Photos by Lindsey Johnson
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? The ones made without meat don't usually cover all your nutritional bases, unless the only bases you're looking to cover are carbs, cheese and condensed cream of mushroom soup. (PS - Please, tell me about this magical carb, cheese and condensed cream of mushroom soup diet you're on. I want to go there.)
I like making (and eating!) shepherd's pie because, although it definitely has the carbs covered with the mashed potato topping, 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--the "lazy" in the title refers to the can of lentil soup in the recipe. 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 delicious and becomes a favorite? That's the story behind my lentil 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.
This December, we’re republishing updated recipes from Oh My Veggies’ first year. This post was originally published on September 6, 2011.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion diced
- 1 pound white mushrooms sliced
- 1 14.5-ounce can lentil soup (like Amy's)
- 2 cups chopped kale
- ¾ cup bulgur
- 2 ½ cups prepared/leftover mashed potatoes heated
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350ºF and lightly coat a 2-3 quart casserole dish with an oil mister.
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 6 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook 5-6 minutes more, or until soft. Add the soup, kale and bulgur, then fill the can with water and add that to the skillet too; reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer for about 5 minutes, until mixture has thickened and kale has wilted.
- Pour the veggie and soup mixture into the casserole dish. Top with the mashed potatoes (warming them first makes them easier to spread). Bake for 30 minutes, then turn on the broiler and broil for about 5 minutes before serving, or until potatoes are golden brown and slightly crispy in places.