I am a comfort food enthusiast and to me, nothing says comfort food like a hearty, homemade casserole. The best part about casseroles is that they’re easy to make and filling. The worst part? They’re not very good for you. There’s usually a generous amount of cheese and carbs involved. Maybe even a can of condensed cream of mushroom soup. I like making (and eating!) shepherd’s pie because, although it definitely has the carbs covered, the filling is easy to make into something a little bit more virtuous. So you have the comfort food goodness of mashed potatoes, but you can get some veggies, grains, and protein in the filling–best of both worlds, right?
I realize that this recipe sounds a little bit odd. You know how sometimes you need to make dinner and you have nothing planned, so you just assemble random ingredients and cross your fingers that it will work? And somehow it turns out good and becomes a favorite? That’s the story behind my vegetarian shepherd’s pie. I’ve made it with different kinds of lentil soup and different vegetables, so don’t think you need to stick to the ingredients I have here. Go wild! Normally when I make shepherd’s pie, it’s a Sunday dinner because I have more time to cook then, but this version comes together quickly enough to make on a busy weeknight–you can even make the filling the night before and assemble the casserole right before cooking.
Vegetarian shepherd's pie made with leftover mashed potatoes, lentil soup, bulgur wheat, zucchini, yellow squash, kale, and mushrooms.
- cooking spray or oil mister
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 small zucchini, thinly sliced
- 1 small yellow squash, thinly sliced
- 8 oz. button mushrooms, sliced
- 1-17.6 oz. carton Pacific Natural Foods Roasted Garlic Mushroom Lentil Soup
- 1 c. kale, chopped
- 1/2 c. bulgur
- 2 c. prepared/leftover mashed potatoes, heated
- salt and pepper to taste
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and coat a 2-3 qt. casserole dish with cooking spray.
- Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 6 minutes. Add zucchini, squash, and mushrooms and cook 5-6 minutes more, or until soft. Add soup, kale and bulgur; reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer for 5 minutes, until mixture has thickened and kale has wilted.
- Pour veggie and soup mixture into casserole dish. Top with mashed potatoes. Bake for 30 minutes. Turn on broiler and broil for 5 minutes before serving, or until potatoes are golden brown.