This vegan green lentil and veggie pie with a vegetable suet top crust is inspired by the traditional Scottish Teviotdale pie that originates from the Scottish Borders.
Green lentils and veggies are cooked within a rich savoury sauce before being topped with an easy suet crust pastry batter, that bakes into a tasty doughball or cobbler texture.
This cozy hearty veggie pie is a deliciously easy budget-friendly family meal that will easily fill up hungry bellies and create happy smiles!
Serve this vegan Teviotdale pie with your favourite veggies and savoury gravy. We had buttered mashed neeps or turnip [otherwise known as swede/rutabaga], and steamed green cabbage, and an onion gravy made with the cooking veggie liquid.
What is a Teviotdale pie?
A Teviotdale or a Teviot pie is essentially a one crust pie with a simple seasoned mince and onions filling topped with a beef suet pastry crust. The pie originates within the Scottish borders in the area known as Teviotdale and Liddesdale. Hawick is the main town and is rich in history dating back to medieval times.
As with most traditional humble and rustic pies the Teviotdale pie would have been created to make the best use of the frugal ingredients that were readily available, and provide calories to feed hungry workers and growing families.
The suet crust makes a nice change from the usual short crust or puff pastry pie toppings, and is similar in taste and texture to light, fluffy traditional stew dumplings but with crispier and chewier baked edges.
Vegan Teviotdale pie
This vegan Teviotdale pie adaptation uses green lentils instead of beef mince, and includes onions, diced carrot and celery for a tasty flavour boost and extra texture. Mushroom stock or broth provides savoury yumminess, but this can be replaced with a vegan 'beef' flavour stock or simply just use a vegetable stock.
The pie crust is traditionally prepared with flour, cornflour, beef suet, and dairy milk. For this vegan Teviotdale pie version vegetable suet and oat milk, [or your usual milk] is used instead.
Fresh or dried thyme leaves adds classic Scottish flavours to the delicious crisp but soft and fluffy suet crust.
The suet crust is so easy and quick to prepare as the ingredients are simply mixed together into a batter, with no kneading or forming a pastry dough required. Once the suet batter is prepared it it spread over the lentil filling and baked. So easy.
Vegetable suet alternative
If vegetable suet is difficult to source or may be too expensive, then a block of vegetable shortening or vegan butter can be frozen and then grated/shredded with a cheese grater. Stork baking spread also comes in hard blocks and this can also be frozen and grated. This will provide small pieces similar to suet.
Cornflour or cornstarch and replacements
Cornflour is a commonly available ingredient in the UK, although in recent times many people are finding this product increasingly difficult to source. In the US and other countries our cornflour is termed cornstarch and it is just the same thing.
If cornflour is difficult to find then try replacing it with ground rice or rice flour, potato flour or starch, tapioca flour, or arrowroot powder. Alternatively simply use extra self-raising flour, although the cornflour does lighten up the crust, the crust will still be tasty.
How to prepare vegan Scottish Teviotdale pie
This veggie pie can be prepared with either 3 cans of drained 400 grams [15oz] green lentils, or 250 grams of dried lentils, which makes around 690 grams of cooked lentils.
If your new to suet crusts then don't let a suet crust put you off! As its so simple and easy to prepare.
Its just a matter of stirring the ingredients together into a thick batter before spreading it out to cover the filling.
If cooking your own lentils, add the lentils to a saucepan along with one or two bay leafs and a litre [4 cups] of cold water.
Bring to the boil and cook for 25 minutes or until soft.
Drain the liquid but do reserve it as it can be added to the vegetable stock.
To prepare the pie filling, cook the diced celery, carrot, onion and garlic in one tablespoon of olive oil for 8 minutes.
Or replace the oil with a little veggie stock/broth.
Pour in 375 millilitres [1 ½ cups] of water and simmer for 10 minutes or until the veggies are soft.
Next add the dried herbs, tomato puree [paste], soya sauce, brown sauce [such as HP sauce], and 400 millilitres of mushroom stock [or vegan 'beef' flavour or vegetable stock].
Season with salt and pepper.
Stir through the cooked lentils and cook for 15 minutes until the sauce is reduced.
Decant the lentil filling into the casserole dish and leave to cool a little while the suet crust is prepared.
Sift the flour, baking powder, and cornflour into a mixing bowl. Add the vegetable suet, a few pinches of salt, and fresh thyme leaves.
Pour in the oat milk [or your usual milk] and stir until combined.
Scoop the batter over the lentil filling evenly.
Bake for 30-35 minutes until risen, golden in places, and a cracked appearance may form as the top of the pastry dries out in the oven.
Underneath the crisp pastry the suet crust will be light and fluffy similar to baked savoury doughballs or a cobbler topping.
Enjoy with your favourite veggies and lots of gravy.
Storage and reheating
Vegan Teviotdale pie can be stored within the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Or freeze portions for up to 3-4 months.
To reheat add to an oven-safe dish and cover the pie with kitchen foil.
Reheat at 160 Fan / 180 C / 350 Fahrenheit / Gas 4 for about 25 minutes or until piping hot throughout.
To speed up reheating remove the pie from the refrigerator 30-60 minutes before reheating, as this will remove some of the chill on the pie.
The pie can be reheated within a microwave but do bear in mind that this may change the texture of the suet crust topping.
More delicious traditional vegan pies and hotpots
Cowboy pie [fun family cheesy baked bean pie]
Cheese, potato and onion pie [old school British dinners inspired recipe]
Homity pie [1940s war era potato pie recipe]
Vegetable hotpot [veggies in a creamy sauce with crispy potato topping]
Vegan Scottish Teviotdale pie
- skillet or a deep non-stick frying pan
- Casserole dish [about 9 x 12 inch and 2 inch deep, or use a similar sized circular oven-safe dish]
- Mixing bowl
Suet pastry crust:
- 225 grams self-raising flour [or plain flour/all-purpose flour with an extra ½ teaspoon of baking powder]
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 25 grams cornflour [or cornstarch as its known in other countries]
- 75 grams vegetable suet [can replace with a block of vegan butter or shortening frozen and then grated/shredded with a cheese grater]
- 300 mililitres oat milk [or soya or your usual milk]
- 2 teaspoon dried thyme [or a few sprigs of fresh thyme with the leaves removed]
- 670 grams cooked green lentils [or brown] [weight is for cooked lentils, can use 3 drained 400g/15 oz cans of lentils]
- 1 tablespoon olive oil [or your usual cooking oil, or replace with ½ cup of veggie stock/broth]
- 150 grams carrot [1 medium diced]
- 140 grams onion [1 medium diced]
- 3 sticks celery [diced]
- 4 cloves garlic [fine diced]
- 1 tablespoon soya sauce
- 1 tablespoon tomato puree [paste]
- 1 tablespoon brown sauce [such as HP sauce or similar, can replace with tomato ketchup]
- 400 mililitres vegetable stock [use a vegan mushroom or 'beef' flavour if available]
Prepare the lentils: [or use three 400 gram/ 15oz cans of green lentils, drained, you may have some lentils left over. If canned lentils are used then omit the next stage and go straight to the prepare pie filling]
- Add 250 grams of uncooked green lentils to a saucepan. Pop in one or two bay leafs [optional] and 4 cups/1 litre of cold water. Bring to the boil, lower the heat and simmer for 25-30 minutes or until the lentils are soft.Drain the lentils but keep any cooking liquid as this can be added to the stock to make up the required amount for the recipe.
Prepare the pie filling:
- Heat the olive oil in a fry pan or skillet over a medium heat. Alternatively replace with ½ cup of vegetable stock/broth.1 tablespoon olive oil
- Add the onion, garlic, celery and carrot and cook for 8 minutes, stirring frequently.150 grams carrot, 140 grams onion, 3 sticks celery, 4 cloves garlic
- Pour in 375 millilitres [1 ½ cups] water and place a lid over the pan. Leave to cook for 10 minutes or until the veggies are soft, especially the carrot and celery. Add extra small amounts of water if required to prevent sticking.
- Next add the tomato puree, brown sauce, soya sauce and lentils.670 grams cooked green lentils, 1 tablespoon soya sauce, 1 tablespoon tomato puree, 1 tablespoon brown sauce
- Pour in the veggie stock. Add a few pinches of salt and some black pepper.Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.[Remove from the heat when done and set aside to cool while the suet crust batter is prepared.]400 mililitres vegetable stock
Prepare the suet crust:
- Preheat the oven to 160 Fan / 180C / 350 Fahrenheit / Gas 4.
- Sift the self-raising flour, baking powder and cornflour into a mixing bowl. Tip in the vegetable suet and add a few pinches of salt. Stir through the dried thyme or the fresh thyme leaves.Stir to combine.225 grams self-raising flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 25 grams cornflour, 75 grams vegetable suet, 2 teaspoon dried thyme
- Pour in the plant milk and stir with a mixing spoon to form a thick batter.300 mililitres oat milk
- Grease the top rim and about an inch below the rim of the casserole dish with some vegan margarine.
- Scoop the pie filling into the casserole dish.
- Pour the batter evenly over the filling to cover, using a small spatula to evenly distribute the batter over the filling.
- Bake in the centre of the oven for around 30-35 minutes or until the crust is golden, risen and firm. Cracks will likely form over the crust as the pastry batter dries out in the oven, but the suet crust below will be light and fluffy.
- A sprinkle of chopped fresh parsley if available is a nice garnish.
- Serve with your favourite veggies and lots of tasty vegetable gravy. If using gravy granules I like to reserve any vegetable cooking water, reheat it to boiling point and then make up the gravy with the vegetable water.
- Nutritional information is provided for guidance only and is not intended as a strict calculation as ingredients can vary.
- Vegan Teviotdale pie can be stored within the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- Or freeze portions for up to 3-4 months.
- Reheat within a hot oven until piping hot, do add a kitchen foil cover to prevent the pie from overcooking and browning too much.
- Slices of pie can be reheated within a microwave but do bear in mind that the suet crust texture can change in a microwave.
- Can't find vegan suet? Atora vegetable suet is vegan and can be sourced in most UK supermarkets, or Suma vegan and gluten-free suet can be found in many UK health stores.
- Alternatively freeze a block of vegetable shortening or vegan butter and use a cheese grater to shred or grate the fat into small pieces.
- In the UK cornflour is the same product as cornstarch, which is what it is termed in many different countries including the US.
- The best cornflour replacements include arrowroot powder, ground rice, tapioca flour, and potato starch.
- A rectangular Pyrex casserole dish was used for this Teviotdale pie, but a circular or oval casserole dish can be used instead.
- Using a smaller baking dish will result in a thicker crust, so do bear this in mind during baking as a few more extra minutes may be required.
Prepared this vegan adaptation of a traditional Scottish Teviotdale pie?
Do let us know how you got on with the recipe by leaving us a comment below, and clicking the star ratings.
All feedback very much appreciated.
Thanks so much, Jacq x