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Try This Winter Vegan Recipe: Sweet Potato Vegan Shepherd’s Pie

Are you looking for new vegan winter recipes to try out over the festive season? Or, are you taking the Veganuary pledge this January?

Either way, you’re sure to love this vegan version of a British classic; a filling vegan shepherd’s pie with a creamy sweet potato topping. This healthy winter vegan recipe takes less than an hour to prepare and cook. It’s also gluten-free. Plus, all the ingredients should be available at your local market. 

Keep reading to learn how to make this winter vegan recipe. 

Also Read: 8 vegan drinks to keep you warm this winter


For the topping:

  • 500 grams of sweet potato (about 2-3 large sweet potatoes)
  • 2-3 tablespoons of plant-based butter (or olive oil)
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)
  • Vegan cheese (optional)
  • Parsley (optional)

For the filling:

  • 1 onion
  • 2-4 cloves of garlic (according to your taste preference)
  • 300 grams of mixed and chopped vegetables (prepared at home or store-bought)
    • I used celery, carrot, peas, and corn
  • 200 grams of green or brown lentils (uncooked)
  • 1 litre of vegetable stock (homemade or from a stock cube)
  • 2 tablespoons of tomato puree
  • 2-3 teaspoons of fresh thyme
  • 100 ml of red wine (optional) 

Also Read: A vegan summer recipe to fill your thermos lunch box


How to Make 

For the topping

  1. Peel the sweet potatoes and cut them into smaller pieces, so they cook faster. In a pan, cover the potatoes with water, bring to the boil and simmer on a low-medium heat until very soft. Check by poking them with a fork. 
  2. Once cooked, take the pan off the heat, drain the potatoes and return to the pan (without heat) or put them in a large bowl. Mash the potatoes while they are still hot and melt the plant-based butter (or mix the olive oil) into them. 
  3. Add salt and pepper to taste, mix and put to one side. 

Also Read: 5 foods to put in a thermal lunch box

Food Pots

For the filling

  1. Dice and cook the onions in olive oil on medium-high heat until translucent. Add the garlic (diced) and cook for a few minutes more. They should start to brown slightly. 
  2. Add the lentils and stir. At this point, you would add the wine (if using) and let it simmer until most of the liquid is gone. 
  3. Stir in the rest of the vegetables*, tomato puree and thyme. Mix, then pour over the vegetable stock. Cover with a lid and simmer until the lentils are tender and the liquid is mostly gone. This will take about 20-30 minutes on low-medium heat. 

*If you choose to use frozen or pre-cooked vegetables, add them in the last 10 minutes of cooking. 

Combine the topping and filling

  1. Transfer the filling to an ovenproof dish. Use a shallow dish if you prefer a thinner shepherd’s pie or a deep dish for a thicker one. 
  2. Spread the mashed sweet potato out on top of the lentil filling, making sure that it’s even all the way across. 
  3. (Optional step) Run a fork in across the top of Shepherd's pie in straight or swirly lines for decoration and sprinkle with grated vegan cheese and black pepper. 
  4. Put it in a preheated oven and cook for 15-20 minutes. When cooked, garnish with fresh parsley and serve with seasonal veggies and a creamy vegan gravy or alongside toasted bread. 

Also Read: Try this delicious vegan buddha bowl recipe

insulated lunch box

Store the Leftovers 

We hate to see good food go to waste and hopefully you do too. This dish is so delicious that you probably won’t have any leftovers, but just in case you do, it’s safe to store in the fridge and consume within 3-5 days. 

I like to make this vegan recipe at home on Sunday evenings, store it in the fridge, and take the leftovers to work in an insulated lunch box. That way, I can enjoy a hot and healthy vegan meal every day of the week. Alternatively, you can cook a couple of vegan shepherd’s pies at the same time and store them for up to a month in the freezer. 

Try This Healthy Winter Vegan Recipe at Home

Adapt this winter vegan recipe to suit your taste. If you’re not a fan of sweet potato, then you can make this same dish with plain potato

or a 50/50 mix of plain and sweet potato. Alternatively, you could make the topping with mashed pumpkin or butternut squash depending what’s in season at your local greengrocers or farmer’s market. Likewise, you can mix up the vegetables you use; green beans, parsnips, and mushrooms also work well in this winter vegan recipe. 

Choose your ingredients and enjoy this healthy vegan recipe at home or on the go in a FLASKE collection.

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