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Shepherd’s Pie with Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Mushroom Gravy (Vegan and Gluten-free)

Savory vegetables and plant-based mushroom gravy baked with golden mashed potatoes on top–this stick-to-your-ribs shepherd’s pie with garlic mashed potatoes is hearty comfort food at its finest.

Vegan Shepherd’s Pie with Savory Mushroom Gravy 5 pans

Here’s my vegan interpretation of the classic British Isle “pie” known as shepherd’s pie, a casserole of vegetables mixed with gravy and baked with mashed potato topping.

In shepherd’s pies of old, dibs and dabs of (usually leftover) meat were mixed into the gravy, being an economical way to use up what’s left from dinner the night before.

The  “meat” stand-in in this shepherd’s pie with garlic mashed potatoes is little 1/4-inch cubes of baked tofu, an easy high-protein addtion to the vegetables and gravy mix. I buy the seasoned and marinated savory baked tofu premade, like this one.

Besides the tofu bits, you’ll find carrots, cauliflower, and peas mixed in with the savory gluten-free mushroom gravy. You can add or substitute in other vegetables too, like celery or corn kernels.

The garlic-infused vegan mashed potato crust is made with a bulb’s worth of garlic! You steam the garlic in the same pot as the potatoes, and then mash them together with fruity olive oil and salt. When you cook garlic cloves until they’re nice and soft, the garlic takes on a whole new personality–mellow and gentle on the palate.

Check the recipe card below for full quantities and information on ingredients.

Make your shepherd’s pie ahead of time:

  • Any or all of the three components in this vegan shepherd’s pie–the gravy, the vegetables, and the garlic mashed potatoes–can be made days or hours ahead.
  • You can also assemble the pie earlier in the day, cover and refrigerate, and then bake it for dinner.
Shepherd’s Pie in a skillet with portions already served so the filling under the potato crust is visilble.

How to make the garlic mashed potatoes:

Either in a steamer or Instant Pot pressure cooker, cook an entire bulb of garlic along with the potatoes. While the potatoes fall apart, the garlic seriously mellows. Mash them together with olive oil, salt, and some of the cooking water–ta-da! Creamy potatoes with incredible flavor!

If you wish, roast the garlic instead of steaming, like in this (also vegan) recipe for roasted garlic mashed potatoes.


  • Try garlic mashed potatoes on top of thick stews or chili–yup–you’ve got your own version of shepherd’s pie!
  • Instead of the pastry crust, bake garlic mashed potatoes on top of any vegetable pot pie filling.

Be sure to check out this other mushroom gravy that’s served over baked polenta and cannellini beans.

Shepherd’s Pie in black skillet with potato crust. Displayed on striped napkin.

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  • Nothing beats Shepard’s pie during the colder months! And I love that you made them in individual skillets. So cute! Reply · 6 November, 2017

    • Thanks Liz! I’m really having fun with the skillets! Reply · 6 November, 2017

  • I love that quote about tofu and the mind! So funny (and true!) Yummy recipe Letty. Love the addition of garlic in the potatoes. Reply · 6 November, 2017

    • Thank you Katie! Totally true tofu! I’m not afraid. 😉 Reply · 6 November, 2017

  • Love it when economical meals that somehow turn into the most flavorful ones. This sounds like the perfect vegetarian comfort food to me! Reply · 6 November, 2017

  • I love that you steam a whole bulb or garlic in with your potatoes! I’m going to have to start doing that! This looks delicious 🙂 Reply · 6 November, 2017

    • And my husband the garlic lover didn’t detect the secret flavor. I mentioned garlic and he said that would be a good idea. He was surprised to hear garlic was already in the potatoes he tasted! Reply · 8 November, 2017

  • I am so not a fan of traditional Shepard’s pie but you’re selling me on this vegetarian version. I’ve been so into mushrooms lately, too! Reply · 9 November, 2017

  • Hi Letty…! am also reads your posts but this is one of my favorite recipe. and its looks so yummy and delicious. Thanks for sharing….! Reply · 15 November, 2017

    • Thank you Satyakam! Reply · 15 November, 2017

  • AR

    This is a WONDERFUL recipe! We are vegans and made this for other vegan friends who have quite a few dietary restrictions. The recipe was easy to follow and even doing a few steps out of order did nothing to diminish its deliciousness. I will say that the sauce didn’t begin to bubble up until we broiled it, but again not an issue – plenty of sauce and super delicious! We’re going to make it again next weekend and take it camping with us. Reply · 10 August, 2020

    • Thank you! I’m so happy to hear this from you! Have fun camping! Reply · 10 August, 2020

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