Mini vegetable pot pie is the perfect entree option for your holiday gathering. These adorable little pies are packed with vegetables, beans, and a creamy cashew sauce. Vegan.
It’s starting to feel a lot like Christmas. Although we still can’t have a tree for the third year in a row, because a certain cat can’t be trusted with almost anything he could fit in his mouth, it’s showing in other ways.
(Sorry, dangly ornaments and strings of brightly colored lights. Maybe next year. But let’s be honest, probably not next year.)
David and I drive through our neighborhood with festive tunes playing on the radio and pass flashing houses in white, red, and green.
There’s an ugly sweater folded at the top of my dresser drawers. And right on cue, this past weekend we even shoveled.
It wasn’t a ton of snow, just a couple of inches. But it was wet enough that by afternoon, my Facebook feed was filled with pictures of kids and snowmen.
After we put our shovels away, I was in the mood for something cozy and warming.
Vegetable pot pie
These elegant vegetable pot pies are a far cry from the 40 cents apiece version I had lined up in my freezer as a young 20-something just out of college.
I’ve made the pot pies multiple times for testing. And I’d gladly eat another one all over again right this minute. They are ridiculously good.
They are filled with veggies aplenty – onions, carrots, celery, green peas, and potatoes. Plus, beans for satiety.
The creamy sauce is made from cashews and savory spices. (Yep, this velvety filling doesn’t include a drop of dairy.)
And on top? A home crust that’s buttery and flaky.
How to make vegetable pot pies
Start by making your pie crust and cutting it into circles. Put it into the refrigerator to cool while you make the filling.
Pour the prepared filling into mini cocottes or 8 ounce ramekins. Top each one with a circle of dough. Then bake for thirty minutes.
There’s something about individual vegetable pot pies that feels like a present.
“You made this just for me?”
They are impressive but unassuming. I mean, who doesn’t like pot pies?
Even dinner guests who are wary of “vegan food” could hardly turn down the temptation of a luscious sauce dotted with vegetables and a nutty pastry crust.
So put on your favorite crackling Christmas record. You know, the one where you have all of the skips and scratches memorized after years of play?
Pull out the ugly Christmas sweater from the top drawer, and invite over a few friends to celebrate the season.
Then serve each one a mini vegetable pot pie and feel the season hug you from the inside out.
Mini vegetable pot pies
For pot pie crust
For pot pie filling
- 1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons raw cashews*
- 2 cups water divided
- 1/2 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup chopped onion in medium pieces
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 cup sliced celery
- 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 vegetable bouillon cube
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced carrots cut into coins
- 1 medium Russet potato about 6 ounces, chopped in small to medium pieces
- 1/2 cup green peas Fresh or frozen are fine
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 15 ounce can chickpeas or Great Northern beans drained (Don't discard bean liquid; reserve it for later use in this recipe)
To make pot pie crust
- In a large mixing bowl, use a fork to combine all purpose flour with salt and dried rosemary. Add non-dairy butter. Using your fingers, fully combine the flour with the non-dairy butter until it has the texture of small pebbles.
- In a small separate bowl, combine ice water and white wine vinegar.
- Add the water/vinegar mixture to the mixing bowl with flour. Use your hands to combine the wet and dry mixtures until one ball of dough has formed. It should be smooth and not sticky.
- For easiest rolling, wrap the dough in plastic and cool in the refrigerator for at least an hour. If you don't have time, it's okay to skip this step, but the dough won't roll quite as easily.**
- Once you are ready to make the pot pies, roll out the dough with a rolling pin. It should be thin enough that you can get 5 mini tops for each pot pie. (You may need to gather the scraps and roll out again for the fifth pot pie lid. That's fine.) You can use either a biscuit cutter to cut out the tops or use a knife and a cocotte lid or extra ramekin as a guide to trace. If you use the cocotte lids/ramekins as a guide, you may need to roll each one out a little bit further to fully cover the pot pie. Put the dough circles into the refrigerator to keep cool while you make the pot pie filling.
To make the pot pie filling
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Put the raw cashews into a blender with 1/2 cup of water. Blend until it is completely smooth, a thick cashew cream. Set aside.
- Bring a soup pot to a medium heat with extra virgin olive oil. Saute onion in oil for about 5 minutes, until it has softened slightly and is fragrant. Add garlic, celery, dried rosemary, dried basil, and saute for a minute more. Add remaining 1 1/2 cups water, vegetable bouillon cube, carrots, potato, green peas, salt, and drained chickpeas or Great Northern beans. Bring to a simmer. Then lower heat, cover, and cook for 7 minutes, until the potato has softened slightly.
- Add cashew cream from blender and cook for 5 minutes more over a low medium heat, so that the cashew cream can reduce slightly and flavors can combine. Stir occasionally.
- Use a ladle to put even amounts of the pot pie filling into each 8 ounce cocotte or ramekin. Using a fingers or pastry brush, spread a thin layer of the saved bean liquid onto the top edge of the cocottes.
- Put an individual crust onto each cocotte and pinch around the edges to seal. Use a sharp knife to put a few vent holes into the top of each pot pie. Use fingers or pastry brush again to lightly spread bean liquid across the top of each crust for better browning.
- Put the cocottes/ramekins on a baking sheet, so that if the pot pie filling bubbles over, it will fall onto the baking sheet and not the oven.
- Bake for 30 minutes. When they are ready, the tops will be a nutty brown color. Remove from oven and allow the pot pies to rest for at least 10 minutes before serving. (The filling will be quite hot.)
Prefer to make a full-sized pot pie? Check out this chicken-style vegan pot pie. It’s made with frozen, store-bought pie crusts!
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