This Lentil Pot Pie is a vegetarian dream, featuring hearty lentils, mushrooms and sweet potatoes in an umami-packed gravy, baked inside of a buttery double pastry.
Mushroom, Sweet Potato and Lentil Pot Pie
This Lentil Pot Pie is, without a doubt, absolute comfort on a dark and stormy day. Or really, any day! Lentils make up the backbone of this pie, but will not be outdone by the earthy mushrooms and creamy sweet potatoes. They are all baked up together in a rich, yet light gravy and tucked inside of a double pie crust. This would make a great baking project for the weekend, or a show-stopping vegetarian main course for a holiday. It will be loved by vegetarians and carnivores alike, so let's get to it!
Don't be intimated by the long list of ingredients here! This vegetarian pie relies on a few flavored-packed ingredients to make it really something stunning.
- green lentils
- dried porcini mushrooms: you can find these in most supermarkets, though they are sometimes placed in different sections of the store (check the aisle near the pasta and tomatoes, first!) or buy them online
- olive oil
- onion + garlic
- celery rib
- all-purpose flour or potato starch (which is the gluten free option)
- sweet potato
- dried sage
- fresh thyme
- tomato paste
- soy sauce
- veggie broth
- apple cider vinegar
- double pie crust or gluten-free pie crust
Substitutes for Dried Mushrooms
The dried porcini mushrooms are used here to really boost the umami flavor of the dish, both with the actual mushrooms but also with the "stock" created by rehydrating the mushrooms.
If you absolutely cannot find dried mushrooms you can substitute with 8 ounces of fresh portobello or shiitake mushrooms. Replace the stock with additional vegetable broth. To replace some of the umami flavor you can add an additional 1 tablespoon soy sauce.
Pie Crust Options
This pie tastes best with a homemade buttery pie crust. This All Butter Pie Crust or Cream Cheese Pie Crust (my personal preference) is a great match for this recipe. This pie can also be made gluten-free, by using this basic Gluten-free Pie Crust, and making sure to use the option of potato starch for the thickener.
Tips for Success
Most of the time, when making a double crust savory pie you will be cooking the filling beforehand. This lentil pie is no different. The lentil filling is entirely cooked in a dutch oven before it is placed in the pie dough. Sounds easy enough, but there is one important step you cannot skip: You must let the pre-cooked filling chill, at least until it's no longer hot, before putting it in the pastry. Placing a hot filling inside of the pastry will melt it, and will result in a soggy pie crust.
I recommend making the lentil filling one day ahead of time. This is helpful for a couple reasons. Not only because it will be well chilled for the pastry, but also because this type of filling tastes even better the next day! The extra day lets all of the ingredients mesh and seep together. With that said, make it ahead of time if you can. Your time frame for this step is one to three days before actually baking the pie.
If you can't make it ahead, let it cool to at least room temperature before placing it in the pastry.
Make Ahead Instructions
As with most pies, there are a few steps you need to complete to get to the finished pie. A lot of these components can be broken down into steps and done ahead of time. As always, I encourage you to make the pastry and roll it out beforehand. The more time you give the gluten to chill out, the better your pie will be.
- Make your choice of pie dough ahead of time. As stated above, you have many pie dough options. This pie needs a double crust. You can make it and store it up to 2 days in the refrigerator, or up to 3 months in the freezer.
- Roll out the pastry. This can be done about 1 day ahead of time. Roll out the bottom crust and place in a pie pan. Roll out the top crust and lay it flat on a baking sheet. Keep both in the refrigerator, covered completely, until you are ready to make the pie.
- Make the filling ahead of time! This can be done up to 3 days ahead of time.
- Assemble the pie: The entire pie can be assembled and then frozen before being ready to bake. You can bake it straight from frozen, following the instructions below.
Baking Instructions for a Pre-Made Frozen Pie
- Unwrap the frozen pie and let sit at room temperature until the oven is preheated. Pre-heat the oven to 425ºF.
- When the oven has reached 425º, put an egg-wash on the crust, if desired.
- Bake on the middle lower rack for 20 minutes.
- Lower the oven temperature to 400º and put a piece of aluminum foil around the outer edges of the pie to prevent it from burning. Cook for another 30-40 minutes, or until the middle of the pie is very hot (you can test it by a thermometer, which you want to be above 170º, or by sticking in a knife and feeling the metal to see if it is hot or not) and the crust is golden brown.
More Savory Pie Options:
- Spinach Artichoke Quiche
- Broccoli Cheddar Quiche
- Kale, Asiago and Potato Pie
- Easy Ham and Cheese Quiche
This vegetarian Lentil Pot Pie features hearty lentils, mushrooms and sweet potatoes in an umami-packed gravy, all baked inside of a buttery double pastry.
- ½ cup green lentils
- 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 celery rib, diced
- 1-½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour or potato starch
- 1 large sweet potato (12 ounces)
- 1 teaspoon dried sage
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme (or 2 teaspoons dried)
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 cup veggie broth
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- Eggwash (1 egg whisked together with 2 teaspoons of water)
- Pour 2 cups of boiling water over mushrooms and let soak for 30 minutes. Drain, and set aside the liquid. Roughly chop up the drained mushrooms and set aside.
- Add the lentils to a medium pot and cover with 1 inch of water. Bring to a boil and then simmer for about 25 minutes or until just tender. Drain any remaining liquid.
- Meanwhile heat oil in a large dutch oven over medium low. Cook the onion and celery and cook until very softened, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.
- Add in the salt, pepper, garlic, flour, dried sage, thyme, tomato paste and soy sauce and cook until fragrant about 30 seconds.
- Add in reserved mushroom liquid, vegetable broth and sweet potatoes and cook until the potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.
- Stir in lentils, apple cider vinegar, and reserved mushrooms. Taste and adjust seasoning.
- Transfer the filling to a shallow container and let cool completely, or overnight in the refrigerator.
- When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 425ºF.
- Roll out one pie dough to a 12″ circle. Fit pastry in a 9” pie plate, making sure to press the pastry into the sides and the bottom.
- Place the lentil filling inside of the pie crust and smooth over the top.
- Roll out the top crust to a roughly 10″ circle and place on top of the filling. Seal the edges of the pie dough together and crimp as desired. Pierce a few steam holes in the center of the pie, and brush the top with an eggwash.
- Bake in the preheated oven on the lower rack for 40-45 minutes, until the crust is light golden brown and the filling is completely heated through (reaching a temperature above 170ºF).
- See note in body of post for replacing the dried mushrooms with fresh.
- To create decorative cut-outs on your top pie crust, use a small cookie cutter to stamp them out from the top crust before placing on top of the pie.
- Make Ahead and Freezing Instructions: As with most pies, there are a few steps you need to complete to get to the finished pie. A lot of these components can be broken down into steps and done ahead of time. Check out the body of the post for more information about all the make ahead steps. Additionally, this entire pie can be assembled and then frozen before being ready to bake. You can bake it straight from frozen, following the instructions in the body of the post.
Keywords: Lentil Pot Pie
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