My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (2024)

This meatless Shepherd’s pie has an incredibly tasty and textured filling with a mix of lentils, quinoa & barley (though you don’t have to use all three) and a creamy goat cheese mashed potato topping. Packed with flavor and texture, it can easily be adapted to suit your family perfectly. This is vegetarian comfort food at its very best.

This recipe was originally published in 2015, but has been updated for 2023 to give more precise measurements, different proportions and a better flavor. If you’re here because you love the old recipe, you can see what’s changed and access the original version here.

My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (1)

Look no further for a tried and tested vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie

When it’s time to start living your best cozy life, you can’t do much better than a big pan of Shepherd’s pie! But making this dish excel without meat may seem tricky. And it is. Lucky for you, I have put YEARS of trial and error into mastering vegetarian Shepherd’s pie so that you don’t have to! You can just take this recipe, take my notes, and get it right the very first time.

My recipe uses the usual veggies plus a combination of lentils, pearl barley and quinoa to make up the bulk of the filling. Lentils and grainscan really excel in recipes where they are intendedto replace ground meat, butthey need help! Wheremeatwould have added flavor to the dish, our lentils and grains are soaking it all up, so we have to give them a lot to work with. And because we want this pie to be completely epic, we are also going to make an extra tasty cheesy root mash topping with a cheesy topping and making sure there is not a single bland bite to be had here.

Nothing about this recipe is half hearted, and it does take a little bit of time, so make this on a weekend when you’ve got some time. Put on some tunes, pour a glass of wine if you wish, and we’ll make magic happen!

My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (2)

Reader Feedback for Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie

This is delicious, we are constantly trying out vegetarian alternative recipes for comfort food we love and have been so disappointed until trying this. Clean plates all round including my four year old who is stereotypically fussy! Love the fact that it’s made from lots of staple and cheap ingredients, gorgeous thank you!

Jen

Made this for New Year’s Day lunch… it was a big success. The best veggie shepherd’s pie recipe I’ve tried. And marmite was a great “secret ingredient”. Thanks!

Jeremy

Delicious! My husband just said it was one of the best things I’ve ever made.

Nancy

Ingredient Notes for the Filling

Everything you need to know to understand the mechanics of this recipe and customize it to your tastes…

My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (3)
  • Lentils, quinoa and barley are our “meat”. They work together really nicely to create a varied texture. I like to weigh it more towards lentils (1 cup of lentils, 1/3rd cup each of barley and quinoa) which turns out quite soft, but if you upweight the barley you get something with a lot more chew to it. Also, feel free to only use lentils or to use two out of three of these ingredients. Just aim for 1 2/3rd cups of whichever grains you wish.
  • Meatless beef style stock: When I first created this recipe in 2015, I recommended using this if you could find it, but nowadays vegan ingredients are more widely available so I am going to assume that you can. In the US there is “Better than Boullion” brand and in the UK there is an Oxo Meatless Beef. You will get much better results using this over vegetable stock.
  • Mustard powder and prepared dijon mustard go a long way to infusing a savory depth, without it getting spicy. This is an idea I’ve borrowed from a mustard lentil recipe in Leith’s Vegetarian Bible and the entire recipe was kind of born from that.
  • Miso or Marmite / Vegemite adds some additional umami flavor. Marmite was in the original recipe and my UK readers love it, but I have always wanted to offer an alternative to overseas readers. I have now tested it with miso and it works just as well.
  • It’s optional, but the pat of butter in the pan with the herbs helps to infuse some richness and enhance the flavors. Not completely necessary if you want to keep this on the lighter side, but I do notice a difference when I use it.
  • With so many different things going in to add flavor to this recipe, don’t stress too much if you have a missing ingredient. Taste it and decide if you’d like to add more of another flavor source instead, but you may feel like it’s perfectly tasty enough without the missing ingredient anyway.
  • You can control how saucy the filling is – those grains really drink up liquid, so just add additional stock (or red wine) as needed to get the texture right.
My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (4)
My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (5)

Ingredient Notes for the Topping

If you want to save time, you can of course use a premade mashed potato, you can also just use your favorite mashed potato recipe. But for the full epic-ness of this recipe, do use my root mash if you can!

My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (6)
  • I like to use 2/3rd white potatoes and 1/3 parsnip, sweet potato or a bit of both. This yields a super comforting fluffy mash with a nice hit of sweetness. You can play around with these ratios and you can’t go too wrong.
  • You want a soft creamy goat cheese, not an aged one with a rind.
  • As is always the case with cheese, a mature / aged cheddar tastes best.
  • The cheese topping is completely optional – I have enjoyed this many times without it and I wouldn’t consider it critical to the recipe’s success so if it feels like overkill, or you’re looking to cut ingredients or calories down, go ahead and skip it.
  • You don’t have to use the same cheese in the mash and for topping. You might wish to get some pre-bagged cheese for the topping, it’s fine either way, but those pre-bagged cheeses tend to brown a little quicker than when you grate it off the block. So you’re either going to need to bake it a little less time (which means the pie won’t be as “set”) or you could add it for the last 10-15 minutes of baking time.
My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (7)

More Vegetarian Comfort Food Staples

I have sooooo many more classic recipes made meatless – these are perfect for those who are new to vegetarian cooking…

My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (12)

The Best Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie Recipe

This meatless Shepherd's pie has an incredibly tasty and textured filling with a mix lentils, quinoa & barley (though you don't have to use all three) and a creamy goat cheese mashed potato topping. Packed with flavor and texture, it can easily be adapted to suit your family perfectly. This is vegetarian comfort food at its very best.

8 servings

Prep Time: 20 minutes mins

Cook Time: 1 hour hr 20 minutes mins

4.79 from 19 ratings

Ingredients

Topping

  • 800 g (28 oz) potatoes, peeled and chopped – weigh before peeling
  • 400 g (14 oz) parsnips, sweet potatoes or both, peeled and chopped – weigh before peeling
  • 50 g (3.5 tbsp) salted butter
  • 125 g (4.5 oz) goats cheese
  • 100 g (3.5 oz) cheddar cheese
  • 180 g (1.5 cups) additional grated cheese, for topping – can be more cheddar or a mixed blend
  • 1 small bunch sliced green (spring) onions, optional
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Filling

  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 300 g (10 oz) mushrooms , diced
  • 40 g (3 tbsp) salted butter
  • 1 Tbsp dried provencal herbs
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 tsp dried sage
  • 1.5 Tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1.5 Tbsp dried mustard powder
  • 2-3 Tbsp red wine, approximate
  • 190 g (1 cup) dry green or brown lentils
  • 60 g ( cup) dry quinoa
  • 60 g ( cup) dry barley
  • 1 litre (4.5 cups) meatless beef style broth
  • 1 tbsp marmite or miso
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 150 g (1 cup) frozen peas
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

  • In a large, deep saucepan or casserole pan, heat a thin layer of olive oil and saute the carrots and onions over a medium heat until they start to soften.

    1 large carrot, 2 medium onions

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (13)

  • Add the mushrooms and garlic, and cook until the mushrooms start to let out moisture and reduce.

    300 g mushrooms, 3 cloves garlic

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (14)

  • Add the butter, herbs and mustard powder and mix through just until the fragrance is released and the butter is melted. If you're using the red wine, add it now to deglaze the pan. Saute for a couple of minutes, allowing the vegetables soak it in

    40 g salted butter, 1 Tbsp dried provencal herbs, 2 tsp dried thyme, 1.5 Tbsp dried mustard powder, 2 tsp dried sage

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (15)

  • Add the dried lentils, quinoa and barley to the pan and cover with the beef style broth.

    190 g dry green or brown lentils, 60 g dry quinoa, 60 g dry barley, 1 litre meatless beef style broth

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (16)

  • Bring the pan to a simmer, then reduce the heat and add the miso / marmite, dijon mustard and bay leaves.

    1.5 Tbsp dijon mustard, 1 tbsp marmite or miso, 2 bay leaves, salt and pepper

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (17)

  • Cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes or until the grains are cooked through and soft. Check in regularly – add extra stock if you find it gets too dry and add salt and pepper to taste.

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (18)

Meanwhile, make the root mash topping

Assemble and bake!

  • Heat the oven to 180C / 355F.

  • Remove the bay leaves from the filling and add the frozen peas. Mix through.

    150 g frozen peas

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (22)

  • Spread the filling in a 9×13 casserole dish.

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (23)

  • Spread the root mash over the top.

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (24)

  • Sprinkle the cheese and sliced green onions over the top of the mash.

    180 g additional grated cheese, 1 small bunch sliced green (spring) onions

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (25)

  • Cover and bake for 25-30 minutes, until the cheese is bubbling.

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (26)

  • Allow to rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

    My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (27)

Notes

To make this recipe gluten free, omit the barley (just add more of the other grains) and the marmite/miso (you could add more of the other flavour sources if you wish, but it’s pretty flavorful so don’t worry too much).

Cuisine: European

Course: Main Course

Author: Christine Melanson

Calories: 579kcal, Carbohydrates: 62g, Protein: 25g, Fat: 26g, Saturated Fat: 15g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6g, Trans Fat: 0.4g, Cholesterol: 66mg, Sodium: 973mg, Potassium: 1244mg, Fiber: 16g, Sugar: 9g, Vitamin A: 2734IU, Vitamin C: 41mg, Calcium: 351mg, Iron: 5mg

The 2015 —> 2023 Update

My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (28)
My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (29)

The original recipe lives here, if you’d like to save or print that off. What’s changed:

  • The proportions have been adjusted to ensure it fits into a normal rectangular 9×13 casserole dish, instead of being baked in the Dutch Oven.
  • I’ve strengthened the overall flavor – as lovely as most reviews were, some readers did report needing to add more seasoning. I decided it was better with a little extra mustard, some added red wine, optional salted butter and garlic. And I now strongly recommend you seek out the vegetarian beef style broth instead of using veggie broth. It is SO tasty now.
  • More flexibility for non UK cooks! I’ve tested this with miso instead of marmite, and sweet potato instead of parsnip, so I can confidently recommend these swaps and keep the recipe easier to make globally.
  • More precise and specific measurements to take out some of the guesswork. 2015 was the “winging it” era – I’ve since learned that not everyone enjoys that way of cooking!

posted by Christine Melansonon February 8, 2015 (last updated Dec 14, 2023)

43 commentsLeave a comment »

43 comments on “My Best Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie Recipe”

Leave a comment »

  1. NancyReply

    Delicious! My husband just said it was one of the best things I’ve ever made. I used carrots with the potatoes and it added a nice sweetness. Thanks for a great recipe!

    • ChristineReply

      Wow! This makes me so happy 🙂 Thank you very much for sharing your feedback.

      • JulieReply

        Great recipe …but you placed it under gluten free. Barley and Marmite are not gluten free.

    • Simon MuntReply

      Warning this is not gluten free anyone preparing this for a celiac vegetarian should not use marmite which contains gluten in the form of wheat flour.

      • Christine MelansonReply

        You’re absolutely right, apologies. I have now added a disclaimer in the top of the post and in the recipe card. It’s very easy to adapt but indeed this error could have caused problems for someone who wasn’t aware. Thank you.

  2. Miss PolkadotReply

    Hold the phone. Do you promise you’re not a mind reader? Because that’d be scary. I was trying to come up with an idea for lunch using the potatoes I just bought and cheese. Because, well, cheese. It wasn’t until I’d settled on a dish, though, that I remember your blog would probably be the right one to turn to in that situation. Long story short: wow. Right now I miss too manyof the ingredients used here but I can tell it’s one that’d be perfect for the next time I visit my parents.

  3. stu currieReply

    Hey, I just made this for my tea tonight. It was amazing. I used a little more mustard than you said after I tasted it before adding the topping, and it turned out excellent. I want to start writing a blog about the recipes I make, and if I include this I will credit you as the mastermind. Thankyou.

    • ChristineReply

      I am so glad that you liked the recipe! Thanks very much for stopping by to let me know. And yes you should definitely start that blog- it’s great fun!

  4. Nutty NutritionistReply

    YUmmy! this looks amazing! I made a veg Shepherds pie once and it was good, but not great. I will have to try this version!

  5. FoodGeekGrazeReply

    i have added all things needed to make this masterpiece to my market list. even before trying, it is more than obvious that this will kill it at my dinner table. rather than typing how much love i feel for you right now, please allow me to copy paste what i wrote under the pin…

    “i was pulled in by this deliciously constructed recipe (loosely based upon a share from the book, “leiths vegetable bible”) and how she goes about employing marmite as a umami push. yes, you read correctly. marmite. seriously well-deserved standing ovation 🙂 other ingredients helping to push this dish over the edge of awesomeness: green lentils, quinoa, barley, parsnip, potato, scallion, goat cheese, cheddar cheese, onion, carrot, mushrooms, peas, herbs, and two kinds of mustard (please don’t beat me up, people of oz… i am a fully vested team marmite member)”

    thank you, thank you, thank you for the genius share!!! cheers~

    • ChristineReply

      What a lovely comment to wake up to! 🙂 I love your enthusiasm for good veggie cooking and marmite 🙂 I really hope you enjoy the recipe!

  6. LauraReply

    This sounds wonderful. So many veggie versions of meat dishes are only ok but I actually want to try this one and I’m not even vegetarian. Good call on using marmite – I love the stuff.

    • ChristineReply

      Ah thank you Laura! I hope you enjoy it if you do! 🙂

  7. JeremyReply

    Made this for New Year’s Day lunch. I used just barley and lentils because the children are still dubious about quinoa (!). Anyway it was a big success. The best veggie shepherd’s pie recipe I’ve tried. And marmite was a great “secret ingredient”. Thanks!

    • ChristineReply

      That’s wonderful, I am so happy to hear that this turned out well for you! Thank you so much for taking the time to let me know 🙂

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  9. TaylorReply

    Hi Christine! I have yet to try this incredible looking recipe. I found it when a friend and I were discussing a mutual love of barley and incorporating it into shepherds pie. (We will be starting a blog about barley, and are hoping to feature this gorgeous dish in a blog about variations of shepherds pie – I promise to link your blog once this happens). My question is this – I am I. Canada and can order marmite off Amazon, but was hoping to make it sooner. Do you know if anyone subbing in worchestershire sauce for traditional shepherds pie flavour?? Thanks in advance for your words of wisdom, and (of course!) this lovely recipe!

    • ChristineReply

      Hi Taylor! Wow I am excited to see your blog about barley – I always want to make more barley but I’m never quite sure what to make so I could use some inspiration! Anyway making this without marmite is totally fine – I would just suggest adding a little more of all the other flavourings- and yes Worcester sauce is a good call. In Canada I think you can get faux beef stock too which is great in this (or if you’re not vegetarian you could of course use real beef stock). Just keep tasting it while you cook and add more stuff until you’re happy 🙂 I hope you love it as much as I do!

      • JenReply

        This is delicious, we are constantly trying out vegetarian alternative recipes for comfort food we love and have been so disappointed until trying this. Clean plates all round including my four year old who is stereotypically fussy! Love the fact that it’s made from lots of staple and cheap ingredients, gorgeous thank you!

        • Christine MelansonReply

          I’m so happy this worked out so well for you! Thanks so much for your feedback. I’m impressed by your four year old, my six year old daughter doesn’t even like potatoes in non chip form so wouldn’t touch this! WHYYY 😂

  10. JuliaReply

    I’ve never tried making vegetarian shepherd’s pie but I like what I see! :)Using barley and quinoa is a great idea.

    • ChristineReply

      Thank you! 🙂

  11. EllenReply

    How perfect would this be for meatless Monday?! Looks hearty, delicious and good for you!

    • ChristineReply

      It is indeed! Thank you! 🙂

  12. NatalieReply

    I love shepherd’s pie and this vegetarian version looks and sounds simply delicious and so easy to make. Such a great idea for weekday dinner or lunch!

    • ChristineReply

      Thank you so much! 🙂

  13. linda spikerReply

    Well this is a great idea! My husband loves shepherd’s pie, but I am not a fan, but this version I could get behind!

    • ChristineReply

      Yay! A great compromise! 🙂

  14. JuliaReply

    I’ve never tried making vegetarian shepherd’s pie but I like what I see! :)Using barley and quinoa is a great idea.

  15. JuliaReply

    I’ve never tried making vegetarian shepherd’s pie but I like what I see! :)Using barley and quinoa is a great idea.

  16. NatalieReply

    I love shepherd’s pie and this vegetarian version looks and sounds simply delicious and so easy to make. Such a great idea for weekday dinner or lunch!

  17. NatalieReply

    I love shepherd’s pie and this vegetarian version looks and sounds simply delicious and so easy to make. Such a great idea for weekday dinner or lunch!

  18. linda spikerReply

    Well this is a great idea! My husband loves shepherd’s pie, but I am not a fan, but this version I could get behind!

  19. linda spikerReply

    Well this is a great idea! My husband loves shepherd’s pie, but I am not a fan, but this version I could get behind!

  20. Claudia LamascoloReply

    My son will love this and if he sees it will be making me go to the kitchen to start cooking! thanks for the recipe

  21. SheliReply

    How do you deal with the fact that quinoa is very bitter and needs to be soaked first? Your recipe didn’t say to soak it first. How do you deal with this? Thanks

  22. EyeemReply

    Why is this recipe listed as gluten free? Barley is not gluten free!

    • Christine MelansonReply

      You’re right, I made this recipe a long time ago before I was aware of that fact. I’ve added a disclaimer. Thank you for bringing it to my attention.

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  24. Lindsay KennedyReply

    This was amazing:)
    Ummm that goat cheese in the mash…. I am in love.
    This dish is amazing… I needed to use up some ingredients so here is what I added:
    A squirt of tomato paste
    A splash of red wine
    My partner who eats meat made his own version and preferred this one Told me he would happily eat this as his main.
    I should probably add that my very picky toddler also gobbled this up!
    Thank-you for sharing. I will definitely be making this again.

  25. JillianReply

    Being pregnant and not feeling well I decided to try something to speed this up. I also have celiac and can’t do marmite or barley. I pulled out my instant pot and used the sauté feature to cook the onions, carrots and mushrooms. I had an heirloom bean and lentil blend I added with a cup of brown rice. I put in 4 cups of veggie stock and pressure cooked it on high for 16 minutes. Turned out perfectly and was pretty easy. This is one of my favorite meals to make and this little “shortcut” made it that much easier. So yummy and a complete dinner in a bowl which is my favorite.

  26. SarahReply

    This was really great! Followed the recipe exactly except without the barley (used extra lentils and quinoa). It was much tastier than vegetarian ‘meat substitute’ fillings usually are, and I’m assuming this was down to the combination of mustard, miso, and beef flavoured stock cube. Christine has really got the combination right here for maximum flavour. I made it for Christmas dinner, it wasn’t quick, but it was an easy work flow while sipping wine and listening to Christmas music. Just what you want on Christmas Day after a brisk morning walk 🙂

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My Best Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe (2024)

FAQs

What can I use to thicken my shepherd's pie? ›

The easiest way to thicken shepherd's pie filling is by sprinkling a few tablespoons of flour into the ground beef mixture as it cooks before adding it to the baking dish. The starch in the flour will absorb the extra liquid and create a thick gravy.

Why is my shepherd's pie soggy? ›

Classic shepherd's pie is made with ground lamb, gravy, mashed potatoes, and veggies like peas, corn, celery, and carrots. Why is my shepherd's pie soggy? Avoid a soggy pie by simmering the meat mixture for at least 8 minutes. Be sure to cook down the mixture to remove excess moisture.

How long does homemade shepherd's pie last? ›

How Long Does Shepherd's Pie Last? If you keep your shepherd's pie in the fridge, I'd say eat it before 3 days are up. You can also freeze it.

Why does shepherd's pie need to go in the oven? ›

Both ingredients are already cooked so it really only needs to be in the oven long enough for the potato to form a golden brown crust on top. Minced or ground beef is used for a Cottage Pie not a Shepherds pie.

Why is Shepard's pie called Shepherd's Pie? ›

If it is made with lamb (or mutton, however mutton is rarely sold in England in the modern day) it is usually called "shepherd's pie" (because a shepherd looks after sheep) and has a topping of mashed potato, patterned to represent sheep's fleece.

How to stop mash potato sinking in shepherd's pie? ›

To stop the mash sinking into the filling, allow the meat to cool before topping with the mashed potato. Freeze in individual ovenproof dishes for an easy meal for one. For a really crisp, golden topping, flash under the grill for a few mins before serving.

What is a natural thickening agent for pie filling? ›

Very often flour or cornstarch is used, but in certain instances tapioca, arrowroot and potato starch can also help achieve the desired consistency. Find out which thickener won't break down, preventing your pie from becoming a watery mess in Food Network Kitchens Pie Thickener 101 post.

How to make shepherd's pie less soupy? ›

Why is my Shepherd's Pie soupy? If your casserole is too runny, chances are you either didn't add enough flour to thicken the gravy or you didn't simmer it long enough to reduce the liquid. Also, make sure your potatoes are thoroughly drained before making the mashed potatoes, so the topping is not too sloppy.

Why does my shepherd pie fall apart? ›

How do you keep shepherds pie from falling apart? The eggs in the mashed potatoes help keep the pie together. You should also make sure to spread the potatoes and press down a bit.

How can I make my pie more firm? ›

All-purpose flour is an easy solution, as you're sure to have it in your pantry. Since it's lower in starch, you'll use more of it than you would higher-starch thickeners. Quick-cooking tapioca makes filling bright and clear, but also gives it a stippled and somewhat sticky texture.

Can I eat 5 day old shepherd's pie? ›

Freshly baked shepherd's pie will keep for about 3 to 5 days in the fridge; refrigerate covered with aluminum foil or plastic wrap. To freeze: wrap shepherd's pie tightly with aluminum foil or plastic freezer wrap, or place in heavy-duty freezer bag.

Is it safe to eat shepherd's pie that was left out overnight? ›

The USDA says food that has been left out of the fridge for more than two hours should be thrown away. At room temperature, bacteria grows incredibly fast and can make you sick. Reheating something that has been sitting at room temperature for longer than two hours won't be safe from bacteria.

Can you reheat homemade shepherd's pie twice? ›

But provided you heat it for the right amount of time and at the correct temperature, you should be okay to reheat your food multiple times. That being said, every time you reheat food, the quality may decrease as reheating has been known to alter the consistency or taste of food.

Why do people put ketchup on shepherds pie? ›

Ketchup: Ketchup will add a little tang to the ground beef mixture. Beef Broth: Beef broth creates a gravy-like consistency in the middle. Cheese: Top the shepherd's pie with extra Cheddar for a cheesy finish.

What is traditional shepherd's pie made of? ›

This traditional shepherd's pie recipe is made with a mixture of lamb and sirloin, lots of veggies, and a creamy, cheesy mashed potato topping ⁠— sure to delight everyone at the table!

How do you reduce salt in shepherd's pie? ›

Add Dairy. A creamy dairy product will coat your mouth, essentially tricking your palate. Heavy cream, half-and-half, or a pat of butter are good solutions for a dish that needs to simmer for a little longer. Add sour cream or a knob of cream cheese at the end and off the heat source to prevent them from breaking.

What ethnicity is Shepherd's Pie? ›

The dish originates from the British Isles, but some might argue that it is an Irish dish by origin. The name "Shepherd's Pie" was first recorded in an 1877 cookbook. In this same cookbook, it was noted that the dish was of Scottish origin. During the period between the 18th and 19th centuries, money was very tight.

What is the difference between Irish and British shepherd's pie? ›

It's called cottage pie in the U.K. because they use beef and in Ireland since the shepherds tend sheep, it's shepherd's pie. No doubt, the English put out an excellent cottage pie, but in Ireland it used to be a delicacy since the Irish couldn't afford beef they repurposed any unused veggies and meat.

What is an interesting fact about shepherd's pie? ›

According to the Oxford Companion to Food, once upon a time, Scotland made its shepherd's pies with pastry instead of mashed potatoes. Indian cooks once considered shepherd's pie to be a perfect dish for tiffin (a word used to mean a light snack in British India).

What to do if your pie is too runny? ›

  1. Cornstarch: Mix with cold water, add to filling, and cook until thick.
  2. Flour: Stir a few tablespoons into the filling.
  3. Tapioca: Use instant tapioca as a thickener.
  4. Reduce Liquid: Cook the filling on the stovetop to evaporate excess liquid.
Sep 25, 2022

How can I make my meat pie filling thicker? ›

Thicken your pie filling (optional).
  1. Mix two tsp. of flour with 1/4 cup cold water or 1 tbsp. cornstarch with 1/4 cup cold water before stirring it into your mixture.
  2. Thicken with flour. For each cup of filling, use about 2 tbsp. of flour. ...
  3. Thicken with cornstarch. For each cup of sauce, use 1 tbsp. of cornstarch.

What can I add to pie filling to make it thicker? ›

Tapioca as Pie Filling Thickener

Tapioca-it's not just for pudding! This old-school ingredient may be what your great grandmother used to thicken her pies, and it's still great for making a perfect fruit pie with a clear, stable filling.

How do you thicken meat pie gravy? ›

The three main thickening agents for gravies are flour, cornflour and arrowroot. The first two are normally used in savoury dishes while arrowroot tends to be used in sweet dishes – that said, arrowroot will work in a savoury dish as it has no flavour.

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