Vegan-Plus-Bugs Shepherd's Pie

Shepherd's Pie, but with a few vegan-plus-bugs tweaks!

Cricket powder adds protein and a toasty-earthy-meaty flavor to this otherwise vegan shepherd's pie. It also helps thicken the lentil pie filling to achieve a consistency similar to a traditional meat-based Shepherd's Pie.

Depending on how you make your mashed potatoes, the non-insect parts of this dish might be vegetarian instead of vegan. That's great too! My goal is to introduce insect protein as a sustainable and environmentally-friendly alternative to replace some consumption of meat. Let's start small! (i.e., cricket-sized) 

This recipe is gluten-free, but double check your mashed potatoes and Worcestershire sauce to be sure.

cricket powder vegan shepherd's pie



  • 1 onion
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 carrots
  • 3 celery stalks
  • 1 zucchini
  • 6 oz. can tomato paste
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1⁄3 cup cricket powder
  • 4 cups mushroom broth (or vegetable broth)
  • 11⁄2 cups brown lentils
  • fresh thyme
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas (or lima beans)
  • salt and pepper
  • warm mashed potatoes (from scratch, from a box, or store-bought)
  • (optional) whole roasted crickets

recipe ingredients vegetables for cricket powder lentil shepherd's pie


Prepare the ingredients:

  1. Make or heat the mashed potatoes
  2. Mince the garlic
  3. Chop the onions
  4. Chop the carrots, celery, and zucchini

Make the pie filling:

  1. Sauté the onion and garlic in olive oil in a stock pot on medium heat, until the onion is translucent.
  2. Add the carrots, celery, and zucchini and sauté for a few more minutes.
  3. Add the tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, and cricket powder. Stir to coat the vegetables.
  4. Add the broth, lentils, and thyme
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce the heat to low.
  7. Simmer for 30 minutes.
  8. Remove the cover and continue to cook until most of the liquid has evaporated, stirring frequently.
  9. Add the frozen peas and cook until heated through.

vegan shepherd's pie filling with lentils and cricket powder

Put it all together:

  1. Heat the oven to 425° F.
  2. Transfer the pie filling to a lightly-greased, oven-safe baking dish.
  3. Spread the warmed mashed potatoes on top of the filling.
  4. Bake for 15 minutes, until the mashed potatoes are slightly crispy and browned on top.
  5. Optionally sprinkle with whole roasted crickets for the last 5 minutes of baking.
  6. Take out of the oven and let cool for 15 minutes. This will let the filling thicken before serving.
  7. Enjoy! 🦗

slice of vegan shepherd's pie 

Not sure where to buy your edible insects? Kiminy recommends a company called Cricket Flours, based in Portland, Oregon. If you're interested in supporting both the entomophagy movement and Kiminy's Crickets too, please consider purchasing through our affiliate link:


cricket flours cricket powder


And for the adventurous types... consider sprinkling some roasted Cricket Bites on top! I used the original flavor on my mini-pie for one, but I'd bet the Hickory Smoked Bacon or Spicy Cayenne would be super tasty too!

cricket Shepherd's mini-Pie