This cheesy vegetable pie is extra luxurious, with heaps of different vegetables, coated in a silky, cheesy sauce. It's so easy to make too!
I love recipes that celebrate vegetables in all their glory, and this cheesy vegetable pie does just that. Heaps of different vegetables, with different flavours, textures, colours...
Add copious amounts of creamy cheese sauce, and a puff pastry lid, and you have an absolutely irresistible cheesy vegetable pie.
Cheesy vegetable pie
I think a cheesy vegetable pie might just be one of my favourite dishes of all time. It's definitely approaching last meal status, especially with a big dollop of mashed potato on the side.
I have previously shared a different vegetable pie here - my creamy vegetable and halloumi pie. That version was a lot more structured than this one, so if you thought that one looked a bit intimidating, this puff pastry version might be more up your street. It really couldn't be easier - just vegetables and beans in a creamy, cheesy sauce, with a puff pastry lid. Easy peasy.
The key is to use a huge variety of veggies, so your pie will be packed with flavour, even before you've added the cheesy sauce. Aim to get as many different colours into your pie as you can - it looks great, tastes great, and is packed with different vitamins.
The ultra cheesy sauce is just the icing on the cake (the sauce on the pie...?).
What vegetables can you use in vegetable pie?
Pretty much any veg will work well in pie. It's pie. It's always good.
Here's what I used:
- red onion
Other veggies that would work really well include:
- green beans
- bell peppers
- courgette (zucchini)
- aubergine (eggplant)
and pretty much anything else you can think of.
I also added a tin of cannellini beans to my veg, so my cheesy vegetable pie would be even more hearty, and to add extra protein.
Creamy cheese sauce
The creamy cheese sauce in this veggie pie is literally just a white sauce, with extra cheese melted into it - its official name is a Mornay sauce, if you want to get fancy!
It's super easy to make, with just a few ingredients. If you've not made a white sauce before, you can read my detailed post all about how to make a simple white sauce, with step-by-step photos. It's really straightforward.
To amp up the flavour, you can add some dried herbs, a dollop of mustard, plenty of salt and pepper... whatever extra flavours you fancy.
Just mix it through the vegetables, and your pie filling is done. Doesn't this just look so luxurious?!
It's all I could do not to eat it straight out of the pan with a spoon (and if that sounds good to you, you might want to try my veggie pot pie soup!).
Puff pastry lid
If you can resist eating it all straight away, it's time to add the puff pastry lid.
I always use shop-bought puff pastry, because whoooo has the time to make their own?! I get the pre-rolled stuff, rather than the big blocks that need rolling out (if you're going to cheat, at least cheat properly, right?).
Just cut a piece to fit the top of your baking dish, crimp it round the edges, and make a little vent in the middle.
I always like to decorate the top of my pie with some pastry leaves, because it makes me feel super swanky, but requires pretty much zero artistic ability - they're literally just diamond shapes with slightly rounded corners.
I also sprinkled a tiny bit of finely grated cheese on top - not enough to weigh down the pastry and stop it getting puffy, but just enough to get nice and crispy on top. Crispy cheese is really hard to beat.
Now get it in the oven!
And when it's all crispy on top, and bubbly underneath, you can crack your way through the pastry, delving into the gooey, cheesy vegetables inside.
How to serve cheesy vegetable pie
Since the pie is already pretty much a full meal in itself (plenty of veg + protein + carby pastry), you don't need to serve much on the side, so no worries if you can't be bothered to make a load of extra veggie side dishes too.
I served mine with just a dollop of mashed potato.
I rarely feel the need to justify having a big heap of mash for dinner (especially in 2020), but spooning that cheesy sauce over the top of a pile of fluffy potato is definitely a pretty convincing reason.
Just look at all the colours in there - orange carrots, green peas and asparagus, yellow corn, creamy beans, and little flecks of purple onion. It looks so inviting - ultra luxurious and a real treat, but with plenty of goodness inside too.
I'm definitely tempted to double the recipe next time... cheesy vegetable pie all week!
Cheesy vegetable pie
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- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 large carrot, diced quite small
- 1 onion (I used red), diced
- 140 g (~ 1 cup) frozen sweetcorn
- 110 g (~ ¾ cup) frozen peas
- 5 medium mushrooms, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 8 spears asparagus, sliced
- 400 g tin cannellini beans, drained (240g, or ~ 1 ¼ cups, when drained)
- 3 tablespoon (~ 40g) butter
- 3 tablespoon plain flour
- 500 ml (~ 2 cups) milk (plus a tiny bit more for the top of the pastry)
- 1 teaspoon dried mixed herbs
- Black pepper
- 200 g mature cheddar cheese, grated (~ 2 cups when grated)
- 250 g (~ 10 ½ oz) ready-rolled puff pastry
- 1 tablespoon finely grated vegetarian parmesan-style cheese
- Heat a dash of oil in a large frying pan, and add the diced carrot, onion, peas, and sweetcorn. Cook over a medium heat for around 10 minutes, until any excess water from the frozen veg has cooked off, and the carrot is beginning to soften. Add the mushrooms, garlic, and asparagus, and cook for a further 5 minutes. Then add the cannellini beans, and mix to combine.
- Meanwhile, melt the butter in a saucepan, over a fairly low heat. Add the flour, and mix to form a roux (a thick paste). Add the milk a little at a time, stirring until smooth each time before adding more. You can find more detailed instructions for how to make a white sauce here. When you've used all the milk, and the sauce is completely smooth, add the herbs, salt, pepper, and the grated cheese. Mix over a low heat until the cheese has melted.
- Combine the cheese sauce with the cooked vegetables, transfer to a suitable baking dish (mine measured 8 x 8 inches), and set aside to cool for 10 minutes or so. Turn the oven to 190°C (Gas Mark 5 / 375°F) to begin heating up.
- Cut a piece of ready-rolled puff pastry to fit the top of your baking dish (you can roll it out a little thinner if needed), with at least an inch excess all the way round. When the vegetable mixture has cooled a little, place the pastry on top, draping it over the edges of the baking dish. It's ideal if it's not sitting directly on top of the vegetables (but it doesn't matter too much). Cut a ventilation hole in the centre of the pastry, and crimp tightly around the edges of the baking dish with a fork. Pulling downwards, to ensure it's sealed thoroughly, tear away any excess pastry. You can use the scraps to create a design for the top of your pie, if you like (I made a few simple leaf shapes) - just place them on top. Lightly brush the top of the pie with milk, and sprinkle on a small amount of finely grated parmesan.
- Bake for around 30 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown, crispy, and puffed up. Serve warm.
Nutritional information is approximate, and will depend on your exact ingredients. Please calculate your own nutritional values if you require accuracy for health reasons.