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Vegetarian Lentil Pot Pie

This vegetarian lentil pot pie topped with a flakey and buttery sheet of puff pastry is simple and elegant enough to serve as an entree this Thanksgiving. Make it vegan by using a vegan pie crust or vegan biscuits instead of puff pastry.

food, vegetarian lentil pot pie

Vegetarian Lentil Pot Pie

This vegetarian lentil pot pie is the epitome of comfort food for colder weather. Brown lentils and mixed vegetables are cooked up in a flavorful red wine sauce and then capped with a sheet of puff pastry. The puff pastry makes this otherwise humble vegetarian lentil pot pie something special.

So special, I think it could stand in for turkey as an entree for your vegetarian friends at Thanksgiving this year! (I know I would be excited to see this pot pie waiting for me on the table at Thanksgiving.)

Why We Love this Recipe

  • Perfect for non-meat eaters during the holidays! We make this as a main-dish alternative to turkey all the time for Thanksgiving and other holiday get togethers.
  • Easy to make ahead. Prep your lentils in advance or buy canned lentils and this lentil pie comes together in a little over 30 minutes when topped with biscuits or pie crust.
  • Adaptable for a variety of diets. This dish is vegetarian and egg free. Swap just an ingredient or two and you can easily make this vegan, dairy free, or gluten free too!

Ingredients and Substitutions

food, vegetarian lentil pot pie

lentil pot pie ingredients in bowls.

  • Lentils: Dried green or brown lentils are inexpensive, healthy, and versatile – what’s not to love! They are the star of this rich plant-based pot pie filling. I have not tested it with other plant-based options yet, but you could likely use a plant-based chicken, soy curls, or sausage in this filling instead of lentils.
  • Aromatics (Garlic, Onion): Adds all the flavor of a traditional pot pie.
  • Herbs (Rosemary, Thyme, Oregano): Adds lots of flavor that reminds me of the holidays. You can substitute 1 1/2 tablespoons of Italian seasoning instead.
  • Tomato Paste and Soy Sauce: Like the red wine, the tomato paste and soy sauce add umami in this plant-based dish. If you have it, you can use a tablespoons of vegan Worcestershire sauce instead of soy sauce.
  • Mixed Vegetables: For ease, we just buy a bag of frozen mixed vegetables. You can use 2-3 cups of chopped fresh vegetables if you’d like. Some vegetables that would be tasty in this filling include: green beans, chopped carrots, peas, and corn.
  • Red Wine: Adds richness and umami to the filling. The alcohol cooks off so you don’t have to worry about alcohol in the finished dish. You can omit the red wine if you’d like. Just use 3 cups of broth instead of 2 1/2 cups when making the filling.
  • Puff Pastry/Biscuits/Pie Crust: Top your pot pie with the pastry of your choice. When serving on Thanksgiving, we splurge and buy puff pastry for this recipe. If we are making this for a weeknight dinner, we’ll usually top it with biscuits.

How to Make this Vegetarian Pot Pie

Want to watch me make this recipe instead? Be sure to check out the recipe card below for video of how to make this recipe!

STEP 1: Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

STEP 2: Make your lentils by adding the lentils, water and broth to a small saucepan and bringing to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cover with a lid and continue to simmer until lentils are tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed, about 12-15 minutes.

STEP 3: Lightly flour your counter or other surface and gently roll out the puff pastry until it is about 1/8 inch thick with a rolling pin. I use a 12 inch skillet for this recipe so I cut the rolled puff pastry dough into a 12 and 1/2 inch square (The extra 1/2 inch allows for a little bit of overhang.) Measure and cut dough into whatever size and shape you need for your baking dish adding about 1/2 extra length for a little bit of overhang. Transfer to the fridge while you make the filling.

STEP 4: Add butter and onion to a 12 inch cast iron skillet (or other oven safe skillet). Saute until onion is softened and translucent. Stir in the garlic and sauté for another minute.

STEP 5: Add the frozen vegetables and flour. Toss to coat vegetables in flour and cook for 2-3 minutes to remove any raw flour flavor.

STEP 6: Stir in the soy sauce, oregano, thyme, rosemary, and broth. Bring to a simmer and cook until sauce has slightly thickened, about 8-10 minutes. The filling will continue to thicken in the oven, so it is better to bake it when it is still a little thin rather than too thick.

STEP 6: Stir in the lentils. Taste and add more salt as needed. Top the skillet with the prepared puff pastry (or biscuits if using). Bake for 30-40 minutes or until filling is bubbling and puff pastry is golden brown. Allow to cook for 10 minutes before serving.

Lentil Pot Pie Topping Options

There are several different ways that you can top your lentil pot pie – it just depends on what you like best!

  • Puff Pastry: why not splurge a little for the holidays and make an extra special pot pie with puff pastry? You can find it in the freezer aisle. It makes an extra flakey and buttery topping for this pot pie. Just roll it out according to the package directions and cut it into the right shape for your baking pan or dish.
  • Biscuits: biscuits can be a fun and easy way to top this pot pie! For ease, we just buy the kind in a can at the store and lay them on top of the filling before baking. Since they bake on the filling, the bottom is not crisp. If you prefer a more crisp biscuit, cook them separately on a baking sheet according to the package directions and add the biscuit to the bowl with serving.
  • Pie Crust: cut your pie crust to fit over the top of your skillet or baking dish and bake until golden. Make sure to cut some slits in the top to allow the steam to escape while baking.

Recipe Notes:

  • Pre-Cooked Lentils: Buy pre-cooked lentils to make the prep work for this lentil pot pie even simpler.
  • About Puff Pastry: New to using puff pasty? Make sure that you thaw it overnight in the fridge before using. It is usually folded into fourths and you’ll need about 1/4 of the sheet for this recipe. You’ll roll it out on a lightly floured surface and then drape it over your skillet to cover.
  • Skillet Alternatives: Don’t have an oven safe skillet? Just transfer the filling to an 8″x8″ square baking dish to bake your lentil pot pie.
  • Make it Vegan: Want to make this vegan? Just use a vegan red wine, vegan butter, and a vegan-friendly topping. (I have had good luck easily finding vegan options for pastry at my local grocery!)
  • Make it Gluten Free: Make a couple of swaps: 1) use tamari instead of soy sauce and 2) cornstarch or gluten free flour in the filling and 3) swap out the pastry on top with a gluten free version.

Make Ahead and Storage

  • Make Ahead: Filling can be made 3-4 days in advance and stored in an airtight container in the fridge. Top with desired pastry and bake according to the recipe.
  • Fridge: Leftovers can be stored for 3-4 days in the fridge when covered or transferred to an airtight container. Reheat in the microwave or for about 8-10 minutes in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Freezer: Allow leftovers to cool to room temperature and add to freezer friendly containers. Pot pie can be frozen for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw in the fridge overnight before reheating. Individual portions can be reheated in the microwave. To reheat the whole dish, bake in the oven for about 10 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

food, vegetarian lentil pot pie

vegetarian lentil pot pie

What should I serve with this lentil pot pie?

food, vegetarian lentil pot pie

Vegetarian Lentil Pot Pie

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Vegetarian Lentil Pot Pie

This vegetarian lentil pot pie topped with a flakey and buttery sheet of puff pastry is simple and elegant enough to serve as an entree this Thanksgiving. Make it vegan by using a vegan pie crust or vegan biscuits instead of puff pastry. Course Entree, Main DishCuisine American, VegetarianKeyword vegetarian lentil pot pie, vegetarian pot pie Prep Time 10 minutesCook Time 40 minutesTotal Time 50 minutes Servings 5 Calories 442kcal Author Deborah Murphy

Ingredients

For the Lentils

  • 1 1/2 cup dried brown or green lentils
  • 3 cups low sodium vegetable broth

For the Pie Filling

  • 2 tablespoons butter (or olive oil)
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine (like Malbec)
  • 2 1/2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 16 oz bag of frozen mixed vegetables
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

Puff Pastry or Biscuits

  • 1/4 14 oz. sheet of puff pastry, thawed
  • 1 package (16 oz) biscuits

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

For the Puff Pastry

    The night before you plan on making this, move your puff pastry to the fridge to start thawing overnight. 

    On a lightly floured surface, gently roll out the puff pastry until it is about 1/8 inch thick. Cut into 12 inch square (for a 12 inch skillet). Adjust size/shape based on your baking dish. Place back in the fridge until ready to bake.

For the Lentils

In a medium saucepan, add the lentils and broth. Bring to a simmer and cover. Cook for 20-25 minutes or until broth is absorbed and lentils are tender.

For the Pie Filling

    While the lentils are cooking, heat the butter in a skillet. Add the onion and cook 3-5 minutes or until tender and translucent. Stir in the garlic and herbs (oregano, thyme, rosemary) and cook another 1 minute.

    Stir in the tomato paste and sauté for 1-2 minutes. Stir in the flour, cooking a minute or two to remove any raw flour taste.

    Gradually pour in the broth, stirring continuously. Add the soy sauce. Bring to a simmer and cook until sauce thickens, about 8-10 minutes.

    Stir in the cooked lentils and cook another 1-2 minutes. Taste and add salt and black pepper if needed.

Baking the Pot Pie

    If using an oven safe skillet, drape puff pastry over the filling in the skillet and trim the edges as needed. You can also transfer filling to an 8″x8″ glass baking dish and cover with puff pastry sheet.

    Cut slits into the puff pastry for steam to escape. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until pastry starts to brown.

    **If using biscuits, layer them on top of the filling and bake for only 20-25 minutes or until the top of the biscuits is golden brown and filling is bubbling.**

    Allow to cool 10 minutes before cutting and serving.

Video

Notes

  • Puff pastry alternatives: If you can’t find puff pastry, you can also use a store-bought/homemade pie crust OR phyllo dough OR biscuits.
  • Alcohol-free: Just use 3 cups of broth instead of 2 1/2 for the filling. 
  • To make this vegan: 1) use vegan butter or olive oil, 2) use vegan red wine, and 3) use a vegan pie crust/phyllo dough/vegan biscuits instead of puff pastry.
  • Make it Gluten Free: Make a couple of swaps: 1) use tamari instead of soy sauce and 2) cornstarch or gluten free flour in the filling and 3) swap out the pastry on top with a gluten free version.
  • Biscuit Tip: If using biscuits you can pre-cook them on a sheet pan before adding to the filling if you don’t like soggy bottoms. (Bottoms will be soft if you bake biscuits on top of the filling.)

Nutrition

Serving: 1/5th recipe | Calories: 442kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 12mg | Sodium: 367mg | Potassium: 899mg | Fiber: 24g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 4883IU | Vitamin C: 15mg | Calcium: 80mg | Iron: 7mg

The post Vegetarian Lentil Pot Pie appeared first on Dietitian Debbie Dishes.

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