Nourishing Vegan Shepherd’s Pie
When I think “comfort food” I go immediately to this shepherd’s pie. I love that it’s completely plant-based and just packed with foods that nourish the body.
This is definitely not your traditional shepherd’s pie that has lots of meat and potatoes, which always left me feeling so heavy. Instead, this one uses sprouted lentils, a super creamy and delicious cauliflower purée on top, is packed with vegetables and a lot of flavor! You definitely won’t be feeling that heaviness after eating this, even if you eat half of it like I maybe do… 😉
One of my favorite legumes to eat is sprouted lentils, and I absolutely love sprouting them myself. If you have kids and want to get them involved in food prep, this would be an awesome place to do so. I’m pretty sure I get a little too excited when they start sprouting and you see the little white tip bursting through. It’s just way too fun!!
I love sprouting all my beans, grains, etc. to increase digestion and maximize absorption. I noticed a huge difference in my body’s ability to digest them once I starting preparing them properly. Sprouted lentils in particular are high in protein, fiber, vitamin A and folate, and minerals like calcium, magnesium, and potassium. Such a beauty food with so many amazing nutrients to benefit the body! LOVE!
This dish has two super easy-to-make components: the filling and the topping. Simply caramelizing and sautéing all the veggies and lentils with some yummy seasoning is all you need for the delicious filling, and quickly steaming and blending the cauliflower makes for the best smooth and creamy topping!
The textures and flavors that are built are just amazing. Caramelizing the garlic, onions, and mushrooms is a must for me, which really builds up that deep umami flavor. The other must for this dish is the final broil…
…that topping. Oh my goodness. I could eat bowls and bowls of just that filling! The key = broiling it with just a bit of coconut oil, nutritional yeast, and salt. Holy smokes!
I can’t wait for you to experience this amazing dish. Perfect for those who already love plant-based food, or forfor introducing more veggies to you, your kids, or someone you know who has a hard time eating them. They may just want to eat half of it at one sitting like me and it become their new favorite comfort food too!
- Garlic, chopped
- Sweet onion, diced
- White or crimini mushrooms, sliced
- Coconut or avocado oil, as needed
- Zucchini or yellow squash, diced
- Celery, sliced
- Carrots. sliced
- Peas, fresh or frozen
- Organic corn, fresh or frozen
- Lentils, soaked 8+ hours and/or sprouted, uncooked
- Seasonings: I use a blend of garlic powder, ground cumin, and dried oregano
- Nutritional yeast, as desired
- Celtic sea salt and black pepper, to taste
- Fresh parsley, chopped
Steam the cauliflower pieces until fork tender. Blend with a blender (I use a Vitamix) or a hand blender with a pinch of salt and pepper.
Caramelize the garlic, onion, and mushrooms with enough oil to lightly cover the pan and a pinch of salt. A great starting point is 2-3 cloves of garlic, 1 small or 1/2 large onion, and 4-5 mushrooms, but use what you like.
Add the zucchini, celery, carrots and lentils and allow to cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Try starting with 1 medium zucchini, 1-2 stalks of celery, 1 large carrot, and around 2 cups of lentils and add more if desired.
Add desired amount of peas and corn (I typically go heavy on the peas and light on the corn).
Season with as much seasonings as you'd like, adding more based on your taste. Add 1-2 spoonfuls of nutritional yeast, a handful of fresh parsley, and a little extra salt and pepper. Taste and add more if needed.
Spread the cauliflower puree evenly on top. Dab or drizzle a small amount of oil on the puree, and sprinkle with a thin layer of nutritional yeast and a pinch of salt.
Broil until caramelized and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Serve and enjoy!
- I use a cast iron to cook, broil, and serve this in. However, if you don't have one, make the filling in your skillet and transfer to a baking dish before topping and broiling.
- Do not feel limited to the vegetables I used - take out or add different ones like green beans. For the vegetables, cut them as big or small as you'd like, just make sure they're all roughly the same size.
- Regarding the seasonings, use these individual spices/herbs or your favorite blend.
*For those that don't know, my recipes are made as whole and nutrient-dense as possible, but still incredibly satisfying. I share my recipes without measurements and hope they equip you to not feel confined to a recipe, but rather confident in your kitchen to be able to create something unique, nourishing, and delicious all on your own. So take this recipe as inspiration and enjoy! Head on over to my IG @noelle.parton and tag me if you try this out, or contact me if you have questions or comments.
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