Baked, Dinner, Main Course, Rice
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Veggie Makhani Shepherd’s Pie

Veggie Makhani Shepherds Pie

This decadent Veggie Makhani Shepherd’s Pie has got to be my favorite holiday entree with an Indian twist! With layers of rice in a béchamel sauce, vegetables in a velvety makhani gravy, and spiced potatoes piped on top, this is the ultimate Indian-inspired take on shepherd’s pie! With warm and cozy flavors and a stunning presentation, this is a perfect centerpiece when hosting or as an elegant meal!


Veggie Makhani Shepherds Pie

We’ll start our rice and béchamel layer by boiling rice with whole spices until al dente. Then, create a roux with flour and butter and once it’s frothy add in milk and whisk vigorously to get this silky sauce! Fold in blanched spinach, herbs, spices, and give it a mix. Finish with your al dente rice, cheese, and our creamy first layer is ready!

For our fire roasted makhani sauce, roast the tomatoes and red bell pepper until charred and blend all these veggies with cashews into a smooth puree! Transfer this to a pan and add in all our masalas and let this simmer to let those flavors really develop! Now, in go our veggies and paneer, garam masala, kasoori methi, and a splash of cream, and this is done!

Veggie Makhani Shepherds Pie

For the potato layer, we’ll boil our potatoes with salt and then mash them along with some spices, herbs, and olive oil until super smooth!

Now, it’s time to assemble! In your baking dish, place a layer of the cheesy béchamel rice. Sprinkle a layer of any melty cheese of your choice. Then, in goes our fire-roasted makhani veggies that are slightly smoky and so rich which goes perfectly with the rice! To finish, pipe the mashed potatoes on top for a super pretty look! Bake until golden brown and your holiday dinner is all sorted!

Veggie Makhani Shepherds Pie

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5 from 1 vote
Veggie Makhani Shepherds Pie
Veggie Makhani Shepherd's Pipe
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
45 mins

Veggie Makhani Shepherd’s Pie — with layers of rice in a béchamel sauce, vegetables in a velvety makhani gravy, and spiced potatoes piped on top, this is the ultimate Indian-inspired take on shepherd’s pie! With warm and cozy flavors and a stunning presentation, this is a perfect centerpiece when hosting or as an elegant meal!

Course: Baked, Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: British, Fusion, Indian
Keyword: festive, party
Custom Category: Baked, Dinner, Fusion, Main Course, Rice
Servings: 8
Calories: 515 kcal
Author: Nidhi Bothra
  • 1 cup rice , soaked for 20 minutes
  • 1 inch cinnamon sticks
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 bay leaves
  • ½ tsp salt
Bechamel Sauce (White Sauce) for Rice:
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 2 1/2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 3 cups milk , plus ½ cup more to adjust the consistency of rice
  • 1/4 cup spinach , chopped and tightly squeezed (frozen or blanched)
  • 1/2 tsp salt , adjust to taste
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp italian seasoning
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese , I used a mix of mozzarella and parmesan
Puree for Makhani Layer:
  • 3 medium tomatoes , fire roasted or use store-bought 14 oz canned roasted tomatoes
  • 1 red bell peppers , fire roasted or use store-bought charred/fire roasted peppers
  • 1 medium onions , fire roasted
  • 8 cloves garlic , fire roasted
  • 1 green chilies , fire roasted
  • 2 tbsp cashews
  • 1 inch ginger
Vegetables For Makhani Layer:
Potatoes Layer:
  • 5 medium potatoes , peeled and diced, and then boiled with ½ tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp salt , adjust to taste
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese , I used a mix of mozzarella and parmesan
  • chives , finely chopped
  • cilantro , finely chopped
Rice Layer:
  1. Prepare rice by adding soaked rice (soak it for 20 mins) to boiling water with all the whole spices and salt. Make sure that the rice is cooked al dente i.e. only 90% cooked, to prevent the rice from turning mushy during baking. When rice is done, drain the water, discard all the whole spices and keep it aside.

  2. Heat butter in a large saucepan and allow it to melt. Add all purpose flour and whisk the mixture so that it becomes frothy with a slight change in color. Gradually whisk in milk, making sure to eliminate lumps from the mixture. Mix in spinach (make sure it's tightly squeezed to remove all water) and all the spices. Then add in the cooked rice and cheese and fold them in gently. Use 1/2 cup milk (or as needed) to adjust the consistency of rice. Take this off the heat and set aside.

Makhani Veggies Layer:
  1. Roast tomatoes, onions, red bell pepper, garlic, and green chilies on medium flame for about 7-10 minutes until charred. Peel the skin of the tomatoes, red bell pepper, onion, and garlic. Transfer these roasted veggies to a blender along with ginger and cashews and blend into a smooth paste.

  2. In a pan, heat oil and add in our puree and all our spices (expect kasoori methi and garam masala). Let this cook covered on medium heat for 6-8 minutes.

  3. Now, add in the paneer, vegetables, heavy cream, kasoori methi, and garam masala. Give this a gentle mix and take this off the heat. It's important not to overcook this as we want the vegetables to stay crisp.

Mashed Potatoes Layer:
  1. Bring water to a boil on medium heat and add in your diced and peeled poatoes and salt. Boil this for about 15 minutes until fork tender.

  2. Drain the potatoes thoroughly and transfer to a bowl. Using a potato ricer or strainer to mash the potatoes into a smooth, silky paste.

  3. Mix in all the spices and your olive oil. Transfer this to a piping bag with any nozzle of your choice (I used a star nozzle). If you don't want to pipe the potatoes, you can spread them directly when assembling.

  1. Take a baking dish (I used a 12" oval shaped) and place a layer of your rice. Level this gently and add a layer of cheese. Then, add a layer of your makhani vegetables and make sure this is level. On the top, pipe your mashed potatoes.

  2. Bake at 350℉/180℃ in a pre-heated oven for 20-25 minutes until the potatoes start to turn slightly golden brown. Finish by broiling for 5 minutes to get some more color on the potatoes. Be sure to check in between and not burn the tops of the potatoes.

  3. Garnish with chives and cilantro. Serve warm and enjoy!

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes
  • You can prepare this in advance. Just cover and keep it in the fridge, and bake when you are ready to serve.
Nutrition Facts
Veggie Makhani Shepherd's Pipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 515 Calories from Fat 225
% Daily Value*
Fat 25g38%
Saturated Fat 11g69%
Trans Fat 0.3g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 9g
Cholesterol 46mg15%
Sodium 937mg41%
Potassium 990mg28%
Carbohydrates 60g20%
Fiber 6g25%
Sugar 11g12%
Protein 15g30%
Vitamin A 1506IU30%
Vitamin C 65mg79%
Calcium 323mg32%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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