I do love a hearty Lentil Sheperd’s Pie. It’s what comes to mind when I think of good ole down home comfort food. Sometimes that is just what we need to make us feel all warm and cozy from the inside out. A Shepherd’s Pie has been my go to dish for company, potlucks, to take to a friend who has just had surgery and even the holidays. If you like mashed potatoes you are going to devour this Lentil Sheperds Pie. It has a nice deep stack of mashed potatoes over a bed of deliciously seasoned lentils and vegetable’s in a lovely gravy like sauce, rich with flavor from Herbs de Provence. I am telling you, that this recipe has got it all going on.
Potatoes and lentils go together so well and are so satisfying. Simple enough for a weeknight family meal but yet elegant enough to serve at a holiday meal. A thick and hearty stick to your ribs kind of casserole dish that is classic comfort food.
I love that it fills a 9 x 13 pan and can feed a crowd. This also makes it easy to transport for office parties, church pot lucks, family gatherings and club meetings. Great for entertaining at home too because it is a main dish and side dish all in one! Everyone loves this dish – yes even those non plant eaters seem to love it.
Plus if you need to take a dish with you to someones house this one gives you plenty of food to eat. Yes, even if everyone beats you to the buffet table and digs into it before you have had a chance to get to the one plant based dish on the table. Of course if you label it “Vegan” they will all avoid it like the plague! My Breville Smart Oven Air holds a 9 x 13 baking dish so I baked it in there. Then to finish off the potatoes I broiled it for a few minutes to brown the top ever so slightly.
If you want to get all cute and fancy you can make individual Lentil Sheperd’s Pie casseroles. Everyone gets all excited about having their very own casserole!
The inspiration for this recipe came from my Hearthy Lentil Vegetable Stew recipe which has become quite poplular with our subscribers. It is a family favorite recipe as well. I had been thinking this past year that it would be awesome as a base for a Sheperd’s Pie. Then my friend Colleen Collins told me that she had used some of the Hearty Lentil Stew for a Sheperd’s Pie for a gathering and it was very well recieved! Not long after that you all started asking me what to make for the holidays so I decided it was high time to get in the kitchen and figure it out. I knew I had to down size the stew recipe and make it thicker. I have my best recipe thoughts at about 4:00 AM when I am just starting to come awake and I am all relaxed and have time to think about it but, I am still kind of asleep. Some ideas for this recipe came to mind so I got up, headed to the kitchen and guess what? I actually nailed it on my first try! I decided to use my Garlic Mashed Potatoes for the topping. The rest as they say is history – this is how the Hearty Lentil Shepard’s Pie recipe came into being.
If you have two pressure cookers you can go ahead and make the Garlic Mashed Potatoes in one pressure cooker while the lentil filling is cooking in the other one. If you only have one pressure cooker cook the lentil filling first. When the lentil filling is done transfer it to the baking dish, wash the pot for the pressure cooker and then make the Garlic Mashed Potatoes. You will be putting the casserole in the oven to heat it up nicely before serving so either method will work well.
Hearty Lentil Shepherd’s Pie
- Casserole dish, Pressure Cooker, Broiler, Potato Masher, Oven
- 2 cups onion, chopped
- 1 cup carrots, diced
- 1/2 cup celery, diced
- 2 cups brown/green lentils, rinsed
- 1 1/2 cups sweet potato, peeled, diced
- 1 can fire roasted diced tomatoes, no salt added
- 2 1/2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
- 1 tablespoon Herbs de Provence seasoning mix or to taste
- 1 teaspoon Sweet Paprika
- 2 teaspoons Table Tasty Salt Substitute or your favorite no salt substitue
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
Add after the lentil mixture is cooked
- 1 cup frozen peas or corn
- 1 tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar
One Batch of Garlic Mashed Potatoes See Recipe Below
- Plug electric pressure cooker in and turn to saute mode. Add the onions, carrots and celery, stir occasionally adding a little water if needed to prevent sticking. When onions are translucent and the carrots and celery have softened slightly add the sweet potatoes, lentils, tomatoes, vegetable broth, Herbs de Provence, Sweet Paprika,Table Tasty and freshly ground black pepper. Shut the saute mode off or press cancel depending on how your pressure cooker works.
- Lock the lid on the pressure cooker, be sure to set the steam valve to steaming and set the timer for 10 minutes on high pressure. Let the pressure come down naturally.
- If you have two pressure cookers you can go ahead and make the Garlic Mashed Potatoes while the lentil filling is cooking. If you only have one pressure cooker when the lentil filling is done transfer it to the baking dish, wash the pot for the pressure cooker and make the Garlic Mashed Potatoes.
- When the pressure has come down naturally for the lentil filling, carefully remove the lid. Add the Balsamic vinegar and the frozen peas or corn, stir well to incorporate it. Taste the filling and make any adjustments to the seasoning if needed.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Transfer the filling into a 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Top with one whole recipe of Garlic Mashed Potatoes and spread them out evenly to cover the filling completely.
- Bake the pie for 30 minutes or until heated through. Make sure your baking dish is safe to go under the broiler and if so broil on high for just a few minutes watching it closely, until potatoes are lightly brown.
- Sprinkle with some chopped fresh chives for a pretty garnish.
If you haven’t already watched my video of making the Instant Pot Garlic Mashed Potatoes I put it here for you to watch. I know so many of you were wanting the Hearty Lentil Sheperd’s Pie recipe to try before the holidays. With that in mind, we didn’t want to delay posting the recipe waiting for an opportunity to record me making it. However it’s a pretty straight forward recipe and easy to make so I think you will all be able to make this dish with no problem. I have faith in you!
Instant Pot Garlic Mashed Potatoes
- Pressure Cooker, Potato Masher
- 2 pounds Yukon Gold Potatoes scrubbed and cut into chunks – or your favorite kind of potato
- 1 cup low sodium vegetable broth
- 8 cloves of garlic – or to taste
- 2-3 teaspoons Benson’s Table Tasty Salt Substitute or your favorite salt substitute
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk warmed so it doesn’t cool down the potatoes
- 1 tablespoon dried Chives or 2 tablespoons fresh minced chives
- freshly ground black pepper
- Put the potatoes, broth and garlic cloves in the Instant Pot, secure the lid and press manual, set time for 4 minutes. When it is done cooking use quick pressure release. Open pot carefully as it will be hot, do not drain the liquid, using a potato masher start mashing making sure you get the cloves of garlic. Add all of the seasonings. Add the almond milk a little at a time – you may not need it all depending on how creamy you like your potatoes. Keep mashing and adding the warm almond milk until you have the desired consistency.
This casserole dish pairs up nicely with the New Chopped Salad with Crunchy JSP Croutons. It is a winning combination of complimentary flavors and textures. Entertaining doesn’t have to be complicated. It doesn’t require hours and hours in the kitchen to produce a company worthy meal. Make this meal with confidence that it is going to taste delcious and be satisfying! You can make a Sheperd’s Pie all year long no matter what season it is. Mashed potatoes are always in season!
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