Inspiration from Meghan

Vegan Shepherd’s Pie


Hey baby, it is cold outside and we want it all. We want to follow healthful habits, and yet we still want to get just that little bit of hug and snuggle from some warm comfort food. And so, as I roll into UnDiet promo mode for my new book, I need all the fabulous fuel I can get. You know I love my power smoothies as much as the next nutritionist, but on days where the sun both rises and sets while I plug away at work, I need something hearty, healthy and come on – super wicked awesometown.

I put on my old granny slippers, got out some classic corningware and I baked up the best meat-free, soy-free, potato-free Vegan Shepherd’s Pie that there ever was.

There are plenty of veg-friendly recipes like this one out there – but what I noticed is that most used high glycemic white potatoes and very strange vegan butter-like products. Both are completely unnecessary and still I worked out a very crispy top.

Vegan Shepherd's Pie

No vegan Shepherd’s Pie is really complete without a gorgeous thick vegan gravy, and so I made one of those too. Look at this vegan gravy just dripping off that slice.

Meatless Monday Shepard's Pie

The recipe is a little long, but do what I did. I spent the hour or so to make two batches. I gave one to my brother and sister-in-law and cut mine into pieces to freeze so we can pull a container out, heat it up in the oven and instant hot, stick to the insides, amazing lunch or dinner. Your future self will thank you when you make freezer meals like this one!

I loved this recipe so much I made it one of the assignments in the Culinary Nutrition Expert Program, too.

Let this inspire a full season of possibilities for Meatless Monday and other plant-iful meals.

Vegan soy-free gravy

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Vegan Shepherd’s Pie

  • Author: Meghan Telpner
  • Total Time: 90 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 8-10 1x


Meatless Monday just got a whole lot better with this No Meat No Potato Vegan Shepherd’s Pie



For The Mashed Topping

  • 1/2 cup millet, soaked
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 head of cauliflower, coarsely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • sea salt to taste

For The Veg Filling

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 medium carrots, scrubbed and sliced into thin coins
  • 2 parsnips, scrubbed and sliced into thin coins
  • 4 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
  • 1 sweet potato, coarsely chopped into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 2 cups (about 18) shiitake mushrooms, cleaned with a damp cloth and stems removed, sliced
  • 115 oz can organic adzuki beans
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp dried thyme
  • 1 Tbsp oregano
  • 1 Tbsp marjoram
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp sea salt or more to taste
  • dash of cayenne
  • 3 Tbsp gluten-free flour of choice (I used brown rice + arrowroot starch)
  • Note: can replace beans with 1lb organic ground meat or 1 package tempeh, chopped fine.

For The Gravy Sauce

  • 1 cup water
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 Tbsp tamari
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 Tbsp cashew butter or tahini
  • 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp blackstrap molasses
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 Tbsp arrowroot starch


For Mash

  1. In a medium pot, add millet, water, onions and garlic. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer.
  2. Once simmering, add cauliflower without disturbing the millet. DO NOT STIR! (you were warned right there).
  3. Allow to cook for about 20 minutes until water has absorbed and millet is cooked. Cauliflower should be lightly steamed.
  4. Either using a potato masher or a food processor, add olive oil and sea salt and process until desired mash consistency.
  5. Set aside.

For Veg

  1. Heat oil in large pot and add onions and garlic. Saute until aromatic and onions are slightly translucent. Add carrots, parsnips, celery, sweet potato and water. Let simmer for 8 minutes.
  2. Add in the mushrooms, beans and all spices and simmer for another 15 minutes until veggies are fork tender.
  3. Add flour as needed to thicken.
  4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  5. In a 12 x 9.5 inch baking dish layout your vegetables and flatten with the back of a spatula. Then spread out the millet cauliflower mash.
  6. Sprinkle with paprika and thyme and bake for 25-30 minutes until bubbling and lightly browned. Allow 10 minutes to rest it before serving.

Gravy Sauce

  1. Place all ingredients in your blender or food processor and mix until smooth.
  2. Transfer to a small pot and bring to a simmer, while stirring occasionally. Do not let it boil or you’ll have a burnt mess on the bottom.
  3. Continue simmering and stirring until desired thickness is achieved.
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Category: Entrees

Keywords: shepherd's pie, vegan shepherd's pie, gluten-free shepherd's pie, grain-free, vegan gravy, gluten-free

Wowza! Now that was an epic recipe. If you love it, why not share in Facebook, Twitter or Pin it to your pin board and be sure to tag me.
Looking for more vegan, Meatless Monday inspiration? Why not try this slow roasted pasta, curried chickpeas and rice, or veggie tater tots.
What are some of your fave meatless meals?

19 responses to “Vegan Shepherd’s Pie”

  1. Shannon C says:

    Meghan, this recipe looks delicious! Thanks for creating it and sharing it with us.

  2. Karen Napper says:

    Wow this looks incredibley delicious.

  3. Jaclyn says:

    This looks LOVELY. My favourite meatless winter recipes as of late have involved thick, creamy (creamless) soups… I made one yesterday with buttercup squash and green lentils. Yum!

  4. Linda says:

    Ooh this is right up my alley – I do love Shepherd’s Pie but have not found a replacement for the potatoes & gravy, until this miraculous moment. And a truly amazing filling too. Can’t wait to try it – thanks Meghan!

  5. HealthNut Nutrition says:

    Hey Meghan! This recipe looks amazing:) I’ve been craving Shepard pie lately I’ve always had it as a kid growing up! Thanks so much for this take on the regular recipe, ill be making this in the near future! Xo

  6. Patricia says:

    Hello Megan, while I have not regularly read your blog in well over a year now, it was a shock when I heard in your interview with Daniel Vitalis that you now consume meat and/or meat products because the vegetarian diet did not “sustain” you. Despite an extensive search on your website and YouTube channel, I have failed to locate a blog post about this change in you dietary approach. While I bear no judgement toward anyone and their personal choices I do have concern about a nutritionist espousing philosophies regarding one’s health that is not a direct reflection of their experiences or the science they base their advice upon. Many people in the vegan community have discovered that their needs are different from what they once were and thy have had the courage to spek about it openly. I feel that you unfortunately have failed to do that.

    • Meghan Telpner says:

      Hi Patricia, so nice to hear from you. It has been a while. I did expect a few comments based on this interview. As I have been approaching people about helping promote my book- many have been saying in whispers “but I eat meat- is that okay”. I realize that many assumptions are made about other people’s diets that are not always accurate. I have never put a label on my way of eating and I can say that I absolutely practice what I share on this blog 100%.

  7. Patricia says:

    Thanks for your response Megan. It has been very professionaly astute of you to refrain from putting a label your dietary style. I think it is very important to be mindful of the impact one’s words can have on the health of others when working in your field. As Daniel Vitalis said we are so starved for community and spirituality in the West, that food becomes fanatical for so many. And, in the process real damage is done to their health. The manner in which you have espoused your philosophies and conducted your business would lead one to determine that you believe veganism is the optimal choice- that is probably why people confess to eating meat when you ask them to help promote your book. Upon suggesting your classes to friends and family, several responded with the same reservations due to their diets.

  8. Andrea says:

    Made this for Meatless Monday last night! Was confused about the second instance of water in the veg and chose to neither thin nor thicken. I wasn’t sure what it was supposed to look like but I went by instinct.

    Also realized part way through that it would benefit from ginger, which I didn’t have, so I added ginger powder with the other spices. I’d have added sliced ginger with the carrots.

    Boyfriend liked it but, because I called it “shepherds pie”, wanted it more creamy and fatty. I realized that I should have swapped out olive oil for coconut when I processed the cauliflower. I topped with not only with paprika and thyme but also with our secret BBQ rub (we don’t know what’s in it) that goes with everything.

    As for the gravy, Jason declared it “a homerun”. That, my friend, is high praise, coming from him.

    AND, it gave me an excuse to bring out the Le Creuset casserole dish.

    I would totally make it again, even though I’m only responsible for a maximum of 52 dinners a year. :) (meatless Mondays)

  9. Stephanie says:

    Do you think this recipe would freeze well? Due to a very busy family schedule I often (sometimes not often enough) spend my Sunday’s making and freezing meals for the week ahead so nobody starves or gets sucked into eating “convenience” food. I’m always on the hunt for new stuff to try.

  10. Vaishali says:

    Sorry if i m sounding silly. What is mince meat? Is it red meat minced? Want to make it for my 6 yr old as he has been drooling over the picture for quite some time. Will let you know how it turned out?

    • Meghan Telpner says:

      No worries – you can use beef and mince it! Choose the best quality meat you can get your hands on, from a knowledgeable butcher :)

  11. Healthy Cauliflower Millet Mash & Indian Stew Recipes | Pickles & Honey says:

    […] Original recipe available here. […]

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    […] No Meat and No Potato Shepherd’s Pie […]

  13. marisa says:

    your recipe calls for 3 tbsp gluten free flour & you have listed brown rice + cornstarch. How much of each combined? so do i mex together equal parts of the 2 then take 3 tbsp from the batch? thanks!

  14. Bob says:

    I’d bin it, as it’s missing the one defining ingredient of Shepherd’s Pie, lamb.

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