A Manly Vegan Meal

This may sound sexist but I honestly think it’s harder for a guy to become a vegan that it is for a woman. The culture we live in often equates meat with manliness and strength and even after 5 years I know it sometimes hard for my husband to admit to his vegetarian lifestyle…especially around his father who still insists on ordering a “man” pizza when he visits which is covered in pepperoni, bacon and sausage.

I actually think it’s quite sexy – a guy who cares enough about animals, his health, the environment and me to go along with my veggie loving ways. He drinks up the green smoothies and juice, uses the phytoplankton and essential oils and never complains about what is put in front of him for dinner…some good and some very very bad (lentil meatloaf- yuck!).

But that isn’t to say the he doesn’t crave a good old-fashioned meat dish like his mom used to make every once in a while. This recipe is a great compromise for the meat lovers in your family. It is comfort food, it’s hearty and it is smothered in gravy -Mark’s favourite part. I even served this for Thanksgiving dinner last year with a side of extra mashed potatoes and a big salad and everyone gobbled it up. You’re welcome Mr. Turkey.

Give this a try and see if even the carnivores in your life enjoy it. And let’s celebrate the veggie loving men out there. Real men eat vegetables! This one is for you Mark.

Vegan Shepard’s Pie (adapted from How It All Vegan, Tanya Barnard & Sarah Kramer)

Filling:
1 clove garlic, minced
1 medium onion, diced
1 Portobello mushroom cap, diced
2 regular carrots, diced
1 cup butternut squash, diced
1 stalk celery, chopped
1/2 cup spinach, chopped
1 large tomato, chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup cooked green lentils (or canned), mashed
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp tamari

Topping:
6-8 medium potatoes ( I always make a few extra for plain mashed potatoes to serve on the side)
1/4 cup almond milk
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp sea salt

Preheat oven to 350.
Grease square cake pan with olive oil.
Steam cubed squash and carrots in a steamer for 20 minutes.

shepards pie- steamer
In a medium pot, boil the chopped potatoes until they are soft enough to be easily pierced with a fork.
In a frying pan, saute garlic, onions, spinach, celery and tomatoes in the olive oil for 5-6 minutes. Add in the steamed carrots, squash, lentils, basil, salt and tamari. Stir and simmer without a lid until the liquid cooks off.

shepard's pie - veggies in pan

Meanwhile, mash the cooked potatoes with milk, salt and olive oil.
Scoop the veggie mixture into the bottom of the cake pan and top with the potatoes.
Bake for 15-20 minutes.

shepard's pie in pan

Mushroom Gravy (adapted from How It All Vegan, Tanya Barnard & Sarah Kramer)

8 mushrooms, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp tamari
Dash cayenne pepper
Dash dried basil
Dash dried dill
Dash black pepper
1/3 cup Bob’s Red Mill GF Baking Flour (or AP flour)
1 1/2 cups vegetable stock
1 tsp miso paste

In a medium saucepan, saute the onion and mushrooms in olive oil on medium/high heat until the onions are translucent and the mushrooms are tender. Add the tamari and spices and stir together.
Remove from heat and slowly stir in the flour. It will be very pasty. Slowly start adding the stock a little at a time until it mixes together well and the lumps disappear. Place back on medium heat and simmer until sauce thickens, stirring often.

shepard's pie gravy

At the last minute, stir in miso.

shepard's pie miso

Place a big scoop of Shepard’s Pie on a plate and cover with a generous serving of gravy. Enjoy!

shepard's pie on plate

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29 thoughts on “A Manly Vegan Meal

  1. Your shepherd’s pie looks good. I actually made a vegan one this weekend for Easter dinner. I’m going to post the recipe tonight. It was really good and satisfying. Even my kids wanted to have it. I’ll have to try yours out.

  2. I agree with you! I do think it’s more challenging for a guy to go vegan. That’s why I feel so fortunate that my husband and I decided to go vegan together. Great post – the meal looks great! Celeste:)

  3. Great post! I think it’s so great when men have the courage and strength to show feelings other than anger–too often, men who show love and affection are mocked by other men as ‘weak’ but I think it shows remarkable integrity and strength of character to stand up to injustice in any form. LOVE those vegan men!!!

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