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)

claireacluck1's picture

Delicious!!! Perfect meat-free Monday dish! As suggested previously I added frozen soya beans. My meat loving and always hungry three sons and husband really enjoyed.

indieprincess's picture

I'm not a vegetarian but I did enjoy this after making it for a vegetarian friend - I made it in 4 individual pie dishes and froze 2, one of which I have subsequently eaten and freezing seemed to intensify the flavour. Loved the sweet potato mash topping

groundflea's picture

My local shop does not seem to have any canned lentils never mind canned green lentils. Is there any alternative i could use? As i assume adding the liquid from the can is important.

sallyjenn's picture

This was lovely! Needed a bit longer in the over than the recipe gives but my meat-eater other half was impressed!

hippychick4eva's picture

Love this.
In my opinion the amount of wine is fine, I tend to add a bit of cornflour mixed with a small amount of water to the sauce at the end to really thicken it up and make it all stick together nicely. I also add a clove or two of garlic to the mash and mix the cheese in with it rather than putting on top.
A really filling, healthy recipe.
It's interesting the comments people have made about using dried lentils, I can see that working quite well and will try it using this method next time.

curiouscas's picture

made this as the vegetarian option when cooking shepherds pie for 50+ people. Everyone utterly loved it even die hard meat eaters with a phobia of lentils. Personally I didn't get a chance to try it but only because everyone wolfed it down so quickly!

applepiejo's picture

Loved it, first time I've willing used lentils and I am a convert. Added some cayenne pepper too. Not a fan of sweet potato so normal mash for me.

wizzy_8's picture

i used normal potatoes and chickpeas. i also used a clove of garlic, a squidge of tomato puree and a teaspoon of cayenne pepper.. i've only made it once so don't know if that made it better or worse, but it was definitely nice!!

charleyguest's picture

I cooked this the other day, was delicious!

I used half chickpeas, half lentils (instead of all lentils).

I took the advice from others, and reduced the water to 50ml, but kept the wine at 200ml.

Next time I am going to put mushrooms and maybe some other vegetables in too.

Great recipe! :)

galagalawatcha's picture

This has become a firm fav in our house.

kara88's picture

Yum! I thought this might be a bit 'Grub on a Grant', but it was lovely. I used the full amount of wine but added less water (the right way round if you need to cut back on liquid in my book) and also added a sprinkling of ground almonds to thicken it up before putting in the oven. I used white-fleshed sweet potatoes as they're not as sweet, kind of halfway between sweet and 'normal' spuds. Makes enough for at least six I'd say, rather than four, which I'm not complaining about.

littlejones's picture

One of my housemates is vegetarian, so I try to find vegetarian meals we will all enjoy and was very disappointed. I followed the recipe exactly but found it very bland. Definitely won't be making this again.

hampanijad's picture

We are vegetarians and this makes great dinner. I just use normal potatoes. Children love it.

ZozieBee's picture

Definitely needed something else in the sweet potato mash! Someone suggested cinnamon..?
But it was lovely - making this again for definite!

kazzac's picture

I made this when my mum came to stay. I adapted the recipe slightly, using ordinary potatoes and dried red lentils (so I added extra stock and red wine and cooked the lentil mix for a bit longer). I also added celery, red pepper, mushrooms and tomato puree to the mix for some extra flavour and texture.

It was really yummy and one I'll make again.

grainnegleeson's picture

I added a small packet of pancetta cubes to the frying onions, it gives a lovely flavour to the lentils. Not very vegetarian though!

rachelmanners's picture

Really good recipe, althought I agree with other commenters that it needed about half the liquid suggested. I made it with normal potatoes which worked really well.

lizzysempill's picture

I made it for a family meal, changed nothing, and will certainly
do it again. Everyone loved it

teeny76's picture

Lovely - used dry green lentils so I did need the extra liquid. Will be making it again


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