How To Make Shepherds Pie:
To make this Irish shepherds pie recipe, simply:
How Long To Boil Eggs For Deviled Eggs:
- Fill a large pot 3/4 full of water.
- Place the pot over high heat until the water comes to a rolling boil. This can take between 7-12 minutes, depending on the size of your pot and how much water you use. To speed things up, I use hot tap water and keep the lid on the pot until the water is boiling.
- Carefully and gently add the desired amount of large eggs to the boiling water. A mesh strainer works well for gently lowering more than one egg at a time into the hot water.
- Boil the eggs for 13-14 minutes. Adjust the heat as necessary so that the water doesnt boil over.
- Remove the pot from the heat. Drain the hot water from the pot while keeping the eggs in the pot. You could use the lid of the pot or a strainer to help keep the eggs in the pot as you drain the hot water.
- Add cold water to the pot until the eggs are covered in cold water. Pour that water out. Repeat with more cold water.
- Add 2 cups of ice to the pot. Gently stir the eggs. If the ice melts, add more until the water stays ice cold.
- Let the eggs rest in the ice cold water for 5 minutes.
- Remove the eggs from the cold water. Store in the refrigerator for up to a week until you are ready to use them.
- Gently crack the egg shells and peel the eggs.
To Make The Mashed Potatoes:
- Add potatoes to pot with water: Place potatoes in a medium pot or large saucepan. Cover with water by 1-inch and season water with salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Cook potatoes until tender: Let gently boil until potatoes are fully tender when pierced with a fork, about 10 15 minutes. Drain in a colander and rinse under hot water for about 5 seconds to remove excess starches .
- Rice Potatoes: Drain potatoes then pass through a food mill or potato ricer into same pot .
- Stir with liquid ingredients: Melt 5 Tbsp butter and add to potatoes along with half and half and sour cream. Stir just to combine while seasoning with salt to taste. Cover and set aside if filling isnt yet complete.
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How To Make The Filling
What Vegetables Go In Shepherd’s Pie
The most traditional vegetables you will find in this dish are carrots, peas, and onions. That isn’t the only mixture that is known, and our family loves the addition of some corn. Below are some other vegetables that I have seen in a cottage or shepherd’s pie and know are still considered pretty true to original flavors.
- Shredded cabbage
If you want to stick with a truly authentic meal, these are the ones you should turn toward. For families that have different vegetable preferences, use whatever you wish. It’s my opinion that while there are some things that I would use, cooking is truly personal experience. Turn this recipe into one that fits your needs and it will be a masterpiece you prefer.
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Easy Shepherds Pie Variations:
Want to customize your shepherds pie recipe? Feel free to:
- Make it vegetarian. To make a vegetarian shepherds pie, just omit the meat and double the amount of mushrooms. And of course, use veggie stock instead of beef stock, and vegan Worcestershire sauce .
- Make it vegan. Do the above, plus use vegan butter, milk and cream cheese in your mashed potatoes.
- Make it gluten-free. Nix the flour and whisk 1.5 tablespoons cornstarch together with the stock before adding it to the sauce. Also be sure to double-check, as always, that all of your other ingredients are certified GF.
- Use sweet potatoes: For an amazing sweet+savory combo, feel free to use sweet potatoes instead of Russets or Yukon golds in your mashed potatoes. So good!!!
To Make Beef Filling :
- Saute veggies: Melt remaining 1 Tbsp butter in a 12-inch cast iron skillet. Add onion, carrots, celery and saute until nearly soft, about6 minutes. Add garlic and saute 1 minute longer.
- Cook beef: Add ground beef in chunks and cook and break up beef until no longer pink, about 6 minutes. If you find theres lots of excess fat then dab some up using balled up paper towels held by tongs .
- Add thickeners: Add flour and tomato paste and saute 1 minute.
- Pour in liquids, let reduce: Pour in red wine, beef broth, Worcestershire, thyme and rosemary. Bring to a simmer stirring frequently. Reduce heat to low and let simmer until reduced by about 2/3 , about 8 10 minutes.
- Add remaining greens: Stir in peas and parsley and heat through, about 1 minute. Season filling with salt and pepper to taste.
- Assemble shepherds pie: Spread beef filling into an even layer. Dollop spoonfuls of mashed potatoes evenly over top then spread into an even layer .
- Run a fork along top in rows to create a wavy pattern.
- Bake: Move oven rack about 5-inches below broiler and preheat broiler to high. Transfer to oven and let broil until golden brown on top about 4 6 minutes .
- Rest: Let rest a few minutes before serving. Garnish with parsley if desired.
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Cottage Pie Vs Shepherds Pie And Cumberland Pie
If youve been wondering what third traditional British pie is very similar to Shepherds Pie and Cottage Pie, then the wait is over. Cumberland Pie is essentially an extended variation of Cottage Pie and Shepherds Pie, except it has the addition of grated cheese and breadcrumbs to the mashed potato topping. Incredible.
How To Freeze Healthy Shepherds Pie
Once the shepherds pie is baked, cool completely and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Place it in the freezer until fairly firm, about two hours. Then, cover tightly with plastic wrap, followed by aluminum foil. Mark the date on the outside and store in the freezer for up to two months.
When ready to serve, remove the foil and plastic wrap. Use the foil you just removed to loosely cover the pie. Make sure that your casserole dish can go straight from freezer to oven if not, set the casserole in the oven while the oven preheats so that the dish warms slowly.
Bake the casserole for an hour, or until the pie is hot all the way through. Remove the foil for the last 15 minutes to allow the top to brown.
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Why Would I Ever Make Shepherds Pie From Scratch
Ill tell you why: Frozen Shepherds Pie tastes like cat food compared to this.
Yes, my Shepherds Pie may LOOK like cat food, but I assure you its delicious! My middle daughter had seconds, my oldest daughter had thirds, and my husband ate all that was remaining later that night.
New Cookbook: The Ultimate Instant Pot Cookbook
This is absolutely my new favorite way to make Shepherd’s Pie, but there are plenty more recipes in this book that I’m excited to try.
I’ve actually already made the Sweet Potatoes Stuffed With Black Beans and Quinoa. Verdict: phenomenal. I love having this easy, meat-free meal in my back pocket.
A few that are next on my list:
- French Toast Casserole
- Hoisin-Glazed Spareribs
- Caramelized Onion Dip
Coco sprinkles her recipes with useful tips and suggestions for substitutions, which are all very useful for cooks like me who employ a mix of roughly 80% “follow the recipe” and 20% “wing it.”
Reading through the book, I also appreciate how straightforward and approachable all the recipes feel — though of course, this shouldn’t come as a surprise since this is why I love featuring her recipes here on Simply Recipes as well! With its mix of basic recipes and recipes to make for dinner, I think this book would be a good one for new Instant Pot users and die-hard fans alike.
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How This Pie Is Different From Traditional Shepherds Pie
The shepherds pie of my upbringing features a hefty portion of meat, with vegetables playing a supporting role, and a thick topping of buttery mashed potatoes. My updated version bumps up the ratio of vegetables to meat and calls for extra-lean ground beef, which is the leanest option in the butcher case.
For the mashed potatoes, the recipe swaps in olive oil for butter, which means more heart-healthy fats in every bite. The sum total of these swaps is a lighter dish with no shortcuts on flavor.
Nicky Perrys Beef Shepherds Pie
- 2 pounds ground beef
- 2 cups crushed tomatoes
- 1 ¼ cups beef stock
- 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 3 tablespoons herbs de Provence
- 3-4 bay leaves
- 3-4 medium carrots, chopped
- 1 cup frozen peas
- FOR THE MASHED POTATOES:
- 4-5 large potatoes
- 3 tablespoons butter
- Grated sharp cheddar cheese
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Can I Use Instant Potatoes Instead Of Fresh Mashed
The purist in me says, “please, no!”. That said, you can definitely use instant mashed potatoes in a pinch. I don’t personally like the flavor, even when “doctored up” as my husband would say. Instant potatoes are a hard no from me, but that doesn’t mean they are for others.
Freshly made mashed potatoes are so easy to whip up that I don’t see the need for a substitute, but again, do what works best for you and your family.
Cook The Ground Lamb Meat Or ‘mince’
Bring a large cast iron skillet, skillet, or frying pan to high heat with two tablespoons of olive oil. *If you like lamb meat, but want to take the ‘lamb’ flavor down a notch, try a drizzle of sesame seed oil.
The oil should be shimmering and just beginning to smoke when it is fully heated. Add the ground lamb meat to the skillet, and spread it in a thin layer over the bottom of the pan. *Your lamb meat will brown and crisp better if it has set out for about 30 minutes prior to cooking so that it is closer to room temperature when starting the cooking process.
Let the meat cook until browned and crisped on the underside. Then split the pan into portions that you can easily flip and turn them so that the topside is now facing downward and getting browned too.
When the bottom side has browned and crisped, break apart the lamb meat and season with 1 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Add the grated or finely chopped onion, minced garlic, and grated carrot. Stir into the ground lamb and cook for 2 – 4 minutes, or until the onion is softened.
Pour the Worcestershire sauce into the pan along with tomato puree and stir to combine. Add the red wine, thyme, and rosemary. Stir to combine and cook until most of the wine has evaporated off.
Stir in the chicken broth or stock and cook for 3 – 4 minutes, then remove from heat. Set aside.
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What Is Shepherds Pie
Originating from the early 1800s, shepherds pie is a traditional Irish recipe. Its a hearty dish where women had to get creative with leftovers. Similar to how we create leftover casseroles today!
The basic structure is having a savory minced lamb filling topped with a layer of mashed potatoes. The filling is usually simmered with onions, carrots, celery, and peas.
Sounds like a cottage pie right? Except, cottage pie uses beef and shepherds pie uses lamb or mutton. So when you eat a Shepherds pie in the US that swaps ground beef for lamb, thats truly a cottage pie, not a Shepherds pie. Oh, semantics.
If you dont eat a lot of lamb, I say give this traditional version a try. I think youll love it! But no matter which type of meat you choose, this is true comfort food that will warm you from the inside out during the winter months.