Easy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe (2024)

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If you’re searching for a delicious comfort food dinner recipe you’ve come to the right recipe. One of my favorite comfort food recipes is my easy shepherd’s pie. It’s filling and warm and perfect for any weather.

Typically, shepherd’s pie is made with lamb or mutton. For me, lamb can be pricey and mutton is difficult to find so I use ground beef or ground turkey to make my version of shepherd’s pie.

Did you know that shepherd’s pie is also known as cottage pie? According to Wikipedia, it was first made when potatoes were considered a food that was affordable for those who lived in modest, cottage homes.

No matter what you call it this dish is perfect for a weeknight dinner. You can even make the ground beef filling ahead of time and freeze it, cutting the prep time in half!

Oh, and my whole family loves this recipe which makes it perfect for feeding three growing teenage boys.

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Easy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe (1)

Here’s the recipe. Scroll down for a printable version if you need one.

Ingredients
Beef Filling:
2 lbs of ground beef
6 oz of tomato pasteEasy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe (2)
12 oz of frozen mixed vegetables
2 tsp saltEasy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe (3)
1 tsp onion powderEasy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe (4)
1 tsp garlic powderEasy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe (5)
1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper

Mashed Potatoes:
4 medium potatoes (peeled and chopped)
1/2 cup of milk
1/4 cup butter
1 tsp salt

Instructions
1. Preheat the oven to 375.
2. In a large pot, boil enough water to cook the potatoes.
3. In a large pot or skillet, cook the ground beef over medium heat.
4. Peel and chop the potatoes while the water is boiling and the ground beef is cooking.
5.When the water boils, add the chopped potatoes and boil until soft.
6. When the ground beef is cooked, add the tomato paste, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper, and vegetables.
7. Stir to combine.
8. When the potatoes are done, drain the water from them and return them to the pot.
9. Add the milk, butter, and salt and mix with a mixer until the potatoes are creamy.
10. Pour the ground beef mixture into a 13X9 baking dish and spread to cover the dish evenly.
11. Add the potatoes to the top of the mixture and spread to cover the beef evenly.
12. Bake for 25-30 minutes.

Adding cheese to the top of the potatoes is recommended. One of my sons doesn’t like cheese with this dish, so I usually add cheese to only half of it as soon as it comes out of the oven.

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Ingredients

  • Beef Filling:
  • 2 lbs of ground beef
  • 6 oz of tomato paste
  • 12 oz of frozen mixed vegetables
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • Mashed Potatoes:
  • 4 medium potatoes peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 cup of milk
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 tsp salt

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 375.

  • In a large pot, boil enough water to cook the potatoes.

  • In a large pot or skillet, cook the ground beef over medium heat.

  • Peel and chop the potatoes while the water is boiling and the ground beef is cooking.

  • When the water boils, add the chopped potatoes and boil until soft.

  • When the ground beef is cooked, add the tomato paste, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper and vegetables.

  • Stir to combine.

  • When the potatoes are done, drain the water from them and return them to the pot.

  • Add the milk, butter and salt and mix with a mixer until the potatoes are creamy.

  • Pour the ground beef mixture into a 13X9 baking dish and spread to cover the dish evenly.

  • Add the potatoes to the top of the mixture and spread to cover the beef evenly.

  • Bake for 25-30 minutes.

  • Adding cheese to the top of the potatoes is recommended. One of my sons doesn't like cheese with this dish, so I usually add cheese to only half of it as soon as it comes out of the oven.

Before you go!

This is how I get a real food dinner on the table on even the busiest evenings. It’s all about planning, baby. Check it out!

Easy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe (7)


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Easy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe (2024)

FAQs

How do you thicken shepherd's pie? ›

The easiest way to thicken shepherd's pie filling is by sprinkling a few tablespoons of flour into the ground beef mixture as it cooks before adding it to the baking dish. The starch in the flour will absorb the extra liquid and create a thick gravy.

What is shepherd's pie normally made of? ›

It's traditionally made with minced meat (usually ground lamb), gravy, vegetables, and mashed potatoes. You may also hear it called "cottage pie." The two terms are used interchangeably, but technically traditional shepherd's pie is made with ground lamb and traditional cottage pie is made with ground beef.

How do you keep shepherd's pie from falling apart? ›

How do you keep shepherds pie from falling apart? The eggs in the mashed potatoes help keep the pie together. You should also make sure to spread the potatoes and press down a bit.

How do you keep mash from sinking in shepherds pie? ›

To stop the mash sinking into the filling, allow the meat to cool before topping with the mashed potato. Freeze in individual ovenproof dishes for an easy meal for one.

What is the best thickener for pie filling? ›

All-purpose flour is an easy solution, as you're sure to have it in your pantry. Since it's lower in starch, you'll use more of it than you would higher-starch thickeners. Quick-cooking tapioca makes filling bright and clear, but also gives it a stippled and somewhat sticky texture.

What is a good thickener for pie filling? ›

Very often flour or cornstarch is used, but in certain instances tapioca, arrowroot and potato starch can also help achieve the desired consistency.

Why is my shepherd's pie soggy? ›

A good shepherd's – or indeed cottage – pie, needs a solid, but fluffy top: too much milk or butter, and you'll end up with a sloppy puree instead. Make sure you steam the potatoes dry before mashing, and season generously; I like Bareham and Hopkinson's nutmeg as well as the usual salt and pepper.

Why is flour used in shepherds pie? ›

This shepherd's pie recipe uses 2 tablespoons of flour to thicken the gravy but if you feel like the meat mixture is too watery, add in another tablespoon and stir to combine. You may also try simmering the mince mixture for longer so that the stock reduces down and thickens.

What is a fun fact about shepherd's pie? ›

According to the Oxford Companion to Food, once upon a time, Scotland made its shepherd's pies with pastry instead of mashed potatoes. Indian cooks once considered shepherd's pie to be a perfect dish for tiffin (a word used to mean a light snack in British India).

How do you stretch ground beef for shepherd's pie? ›

Stretch your ground beef with any of these cheap fillers:
  1. Cooked or uncooked oatmeal, or rolled oats.
  2. Breadcrumbs.
  3. Cooked barley or bulgar wheat.
  4. Quinoa or couscous.
  5. TVP (Textured Vegetable Protein)
  6. Grated or finely chopped vegetables like carrots, celery, garlic, onions, sweet or hot peppers, potatoes, squash, or zucchini.
Dec 24, 2022

How is shepherd's pie originally made? ›

And, by doing so, the humble shepherd's pie was born. Originally, the dish contained a pastry shell at the bottom, top, or both. Over time, this morphed into potato slices at the bottom and top of savory minced lamb meat, until it eventually became a topping of mashed potatoes.

Why does my potato sink in shepherds pie? ›

Residual moisture from the potatoes will drip into the beef below as it cooks, and too much of it will cause the potatoes to eventually sink. Aside from ridding your potatoes of excess moisture before you mash them, it also helps to cool the beef down, BBC Good Food shares.

Should I put shepherds pie in the fridge? ›

Leftovers or Make Ahead

A Shepherd's Pie is the perfect make-ahead food. In the fridge Cook up to point 11 in the recipe below and you can keep this recipe in the fridge for 2 days.

Is shepherds pie the same as cottage pie? ›

These meaty, mince-filled and mash potato-topped pies are very similar, the difference comes down to the filling. Cottage pie is usually made with beef, whereas shepherd's pie is made with lamb. You can also add vegetables and aromats to the filling, such as onions, garlic, carrot, zucchini and rosemary.

How do you make mashed potatoes moist again? ›

You can use milk, cream, half-and-half, tangy buttermilk, or chicken or vegetable stock to rehydrate your mashed potatoes. Start with ½ cup of liquid for 4 cups of mashed potatoes, and add it gradually so you don't end up with potato soup. Adding extra butter is a good idea, too.

How do you thicken shepherd's pie without cornstarch? ›

Arrowroot Powder – If you're following the Paleo Diet then Arrowroot Powder is a great alternative to using cornstarch to thicken gravies and sauces.

What to do if your pie is too runny? ›

You just use the same amount of tapioca starch as you would cornstarch. Cook your filling before putting in the pie shell, then bake. I chop about 5-6 cups, add 1 cup sugar (or more if you want sweeter), plus 3 tbsp cornstarch (add before hearing), and cook til thickened slightly, it will finish in the oven.

What is the best thickener for meat pies? ›

FINO PIE THICKENING is a balanced blend of cereals and starches especially designed for thickening and stabilising pie meat.

Is cornstarch or flour better for thickening pie? ›

Which one you use is a matter of personal preference. Cornstarch makes for a shiny, glossy filling. A little goes a long way because it has twice the gelling power of flour. Flour thickens nicely but leaves more of a matte finish.

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