This Vegan Shepherd’s Pie is the ultimate in guilt-free comfort food. It sounds like an oxymoron, guilt-free and comfort food—but it comes down to ingredients. With no oil, no added fat, plus the addition of starchy potatoes and heartiness of the lentils and veggie mixture are comforting without sabotaging your weight loss goals. Don’t shy away from potatoes and legumes because the resistant starch and fiber are oh so good for beneficial microbes in your gut, which can further aid in weight loss.
One of the questions Sersie and I get when working with our group doing the Daniel fast as a bridge to healthy living is “How do I handle the holidays?”
Well, this dish can be that solution to the holiday dinner consternation.
Why? Because this Vegan Shepherd’s Pie is tasty and easy to prepare, pack and transport to wherever you’re meeting up with family. You can reheat it in the oven or pop it in the microwave just before everyone sits down for dinner. Yes, you still may get questions about why you’re eating vegan or even some funny looks from a few “curious” family members. But you can take comfort in knowing your meal is nutritious, tasty, and filling.
Pro Tip: Bring enough to share with those curious family members.
What is vegan shepherd’s pie made of?
Some recipes will call for using mock meats as the base. However, this recipes calls for using more whole plant food ingredients. The lentils, mushrooms, onion, carrot, peas and corn dominate the filling. The topping uses creamy garlic mashed potatoes. I appreciate what the nutrients of these fiber-rich whole plant foods are doing in my body to lower inflammation and improving my gut health.
There key ingredients you’ll need are:
- Potatoes (Yukon gold or red)
- Unsweetened, plain soy milk
- Brown or Green Lentils, dry
- Aminos (or reduced sodium tamari/soy sauce)
- Dried thyme
- Dried rosemary
- Tomato paste
- Black pepper
- Low sodium vegetable broth
- Frozen peas
- Frozen corn
How to make vegan shepherd’s pie
For starters, you’ll need a large pot, large sauté pan, hand mixer or potato masher, cutting board, knife, large spoon, and casserole dish (about 7×11) or a 9×9 (or 8×8) baking pan. Start by preparing the creamy garlicky mashed potatoes.
- Chop Yukon gold potatoes (with skin on), and add to a pot of water, so the water covers the potatoes by an inch or two.
- Smash garlic cloves, but leave whole, and add to the pot with potatoes and water.
- Boil the potatoes and garlic over medium-high heat uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes or until potatoes are fork-tender.
- Drain potatoes and garlic and return them to the pot.
- Add ¼ cup of the unsweetened, plain soy milk to the drained potato garlic mixture. Using a hand mixer, whip potatoes until creamy. If potatoes are too stiff, add another few tablespoons of soy milk until desired consistency.
- Salt and pepper to taste, and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C).
- Preheat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Dry sauté the chopped onion for about 4 minutes or until it starts to brown. Add chopped mushrooms and carrots and continue cooking for another 2 to 3 minutes. If veggies stick, add a splash of water.
- Stir in seasonings (aminos, black pepper, dried thyme, dried rosemary) and tomato paste. Continue cooking for 1 to 2 minutes. It should smell quite lovely.
- Add dried lentils and low sodium vegetable broth to the saute pan. Stir well, and increase the heat to medium-high. Bring lentils and veggies to a gentle boil. Reduce heat, cover pot, and continue to cook until lentils are tender about 30 minutes. During the last 2 to 3 minutes of cooking, stir in frozen peas and corn. Don’t worry if the peas are still cold; they’ll finish up in the oven.
- Add lentil and veggie mixture to a 7×11 casserole dish or 9×9 or 8×8 square baking pan. Spoon on prepared garlic mashed potatoes. Bake in a preheated oven for 12 to 15 minutes or until mashed potatoes start to brown and the lentil veggie mixture is bubbly.
- Remove from the oven and let sit for 10 to 15 minutes before serving. Garnish with fresh chopped herbs and enjoy!
How long does this lentil shepherd’s pie last in the refrigerator?
You can store leftovers in the refrigerator for 4 days. Alternatively, you can portion out servings and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
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