Veggie shepherd's pie with sweet potato mash

Veggie shepherd's pie with sweet potato mash

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(314 ratings)

Prep: 25 mins Ready in 45 mins


Serves 4

The secret to this shepherd's pie’s filling is to choose big carrots so they don’t lose their texture when cooked

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable
  • Easily halved
  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal531
  • fat17g
  • saturates8g
  • carbs79.6g
  • sugars31g
  • fibre12g
  • protein16g
  • salt3.95g
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  • 1 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 1 large onion, halved and sliced



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 2 large carrot (500g/1lb 2oz in total), cut into sugar-cube size pieces



    The carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root…

  • 2 tbsp thyme chopped


    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…

  • 200ml red wine
  • 400g can chopped tomato
  • 2 vegetable stock cubes
  • 410g can green lentils



    The lentil plant (Lens Culinaris) originates from Asia and North Africa and is one of our oldest…

  • 950g sweet potato, peeled and cut into chunks
    Sweet potatoes

    Sweet potato

    sweet po-tate-toe

    Sweet potatoes have a creamy texture and a sweet-spicy flavour that makes them ideal for savoury…

  • 25g butter



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 85g vegetarian mature cheddar, grated


  1. Heat the oil in a frying pan, then fry the onion until golden. Add the carrots and all but a sprinkling of thyme. Pour in the wine, 150ml water and the tomatoes, then sprinkle in the stock cubes and simmer for 10 mins. Tip in the can of lentils, including their juice, then cover and simmer for another 10 mins until the carrots still have a bit of bite and the lentils are pulpy.

  2. Meanwhile, boil the sweet potatoes for 15 mins until tender, drain well, then mash with the butter and season to taste. Pile the lentil mixture into a pie dish, spoon the mash on top, then sprinkle over the cheese and remaining thyme. The pie can now be covered and chilled for 2 days, or frozen for up to a month.

  3. Heat oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5. Cook for 20 mins if cooking straight away, or for 40 mins from chilled, until golden and hot all the way through. Serve with broccoli.

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Comments (324)

paulak's picture

I've been looking for a good vegetarian shepherd's pie for a while, I think I've found it with this one. We're not sweet potato lovers so I used ordinary ones, also followed the advice from others and reduced the wine to about 150mls.

pboropixie's picture

I've just tried this and it was delicious! I agree with the comments about reducing the amount of liquid (I would cut out the water) as I had to simmer it for longer than stated to stop it being too sloppy. I'm looking forward to making this again and making enough to put a few portions in the freezer.

ellingtonboots's picture

Really tasty! I agree with the extra time to reduce the liquid. Might try the veggie gravy granules idea next time too.

hotchkissstuart's picture

This went down really well. Did add some tomato puree and Worcester sauce for extra flavour.

renomate's picture

am addicted to lentils now and this is another great recipe for them. forget reducing the amount of wine, reduce the amount of water if you dont want too much liquid!

chocolatemonkeybear's picture

Absolutely gorgeous!

I agree with the reduction in the liquids, and I have also used port instead of wine, which works pretty well too.

robmcgraw's picture

Fantastic recipe! Substituted 1tsp of dried thyme for fresh and,like others, I reduced the liquid. I've been asked to make it again tonight and I only made it 4 days ago. It must be good!

chesty's picture

Really tasty, I simmered it uncovered and ended up with a delicious thick filling. I also used left over carrot and potato mash for the topping. This would be a good way to use up left over vegetables, and I'm sure would be lovely with courgette and mushrooms too.

Will definitely make again, a very economical dish that is very filling

pigpen71's picture

I made this a day ahead for some veggie friends for Sunday Lunch. What a hit, it was delicious, I added some veggie gravy granules as recommended, and it was a perfect consistency. Would make again.

sis2007's picture

hi i made this last nite and it was liked by all my family .i used potato instead of sweet it was very nice and tasty will make it again

michaelawindsor's picture

How many grammes of dried lentils should I use...I also assume they would soak up the liquid?

sarahcookerybook's picture

Be warned if you're cooking this for anyone but your nearest and dearest - my first effort was very sloppy ... basically lentil mush topped with potato mush! After a few school dinner-esque disasters I think I've got it now. Dried lentils not tinned, red onions, a variation of vegetables (courgette works well) and a good pinch of smoked paprika (thanks mrsmoo) seems to give the best result.

maddieson's picture

Very tasty and sweet

maddieson's picture

Nice. Felt like adding tomato puree after I had made it and a thinner layer of sweet potato as it absorbed my sauce, that I had carefully boiled away on recommendation from other posters saying it was too saucey!

msmooo's picture

This is so... good, had to make a few adjustments. Used dried split yellow peas, which I cooked in the wine and stock for over 1.5 hrs., they were still a little crunchy, will definitely try the tinned lentils next time. Added a large courgette, a bay leaf and a tsp smoked paprika, and my tomatoes were Moroccan seasoned. For the mash mine was one kumera, 4 agria potatoes, 1 onion and a clove of garlic, and when mashing added a little milk. Even my children loved this recipe will definitley be making again soon.

hstanton's picture

Thought I should add the info! I was really surprised with the results.

Preparation Method Percent Retained
Alcohol added to boiling liquid & removed from heat 85%
Flame 75%
No heat; stored overnight 70%
Baked, 25 minutes, alcohol not stirred into mixture 45%
Baked/simmered, alcohol stirred into mixture:
15 minutes 40%
30 minutes 35%
1 hour 25%
1.5 hours 20%
2 hours 10%
2.5 hours 5%

hstanton's picture

Have just found out that wine does NOT lose its alcohol content when cooked!
What can I use to substitute as have children?

purpleonionuk's picture

Great recipe,
I added a little cumin and mild chili powder to the lentil mix, and for the topping I made breadcrumbs from a slice of brown bread, mixed it with the grated cheese and added 1 tsp of english mustard powder, then sprinkled it over the top.

traciekan's picture

i made this today with black lentils it was sublime. BUT i didnt top with mash i made a crumble top instead.
mixed butter with some flour and porridge oats and added good handful of those dried onions. delicious.

lucylou77's picture

Delish!!! I am not a vegetarian but cooked this for a veggie friend and it went down a treat!! My son also had some and asked for seconds!!!! I also reduced the wine and added cinnamon to the sweet mash. Will most definatley be cooking this again!!


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