Shepherdless Pie

Vegan Shepherds’ Pie

This is a lovely hearty meal using Puy lentils as a substitute for meat.  It’s also a really good way to use up random bits and pieces of veg leftover in the fridge – just fling them in!   If you can’t get Puy, I have also used brown lentils and green lentils before to very good effect here.  With lots of lovely pillowy mashed potato on the top, this is real, solid comfort food in a bowl.  Team it with a side of greens or a coleslaw.

shepherdless pie


  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 2 ribs celery chopped (I chopped them into small dice but they look and cook fine just chopped thinly across the girth of the celery rib)
  • 1 HUGE carrot (what I had) or two medium carrots diced small
  • 1 clove garlic (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (or extra virgin rapeseed oil would also be good here)
  • 2 x 14 oz tins chopped (or whole) tomatoes
  • 8 oz Puy lentils (pre-cooked for preference – you don’t want the finished dish to have too much bite from the lentils)
  • Seasoning to taste
  • 5 – 2 lb potatoes (could substitute cauliflower or celeriac for some of the potatoes)
  • Touch of olive oil
  • A little plant based milk


  • Sauté the onion, celery, carrot and garlic in the olive oil until soft
  • Stir in the tinned tomatoes and lentils and season to taste.
  • Simmer for a while to bring the flavours together while your potatoes cook
  • Boil the potatoes in salted water until soft, then mash with the olive oil and plant milk until it reaches the consistency you like. A tablespoon or two of nutritional yeast would be a great addition here
  • Place pie filling in a heat proof serving dish and spread the mash on top. Rough up the top of the mash with a fork, drizzle on more olive oil if desired, and then place under a hot grill (if you’re in a hurry!) or in a hot oven to brown the top and bring everything back to piping hot

Serve in big deep bowls with your chosen accompaniment and enjoy!


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