This cozy Vegetable Shepherd’s Pie is hearty, healthy comfort food that will satisfy everyone!
Once the holidays are behind me, I yearn to get back to healthier eating. But with winter being…well, winter, I crave comfort food. The thing is, we all tend to associate the term, “comfort food” with heavy, greasy and unwholesome foods.
That’s what makes me feel passionate about getting into the kitchen and working to change that perception. This shepherd’s pie, traditionally made with meat, is full of veggies like earthy mushrooms, sweet peas and carrots, and bites of pearl onions. It’s all topped with creamy mashed potatoes that get a bit toasty with a couple of minutes under the broiler. One taste and you won’t believe how richly satisfying this dish is.
To be honest, even I was surprised by just how delicious this turned out. Between the saucy, deeply flavored veggies and the creamy mashed potatoes…it was so much more than I expected.
I’ve never made mashed potatoes without butter before. These, with extra virgin olive oil and flax milk, were amazing! No, really. They were amazing. I’m going to be making my mashed potatoes this way all the time now!
Vegetable Shepherd's Pie
- 4 large russet potatoes about 2.5 pounds, peeled
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 - 1 1/4 cup milk of your choice I like to use flax milk in this
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 medium onion diced
- 3 stalks celery sliced
- 4-5 medium carrots diced
- 1 bay leaf
- 16 ounces cremini mushrooms sliced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour see notes to make this gluten-free
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons soy sauce or use gluten-free tamari
- 1 cup dry red wine
- 14 ounces frozen pearl onions
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- 16 ounces frozen peas
- salt and pepper to taste
- Start by making your mashed potatoes. In a large pot over high heat, add the potatoes and bring them to a boil. Reduce to a lively simmer and cook until the potatoes are fork tender. Drain and add the olive oil, milk, salt and pepper. Mash the potatoes until smooth. Set aside.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. In a low, oven-safe pot, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, celery, carrots and bay leaf. Cook until the onions become a bit translucent. Add the mushrooms and cook just until they begin to brown at the edges and the carrots have become tender. Add the garlic and thyme leaves and cook for just a minute. Add the flour and stir to combine. Add the tomato paste, soy sauce or tamari. Cook for just a few seconds then add the wine and the pearl onions. Continue cooking until the wine is mostly evaporated. Add the vegetable broth. Stir to combine. If you think you may need more broth, go ahead and add up to a half cup or so more. Add the peas. Bring the pot back to a simmer and continue to cook for 3 to 5 minutes. Add just a pinch of salt and some black pepper.
- Spread the mashed potatoes on top of the filling, making some swirls (they get browned and toasty in the oven) and drizzle just a smidge of olive oil over the top.
- Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. To really get a nice golden top, switch the oven to broil and raise the rack. Broil for just a couple of minutes…keep your eye on it, the broiler works super fast!
- Substitute the 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour with either 2 teaspoons of cornstarch or 2 teaspoons or arrowroot. Be sure to create a slurry with the cornstarch or arrowroot with equal parts vegetable broth or water before adding it to the hot dish to prevent clumping.
- Substitute the soy sauce with gluten-free tamari. Be sure your tamari is labeled gluten-free.
I LOVE SEEING PHOTOS OF RECIPES THAT YOU’VE MADE!
Before you take a bite, snap a photo with your phone, follow me on INSTAGRAM and tag it with #TASTELOVEANDNOURISH