Gluten-Free Shepherd's Pie Two Ways (one vegan)

Gluten free shepherds pie two ways - one with chicken and one with tofu and veggies and dairy-free cheese topped mashed potatoes
Cooking light- gluten-free shepherd's pie with lovely gravy, two ways.

Gluten-Free Shepherd's Pie Two Ways (one vegan)

A cold rain is rolling through Connecticut, interrupting a whisper of mist with sudden bursts of stinging wet drops. The skies are wooly gray, gloomy and low. It's the kind of day that calls for comfort in the form of food. Something baked in a crock. Something piping hot and old fashioned. Something with mashed potatoes...

A savory pie, I said out loud, standing at the kitchen sink, listening to the staccato of rain drumming the skylights.

Don't tease me, said my husband, looking up from his latest screenplay.

I wouldn't joke about a thing like pie, I assured him.

Seriously. I'm thinking a shepherd's pie, I said. But not the usual shepherd's pie. No lamb. No beef. No onion. No peas.

Please, he said. No peas.

You know, that could get you into trouble, I told him. Your pea prejudice. The foodie police will be at our door before you know it. Demanding equal time for peas. And I'm already in enough trouble with their ilk.

Their ilk? he asked.

Yes, I said solemnly. My shepherd's pie is going to have tofu. And in some circles, that could get you killed.
Seriously, he echoed. And shook his head. He shifted in his seat.

Hey. Honey?

I turned toward him.

No offense, but. Can I have a chicken pie? Nothing against bean curd, but.

I know, I assured him. I know tofu doesn't always float your boat.

I have a legume issue, he stated. Never been a fan.

I love you anyway, I said.

For better or for worse.

Legumes or no legumes.

This delicious dairy-free pie can be made with organic tofu or free range chicken
This was my shepherd's pie with organic tofu - vegan and dairy-free goodness.

Gluten-Free Shepherd's Pie Recipe Two Ways

This a light and healthy version of shepherd's pie made without dairy, lamb, or beef. I made two versions- one vegan (for moi) using organic non-GMO firm tofu, and one with Mary's organic free range chicken, for Steve. The gravy is golden and creamy and reminded me of the pot pies I used to love in childhood.


For the mashed potato topping:

3 cups peeled, diced gold potatoes
Sea salt
Plain soy, nut, or light coconut milk, as needed

For the filling:

1 tablespoon olive oil
1-2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup sliced carrots
1 cup zucchini, sliced into half-moons
1 cup chopped broccoli florets
1 14-oz can artichoke hearts, drained, quartered
1 cup cubed organic non-GMO firm sprouted tofu, or diced cooked chicken
2 teaspoons Italian style herbs (blend of oregano, thyme, marjoram, basil, parsley)
1 teaspoon rubbed sage
1 teaspoon rosemary, minced
Sea salt and ground pepper, to taste

For the gravy:

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons rice flour

1/2 cup warm broth (light vegetable or chicken broth)
1 cup non-dairy milk, warmed
2 tablespoons vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)
1 teaspoon mild GF curry powder

Sea salt and ground pepper, to taste


For the potato topping- boil the potatoes in a pot until fork tender, about 25 minutes. Drain well. Mash with a potato masher; add a splash of non-dairy milk and season with sea salt, to taste. Stir till smooth and creamy, adding a little more 'milk' until the potatoes are fluffy and smooth. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease four single serving 10-oz ramekins with vegan buttery spread (such as Earth Balance). Set aside.

First, make the mashed potatoes. I used "Buttercream" gold potatoes- so full of flavor.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and stir in the garlic. Add the carrots, zucchini, and broccoli. Stir and cook lightly until fork tender, roughly ten minutes. If you prefer your veggies crisper, cook only until tender-crisp.

Add in the artichoke hearts, tofu or diced cooked chicken, and herbs, season with sea salt and ground pepper; set aside.

Make your gravy. Heat the olive oil in a pot over medium-low heat; stir in the rice flour to make a paste. Stir and cook for half a minute. Slowly add in the warm broth, and non-dairy milk; keep stirring. Add the vegan butter, curry powder, and sea salt. When it begins to thicken remove from heat and taste test. It should taste mild and creamy. The herbs in the veggies will add rosemary-sage flavor.

Pour the gravy over the filling mixture and gently mix until the veggies are coated with gravy.

Spoon the filling into the ramekins. Top with a big spoonful of mashed potatoes.

Sprinkle with non-dairy/vegan shredded cheese, if you like.

Place the ramekins on a baking sheet (to catch any bubbling-over drips) and bake in the center of a hot oven for 30 to 35 minutes. I tented my ramekins with foil for the first half of baking time to keep the mashed potatoes moist. Then I removed the foil and let the the topping brown a bit.

Cook time: 30 min

Yield: 4 servings

Recipe Source:

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Gluten free comfort food means a shepherds pie in yummy dairy free gravy topped with buttercream mashed potatoes
Two pies. Two ways. 
Steve's had organic free-range chicken in his. Mine, tofu.

GFG Notes:

We used plain organic soy milk (non-GMO) as our non-dairy milk of choice. We love its creamy richness. Though a neutral tasting coconut, or nut milk would also work. (And for those of you asking about using moo-derived milk, butter, and real cheese, sure. Dairy will work in this recipe.)

For those of you into the vegan nutritional yeast thang, you could season the gravy with a spoonful of nutritional yeast; add just enough to give the sauce some depth.

If you need a vegan pie without soy, use drained canned chick peas for the protein.


Kalyn said...

Both versions sound yummy. I haven't cooked with nutritional yeast, but I am curious about it.

And I was so excited to click the link and read about the screenplay!

missmarc said...

this is perfect. I was just watching my beloved Ina Garten today and she made individual veggie pot pies, but these are just beautiful. the word 'ramekin' is so adorable, too; the perfect excuse for me to finally buy a set. thanks Karina

LKP said...

allow me to thank you. for your inspiring recipes that are life-lines in disguise. also for your enthusiasm in which you approach something that can be so overwhelming. and lastly, thank you for your creativity and impeccable taste! you, my friend, are a breath of fresh air in a GF lifestyle. ::hugs::

The Not So Perfect Housewife said...

This looks amazingly delicious!!

Anonymous said...

I am nightshade free, sigh - but I think mashed sweet potato on the top would be good and I love tofu so will try this out for sure.

Anonymous said...

I just ate dinner...and I found myself salivating!
The plot about an In & Out bandit sounds very interesting : )

Anonymous said...

I am too night shade free... Sweet potatoes will work! I have been night shade free for almost 6 months trying to control inflammation in my body it's not easy but I'm getting used to it, this looks great going to try it!

Erin Farrell Speer said...

This looks amazing - can't wait to try it this weekend! I too am experiencing the gloom in Southern California, and this will hit the spot!

barb said...

I'm sure this farmer's pie will be delicious without soy or chicken; maybe some lima beans or cashews instead.

Judith :: Dance While You Cook said...

This looks quite yummy. I'm a sucker for pot pies. And this is the perfect time of year to expand my pot pie repertoire. Thanks for the inspiration!

Anonymous said...

How about parsnips for the nightshade wary people? Myself included. Karina, you are awesome. You have helped me go GF/CF for my son, well really for all of us, but mostly for him. Thank you so much!

The InTolerant Chef said...

The artichokes are a great idea!

Jeanette said...

This looks amazing, and the filling sounds so bright with all the vegetables and herbs.

Gwendolyn said...

Mashed cauliflower would work in place of the potatoes too. I'm not a fan of cauliflower, but could see it working for others.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a vegan, nor GF but I love the way you write and your photos. I might just try some of your dishes!

gfe--gluten free easily said...

Individual shepherd's pie? My word, Karina. They are just gorgeous. I'm comforted by just looking at them. Wish I could reach through the screen. The inclusion of artichoke hearts puts these over the top. Seriously love these--thank you!


Cassiani said...

lol- it's been a shepherd's pie week at our house as well! though my little foodies like the peas, and usually the shepherd's pie is an excuse to mix grass-fed farm fresh beef with wine sauce and the elusive, rare, and decadent mashed potatoes...

for valentine's day i made the shepherd's pie for the kids and our guests/babysitters, and on the way out, my husband told me that he was wishing he could stay home for that instead of having restaurant food. honestly, he would have preferred it- and the pie was all but gone when we came home.

shepherd's pie- the microwave free house solution to reheating potato and veggie dishes! and somehow making them even better than the first time around...

VeggieAmanda said...

Wow! The pictures look delish and the recipes sound amazing!

Gail for So Delicious Dairy Free said...

Hi Karina! Thank you for sharing another spectacular recipe made with So Delicious Coconut Milk! Your vegan Shepherd's Pie looks amazing, and while I know it won't be nearly as pretty as yours, I can't wait to try it!

moonwatcher said...

Hi Karina,

This looks really great and the photos are beautiful. I will try it sometime, with tofu, and one of my fat free guten free gravies. Thank you. Great post, too. I really enjoyed it.



Stacy said...

Did you use dried or fresh herbs and what is night shade free?

cook4seasons said...

I am with the hubby - no peas, please...but bring on the pie! I like the idea of sweet potatoes or parsnips, too. The recipe sounds divine!

EA-The Spicy RD said...

Both versions look delicious. I will definitely be adding peas to mine!

Karina Allrich said...

Thank you Everyone, for your lovely comments. We enjoyed this pie immensely. xox

As for nightshade-free-- Nightshades include potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant and chili pepper. Some avoid them due to inflammation. (I personally see no difference in my joint symptoms avoiding nightshade foods, but some report less swelling and pain.)

As someone suggested, mashed cauliflower could work as a sub, as could sweet potatoes/yams which are not in the nightshade family. You could also try using polenta as a topping.

Dried or fresh herbs work in this recipe- if using fresh rosemary, don't overdo it, taste test.

xox Karina

honeyfromflintyrocks said...

Hello Karina,
Wow! NOW I have an excuse to go buty those 10 ounce ramikins I have been eyeing at my Costco business center!! Individual pies! YEAH!!

They look great. Thank you for a the great recipes and I really appreciate all the notes at the end!
~Mrs. R

JoLynn-dreaminitvegan said...

Perfect Karina! First thing I thought of was when I saw the inside of your Shepherd's pie was that it looked like a pot pie filling. I've done the same once and the family prefers pot pie filling with a crust and not potatoes. Although they ate every morsel of it. lol!
I love that you used the ramekins for individual pies.

Sarah (Flavoropolis) said...

I've been enjoying the LA rain!
These look amazing. I love the idea of individual ramekin pies. So cute, yet hearty-looking!

Meagan said...

I would def be having the CHICKEN pot pie :)

Melanie said...

This looks perfect and just what I want for dinner! Thanks for both recipes! :) I'm definitely going to try a mashed cauliflower topping on mine and see how it turns out.

Cheriss said...

I'm so excited to try this!

Memória said...

What a lovely Cottage Pie!!(a Shepherd's Pie has lamb only) I love your style of writing.

Karina Allrich said...

Thanks Everyone! I'm glad you like my non-traditional shepherd's pie. And yeah, aren't these ramekins cute? I need to create more recipes for them. Have a beautiful day! xox Karina

Elizabeth said...

Very fancy and yummy looking too!
Peace & Raw GF Health,

Anonymous said...

i made this last night and it was delicious! and, much easier to make than i was guessing. thank you, my whole family loved it(all 3 kids, and me and my husband). i made 3 in ramekins for the kids, and the rest of it i made in a pie dish. both ways were successful!

Anonymous said...

Made this last night and it was absolutely divine! Very easy to make and most definitely a keeper. Made three changes: forgot to buy the artichoke hearts, so I left them out, used Herbs de Provence instead of sage and rosemary and baked in a large corning-ware square dish as I did not have the appropriate sized ramekins.

KeyLimePieKitchen said...

This looks so yummy! I've never been much of a fan of shepherds pie but I think I'll have to try this one! And your photography makes it look fabulous :)

eatfreesimply said...

Thank you for the delightful inspiration. It was a cold, wet day here and I was longing for some fire. Changed a few things and made a chipotle version. Absolutely fab. My family thanks you. :)

gfe--gluten free easily said...

I love how you make everyone happy, Karina! I'm with Steve ... I'm all for the chicken version. :-)

Love that "wooly gray" description of the sky ... perfect!

Shirley said...

I'm going to need to try this! Last time I made shephard's pie it was HUGE and very dry. Probably because I neglected to use a gravy of sorts. Thanks!

kellypea said...

All right -- your window sounds far more romantic than ours, but I'll be happy that you will give me a sense of living somewhere different from time to time. Lovely rendition of a shepherd's pie even without the peas I'm partial to. I'm wondering if I could sneak the tofu past my husband...looks like chicken? :D

kamsy said...

I have a SILLY multi-part question:
What size are the ramekins you used and where does one buy said ramekins?

Warm n Wonderful said...

Love shepherds pie. I make mine with sweet potatoes, and also make them in single serve bowls. I am vegetarian, but can't do tofu, so I always use my bean of choice, Aduki.
My blogspot warmnwonderful has a post from 2011 showing the delicious meal.

Jamie said...

I'm Just beginning to cook with flours (yeah ... I buy my GF breads pre-made), and I have Sweet rice flour. Will that work, or is there a great distinction between Sweet and plain?

Jennifer Brick said...

Looks amazing! I made a paleo sheperd's pie the other day and am posting it on my own blog! Yours looks much fancier than mine, I love how you did the topping.

Eithne said...

Hi Karina!

Looking forward to trying this! Did you delete your Instagram account? I miss seeing your beautiful pictures!
Eithne xo

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