Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie with lentils

It’s that time of the year when comfort foods surface in my kitchen.  I mean come on, what’s not to love about warm autumn flavors, like a good soup, stew or curries this time of year?  Truly satisfying food doesn’t just fill the stomach, it stimulates the senses too.  I actually get quite psyched to try out new recipes that I’ve been bookmarking over the summer. There’s nothing quite like a roast in the oven, a baked apple pie with the aromas of Fall or just baking a loaf of bread or rolls keeps our kitchen and our tummies satiated.  It it is with this in mind that I tried this Vegetarian Shepherds Pie, a colorful medley of vegetables, protein filled lentils, a rich brown gravy with a splash of red wine and a crispy mashed potato topping.  Comfort in a bowl!

They say we eat with our eyes, look at those colors and all the goodness that will go into that pan of vegetables.

Doesn’t that look rich with all the flavors and colors of autumn?  A splash of wine always enriches the gravy, or so it does in our house 🙂

The green lentils added some protein to this comforting dish.  A crispy mashed potato topping to complete the dish.

A side salad, and nothing much more needed for this satisfying meal.  This will definitely be on our monthly rotation of comfort foods.  Stay tuned to Safari of the Mind to gather more such recipes.

Vegetarian Shepherds Pie with lentils


  • 4 potatoes peeled and chopped
  • 3 carrots peeled and chopped
  • 1 leek chopped
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1/3 pound mushrooms sliced
  • 3/4 cup cooked green lentils
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 1/2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1/3 cup red wine (secret ingredient)
  • 4 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1 tablespoon tomato puree
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1-2 tbsp butter
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese


  1. Add potatoes to a pot of boiling water with a pinch of salt and cook for 10-20 minutes until soft.
  2. Heat a little oil in a large pot and add the carrots, leek and onion and cook for a couple of minutes until softened, then add the mushrooms and garlic and cooked lentils and cook for a few minutes longer.
  3. Add the tomato puree, flour and thyme followed by the stock and wine.  Bring to a simmer and cook for about 10 minutes or until the sauce is thickened.
  4. In the meantime mash the potatoes with milk and butter and a sprinkling of salt and pepper.  Add shredded mozzarella cheese and mix well.
  5. Pour the vegetables into a baking dish and top with mashed potato.  Gently spread the potato with the back of a spoon until it covers the entire surface.  Drag a fork across the top to add a pattern if desired.
  6. Place under broiler for 10 minutes or so until browned and crispy.

Recipe adapted from The Cook Report.



30 thoughts on “Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie with lentils

  1. Loretta, the mash on top of your pie is browned to perfection. We love dishes like this. I can see this served beside a nice roasted leg of lamb even if it is a veggie recipe. So, is the half of jalapeño in pie? Will mark this one for sure.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha you don’t miss a trick do you Ron? The recipe did not call for a jalapeño, however, I wanted some heat to it, so I sparingly added a couple slices 😋


  2. This is warming my bones just looking at it! I’m always looking at recipes for lentils and this one is definitely one I’ll be trying. I’m drooling just contemplating biting into that crunchy potato topping. I would think this dinner and a glass of wine would be medicinal after the weddings and jet-setting you’ve been enjoying too!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha you read my mind Julie, comfort food at its best after such a busy 6 months. But I still have the pup here till Saturday and only then will I be able to relax. Phew, I’ll need a few bottles of red by then 😉😉

      Liked by 1 person

  3. What a perfect fall dinner, Loretta. Absolutely love all the flavors in the lentil carrot mushroom base and your potato topping looks scrumptious!
    I was thinking of shephard’s pie as I woke up this morning and lo and behold you had one ready!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Can’t wait to see how you Indianize your shepherd’s pie Sandhya. Is there such a word? I too add Indian spices to a dish if I find it will be too bland, but sometimes I just like plain flavors. The recipe actually didn’t call for lentils, but I thought it would be a great addition, and it certainly was, especially those green lentils. Nothing quite like a cottage pie in the cooler weather is there?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ha ha yes! But I agree about having just plain flavors sometimes. Lentils and fall somehow go together in my head…not sure why 🙂 so I am happy you added them. Where do you get the green lentils?


  4. I actually might make this Loretta even though I love my meat version of Shepherd’s Pie. I do love lentils and of course mashed potatoes. By the way you might want to remove the smiley face after the red wine ingredient. It prints out a BIG SMILEY! Happy Halloween by the way – will you be tricking or treating? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh for sure I too love a lamb or beef shepherd’s pie, but we are trying to have at least 3-4 meatless dinners in a week. The recipe actually did not call for lentils, but I wanted to add it for the protein. I’ll have to check the big smiley on the print feature, thanks. It’s been tough keeping up with the blog as we brought our second daughter’s pup with us after the wedding. It’s almost 3 weeks since we’ve had him and wow, I’m exhausted, he’s a year old and so full of energy. It’s like running afte r a toddler. I’m catching up on answering posts while he is napping in the sun, but soon he’ll be up and wanting to play again. 😀


  5. I am so impressed with your blog Loretta. Have you ever done a cook book? I loved the phrase…autumn flavors. It conjured up all kinds of pleasant images for me. Leaves turning. Pumpkin pie. Eating a hardy soup in toasty pajamas. I remember living In the Earls Court section of London in a sprawling house with 5 other 2o year-old models eating Shepherds Pie every night because the man who sold them from a little stand by the tube station was besotted with one of my leggy roommates. Not only did you wake my appetite but you popped a vintage file. Thanks. It truly is a beautiful site. Susannah.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What an honor to have you visit my humble blog Susannah, I’m an ardent admirer of your scribblings, it always puts a smile on my face. Ha ha, fortunately you reaped the benefits of your leggy roommate eh? Isn’t London amazing? Just like NYC with something happening around every corner and crevice. I lived in England for a while and even worked in London for a few years. My family still live in England, so I get to go back and visit every year. I make a B line for the pubs each time as I love the food. Have you ever been to the Norwood in Chelsea In Manhattan?it is where our daughter got married 3 weeks ago. What a venue! It’s a private arts club in a 150 year old townhouse. The wedding took place on all 4 floors of the townhouse, including the courtyard outdoors. Such an unusual and intimate venue. Just wanted to mention it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No, I never have, but it sounds like I’d love it being such an admirer of what sounds like, a landmark building. Congrats on her marriage. I loved your site. It’s so, so beautiful. It did make me hungry, I’ll tell ya that. I was in England so long ago, but can conjure it up in a heartbeat, and that Shepherd’s Pie of yours really helped. Been hankering for it ever since. It was warm and solid, I remember, and we had limited heat in this old house so it was comfort food and then some. Memories. They pop up like tulips you forgot you planted. Susannah

        Liked by 1 person

  6. This looks absolutely gorgeous! I am going to try making this soon. I am simply awestruck by your photographic, gardening and cooking skills. Thanks for sharing all the info here. Lots to learn from you!


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