Shepherd’s Pie With Cheese

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Cheesy Beef Shepherds Pie

Shepherds Pie With a Cheese Champ Topping Recipe

Minutes Prep Time: 20

  • 4 medium baking potatoes , peeled

  • PAM® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray

  • 1 pound ground round beef

  • 1 small onion, chopped

  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1-1/2 cups Birds Eye® Mixed Vegetables

  • 2 tablespoons Hunt’s® Tomato Paste

  • 1 cup lower sodium beef broth

  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

  • 3 tablespoons butter

  • 1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

Why This Recipe Works:

This recipe is the perfect St. Paddys Day meal that your family is guaranteed to love. Shepherd’s Pie is the epitome of comfort foods, made completely from scratch and topped with mashed potatoes.

When creating this I wanted to put a fun little spin on the traditional meal. Adding a Guinness Stout to deglaze the pan and mixing in some extra sharp shredded Irish cheddar cheese gives this delicious dinner an additional Irish spin.

How To Make Shepherds Pie

  • Sauté some chopped onions in olive oil.
  • Add ground beef or ground lamb.
  • Add dried parsley, dried thyme, dried rosemary, salt, and pepper.
  • Stir and cook the meat mixture until the meat is browned.
  • Add minced garlic and Worcestershire sauce.
  • Cook the garlic for a minute.
  • Add flour and tomato paste.
  • Add beef broth, frozen mixed peas and carrots, and frozen corn kernels.
  • Simmer the meat gravy until it is thick.
  • Boil some peeled and chopped potatoes until they are soft.
  • Drain the potatoes
  • Add butter, half & half, parmesan cheese, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  • Mash the potatoes until smooth.
  • Pour the meat mixture into a casserole dish.
  • Top it with the cheesy mashed potatoes.
  • Bake until the meat is bubbling and the potatoes are golden.

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Cheddar Topped Shepherds Pie

This recipe is a family favorite!

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  • Cheddar Topped Shepherds Pie has a hearty, meat filling with a cheddar mashed potato topping. Super delicious!

    Weve been updating some of our favorite recipes and this Cheddar Topped Shepherds Pie recipe was our second post ever published here on A Family Feast.

    Its the perfect recipe to make anytime you are looking for some hearty and delicious comfort food! This cheddar topped shepherds pie is very filling, and this recipe makes a generous amount so its great for feeding a small crowd or to have for leftovers the day after!

    This recipe uses carrots rather than the version of shepherds pie that I grew up with that included corn in the filling. I personally think the earthiness of the carrots makes this taste so much better, and its the perfect complement to the savory beef and the rich, cheddar-potato topping!

    The recipe was adapted from one that originally appeared in we tweaked the proportions of vegetables and cheese a bit and also added in more seasonings to really enhance the flavor of the meat and vegetable mixture to our liking.

    We strongly recommend that you use block white cheddar and not the pre-shredded cheddar which seemed to make this recipe a little greasy when we made it for the first time.

    This recipe was originally published on A Family Feast in October 2012. The photos and recipe have been updated.

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    Fresh Or Frozen Vegetables


    Im all about using frozen vegetables for this recipe because theyre fast, easy, and you can keep them on hand in your freezer without them going bad. My grocery store didnt have the frozen pea and carrot mix this particular day, so I chopped up one large fresh carrot to use in place of the frozen. Whether you use fresh, frozen, or a mix of both, just make sure you have about 3 cups of vegetables total.

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    How To Make Cottage Pie Step By Step Photos

    Peel and cube about 2.5 lbs. russet potatoes into 1-inch pieces. Rinse them briefly with cool water in a colander, then add them to a large pot and add enough water to cover the potatoes. Add 1/2 tsp salt, place a lid on the pot, and bring it up to a boil over high heat. Boil the potatoes until they are very tender, about 7-10 minutes.

    Once the potatoes are tender, drain them in a colander and rinse them briefly a second time with hot water. Let them drain in the colander. While the potatoes are draining, add 2 Tbsp butter and 1/2 cup milk to the pot you just used. Heat them over low until the butter is melted and the milk is hot. Add the drained potatoes back to the pot and mash until smooth . Taste and add more salt if needed. I added 1/2 tsp salt.

    Finally, stir in 4 oz. shredded cheddar. Its okay if the cheddar doesnt fully melt. Set the mashed potatoes aside until youre ready to assemble the cottage pie. Placing the lid back on top will help them keep warm.

    While the potatoes are cooking you can begin the filling. Also begin to preheat the oven to 350ºF. Dice a yellow onion and mince two cloves of garlic. Add both to a large skillet along with 2 Tbsp olive oil. Sauté over medium until the onions are soft and translucent. Add the ground beef and continue to sauté until the beef is cooked through.

    Once the gravy has thickened, add 2 cups frozen peas and carrots , 1 cup frozen corn, 1/2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce, 1 tsp dried rosemary, and 1/2 tsp dried thyme.

    Perfect Make Ahead Meal

    Simple shepherds pie is perfect for meal prep because all of the elements can be made ahead of time. A win for busy moms everywhere!

    The mashed potatoes can be prepared up to three days before and refrigerated.

    The meat mixture can also be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for a couple of days.

    And of course you can assemble the entire casserole, cover and chill it until you are ready to bake it. Just keep in mind that if it is cold, the cooking time will be much longer.

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    What Type Of Potatoes Are Best For Shepherd’s Pie

    The general consensus is that russet potatoes are the best potatoes for shepherd’s pie. Basically, you just want a potato that’s good for mashing. Honestly, you can use cauliflower if you want , it’s just based on preference. Or, purchase already made potatoes in the deli section of your grocery store.

    To Prepare The Filling:

    How to Make Homemade Shepherd’s Pie with CHEESE!! | RECIPE
    • Chop the vegetables.
    • Heat the oil in a heavy pot.
    • Add the meat and vegetables to the pot and cook until the onions are clear, the carrots are tender, and the meat is browned.
    • Add the flour to the mixture and stir until the flour absorbs all the drippings. This will look a bit pasty. Thats okay, the roux is clinging to the meat and veg, but will dissolve into the beef stock and help thicken the gravy.
    • Stir in the beef stock and spices. Bring to a boil and then allow it to simmer until the gravy has thickened to your liking.
    • Stir in the peas. Theres no need to thaw them if youre using frozen peas.
    • Now the filling is ready.

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    Customize Your Shepherds Pie

    This easy shepherds pie is the ultimate comfort food. Meat, cheese, potatoes? Whats not to love with that combo! It is also is easily customizable to your familys preferences. You can add different vegetables: corn, carrots, peas, green beans, etc. I personally prefer corn and green beans in mine, but when Im in a rush, Ill just use a bag of frozen mixed vegetables.

    You can use instant mashed potatoes or real mashed potatoes with Yukon, Russet, or Sweet Potatoes. The gravy can be made from scratch or made with a gravy packet. The choice is up to you. You can even switch up the cheeses. Some good substitutes are Colby jack, mild cheddar, or a mix of different cheeses .The possibilities are endless!

    Preparing The Mashed Potato For The Shepherds Pie

    Use any potatoes you like. Butter, milk, and the seasoning play the biggest role here. Do not boil the potato to a point where it turns into a soupy mashed potato. When you insert a knife in the potato, and it goes through with minor resistance. Drain the potato completely and add all the ingredients while the potatoes are still hot. Mashed the potatoes until it reaches a spreadable consistency.

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    To Assemble A Shepherds Pie

  • Transfer the Meat Sauce into a pie dish or casserole.
  • Top with scoops of potatoes then spread potatoes evenly over the filling. An ice cream scoop makes this easy.
  • Drizzle with melted butter and bake at 400F for about 30 minutes or until potatoes start to turn golden.
  • Pro Tip: Shepherds Pie can be made ahead which is perfect for the holidays or busy weeknights. See the Make-ahead section below for tips on refrigerating or freezing the pie.

    Ingredients For Shepherds Pie

    Mac n Cheese Ground Beef Shepherds Pie
    • Ground Beef we used lean beef, or you can substitute with ground lamb.
    • Salt and Pepper after several tests, we found this simple seasoning is all that is needed. Thyme and rosemary are commonly added but we found it overpowering in any quantity.
    • Onion we used yellow onion, but you can substitute any variety
    • Garlic aromatic that enhances the sauce
    • All-purpose flour thickens the sauce
    • Red Wine use a dry red wine to add rich flavor. Use any dry red wine such as Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cabernet, or Sauvignon
    • Beef Broth you can use Chicken broth if that is what you have on hand.
    • Tomato paste rounds out the flavor of the sauce
    • Worcestershire sauce adds the umami
    • Frozen vegetables we use a combination of carrots, peas and corn

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    What Is The Difference Between Cottage Pie And Shepherd’s Pie

    Traditional Shepherd’s Pie is made with ground lamb. Most of us make Cottage Pie because, instead of lamb, we use ground beef in our recipe. I think most of us would prefer using ground beef, anyways. So technically, this dish should be called a cheesy COTTAGE pie because of the use of ground beef rather than ground lamb. If we are going by traditional English terms. However, here in the US we mostly use the term shepherd’s pie to refer to most anything with ground meat and a mashed topping.

    Slightly Different Than Traditional

    Traditional pies are made with ground lamb in a savory gravy, mixed vegetables and topped with mashed potatoes.

    The best recipes are seasoned to perfection and transformed into a mouth watering casserole.

    My recipe is pretty traditional except that I used ground beef instead of lamb. I also prefer to cook it in a skillet.

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    The Best Quick & Easy Shepherds Pie Recipe Made With Ground Beef

    If youre looking for cheap and easy dinner recipes for the family, this ground beef and potato casserole recipe is always a hit! Even your picky eaters will love this simple meal. Its also loaded with veggies, so consider it healthy enough to serve often.

    The idea behind a classic shepherds pie is simply to mix ground beef or lamb with a good hearty tomato based sauce and mixed vegetables, top with mashed potatoes in a casserole dish , and then bake until the potatoes and cheese are well browned.

    Cream Cheese Shepherds Pie

    How to Make a Perfect Shepherds Pie/Cottage Pie | Chef Jean-Pierre

    I wasnt introduced to Shepherds Pie until a couple years ago, but I love it! Its a classic comfort food. Its also great one dish meal that makes enough to feed an army.

    Recently, Andrew mentioned that he wanted me to try making a Shepherds Pie. His grandma makes the best ever mashed potatoes with cream cheese, so we decided to try that for the mashed potatoes part.

    The secret to getting amazing filling is using a jar of beef gravy! Ive made Shepherds Pie other ways before and it just didnt turn out as good. This filling combined with the cream cheese mashed potatoes makes this dish so good!

    Andrew and I both agreed that this was the best Shepherds Pie we had ever had! Usually, whenever I make a new dish, we can think of at least a couple things to do next time to make it better. But with this dish, there is nothing I would change! Its definitely going on the regular rotation.

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    What Is Shepherds Pie

    Shepherds Pie is a delicious combo of ground lamb that has been cooked with carrots, sweet green peas and corn in a gravy or sauce. The lamb mixture is then topped with a crust of creamy mashed potatoes.

    This casserole traditionally made with ground lamb. Many people make this recipe with ground beef however, if you use ground beef its actually called Cottage Pie! .Either way, this crustless meat pie is topped creamy mashed potatoes and baked until bubbly.

    Do you put cheese on top of Shepherds Pie? Traditionally, a Shepherds Pie is not topped with cheese, but as you all know, cheese is my love language. You can add a sprinkle of cheddar cheese on top of the mashed potatoes or just brush them with a little bit of butter before baking.

    How Do You Make Shepherds Pie

    Homemade shepherds pie is actually pretty easy to whip up, especially if you have leftover mashed potatoes! There are just a few simple steps:

  • VEGETABLES: If you dont have leftover mashed potatoes, make mashed potatoes from scratch, or use instant mashed potatoes. Chop the onion and celery. Peel and shred the carrot.
  • PREP: Spray a 2 1/2 quart casserole dish with non stick cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • FILLING: In a large skillet, brown ground beef with the onion, celery, and shredded carrot. Drain off any fat. Stir in tomato soup, green beans, and black pepper.
  • Heat through and pour into the prepared casserole dish.
  • TOPPING: Spread the mashed potatoes over the filling. Sprinkle grated cheese evenly over the top.
  • BAKE: Bake at 350° for about 30 minutes, or until hot and bubbly. For gooey cheese, cover with foil before baking. For a crispy cheese topping, bake uncovered.
  • Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. We like to just reheat individual servings in the microwave.


    Oh yum, just look at all those tasty layers!

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    The Mashed Potato Short Cut

    If youre in a hurry and looking to make this recipe a lot faster and easier, you can use store bought mashed potatoes, but keep in mind that it will increase the recipe cost quite a bit. Youll need about 6 cups of prepared mashed potatoes.

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