Remember a few weeks back when I mentioned how completely and utterly done with winter I was?
Well winter is finally (maybe, fingers crossed...) showing signs of coming to an end. It's staying light a little bit later and even though I hate the thought of losing a whole hour to DST this weekend, I'll surely appreciate the longer brighter evenings.
There might not be much snow left on the ground and it might not be freezing cold any more but still, it's certainly not spring yet. Therefore I'm still 100% on board with winter comfort foods. Like casseroles!
I haven't made many casseroles in my lifetime but I have definitely eaten my share of them. My mom makes some seriously awesome casseroles, you know, with the amazingly delicious crispy crunchy toasted toppings? Ugh, that stuff is the best. Home-cooked meals made by moms are the best too. ♥
Until now I've kind of avoided cooking casseroles. For some reason I've been under the impression that casseroles were a lot of work or something. Well, it turns out they aren't! Considering how many servings they make (and that they can usually be frozen!), casseroles are pretty darn convenient! (This is all old news to most home cooks, but if you've been avoiding casseroles like me, stop now!)
So far in my casserole endeavour I've made a couple of vegan lasagnas with tofu spinach "ricotta", the best vegan mac n' cheese I've ever eaten (based off of this recipe - complete with a crispy herb-y topping. Mmm...), and this healthy, veggie and lentil packed shepherd's pie!
While I love comfort food, I'm not looking for something too heavy or filling. This shepherd's pie strikes the perfect balance of healthy and comforting.
I kept the mashed potato topping nice and simple using The Little Potato Company's Creamer potatoes. They're completely fuss-free! They come pre-washed and their delicate thin skins mean no peeling required! (Thank goodness for that because Creamer potatoes would be a real bugger to peel.) The Little Potatoes just need a quick boil and mash with a touch of vegan butter, salt, and a splash of unsweetened almond or soy milk. Creamer potatoes are a great source of vitamin C and potassium (and leaving the tender skins on adds a good dose of fibre to the dish too!)
The filling (or base) is brimming with vegetables 😀 Think carrots, celery, onion, garlic, kale, mushrooms, corn, peas, AND lentils in a light savoury vegetable gravy. You can experiment with different veggies but this combination is reeeally good. Mushrooms and lentils are an ideal base for a vegan shepherd's pie, the heartiness is spot on and there's no need for vegan meat substitutes!
This recipe comes together in just over an hour and makes about 8 servings. It freezes like a dream so if 8 servings is too much you can save some leftovers for healthy comfort food in a pinch!
This post is sponsored by The Little Potato Company. We love them for their commitment to simple, healthy whole foods like the delicious Creamer potatoes. Thanks for supporting the brands that support I Love Vegan! Learn more about why we love Little Potatoes SO much at www.littlepotatoes.com
Want to win yourself some Little Potatoes? Enter to win a 1 month supply of Creamers from The Little Potato Company below!Print
Healthy Veggie Lentil Shepherd's Pie
- Prep Time: 40 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hours 10 minutes
- Yield: serves 8
- Category: Dinner
- Cuisine: Vegan
This healthy vegan Shepherd's pie uses nutrient-rich Little Potatoes (and their skins!) for the mashed topping and a hearty mix of lentils and vegetables for the base. Healthy comfort food at its finest!
Mashed Potato Topping:
- 1.5lb bag of The Little Potatoes Fingerling Potatoes (or Baby Boomers)
- ⅓ cup unsweetened soy or almond milk
- ½ tbsp Earth Balance
- ¼-½ teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ tbsp olive oil
- ½ cup carrots, chopped
- ½ cup celery, chopped
- ½ red onion, chopped
- 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup kale, de-stemmed and finely chopped
- 2 cup mushrooms, sliced
- ¼ tsp thyme
- 2 tbsp unbleached all purpose flour
- 1 ½ - 2 cups veggie broth
- ½ cup frozen corn
- ½ cup frozen peas
- 1 ½ cups cooked green lentils (cooking instructions in notes)
- In a large pot, cover Creamer potatoes with a generous amount of cold water and bring to a boil. Boil for 15 minutes (or until tender.)
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- While the potatoes are boiling, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, celery, carrots, garlic, and kale. Sauté for 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms and thyme. Continue sautéing until the vegetables are nearly tender.
- Evenly sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and stir to coat. Cook for 1 minute. Gradually and in small amounts, add the veggie broth to the vegetables using a whisk to incorporate the broth. Keep adding more broth until the consistency is a thin gravy. Add the corn, peas, and lentils. Simmer for 5 minutes (add more water if needed.) Pour veggie mixture into a large casserole dish. Spoon or pipe mashed potatoes evenly on top. Cover the casserole dish with a lid or foil and bake for 25 minutes. Remove the lid and broil for 2-5 minute until browned to your liking.
I cooked this recipe in a large deep dish pie plate. Any large casserole dish should be just fine.Cooking Lentils: Approx. ¾ cup dry green lentils = 1 ½ cups cooked. Rinse ½ cup dry red lentils (split). Add the lentils and 2 ½ cups of unsalted water to a medium sized saucepan. Bring to a boil and boil for 20-25 minutes (until lentils are tender.)
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I followed this recipe to the T and found it to be very bland, it was worth a try.
This sounds like a great, hardy recipe. How well does it freeze? I cool for one so would only probably consume half in a week and keep the other for 2-3 weeks out if it froze well. Otherwise I'd need to figure out halfing the recipe.
I think this recipe would freeze really well! If you try it out please let me know how it goes!
Hi there - I"m about to try your recipe and it looks great. I went looking for Earth Balance and when I looked at the ingredients I was surprised to see palm oil...I thought you might be too, so am sharing in case you didn't know, or perhaps you might be unaware of what the harvesting of palm oil has done to orangutan habitats.
thanks for the recipe though! I'm new to a vegan lifestyle so it's great to find places to go with tasty recipes
Hi. In the notes regarding the lentils you mention red lentils as well, but they aren't on the ingredient list. Is it just the green lentils you have used in this pie?
Woops, sorry about that Carole! This recipe just uses GREEN lentils - I've fixed the recipe. Thanks for commenting!
Sorry, I missed the little Print button!! Hard to see!
Glad you found it Bonnie! I'll look into brightening up the "Print" button 😀
How do I print your recipes?
It serves 8. But how much is 1 serve? One scoop ? Or a cup each? I want to halve the recipe so it doesn't serve so many but not if the expected serving size is small.
Sorry, your comment got lost! I made this in an 9", round casserole dish. I divided it by 8 by eyeballing it and cutting it into even slices. Hope that helps!
Is there an substitute to the Earth Balance that is listed in the ingredients list? Firstly I'm not sure what it is, and secondly because I am from the UK and we don't have it over here!
Any vegan 'butter' or margarine will work! I think Tesco carries a soy-based vegan butter, there's also the brand 'Pure' which has some vegan options, or you can make your own! Here's a recipe for making your own.
Thanks for this delicious recipe, I tried it this weekend and it was a success 🙂
Awesome! That's great to hear!
This looks so delicious. Love healthy shepherd's pie recipes! I bet those potatoes would be good in potato soup as well...small so no need to cut before cooking....that's usually my least favorite part of dealing with potatoes. 🙂
Thanks Carly! I agree, prepping potatoes is the worst!
Izzy @ She likes food
I pretty much live in the dessert so winter has been long gone but I still love a good casserole like this! I love any casserole that has potatoes on top! This looks delicious 🙂
Thanks Izzy! I'm going to have to try some more casserole recipes with potato topping 😀
Having said that, these little potatoes could be grated for some delicious potato pancakes. Is there a vegan recipe?? Wondering how to get them to stick together.
Oooh, I'll have to think about that one! Thanks for the inspiration Cheryl!
Mmm I love the way you browned the mashed potatoes in the picture --looks so tasty.
Also, I clicked on the link for The Little Potato Company and read the information about the product and the company. Little Potato creamers are one veggie I actually do trust to be pre washed and ready to eat--very nice!
Thanks! I hate washing potatoes so I've been loving these pre-washed ones 😀