Veggie shepherd's pie with sweet potato mash

Veggie shepherd's pie with sweet potato mash

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(318 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 (327)

cfrickers's picture

Amazing recipe!!!

Whatawasteoftime's picture

Hmm, wet, bland, took longer to cook than advised, vegetables need to be cut to half the size suggested. You'll need 50% more sweet potato to manage anything approaching a topping. Get a real cookbook that you have to pay for - it will be an investment - your recipes might work and might even taste of something

hannah_scott's picture

As I was cooking for 6 people, I used two cans of tomatoes, more onion and added a can of kidney beans. It went down a treat with everyone except one, who wasn't a fan of the sweet potato! Next time I will use some normal potatoes as even though the sweet potatoes add a lovely taste, they make the meal about £1 more expensive. I also think I will used dried thyme, as it will be easier to whip up at late notice. Lovely dish, and will be enjoying again.

Sarahphe's picture

Amazing recipe! We're not vegetarians but fancied trying something new. You would struggle to tell there isn't meat in this and my husband and I scoffed a huge portion each. I used dried lentils so used lots more water but just added it as needed. This also meant it was cooking for about an hour before it was ready to go in the oven but this wasn't a problem. I also added some garlic, also a teaspoon of marmite for added richness and a bayleaf in with the mixture whilst is was cooking on the hob. I will be telling everyone about this recipe

danielle5820's picture

Worked nicely. However, as the majority of comments say, 100ml of water is more than enough. I had to drain my mixture slightly. I also did a leek and cauliflower mash instead.. Lovely!!

betsydoda's picture

I absolutely LOVE this dish. We tried it with the sweet potato (which my kids are not particularly fond of), then I tried it with a combo of sweet and regular potato and finally I tried it with just regular potato on its own. All work great, in my opinion, but my kids prefer the regular potato best. The lentils and the wine make this dish so "meaty" that I think it is the perfect meal for those that are reluctant to go without meat. Totally dee-lish!

Mand89's picture

Delicious! Having been a veggie for 13 years I'm always looking for new dishes. I read the other comments first and made these changes: added mushrooms, quorn mince, 2 cloves garlic, Italian seasoning, garlic salt, salt and pepper. Only used a splash of water and a little bit of lentil juice. Added 1 tspn paprika to the mash. Best homemade meal I've had in ages.

jes_668's picture

You didn't really follow the recipe...

rach_macleod's picture

I found this meal too sweet, next time i will use normal potatoes rather than sweet. my 10 month old baby loved it but my husband wasn't too keen.

michelle_30's picture

Made this tonight for tea, only change i made was to add 1 clove of garlic and only 100mls water plus for 5 mins cooked uncovered when on the hob. Well my boyfriend who doesnt like his meals without meat enjoyed the whole dish and and even said that he felt healthy after eating it!! Ive worked it out to be all of your 5 a day portions when you make it for 4 people. I will def be making this again and recommend you try too. Was really tasty and easy to make!

goodbyebread's picture

I have so missed red wine casseroles since becoming vegetarian, but this is better than all of them combined! Oh yes. The filling is lovely and rich and contrasts well with the sweetness of the potato. I did not find it bland at all. I did alter the recipe a little - I cut the carrots smaller than suggested because they are a hard vegetable and added just enough water at the end to make sure it wouldn't dry out while cooking. It was a hit. Plus, it felt so sophisticated to be cooking with wine! I can't wait to make this again.

dragonflies's picture

Really tasty recipe, agree with previous comments about chopping carrots smaller. Lovely with some green veg, it freezes excellently as well.

nkgandotra's picture

An instant hit with my hungry housemates!

kc84's picture

I found this really bland. Will not be making again.

sp123's picture

Just made this for dinner and me, my husband, my 3 1/2 year old AND my 10 month old ALL liked and ate it, this has never happened before. Lovely recipe, I added garlic with the onion and 100ml of water instead of 150ml, I cut the carrots really small and cooked for slightly longer, it was delicious! Will be doing this again. Also have enough for lunch tomorrow left over.

sweetsparrow's picture

I made the same adjustments plus a bay leaf while cooking in the pan and used grated Parmesan instead of mature cheddar for topping. I also put sprigs of thyme in the mixture while cooking instead of chopping then removed it at the end, same flavour without tiny woody bits everywhere! My 3 year old loved it and it was a big hit with the meat-loving other half too. It's been a few years since I made this, why?! It's great!

Samamfer's picture

We're not veggies at our house, but my husband doesn't like mince beef (WHAT?!) so I thought I'd try this veggie pie.
We absolutely loved it!!! I didn't have enough sweet potatoes in so used some normal ones for the topping too but it was still gorgeous :)

goodfoodliz's picture

Really, really scrummy. I'm not a great cook and it turned out really well. I used about 100ml of water (rather than the 150ml suggested) as I took into account the previous comments and also that it seemed rather too liquidy. My partner, who is a confirmed carnivore and hates vegetables, really loved it but thought there were too many carrots (I personally loved the carrots - which did still have a bit of bite). Next time, I think I won't reduce the amount of carrot but chop it a bit smaller.
I'm looking forward to making this recipe again.

vadjaja's picture

Super delicious, even my non vegetarian friends love this and declare it better than any traditional shepherds pie they have had!

atrixa's picture

Not one i'd make again- I think you really need to parboil the carrots before you put them in the dish, as they felt almost raw. I also felt there was too much liquid, so the mash sank into the filling a bit too much.


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