St. Patrick鈥檚 Day is quickly approaching (is it really March already?!), and what鈥檚 the only thing better than baking a pie to celebrate? Baking a pie within a pie! This cheesy shepherd鈥檚 pie pie (no, that鈥檚 not a typo!) is a tasty mash-topped shepherd鈥檚 pie, all encased in a crispy pastry crust (with a bit of extra cheese on top for good measure). I used a simple lentil-based filling, making this vegetarian shepherd鈥檚 pie super hearty and filling. It鈥檚 so good with gravy and extra veggies on the side.

Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-13

Ingredients:

  • 1 roll shortcrust pastry
  • 1 Tablespoon oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 3 medium mushrooms, diced
  • 1 cup peas and / or sweet corn (I used frozen)
  • 1 1/3 cups cooked puy lentils
  • 4 medium聽potatoes, cut into chunks
  • 3 Tablespoons milk
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • salt
  • black pepper
Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-1

Instructions:

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly grease a deep baking dish, and lay a sheet of shortcrust pastry over the top. Carefully press the pastry down to the corners of the dish and trim any excess. Prick the base several times with a fork and blind bake for around 20 minutes, until the pastry is crispy and golden brown.

2. While the pastry is blind baking, prepare the shepherd鈥檚 pie filling. Heat a dash of oil in a frying pan, and add the diced onion, carrot, mushrooms, frozen peas, and sweet corn. Cook over a medium heat for 5-10 minutes, until the vegetables are soft.

3. Add the puy lentils and mix to combine. At this point, you can also add any other flavorings that you fancy, e.g. a squeeze of ketchup, dash of Worcestershire sauce, some dried herbs or spices, etc.

4. Boil the chunks of potato until completely soft and mash thoroughly. Add a dash of milk and about 2/3 of the grated cheese (just hold a little back for topping). Season generously with salt and pepper, and mash well until it鈥檚 creamy.

5. When the pastry is golden brown and crispy, add the lentil mixture and top with the mashed potato.

6. Top with the remaining grated cheese.

7. Bake for about 30 minutes longer, until the cheese is golden brown and crispy.

Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-2

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly grease a deep baking dish and lay a sheet of shortcrust pastry over the top. Carefully press the pastry down to the corners of the dish and trim any excess. Prick the base several times with a fork and blind bake for around 20 minutes, until the pastry is crispy and golden brown.

Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-3

While the pastry is blind baking, prepare the shepherd鈥檚 pie filling. Heat a dash of oil in a frying pan and add the diced onion, carrot, mushrooms, frozen peas, and sweet corn. Cook over a medium heat for 5-10 minutes, until the vegetables are soft.

You can use alternative veggies if you feel like it 鈥 celery, garlic, peppers, whatever you have on hand. Shepherd鈥檚 pie is a great way to clear the fridge!

Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-4

Add the puy lentils and mix to combine. At this point, you can also add any other flavorings that you fancy, e.g. a squeeze of ketchup, dash of Worcestershire sauce, some dried herbs or spices, etc. Make it your own! Just make sure the mixture doesn鈥檛 become too wet, or you may end up with soggy pastry.

Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-5

Boil the chunks of potato until completely soft, and mash thoroughly. Add a dash of milk and about 2/3 of the grated cheese (just hold a little back for topping). Season generously with salt and pepper and mash well until it鈥檚 creamy.

I love skin-on mash, so I left the skins on mine, but you can peel your potatoes first if you prefer.

Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-6

When the pastry is golden brown and crispy, add the lentil mixture and top with the mashed potato.

Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-7

Top with the remaining grated cheese.

Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-10

Bake for about 30 minutes longer, until the cheese is golden brown and crispy. Serve hot, topped with some fresh parsley, if desired.

Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-12

Shepherd鈥檚 pie is always the most amazing comfort food, but add a crispy pastry crust and that beautiful cheesy topping, and it鈥檚 taken to the next level! All you need is a few veggies on the side and some gravy for pouring over the top, and you have a super hearty dinner.

Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-11
Cheesy shepherd's pie pie-16

What kind of pie will you be making to celebrate Pi Day this year? Share your recipe ideas on Twitter @BritandCo, and follow us on Pinterest for more inspiration!