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Instant Pot (or not) Shepherd’s Pie Stew
with lentils / gnocchi

Active: 20 Total: 40

No matter how you choose to cook this stew, we think you'll love the classic flavors that will fit right into a cozy St. Patrick's Day meal.
Smarts: If you are serving this meal immediately, simmer the gnocchi in the stew where it will release starch to naturally thicken the broth and absorb more flavor. If not serving right away, cook it separately to avoid it expanding as it sits.
Cooking methods: This recipe includes instructions for using the Instant Pot, Slow Cooker, or stovetop. Select your preferred method.

Ingredients

Servings:
4
Metric
Shepherd’s Pie Stew:
  • Onions, medium - 1/2, diced
  • Parsley - 1 Tbsp, chopped
  • Peas and carrots, frozen - 2 cups, defrosted
  • Oil, cooking - 2 Tbsp
  • Stock, any type - 5 cups
  • Tomato paste - 3 Tbsp
  • Soy sauce, low-sodium - 1 Tbsp
  • Lentils, uncooked French / green - 1 1/2 cups
  • Gnocchi - 16 oz
  • Baby spinach - 5 oz (sub baby kale or chopped chard leaves)
Shepherd's Pie Spice Mix:
  • Thyme, dried - 1 tsp
  • Garlic powder - 1 tsp
  • Mustard powder (opt) - 1/2 tsp
  • Black pepper - 1/2 tsp
  • Salt - 1/2 tsp

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 serving
Servings Per Recipe 4
Amount Per Serving
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Choose Cooking Method

Prep

  1. Onions - Dice onions. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  2. Make spice mix - Combine dried thyme, garlic powder, mustard powder, black pepper, and salt. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  3. Parsley - Chop parsley. (Can be done up to 2 days ahead)
  4. In the bowl of a slow cooker whisk together stock (this recipe was written for Instant Pot, so we recommend increasing liquid by 10-20% over listed amount to account for evaporation), spice mix, tomato paste, and soy sauce. Stir in onions and lentils. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or high for 3 to 4 hours.
  5. Frozen peas and carrots - Defrost.

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Make

  1. When stew is nearly finished cooking, increase slow cooker heat to high. If cooking gnocchi in the stew, add gnocchi and cover. Simmer until gnocchi is tender (depending on how hot your slow cooker runs, this may take 2-3 times as long as the time listed on the package). (You can also cook the gnocchi separately.)
  2. Stir spinach, peas, and carrots into stew until spinach is wilted.
  3. Taste stew and season with some salt and pepper.
  4. Divide between serving bowls and serve with parsley on top.

Prep

  1. Onions - Dice onions. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  2. Make spice mix - Combine dried thyme, garlic powder, mustard powder, black pepper, and salt. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  3. Parsley - Chop parsley. (Can be done up to 2 days ahead)
  4. Frozen peas and carrots - Defrost.

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Make

  1. Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onions. Saute until slightly softened, 2 to 3 minutes more. Stir in spice mix for 1 minute.
  2. Slowly pour in stock (this recipe was written for Instant Pot, so we recommend increasing liquid by 10-20% over listed amount to account for evaporation) while scraping up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan. Stir in tomato paste, soy sauce, and lentils.
  3. Cover stew with a lid and reduce heat so that it stays at a low simmer. Simmer until lentils are tender, 15 to 25 minutes. (Timing will vary a bit depending on the size / type of lentils. Check the package for recommended cook time.)
  4. When stew is nearly finished cooking, remove lid and keep stew at a simmer. If cooking gnocchi in the stew, add gnocchi and simmer according to package directions (or cook gnocchi separately).
  5. Stir spinach, peas, and carrots into stew until spinach is wilted.
  6. Taste stew and season with some salt and pepper.
  7. Divide between serving bowls and serve with parsley on top.

Prep

  1. Onions - Dice onions. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  2. Make spice mix - Combine dried thyme, garlic powder, mustard powder, black pepper, and salt. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  3. Parsley - Chop parsley. (Can be done up to 2 days ahead)
  4. Frozen peas and carrots - Defrost.

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Make

  1. Using the Saute function of an Instant Pot add oil and then onions. Saute until slightly softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in spice mix for 1 minute.
  2. Slowly pour in stock while scraping up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan (be sure to scrape well to avoid the burn error). Turn off Saute function.
  3. Stir in tomato paste, soy sauce, and lentils.
  4. Close and lock the lid. Set the pressure valve to 'Sealing'. Cook on manual / high pressure for 15 minutes. Let pressure release naturally for 5 minutes and then manually release any remaining pressure.
  5. Once all of the pressure has released, remove the lid and set aside. Turn on the Saute function to medium.
  6. If cooking gnocchi in the stew, add gnocchi and simmer according to package directions (or cook gnocchi separately).
  7. Stir spinach, peas, and carrots into stew until spinach is wilted.
  8. Taste stew and season with some salt and pepper.
  9. Divide between serving bowls and serve with parsley on top.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 serving
Servings Per Recipe 4
Amount Per Serving
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% Daily Value
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Increase your nutrition smarts


Reviews

Ratings

Original (45)
Gluten-free (2)
Paleo (3)
Vegetarian (13)

Most Helpful

I did the slow cooker version and used a bag of frozen mixed veggies that also had green beans and corn. I added 1 TB of vegan Worcestershire sauce, since I saw that was in the original recipe. Wow, smelled heavenly while it was cooking and tasted delicious!! I cooked the gnocchi separately (first time ever trying them) and put them in the bottom of the bowl. So, so good, and so simple!

By: Sarah
Posted: Mar 21, 2021
Diet: Vegetarian
1 Helpful

35 reviews

Very grateful I read one of the reviews that included more accurate timing for the IP. Otherwise dinner would have been much later than anticipated! It's definitely closer to 90 minutes - even with much of the meal prep done ahead of time. :-( Took one star off for that because we've got two elementary school kids and dinner being later than anticipated is very challenging in our house. Overall, this was good. The recipe calls for frozen peas and carrots but the store only had a medley of peas, carrots, corn, and green beans. It would have been better with just the peas and carrots as specified in the recipe... I think I like the CS beef and barely soup better than this one. But maybe I'd have preferred it with potatoes instead of gnocci. They did get really big and kind of took over all the tastes when eating leftovers the next day. But everyone ate it! So that's a win.

By: Jennifer
Posted: Apr 20, 2021
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

I made this paleo using the Trader Joe's cauliflower gnocchi and it was delicious!

By: Alice
Posted: Apr 02, 2021
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

This was delicious! Used 4 cups of broth in the slow cooker and it was perfect. The meat was so tender even the picky eater loved it. Perfect amount of spice for us.

By: Lindsey
Posted: Mar 22, 2021
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

I love that this works with Instant Pot. This is definitely going to be a regular.

By: Rachel
Posted: Mar 22, 2021
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

This was very good and my husband loved it. We don’t love lentils so I sliced and browned four Beyond Beef Brats and it worked fairly well. I also used vegan Worcestershire sauce, vegetable broth and about a teaspoon of Orrington Farms vegan beef broth base.

By: Ruhi
Posted: Mar 22, 2021
Diet: Vegetarian
0 Helpful

We used 3 cups of broth and cooked the gnocchi in the stew. So good!

By: Carrie
Posted: Mar 22, 2021
Diet: Original
0 Helpful