Fact: the human brain remembers negative events better than positive ones. (Heres’ one source, there are many.) Yes, it’s true. Those snide remarks, criticisms, fears, and worries stick out like sore thumbs. Have you ever had something fabulous happen, then to be dwarfed by the smallest “negative” event your mind can’t help from focusing on?
Confession: my perception of what parenting would be like was skewed to the negative. Hearing what parents all around me had to say about it, I assumed my life would be full of dirty diapers, sleep deprivation, frustration, helplessness, loneliness, and boredom. But what I’ve realized is that I’ve heard positive things from parents too, I just didn’t remember them as well.
It’s the best, most fun thing you’ll ever do. (Check!)
Your soul is changed; you cherish the smaller things more. (Check!)
Looking at your kiddo makes your heart melt in a way you’ve never felt before. (Check!)
And it goes on. I do think Alex and I got lucky: Larson is an extraordinarily awesome kid who is fun-loving, curious, hilarious, and sweet, and pretty much the most fun person to be around in the universe (I know, I’m biased!). But I think the fact that I’m surprised that parenting is the most positive thing I’ve ever done is because my brain hears and remembers negative loud and clear.
How does that relate to this vegan pot pie? Well, you may remember us talking about all the kitchen failures we’ve had in the past. Being adventurous in the kitchen calls for taking risks, and with risks comes failures. It can be easy to start to fear failure when you’re taking culinary risks. Last week, Alex said he’d make dinner for me. That evening, he made up this vegan pot pie from scratch based on just an idea in his head. Knowing what I know about risk and failure, I assumed it would be a flop–and I wanted to keep my expectations low in case we ended up eating peanut butter sandwiches. Miraculously, this vegan pot pie was one of the best things I’d ever tasted. The earthy potatoes and onions are slathered in a savory, creamy sauce, along with fried shallots and white beans. And on top, a flaky sage crust that you’d never believe is vegan (his secret: coconut oil).
This time, I decided to bask in the glow of the vegan pot pie triumph. We made it again, and it was spot on. Larson was in love with the pot pie, eating more than we’d ever seen him eat and slamming the table with his hands in glee. And though I know my brain is wired to remember the negative best, I intentionally impressed this positive memory into my brain: Cozy, delicious vegan pot pie. Sparkling snow on the ground. Sweet 11 month old Larson covered in vegetable goo. This is what I want to remember.
Looking for more healthy dinner recipes?
Looking for some healthy dinner recipes? Here are a few more of our favorite healthy dinner recipes, which happen to be vegan recipes:
- Moroccan Spiced Cauliflower Soup
- Spiced Chickpea Tacos with Avocado Cream
- Simple Chickpea Curry with Tart Cherries
- Creamy Vegan Pasta Marinara
Did you make this recipe?
If you make this vegan pot pie with sage crust, we’d love to hear how it turned out. Leave a comment below or share a picture on Instagram and mention @acouplecooks.
This recipe is…
Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free, and sugar-free.Print
Looking for deliciously healthy dinner ideas? This vegan pot pie is top notch: cozy, hearty vegetables in a gooey sauce are covered with a flaky, sage crust.
For the crust
- 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 teaspoons dried sage
- 1/2 cup refined coconut oil (room temperature)
- 7 tablespoons ice water
For the filling
- 1 large shallot
- 1 15-ounce can cannellini beans
- About 1/3 cup olive oil, divided
- 1 small sweet potato (about 1/2 pound)
- 1 small Yukon gold potato (about 1/2 pound)
- 1 medium yellow onion
- 1 small or 1/2 large red bell pepper
- 8 ounces baby bella mushrooms
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground thyme
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 450°F.
- Make the crust: In a medium bowl, mix all-purpose flour, kosher salt, baking powder, and sage. Measure 1/2 cup of room temperature coconut oil and then drop small blobs of the coconut oil into the flour mixture. Use a pastry blender to cut it into the flour mixture until a coarse meal texture is obtained.
- Sprinkle 7 tablespoons ice water over the flour, mixing gradually with fork until the dough sticks together. Add additional water by the tablespoon until the dough comes together with your hands, but is not sticky (add a bit more water or flour if necessary). Form the dough into a ball and refrigerate in a covered container until the filling is ready.
- Make the filling: Slice the shallot into rings. Drain and rinse the cannellini beans, shaking them dry. Place a medium skillet over medium-high heat and pour in olive oil until the bottom of the skillet is just covered. Add the shallot and beans to the skillet in a single layer. Cook without stirring for 3 to 4 minutes until the bottoms are browned and crispy, then stir and cook without stirring for another 4 to 5 minutes until crispy and fully browned. Remove from heat and add a pinch of kosher salt.
- Meanwhile, dice the sweet potato, Yukon gold potato, yellow onion, and bell pepper into 1/2-inch cubes. Slice the mushrooms.
- In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the sweet potatoes, Yukon gold potatoes, onion, pepper, and mushrooms. Cook, stirring frequently, until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. When tender, reduce the heat to low. Add the spices and flour and stir until the vegetables are coated. Add the vegetable broth, soy sauce, and kosher salt. Stir for about 4 minutes until the broth thickens into a sauce. Remove from the heat and add the crispy beans and shallots. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
- Pour the filling into a deep dish 9” pie pan or small baking dish, or into several smaller baking dishes.
- Remove the dough from the refrigerator and roll it out on a floured surface until it is large enough to cover the pan. Work quickly as the dough is easiest to work with while it’s just come to room temperature. Drape the dough over the pan and remove excess dough. Lightly crimp the edges (it’s a rustic pie, so it doesn’t have to be perfect!). Cut 4 small slits to vent for steam in the center of the crust. In a small bowl, mix a few drops of water with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and lightly brush it over the dough.
- Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden and crispy. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for several minutes before serving.