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Lentil Shepherd’s Pie : healthy, vegan & gluten-free



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Lately I’ve been craving some serious comfort food. Blame it on the weather, blame it on the need for sunshine… but I don’t mind. There’s nothing better than warming your body and spirits with a delicious healthy comfort-filling dinner. 

This time, I declared it must be Shepherd’s Pie – Vegan style. It’s just what my cravings were calling for…. and a Lentil Shepherd’s Pie was quickly made up with just a few easy to find ingredient (you may already have in your pantry). Let’s get to it!

Now I don’t like to feel like I’m giving up anything when it comes to comfort food. It’s easy to spot a ‘fake’ dish miles away…. but this, this is a wonderful dish that will heighten all your senses and satisfy all your comfort-food cravings… I may have a few preferences for my ingredients (notice, I don’t dwell on the restrictions here, but keep to the positive). My preferences for a cooked hardy meal were lots of authentic to a Shepherd’s pie veggies, mashed potato layer, and a good protein and fibre source; lentils. Here is the recipe you’re all waiting for:


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Vegan Lentil Shepherd’s Pie

{vegan and gluten free recipe}
Ingredients:
  • 1 onion
  • 2 carrots
  • 1/2 cup sweet peas (frozen are fine)
  • 1 stalk of celery (optional)
  • 1 can of organic corn
  • 1 large can of lentils (or 1 cup dried lentils, cooked)
  • 5-7 large yukon gold potatoes
  • 1/4 cup rice milk
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • pinch of cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dried paprika
  • oil for cooking

.

chef notes : Ok, honestly I was out of sweet peas for this version, so it’s actually without the sweet peas in these photos. Also, you might be raising your eyebrows that the Worcestershire sauce is’t on this list. Well it’s actually a fermented anchovy sauce – so this can be easily skipped if you’re vegan and it tastes great without it too.


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Directions:

In a large pot, cook the peeled potatoes in salted water. In a large pan, saute the chopped onions, carrots, celery – cook until golden, add the frozen peas and lentils and cover to cook for a few minutes. Add a bit of water if these veggies start to stick to the bottom of the pan. Add in the corn, soy sauce, and season with cumin and thyme, salt and pepper. Keep covered, turn down the heat to low.

Your potatoes should be boiled by now, drain them leaving some of the water near the bottom, mash them with the rice milk until a puree forms. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

In an oven -safe dish, place in the whole mix of vegetables with lentils into the bottom of the pan and spread out evenly. Add the mashed potatoes on top and smooth out over top with the back of the spoon. Sprinkle the top with dried paprika, and poke through with a fork to make vents in the mashed potatoes.

Bake at 350 F for 20-30 minutes. Let it set for 10 minutes before serving, but serve while still hot. Enjoy your delicious healthy Vegan comfort-food.

 


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Changing up a few things for a healthier alternative is easier than you think. I’m not a crazy obsessed veganist, I just eat food that makes me feel good. And meat-less, veggie-rich dishes are what makes me feel good. I also like to make something that the meat-loving other half in the family enjoys as well, and doesn’t feel like he’s fed ‘rabbit food’ all the time (although occasionally, rabbit food it is! ;)

Seriously, this meal is good! You won’t miss any meat with this version, and you’ll feel happier with a lighter plant-based meal. And if you are vegan, than you’ll be oh-so-happy warm comfort food awaits and feeds all your senses and nourishes your body.




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