Shepherds Pie

Shepherd’s Pie

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4.5 from 2 votes

Originating in England, Shepherd’s Pie is a hearty dish that marries ground meat with a savory vegetable gravy, all crowned by a layer of sumptuously mashed potatoes. Whether you opt for the traditional ground lamb or the equally delectable ground beef, this timeless classic promises a comforting meal that satisfies every palate.

Ingredients Needed:

Ground Beef or Lamb: Choose lean ground beef or the traditional ground lamb for an authentic taste experience.

Salt and Pepper: The cornerstone of seasoning, salt, and pepper enhance the flavors of the dish.

Onion and Garlic: These aromatic ingredients infuse the gravy with depth and richness.

All-Purpose Flour: Used to thicken the sauce, ensuring a luscious consistency.

Red Wine: Opt for a dry red wine like Pinot Noir or Merlot to impart a luxurious flavor profile.

Beef Broth: Provides a robust base for the gravy, enhancing its savory notes.

Tomato Paste: Adds a hint of sweetness and depth to the sauce.

Worcestershire Sauce: Elevates the umami factor, contributing to the dish’s complex taste.

Frozen Vegetables: A medley of carrots, peas, and corn adds color, texture, and nutrition to the filling.

Pro Tips:

Consistency is key: Cut potatoes into uniform pieces for even cooking.

Seasoning: Add salt to the potatoes after cooking to prevent them from becoming waterlogged.

Avoid overcooking: Be mindful not to overcook the potatoes, as they may become gummy.

Immediate mashing: Mash the potatoes promptly after cooking for optimal texture.

How To Make:

Sauté the Ground Meat: In a skillet, sauté the ground meat until browned, breaking it apart with a spatula. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Add Aromatics: Incorporate onions and garlic into the skillet, sautéing until aromatic and softened.

Thicken the Sauce: Sprinkle flour over the meat mixture, stirring to create a roux. Deglaze the pan with red wine, scraping up any flavorful bits from the bottom.

Enhance the Flavor: Stir in beef broth, tomato paste, and Worcestershire sauce, allowing the flavors to meld.

Incorporate Vegetables: Add frozen vegetables to the mixture, bringing the filling to a gentle boil. Adjust seasoning as needed.

Assembling the Shepherd’s Pie

Transfer the Meat Mixture: Pour the savory filling into a pie dish or casserole, ensuring an even distribution.

Top with Mashed Potatoes: Using an ice cream scoop, dollop the mashed potatoes over the filling, spreading them evenly to create a seal.

Bake to Perfection: Drizzle melted butter over the potatoes and bake at 400˚F until golden and bubbling.


Shepherd’s Pie vs. Cottage Pie: While Shepherd’s Pie traditionally features ground lamb, Cottage Pie substitutes beef, offering a delightful variation on this classic dish.

Utilizing Leftover Mashed Potatoes: Leftover mashed potatoes can be repurposed for Shepherd’s Pie, provided they are warmed and softened with heavy cream before use.

Vegetable Substitutions: Feel free to experiment with a variety of vegetables, such as sautéed zucchini or mushrooms, to customize the dish to your taste.

Wine Substitution: While red wine enhances the flavor profile of the dish, beef broth can be used as a substitute if desired.

Make-Ahead Options: Shepherd’s Pie can be assembled ahead of time and refrigerated or frozen for future enjoyment, offering a convenient meal solution.

Shepherd’s Pie

Recipe by
4.5 from 2 votes
Course: MainCuisine: English


Prep time


Cooking time





Indulge in the Comfort of Shepherd’s Pie


  • For the Potato Topping:
  • 2 lbs russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1” thick pieces

  • 3/4 cup warm heavy whipping cream

  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt

  • 1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese

  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted (for brushing)

  • 1 Tbsp chopped parsley or chives (for garnish)

  • For the Pie Filling:
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil

  • 1 lb lean ground beef or ground lamb

  • 1 1/2 tsp salt, divided

  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour

  • 1/2 cup dry red wine (e.g., Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon)

  • 1 cup beef broth or chicken broth

  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste

  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce

  • 1 1/2 cups frozen mixed vegetables (peas, carrots, corn)


  • Preparing the Potatoes:
    Boil the potatoes until tender, then mash them in a large pot.
    Mix in warm cream and salt, followed by parmesan cheese and beaten egg, until smooth.
  • Crafting the Filling:
    Preheat oven to 400˚F.
    In a skillet, heat olive oil and cook ground beef until browned. Season with 1 tsp salt and black pepper.
    Add onions and garlic, cooking until softened.
    Sprinkle flour over the mixture, stirring until incorporated.
    Deglaze the pan with red wine, then add broth, tomato paste, and Worcestershire sauce.
    Stir in frozen vegetables, seasoning with remaining salt and pepper. Simmer until slightly thickened.
  • Assembling the Pie:
    Transfer the filling to a pie dish or casserole.
    Top with mashed potatoes, spreading them evenly.
    Brush melted butter over the potatoes.
    Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden.
    Garnish with chopped parsley or chives before serving.

Nutrition Facts

  • Calories: 403kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 30g
  • Protein: 17g
  • Fat: 23g

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