Vegetarian Cottage Pie With Garlic Butter Sweet Potato Mash

Vegetarian lentil cottage pie with garlic butter sweet potato mash - Domestic Gothess Vegetarian cottage pie (or shepherds pie, either name works seeing as there is no meat in it to distinguish between them) is a meal that I make fairly regularly as it is so simple, hearty and healthy. Lentils make a great (and very healthy) replacement for meat in a lot of recipes, particularly in warming Winter ones such as stews and pies; and I always have a stash of several different varieties in the cupboard. Although I often cook with dried lentils, they can take a while to cook and some varieties need to be soaked overnight before you can cook them so I also keep tins of pre-cooked lentils for when I want to make something a little more low-effort. I used a tin of lentils in this cottage pie, they really help to bulk it out and make it far more filling than it would be if just made with veg.

Vegetarian lentil shepherds pie with garlic butter sweet potato mash - Domestic GothessThe cottage pie is made even healthier by replacing the mashed potatoes in the topping with sweet potatoes, so it is packed full of vegetables and has plenty of protein from the lentils and cheese. It isn’t just healthy though, this pie is really tasty; I always use red wine in the sauce as it adds so much flavour, don’t omit it! The alcohol gets cooked off and it doesn’t taste strongly of wine so it is still fine to serve to children. The mash is flavoured with garlic butter, it is so simple to make but seriously good! I like to sprinkle some grated mature cheddar cheese over the top of the pie before I pop it in the oven, this is optional but I would never want to go without, the more cheese the better in my opinion.

Vegetarian cottage pie with garlic butter sweet potato mash - Domestic GothessI used Clover original spread in place of butter in this recipe – it is made with buttermilk, contains half the saturated fat of butter and no artificial ingredients, which means it is great for everyday family use. Clover are currently running a competition on their Facebook page where you can win a pair of oven gloves and personalised fridge magnets, all you have to do is upload a photo of a family meal cooked with Clover.

garlic butter sweet potato mashThe cottage pie can be baked in one large dish, or in about six small ones to make individual pies; it can even be prepared in advance then refrigerated for a couple of days before you bake it, and it freezes really well too; it is very handy to have some in the freezer for days when you don’t have time (or can’t be bothered) to cook. This is essentially a meal in one and needs nothing else, though I do like to serve it with some peas or broccoli (or both) for a bit of greenery.

Vegetarian Cottage Pie With Garlic Butter Sweet Potato Mash

Servings 6 people
Author Domestic Gothess



  • 50 g (1.75 oz) Clover original butter
  • 1 large onion finely chopped
  • 1 leek finely chopped
  • 2 large carrots cut into small dice
  • 2 fat garlic cloves crushed
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 200 g (7 oz) mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 150 ml (2/3 cup) red wine
  • 1 400 g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 400 g tin green or puy lentils drained
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • salt and pepper

Sweet Potato Topping

  • 1.5 kg (3.3 pounds) sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 50 g (1.75 oz) Clover original
  • 4 fat garlic cloves crushed
  • 75 g (2.75 oz) mature cheddar, grated


  1. Melt the Clover in a large pan and gently fry the onion, leek, carrots and garlic for 15 minutes until soft. Add the mushrooms and thyme and continue to cook for 5-10 minutes until the mushrooms are soft and any excess liquid has evaporated.
  2. Pour in the red wine and tomatoes and add the lentils, stock cube, soy sauce and sugar. Bring up to a simmer and cook for about 20 minutes then season to taste with plenty of salt and pepper.
  3. Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/gas mark 5.
  4. To make the sweet potato topping, boil the sweet potatoes in a large pan of salted water until tender, drain well then return to the pan.
  5. In a small pan, melt the Clover, add the garlic and cook gently for about 5 minutes until the garlic begins to turn golden, pour the garlic butter into the potatoes then mash them and season with salt and pepper.
  6. Transfer the filling to a large ovenproof dish and spread the mash over the top (or get fancy like I did and pipe it on using a piping bag fitted with a large star nozzle); sprinkle over the cheddar (at this point the pie can be refrigerated for up to a couple of days). Bake for 30-40 minutes until golden and bubbling.

Β Vegetarian lentil shepherds pie with garlic butter sweet potato mashThis post is sponsored by Clover, all opinions are my own.

I am sharing this with Fabulous Foodie Fridays, Fiesta Friday hosted by Cooking With Aunt Juju and The Kiwi Fruit, Foodie FriDIY, Foodie Friends Friday, Friday Favourites and Friday Features
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24 Comments on Vegetarian Cottage Pie With Garlic Butter Sweet Potato Mash

  1. Louise | Cygnet Kitchen
    November 9, 2015 at 3:49 pm (3 years ago)

    This looks incredibly healthy and comforting, so economical too Hannah! x

    • hannahhossack
      November 10, 2015 at 8:59 am (3 years ago)

      Thanks Louise, yes! It’s really cheap to make, but so tasty πŸ™‚ x

  2. Hilda
    November 10, 2015 at 2:04 am (3 years ago)

    I love puy lentils. This is a great way to use them.

    • hannahhossack
      November 10, 2015 at 8:56 am (3 years ago)

      Thanks Hilda, I use lentils a lot, several varieties, but I think puy ones are my favourite.

  3. sally hossack
    November 10, 2015 at 7:10 am (3 years ago)

    This recipe is a cut above any shepherds pie, meat or veggie. A great recipe Hannah, especially with the red wine and garlic.

    • hannahhossack
      November 10, 2015 at 8:53 am (3 years ago)

      Thanks Ma πŸ™‚ you can’t leave out the red wine! I find cottage pie a bit bland without it.

  4. Eb Gargano
    November 10, 2015 at 11:30 am (3 years ago)

    This looks so delicious! I love cottage pie and I really like the idea of using sweet potato mash on top. I’m going to have to try that next time!

  5. Honest Mum
    November 11, 2015 at 2:40 pm (3 years ago)

    The perfect winter feast. Thanks for linking up to #tastytuesdays x

  6. vegeTARAian
    November 12, 2015 at 10:00 am (3 years ago)

    Phwoar, this looks amazing! I’d love a bowl of that hearty goodness in winter.

  7. Gretta
    November 12, 2015 at 10:48 am (3 years ago)

    What a great meat free alternative! Going to try this for sure πŸ™‚

  8. bakeplaysmile
    November 12, 2015 at 7:52 pm (3 years ago)

    What a brilliant meat-free dinner. Who needs meat when you can eat this!! And sweet potato is my fave! Thanks for linking up with Fabulous Foodie Fridays! Have a great weekend xx

  9. Amy
    November 12, 2015 at 11:07 pm (3 years ago)

    Can I come to your house for dinner? This looks absolutely delicious! I loved my Mum’s cottage pie (with beef) before I became vegetarian and I’ve never found a veggie version that I absolutely loved. I think you’ve solved my problem! This pie has everything delicious in it! I love that the sweet potato mash has garlic butter in it – super tasty! This will be on our table the next time I’m seeking comfort food!

  10. lucyparissi
    November 13, 2015 at 8:57 am (3 years ago)

    I have been looking for a way to make my meaty dishes vegetarian and this looks like the way to go. I actually got some green lentils to try some dishes with. This looks perfect for making individual mini pies and freezing as well.

    November 13, 2015 at 3:40 pm (3 years ago)

    I really like your version of “shepherd’s pie” with lentils and sweet potatoes – two favorites! Most recipes are not healthy – I will have to keep your recipe. Thanks for bringing this to Fiesta Friday πŸ™‚

  12. The Kiwi Fruit
    November 13, 2015 at 8:10 pm (3 years ago)

    Oh I haven’t had a cottage pie, or shepherd’s pie in so lone. Even longer for a vegetarian version. This one looks just so delicious and I love the sweet potato topping instead of just regular potato. You have me feeling inspired and I am so going to make one of these soon!!! Thanks for inspiring us all this week at Fiesta Friday. Have a wonderful weekend!

  13. Julie is Hostess At Heart
    November 13, 2015 at 11:42 pm (3 years ago)

    I love that you used lentils and sweet potatoes in this pie! I haven’t been using them all that long so am always looking for new recipes. This cottage pie looks delicious!

  14. Arl's World
    November 15, 2015 at 5:04 pm (3 years ago)

    I love all your dishes, you are truly talented in the kitchen. This would be a perfect dish to serve at Thanksgiving! I am saving this. Thanks for bringing it to FF!

  15. petra08
    November 15, 2015 at 10:06 pm (3 years ago)

    It looks like great comfort food and perfect whe it is getting colder outside! πŸ™‚

  16. Aruna Panangipally
    November 17, 2015 at 2:41 pm (3 years ago)

    What a gorgeous looking dish! Bookmarked for trying πŸ™‚

  17. Christine at Must Love Home
    November 18, 2015 at 9:14 pm (3 years ago)

    Hello Friend, This is perfect!!! Thank you for sharing with us at the Friday Favorites Link Party, where every link is pinned and tweeted! I hope you have a wonderful weekend!! Hugs – Christine at Must Love Home

  18. Jane Ennis
    October 11, 2017 at 4:04 pm (10 months ago)

    I am trying this out for supper this evening, it sounds wonderful! !

  19. Annie Allen
    October 23, 2017 at 1:08 pm (10 months ago)

    Hi Hannah,
    I made this dish last week (because I LOVE puy lentis). absolutely delicious. and I loved the idea of putting garlic butter in the mash! thanks again for another fantastic one. x


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