lentil shepherds pie. Added leftover chicken and extra carrots to the lentils and used mushroom broth. My boys enjoyed it too and still don’t realize those were not potatoes on top!! I promise to enlighten them
Hi Janice! Im so happy to hear everyone enjoyed it! Love that they couldn't even tell the difference!!
Terrie J. Core says
I cannot wait to try this! Loving every recipe you post and honestly so excited
To see each new one in my mailbox 😊
That makes me so happy! Hope you enjoy the Shepherds Pie!!!
Ann Menheere says
I'm assuming that we don't use the broth when using canned lentils?
You still want to use the broth But you can reduce it a bit if you prefer a thicker filling. You can also thicken them sauce at the end with a bit of cornstarch (see Pro Tips) Hope you enjoy it!
Connie Parking says
Loved this recipe...don't like peas so I left them out. Will make again for sure. Can't wait for more new recipes. Thanks Andrea.