Vegan Shepherd’s Pie

This easy vegan shepherd’s pie recipe is perfect for meal prepping. It creates a savory, saucy casserole featuring plant-based veggie crumbles in a thick vegetable stew, topped with vegan mashed potatoes,

If you’re into great vegan main dish recipes,  check out our Vegan Beefless Stew recipe or our Vegan Cheeseburger Soup.

A casserole full of vegan shepherd's pie is on a white counter with fresh parsley around it.

I first attempted a shepherd’s pie when I was young, in my late teens. I remember feeling a little nervous and overwhelmed but pleased with the results. Of course, I wasn’t vegetarian or vegan in those days.

I was curious if I could make a shepherd pie vegan. What I discovered is it’s actually easier than a meat-based recipe. Want to know why?

Because you get to skip a step (no cooking the meat), that means this meatless shepherd’s pie is easier.

Why This Recipe is a Winner

  • Lots of mashed potato topping makes this the best shepherd’s pie ever
  • Using veggie crumbles keeps this recipe easy to make and infused with plant-based protein
  • Adding vegetable broth creates a savory sauce for the thick stew, making this an irresistible main meal dish!
Looking down on a casserole dish full of vegan shepherd's pie with a plate beside it full of a single serving.

What You Need

You can find the full printable recipe, including ingredient quantities, below. But first, here are some explanations of ingredients and steps to help you make this recipe perfect every time.

Here are the ingredients you’ll need for this recipe:

  • Potatoes — You can use either Russet or Yukon Gold potatoes for creamy mashed potatoes, or even red potatoes if you prefer a bit more texture in the mashed potatoes.
  • Vegan butter — You can use any storebought vegan butter (even tubbed butter) or make your own vegan butter.
  • Plant-based milk — I prefer plain soy milk (not vanilla), but I have used others, like almond milk.
  • Salt
  • Olive oil
  • Onion 
  • Carrots
  • Garlic — You’ll need a few cloves of fresh garlic, or you can use the tender garlic confit.
  • Tomato paste
  • White wine
  • Vegetable broth — I recommend Better than Bouillon Vegetarian Base because it’s a high-quality broth with great flavor.
  • Bay leaves
  • Cornstarch
  • Veggie crumbles
  • Corn — You can use fresh, frozen, or even canned corn.
  • Frozen Peas.

This recipe calls for vegan bouillon. You can find this in the aisle with other bouillons, in health food stores, or even online.

How to Make Vegan Shepherd’s Pie

As I said above, this vegan shepherd’s pie is actually easier to make than a meat-based version, because you don’t have to cook the meat. I use veggie crumbles instead and they come pre-cooked.

Here’s a summary of the steps involved:

  1. Make the potato topping — Cook the potatoes in water and then drain them. Then add the plant-based milk and vegan butter and use a potato masher to create the mashed potato topping.
  2. Make the savory filling — The filling is a veggie stew, that begins by cooking onions and carrots with some oil. Add the remaining ingredients, including the vegetable broth. Then add the thickener (cornstarch) and cook until the stew has thickened.
  3. Add to a casserole dish and bake — Pour the stew into a casserole dish and top with the mashed potatoes. Then place in a preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes.
  4. Cool and serve — Remove the dish from the oven and allow it to cool for several minutes before serving.

Frequently-Asked Questions

What is a good side dish to serve with shepherd's pie?

You can serve a variety of vegetable-themed side dishes with shepherd’s pie, such as salads, roasted carrots, steamed broccoli, and more. Obviously, it’s nice to have some rustic bread to serve as well.

Can you freeze shepherds pie?

You can freeze shepherd’s pie. Simply allow it to cool and then transfer it to a freezer-safe container. It can be frozen for up to 2 months. When you’re ready to eat it, transfer it to the fridge to thaw overnight. Then heat up individual servings or the entire dish in an oven at 350°F for up to an hour, or until heated through.

How long can shepherd's pie stay in the fridge?

Once your shepherd’s pie cools completely, cover and store it in the fridge for up to 5 days.

This vegan Shepherd’s Pie is a savory, filling dish that will help you realize how tasty vegan recipes can be!

Marly’s Tips

Use these tips and tricks to make this vegan shepherd’s pie delicious:

  • Use a bag (or two) of frozen chopped vegetables (like frozen carrots) to skip some chopping
  • Add garlic to the mashed potatoes, as this Vegan Garlic Mashed Potatoes recipe calls for
  • Adding some small cauliflower florets would be a nice touch for this vegan shepherd pie
  • You could add some chopped mushrooms in with the sauce
  • Replace veggie crumbles with two cups of cooked lentils to create a lentil shepherd’s pie recipe. There’s nothing like a lentil pie main dish!
  • If you don’t want to use cornstarch, use another thickener like arrowroot powder. You can even add a bit of the mashed potatoes to the stew to help create a thicker sauce.

See why this vegan shepherds pie is part of our favorite amazing vegan recipes? It’s so good!

More Vegan Main Meal Recipes

Here are some more vegan main meal recipes for your meal prepping enjoyment:

Looking down on a casserole dish with vegan shepherd's pie, and one serving removed.
Vegan Shepherd's Pie

Vegan Shepherd’s Pie

Prepare this Vegan Shepherd's Pie for a satisfying, potato-filled vegan dinner! The veggie stew is made with veggie crumbles, carrots, and peas. And, of course, it's topped with lots of potatoes.
4.78 from 9 votes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 10
Calories: 341kcal

Ingredients

For the Potato Topping

  • 5 pounds russet potatoes washed and unpeeled
  • ½ cup vegan butter sliced
  • cups plant-based milk
  • Sea salt to taste

For the Veggie Filling:

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 onion peeled and chopped
  • 2 cups chopped carrots*
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • ½ cup white wine
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon No Beef Bouillon*
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 1 package veggie crumbles
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1 cup frozen peas

Instructions

Potato Topping

  • Chop potatoes (with skins) into small cubes (the smaller the cubes, the faster the cooking time). Place in a large pot and cover with water.
  • Place this pot on a burner and bring it to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cook until the potatoes are fork-tender, about 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Drain the potatoes into a strainer, being careful not to burn yourself with the steam.
  • Place the cooked potatoes into a mixing bowl. Add the vegan butter slices and use a mashing tool to mash the potatoes. Slowly add the plant-based milk. Continue mashing until a desired consistency is reach. Add salt to taste and stir to combine.

Veggie Filling

  • Heat your oven to 400°F/200°C.
  • Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the chopped onions and chopped carrots. Cook until tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Then add the minced garlic, and cook for another minute or so.
  • Add the tomato paste, wine, vegetable broth, and no beef bouillon. Stir to combine. Add bay leaves to the top and bring this to a simmer. Continue cooking about 10 minutes. The liquid should reduce a little during this time.
  • Add cornstarch and water in a bowl. Stir to dissolve the cornstarch. Add this into the pot and continue on simmer until a thick sauce forms, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the veggie crumbles, frozen corn, and frozen peas. Stir to combine.
  • Pour the veggie filling mixture into the bottom of a large casserole dish. Top with the mashed potatoes. You can either spoon the potatoes over the top or place them in a piping bag with a large star tip and create some lovely patterns on the top of your shepherd pie. Either way, be sure to create some peaks in the potato that will brown nicely while baking.
  • Place the dish in the oven and bake around 30 minutes, until the potatoes are golden brown and the edges are bubbly.
  • When done, remove from the oven and let stand for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

Recommended Equipment

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Notes

To speed up your cooking time, feel free to microwave the chopped carrots before adding them in with the onions.
I use vegan beef bouillon, however, if you can’t find this, substitute a vegetable bouillon or add 1–2 teaspoons of vegan Worcestershire sauce.
I used Sauvignon Blanc because it’s not as sweet as some wines.
Calories: 341kcal | Carbohydrates: 54g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 643mg | Potassium: 1168mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 4635IU | Vitamin C: 23.1mg | Calcium: 92mg | Iron: 2.5mg

The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

That’s it for this vegan cottage pie recipe! But you know what, whatever vegan dinner you’re biting into, enjoy!

26 Responses to Vegan Shepherd’s Pie

  1. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyNancy Reply

    5 stars
    Love your recipe. Make it often. Tweak it slightly. Add 1/4 cup of ACV in place of the wine. I use my IP to make the potatoes. Saves time and is perfect every time. Can you post a pic of the veggie crumbles? I have yet to add them. Where do you find them? Thanks for sharing!

  2. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyCara Reply

    4 stars
    I didnt follow the recipe exactly but what i made tasted amazing! I was surprised by the recommended 5lbs of potatoes so i basically cut the potato topping recipe in half. Also, i didnt have carrots, so they were omitted. Then, i used beyond meat instead of veggie crumbles. So, i browned the beyond meat with the onion, garlic, and ketchup (i didnt have tomato paste). Also, 4 cups of broth seemed like a lot of liquid (maybe lacking the two cups of carrots?). I used only 1 cup of broth and the consistency was perfect.

    Also, i added a layer of vegan cheese (daiya moz style) between the veg mix and potato toping.

  3. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyEarlene Reply

    5 stars
    Making this a second time, which is the biggest compliment, as I rarely make the same thing twice – too many new ones to try!

  4. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyKathy J Reply

    Our family enjoyed this very much! Thank you! I didn’t use the wine and only used 1 cup of broth. I also added some onion, and garlic powder. We also topped it with vegan cheese. Yum!!

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      Thanks, Kathy! I’m so glad you liked this recipe. Love your adaptations!

  5. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyRachel Reply

    5 stars
    I really love this recipe. It’s easy for me, and happily works with any number of substitutions. My only real complaint is it seems to have excessive liquid, although perhaps that is because I am using fake meat (impossible burger meat) rather than veggie crumble.

    Other substitutions I regularly make depending on availability is apple cider vinegar rather than wine, sofrito tomato paste instead of normal for the extra spices, butter instead of olive oil since I like my onions cooked in butter, and I don’t bother with beef bullion.

    For quickness of prep time, a bag of mixed frozen veggies works well, or if you have a Wegmans nearby their premade mashed potatoes work really well on top.

  6. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyHaley Reply

    Could you make this ahead of time? Would it keep well for a few hours then pop in oven for dinner?

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      Hi Haley! Actually, I recommend making this recipe ahead of time because the flavors just get better with time! So, allow it to cool, then cover, and refrigerate. Then prior to serving, heat it up in the oven (as you say) and it will be ready to go. For weeknight leftovers, we even will heat individual servings in the microwave. But the oven rules!

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