This, my friends, is a Shepherd’s Pie. Had I ever eaten one before this past weekend? No. Had I ever even seen one before this past weekend? Not once in my life. It wasn’t until this past Sunday that I saw and devoured one for the first time in my life. And boy, was I mind blown!
During our ‘staycation’ in San Francisco, Mark made us reservations to an all vegetarian restaurant called Greens Restaurant for Sunday evening (I know, every vegetarian girl’s dream). So after traipsing all over San Francisco by foot, which Mark cleverly referred to as ‘urban hiking‘, we were quite ravenous. Of course knowing us, instead of calling for a Lyft or Uber to chauffeur us to the restaurant, we decided to power walk a mile and a half through the Wharff, Fort Mason, and some creepy street. I questioned my wardrobe choice that night because I wore boots that had heels. Good thing I didn’t have to try to outrun anyone or anything.
To make a long story short, I ordered their vegetarian mushroom shepherd’s pie for dinner. After one bite, my taste buds were immediately overwhelmed by all of the flavors. I looked up at Mark, pointed at the pie with my fork and said, “This is so good! You have to try it! I’m going to recreate it when we get home.”
The next day we walked to the Embarcadero through the torrential rainfall and I bought two 4inch mini springform pans. And now that I’ve got the recipe down, I am ready share it with you. It’s savory, flavorful, mushroom-y, creamy, and totally vegan! Guys, I’m in love. If you like mashed potatoes, if you like gravy, if you like mushrooms, if you like food, you’ll LOVE this.
You’ll need to make sure you have potatoes, mushrooms, an onion, garlic cloves, vegetable broth, and a few other items to make this recipe. You’ll also need either 4inch mini springform pans or mini cocottes to make this recipe (those two links are Amazon affiliate links through which I earn a small commission if you purchase them through Amazon by clicking on these links).
The original Greens Restaurant recipe is here; however, I was quite mortified when I saw how much cream, cheese, and butter were used. I’m glad that I had the opportunity to eat their sheperd’s pie, but I recreated it to make it lighter, healthier, and vegan friendly.
- 3 russet potatoes (peeled and chopped)
- 4 garlic cloves (minced)
- ½ Tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)
- 1¼ cup almond milk or any other milk of your choice (you may need to add more)
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- ¼ tsp salt (more to taste)
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 yellow onion (sliced)
- 1¼ cup vegetable broth (low-sodium)
- 1 pound mini portabello mushrooms (sliced)
- 1½ Tbsp nutritional yeast
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 2 Tbsp cornstarch
- ⅛ tsp fresh rosemary
- ¼ tsp dried thyme
- Salt and pepper to taste.
- Optional: Parmesan cheese (vegan cheese or non vegan)
- For the mashed potatoes, placed the potatoes (peeled and chopped) into a small-medium pot. Fill the pot with water until the potatoes are completely submerged. Bring the pot to a boil and let it boil for about 20 minutes or until the potatoes are soft.
- While the potatoes are boiling, add 3 Tbsp of olive oil to a separate pan. Sautee the 4 cloves of garlic (minced) over low heat for about 3 minutes.
- Drain the pot of potatoes, add the garlic with the oil to the potatoes, add almond milk, add ½ Tbsp nutritional yeast, and over low heat, mash the potatoes to your desired consistency. Add more milk if you find it too thick for your liking. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover the pot and set aside.
- In a medium-large pot, add 3 Tbsp olive oil to the pot over medium heat. Add the sliced yellow onions and a pinch of salt. We're going to caramelize them by letting them stick to the bottom of the pot and then giving them a quick stir right before they burn. Add in a splash of vegetable broth every time you feel like the onions will burn without liquid or to help you scrape them off the bottom. After the onions are a golden brown, pour in the rest of the vegetable broth if you haven't already.
- Add the sliced mushrooms to the pot, add a pinch of salt, give the pot a quick stir, and cover the pot for about 5 minutes. Remove the cover and cook mushrooms until they are tender (about another 5 minutes). Stir in the minced garlic, thyme, and rosemary. Cook for another minute. Add the nutritional yeast. Stir the pot. Taste the liquid and mushroom. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the cornstarch to thicken the liquid.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Coat the baking pans or mini cocotte pots with olive oil (you'll probably need 4). Add mushrooms on the first layer (try not to get too much liquid), mashed potatoes to the second, mushrooms again, and then top with mashed potatoes (shape it into a dome). Do this until there are no more mashed potatoes or mushrooms left. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the tops are golden.
- Remove them from the oven and let them cool for about 5 minutes. Run a knife around the inside to loosen them. Eat directly out of the cocotte pots or transfer the pies to a plate and ENJOY.
Trust me, this is worth every single bite. Served upon a bed of fresh greens (because you should never forget those) and roasted carrots with some extra mushroom gravy drizzled on top…oh, it’s to die for! I honestly cannot wait until lunchtime so that I can eat some more of this.
Yes, ogle these photos and then go try making this. With mushrooms, potatoes, and animal free ingredients, this dish is lighter than most if not all traditional shepherd’s pies.