The Best Vegan Shepherd's Pie Recipe | FoodByMaria Recipes

Vegan Meals

The Best Vegan Shepherd’s Pie


20 minutes


50 minutes



We are stuck in the middle of a polar vortex and all I want to do is eat this warm, plant-based, comfort in a casserole dish, shepherd’s pie. A traditional British shepherd’s pie is usually the complete opposite of what you’d think a vegan or plant-based dish should be, good thing I like a challenge! This hearty version of a vegan shepherd’s pie is super easy to whip up any night of the week and is packed with nutrients and bursting with flavour.

Vegan Shepherd's Pie getting scooped out of a baking dish.

The Low-Down On Lentils

I have some serious love for lentils! They come in red, brown, and green, and are such a great addition to casseroles, soups, or anything you want to add some texture too. For this recipe, I used red lentils from Bob’s Red Mill, my go-to brand for pantry staples, but you can use whatever color them you have on hand.

A lentil is a legume from the bean family and are a fiber powerhouse. Because of this, I recommend soaking them for at least 4 hours to remove the outer covering of anti-nutrients. It’s these compounds that have given beans a bad reputation of causing gas and bloating. By soaking them you are mimicking their natural germination process and not only removing the hard to digest compounds but activating the good compounds and increasing the nutritional value. Soaking will also cut down on cook time, but it is totally optional. If you’ve got a belly full of lentils and a gut full of gas don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Vegan Shepherd's Pie in baking dish next to Bob's Red Mill lentils

Bob's Red Mill red lentils on counter

Vegan Shepherd’s Pie that gets two British thumbs up

I am always cooking and recipe testing at home and luckily for my boyfriend, he is my number one test subject! Andrew is my biggest fan and best critic because he will always tell me exactly what he thinks. If you’ve seen Andrew on my stories you already know he’s British and has probably enjoyed more authentic shepherd’s pies than you or I could imagine.

So when I decided to tackle a vegan shepherd’s pie, I knew he would really let me have it. I actually tested this recipe twice so we’ve been eating a lot of it and I’m happy to report Andrew has given this vegan shepherd’s pie two thumbs up!  He’s been having it for lunch and dinner, as this recipe makes a large casserole and I love leftovers as a lunch option. It’s Andrew approved so I know your whole family will love this hearty, warm, and not so traditional shepherd’s pie.

Easy Mid Week Meals

Like I mentioned above this recipe makes a large casserole so it can be saved for leftovers or frozen for another cold day. It can also be made ahead, kept in the fridge, and then thrown in the oven for a fast dinner. It is super easy to make and is mostly all prepared in one pot (the mashed potatoes take up another pot, sorry I tried). By using a mix of lentils and the Yves ground round in a tomato puree you’ll have a delicious “meat” sauce that you won’t believe isn’t meat. Don’t be afraid to add other beans or veggies like corn or peas to the filling, get creative! For more easy mid-week meal inspiration be sure to check out my Pinterest board here and try some of my other recipes:

Close-up of vegan Shepherd's Pie in a baking dish

Vegan Shepherd's Pie in a baking dish with a spoon

Give this vegan shepherd’s pie a try and I know you will be happy to eat it for the entire week! Not only is it super easy but it is so good for you. Healthy and convenient, win-win. Check out the recipe below and don’t forget to let me know what you think over at @foodbymaria! Tag #foodbymaria and #fearnotfoodisyourfriend so I can see all your beautiful recreations.

Looking for a twist on the classic Shepherd’s Pie? Try my Lentil Shepherd’s Pie with a Parsnip Mash instead.

clock clock icon cutlery cutlery icon flag flag icon folder folder icon instagram instagram icon pinterest pinterest icon print print icon squares squares icon

Vegan Shepherd’s Pie

  • Author: Maria Koutsogiannis
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 8 1x
  • Category: Mains
  • Cuisine: Vegan


We are stuck in the middle of a polar vortex and all I want to do is eat this warm, plant-based, comfort in a casserole dish, shepherd’s pie.



  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 medium sweet white onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, pressed or finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp. dried basil
  • 1 tbsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • season to taste – this may be best to do at the end!
  • 3/4 cup tomato puree
  • 2 heaped tsp. tomato paste
  • 12 tbsp. vegetable stock paste – use as much as you like depending on your preference and tolerance to salt
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked lentils – I used Bob’s Red Mill
  • 1 packet Yves Ground Round
  • 23 cups hot water
  • season to taste
  • 5 large white potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • season to taste
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/41/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 heaped tbsp. butter
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme
  • garnish with 2 tbsp. fresh thyme


Into a large pot add olive oil and heat for 30 seconds on medium-high heat.  Add your onions and cook for around 5 minutes or until soft and translucent.  Add in your garlic, basil, oregano, cumin, cinnamon and cloves. Stir until onion is well coated and turn heat to low to cook and marry for around 3 minutes.  Stir often to avoid burning.

Into the pot add your tomato puree, tomato paste and vegetable stock paste.  Give this all a good stir and then increase heat to high before adding your lentils and Yves Ground Round.  Let them sautéed in the pan for two minutes before adding your water.  Stir, stir, stir, bring to a boil then simmer for 20 minutes until thick and luscious like a traditional meat sauce. Set aside once done.

Preheat oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

While your “meat” sauce is simmering prepare your mashed potatoes by boiling water in a large stockpot.  Season your water and cook your potatoes till very tender, could take 15 minutes or so.  Strain your potatoes but absolutely do not rinse and return to pot.  Add the remainder of the ingredients and mash till extremely rich and creamy!  Remember, when adding your liquid that you must have a more solid mash to add on top of the first layer! Set aside.

Into a 13″L x 7.75″W x 2.25″H baking dish transfer your “meat mixture” and lay it flat using a spatula. Begin dolloping your mashed potato onto the mixture and using a flat tool flatten it all out.  I like using a fork to carve marks vertically and horizontally across the pie.  This adds fun texture and when it cooks gets nice and golden brown! Before cooking spray the mashed potatoes with an oil of your choice for that added golden colour (you will thank me later if you do this).

Cook for 25 minutes before setting the oven to broil for 5 minutes.  Watch closely so nothing burns but this is an amazing adding touch to the recipe!

Enjoy with fresh thyme garnish and your choice of steamed greens or veg!


It will last up to 1 week in a tightly sealed container in the fridge.

This recipe is freezer friendly, lasts up to 2-3 months.

If you don’t have vegetable stock paste then use 2-3 cups of your own vegetable stock! Just make sure it’s strong, good quality stuff!

Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Bobs Red Mill

Casey Jolly

Recipe was incredible!
The meat sauce is savory, hearty & very simple.
And the thyme mashed potatoes are so flavorful & not too rich. All of the flavors compliment each other. It’s a hearty home style dish the whole family (meat eaters too) will love!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Hey Casey!!! Thanks so much!!!!!

Catarina Cardoso

So so good. In Portugal I couldn’t find the equivalent to Yves ground round but it was divine, even without it. Real confort Food.

Maria Koutsogiannis

this is amazing!! Thank you for sharing!!!

mary groothuis

Where do you find Yves ground round. Is it in the Bean department.

Maria Koutsogiannis

I usually find it with the salad dressings, prepped veg and other vegan ingredients! Where do you normally shop hun?

Jana F.

Making this recipe again and again – I LOVE IT – it is always a winner!!

Maria Koutsogiannis



THANK YOU THANK YOU for easy, hubby approved recipes. This casserole was easy and delicious. We somehow managed not to eat it all in one sitting, and to have some leftovers for easy lunches. Woo hoo!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Ok, wow this makes me sooo happy! Thanks so much love!


Thankyou so much Maria! You have made plant based meals with so much flavour and ease. I have made this for my family and not being funny we should have had some left over for lunch, there was nothing left!

Maria Koutsogiannis

YESSSSS! Honestly I couldnt be more flattered. I see that your email says UK so I AM SO PUMPED that someone from the UK is saying this about my VEGAN Shepherds Pie!! Thanks so much for your support!!


This was so delicious! The recipe was easy to follow and I loved the addition of lentils. Was lovely to have the leftovers for lunch, tasted just as good the next time. Also approved by my husband! Thanks so much for the recipe, excited to try your moussaka next!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Hey beauty! Thanks so much for the love! I love this recipe as well, I quite like how simple it is too! The moussaka is amazing! Please let me know what you think of the recipe!!!

Dana Rah-Khem

Made this for dinner and it was a huge hit, literally vanished so fast. Very flavorful and fragrant. You have so many wonderful recipes!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Thank you so much beauty! I love cooking food with amazing flavour. Healthy food doesn’t have to taste like shit should really be my motto haha.


Delicious dinner. One of my new soulfood recipes. Wanted to safe the leftover for tomorrow but it’s nothing left 😂

Maria Koutsogiannis

hahahahah I am so sorry there were no leftovers! haha but I feel like that’s a good thing so I won’t complain! xx


This was my first time ever making a shepherds pie and it was worth the wait!! The spices in this recipe really make it so delicious! I did happen to overlook that I was supposed to add cooked lentils so that added a few extra minutes in the middle of preparation but it ended up turning out amazing!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Hey Meaghan!! Thanks so much for the love!!!!!! So glad you loved this!

Kasia Taekema

This recipe is amazing – and perfect for the plant-based food scared hah! The flavours are fantastic and the textures are bang on. This will easily be a staple in our household. Also, it’s heavily toddler approved. So many wins.

Maria Koutsogiannis

Yes!! Kasia, this is amazing! So glad even your little ones loved this!!! BIG FOODBYMARIA WIN!

Kayla Belcher

This was so so easy and delicious. My husband, who is not veg, had multiple servings, so I deem this recipe a success. 10/10 will make again. 🙂

Maria Koutsogiannis

YESSSSS! thank you so much Kayla! this is great, so glad your hubby loved and that youll be making it again!

Amber Fehr

This dish was delicious to eat and easy to make. I made it yesterday, and I alone have eaten about a quarter of it! The blend of spices are perfect, and my husband and toddlers love it as well! There’s something so satisfying about cooking healthy meals for your family.. Thank you so much Maria! I will be making this often

Maria Koutsogiannis

Hello Amber!! Thanks so much for this amazing review. Glad your family enjoyed this amazing recipe! Please let me know if you make anymore recipes 🙂

Cassie Autumn Tran

This pie looks like it would taste so delicious! You probably had the most amazing dinner for DAYS. I wouldn’t ever want anything else aside from this shepherd’s pie for a loooooong time if I made this at home, which I totally should do. I did make a sweet potato green lentil shepherd’s pie and it was freaking amazing. I do want to experiment with red lentils to see what the filling texture is like though!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Its amazing!! YOu would love this dish!

Roxane Georgousis

This was amazing!! I’m a meat eater transitioning to a more plant based diet and this Shepards Pie left me 100% satisfied. Didn’t miss the meat at all!

Thank you for sharing your talents!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Yes, this is incredible to hear!!! So glad I can help you transition beauty!!!


I would like to try this, but I am allergic to soy. What can I substitute for the Yves Ground Round?

Maria Koutsogiannis

I would just double the lentils! That will still work 🙂


Really love this kind of comfort food, so great recipe!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Thank you so much!!

Brittany Longley

Just made this… and holy was it AHH-MAZ-ING. Seriously one of the most flavourful dishes, and my toddler devoured it! It might be the only time i’ve gotten him to enjoy lentils other than in burgers. I will be making this a staple for sure!

Maria Koutsogiannis

YES BRITTANY!!! I AM HERE FOR THIS! So happy to hear! Thanks so much beauty!


Such an easy and yummy recipe. Comfort food at its best. Took the leftovers to works for lunch and it was even better next day. All my colleagues were jelly AF!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Hell ya! this makes me so happy! Thanks for the love hun xx

Janice Boudreau

I’ve made this recipe twice now as a ‘make ahead’ for the work week. We are a household of 2, so it was great for several nights. I think it actually tastes better the next day, as the flavors soak in and deepen. I plan to add corn the next time I make it. It was the first time I used Yves and the texture would make non vegetarians happy too. Thank you- it is now a favorite go to recipe!!!

Maria Koutsogiannis

HELLO JANICE!thank you so much for the kind words. so glad you love this recipe, it’s honestly amazing!!


looooove this recipe! much much love Maria and thank you!

Maria Koutsogiannis

thank you so much for the love, Virginia! It’s one of my favourites!


I’m writing this moments after my husband said “Jessica, dinner was so good” for the 30th time. I’ve been following you for a while, but tonight was the first time I tried your recipes- I am so happy I did. An easy way to incorporate plant based meals into the routine and the Recipe was Easy to follow and make! I’ve already sent this recipe to a bunch of pals so they try it too!!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Yes!!! This makes me so happy, Jess. Thanks so much for the support and love!!! Let us know what you make next xx

Kaitlin Hearn

This was so so good!! The only thing my husband and I found was that it was really salty even without adding any extra. I’m guessing from the vegetable stock paste? Would it be possible to use low sodium veggie stock with similar results? Or to just cut down on the amount of paste with the same amount of water? Thanks!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Hey beauty,

You’re the first to say that but honestly, it could be so many reasons. The type of stock paste, what measuring tool yuo used etc. You can sub it out for low sodium, easily or just use less next time. This is why it’s important to season to taste and know your salt preferences and then create the recipe based on that!

Ellie James

SO delicious! My mom and I made this together tonight and we both loved it. Can’t wait to make it again for my hubby when he’s back in town and probably again for our thanksgiving meal! We didn’t have the ground round so we just increased the lentils and added a handful of chopped carrots as well. SO good. Realized I’ve followed you for a long time and had yet to make a single recipe (shame I know!!) – just usually drooled over gorgeous photos on insta – but tonight changed all that and I can’t wait to make so much more of your stuff!! Easy but DELISH – thanks!!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Yes, Ellie! This is amazing, I am so glad you enjoyed this recipe. It’s so easy and adaptable, right?! Well done on your first FoodByMaria recipe, please let us know what you make next!

Adrienne Lem

I’ve always been hesitant to try “fake” meat…but this shepherd’s pie was so tasty, savoury, serious comfort food, I’ve made it twice in the last two weeks. I guess it’s all about how you transform the “meat” and this recipe definitely elevated the Yves Ground Round. A bonus, it keeps very well in the fridge and is perfect for dinner meal preps. This shepherd’s pie will stay in our winter round-up.

Maria Koutsogiannis

YESSSS!! Thanks for the love Adrienne, this is seriously one of my favourites ever.


This recipe was the cat’s Pajamas — So hearty and delicious!!

Maria Koutsogiannis

YES AMBER! This makes me so happy, thanks so much for the love!

Mahala rae

Cannot wait for winter in Australia so I can eat this every week. Such a great vegan recipe alternative.

Maria Koutsogiannis

Thank you so much love, it’s one of our favourites!

Jana F.

Delicious! My Boyfriend didn’t even recognize it is vegan – 👌🤤😍

Maria Koutsogiannis

YESSS Jana! This is great!

Hayley Brown

I thought my base was a little runny but after baking it didn’t matter.
This recipe is seriously so delicious and after snowboarding all day it was warm and hearty all the way down! Thanks Maria x

Maria Koutsogiannis

Hey Hayley! That is totally normal, cooking anything will always remove moisture, so glad you liked it! Thanks for the love xxx

Allie Beal

THIS IS SO FLIPPING GOOD!!!! Maria is a genius!!! My niece & nephew are extremely picky eaters. I’m switching them to a Vegan lifestyle & I want wholesome foods for them. They couldn’t believe how good this tasted. They LOVED this Shepherds Pie!!!! Even my sister loved it & she’s pickier than the kids! Everyone went back for seconds♥️♥️♥️♥️ Thank you so much Maria!!!!

Maria Koutsogiannis

YESSSS, ALLIE! You hero, this is amazing. Thanks so much for the love. Please let us know what you make next!!

Bjarney Ingibjörg Gunnlaugsdóttir

Delicious!! I made it for a big family dinner and everyone loved it. Even the people who ignore every food that does not include meet😍

Maria Koutsogiannis

WOW!! This makes me so happy, thanks so much for the love hun!

Patty Miller

This looks so good, but have you seen the ingredients in the Yves Ground Round you are suggesting? Will look at amping up flavours in another way, but will definitely give this a try.

Maria Koutsogiannis

Yes, I have! And I am a believer in balance! I am not here to food-shame, instil fear or make others feel like what they are eating is lesser or better than what I eat. This dish can be made with an extra 1 1/2 cups of lentils instead of the Ground Round (if you prefer to not eat that). Please let us know how it goes by leaving a star review when you’re done Patty! Good luck xx

Lindsey W.

Absolutely loved this! Since making the diet change over to plant based I’ve been missing a few of my faves and this recipe didn’t dissapoint.

I used the crumbles by Beyond Meat since that’s what I had on hand. The meat sauce was so thick and hearty! Not to mention- this recipe was even boyfriend approved! I call that a win!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Hey Lindsey!! This is amazing, so glad you enjoyed this and that it was boyfriend approved. I call this a win too!

Alysa Baker

We have been trying to implement more plant based meals and this super delicious comfort food will be on the rotation! Not only was it delicious but easy to make and Hubby approved! ❤️

Maria Koutsogiannis

This makes me so happy, Alysa! Thanks so so much for the love!

Alberta T.

This was a great no hassle recipe. Perfect comfort food on a cold winter day, and something that can be made with pantry staples. We had lentils on hand, and of course potatoes, onions and garlic from our summer garden, but no veggie ground round. I added extra lentils and some TVP. Pro-tip, soak the lentils as Maria recommends…..Oh, and this recipe really does make 8 servings, had this all week for lunch.

Maria Koutsogiannis

YESSSS!! right, isn’t it so awesome to have food for the whole week?!

Cris Monahan Bremer

We have a tradition in our home of making Cincinnati Chili for large family gatherings, mostly in the fall for Halloween. I served this new dish last night for our intimate Easter dinner and my meat eating husband loved it! The ingredients and spices are similar to the famous Cincinnati dish that is normally served over a plate of pasta and other “layers” of food. We have a new meat free tradition now in place! Thank you Maria!

Maria Koutsogiannis

YOU ARE SO WELCOME, CRIS!! This makes me soo happy!


This Shepherds Pie is sooo incredibly delicious! Thank you so much for the recipe, Maria!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Thanks for the love, Andrea!

Julie Kapuscinski

This Shepard’s pie is to die for! I used Beyond Meat and a can of chickpeas (crush by hand) because I have a lentil allergy, and it turned out perfect. The spices are on-point and make the whole house smell amazing. We almost ate the whole thing but I managed to leave a bit for lunch the next day.
Thank you for the best Shepard’s pie ever, I’ll definitely be making this again and again!

Maria Koutsogiannis

YOur’e so welcome, thanks for the love, Julie!

Julie Kapuscinski

This Shepard’s pie is to die for! I used Beyond Meat and a can of chickpeas (crush by hand) because I have a lentil allergy, and it turned out perfect. The spices are on-point and make the whole house smell amazing. We almost ate the whole thing but I managed to leave a bit for lunch the next day.
Thank you for the best Shepard’s pie ever, I’ll definitely be making this again and again!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Thank you hunnie!!!!


So delicious! Made this as meal prep and got 9 lunches out of this and it’s so good and so comforting. Cant wait to make again! SO simple! Will probably make mashed potatoes like this forever now. Thank you!

Maria Koutsogiannis

YESSS!!!! This means so much to me!

Mark Woynarowich

Ok so don’t go any farther. Make this right now. Simple to make and so delicious. it takes me back to a when we were kids. Great vegan take on a traditional recipe!

Maria Koutsogiannis

Thank you so much for the love, Mark!


Am I working my was slowly through every one of Maria’s recipes? Yes. Yes I am. This was omg next first time I used ground round and it was pleasantly surprised at how well it turned out. I think and unsuspecting diner would have no idea that this is a vegan recipe. I loved this dish, my husband and I finished the whole thing in two sittings and next time I think I’ll make a double batch.

Maria Koutsogiannis

YESSS!! This is amazing, Jessie! You need to try my Mushroom pot pies too!

Chloe Favre

To make it more “earthy” I added mushroom. I diced them in small pieces, then cooked and reduced them after adding the spices. I also added bay leaves for more flavour and borlotti beans for chunkier texture.
Delicious thanks for recipe, loved it!

Maria Koutsogiannis

That is lovely, Chloe! Thank you so much!

Caroline Grau

Honestly this is the best thing I’ve eaten in a long time!! I’ve loved every single recipe that I’ve cooked from foodbymaria so far, but this is like the cherry on top. It’s so incredibly flavorful, perfect for a Sunday night dinner with the family or even for meal prep because it maybe tastes even better the next day! Please do yourself a favor and make this recipe! You’re not gonna regret it! 🙂

Maria Koutsogiannis

YOU ARE THE BEST! Thank you so much for the love, Caroline!

Kristie Sparksman

Ugggggghhhhhhhhhhh sssssoooooooooo gggggooooooooooood. Community didn’t have Round Ground so I snagged some Very Good Butcher Taco Stuffer and it was a hella good decision. I added a layer of sauteéd swiss chard between the meat and taters. Thank you for this recipe, Maria! xo

Maria Koutsogiannis

ok, that sounds sooo good! Thanks for the love, hun!

Post A Comment