• 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, finely diced
  • 2 stalks celery, finely diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground paprika
  • ground black pepper , to taste
  • 2 tablespoons white flour
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup red wine
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely chopped thyme
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped rosemary
  • 4 cups mashed potatoes, (click for my recipe and you'll have some leftovers to sneak during cooking)
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese


  1. Brown meat and vegetables: Heat the oil over medium high heat in a large, deep skillet. Add the beef and cook until browned and all the meat juices have evaporated. Add the garlic, onions, carrots and celery and continue cooking until the veggies are starting to soften.
  2. Season: Sprinkle the salt, paprika, pepper and flour over the pan. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring often. Stir in the tomato paste and cook, stirring all the time, until it smells roasted (about 1 minute).
  3. Deglaze the pan: Pour the red wine over the meat and veggies, scratching the browned bits off the bottom. Bring to a boil and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated. Add the broth and simmer for 4-5 minutes, or until a thick gravy has formed.
  4. Finish the filling: Stir in the peas and herbs. Check for seasoning, then spread in a 7x11 baking dish and set aside until cooled.
  5. Prep mash: In the meantime, make your favorite mashed potatoes. You need about 4 cups of mash to top off the casserole. About 1.5 pounds of peeled potatoes should yield enough.
  6. Bake pie: Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Spread the mashed potatoes over the cold filling. (Be careful not to mix up the two.) Sprinkle with the cheese. Bake at 400°F for 20 minutes or until golden.


Assemble the entire pie as directed in the recipe, right up to the finally baking step.

Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days, then bake at 400°F for 30-40 minutes, or until the filling is bubbly and the top is golden.

Prepare as directed in the recipe, right up to the final baking step. Wrap well with foil and then aluminum foil. Label and freeze for up to 2 months.

To reheat: No need to defrost! Remove both foils, then replace the aluminum foil. Bake at 400°F with the foil on for 1 hour. Remove the foil and bake for another 10 minutes, until browned.


Don't be scared of adding some color:

Make sure to brown the meat and vegetables well for the most intense flavors

Do not skip cooling the filling:

This is how you keep the layers in shepherd's pie from mixing; depending on the dish and the room temperature, cool it for 15-30 minutes (sometimes I put mine outside in the winter, it's cold in 15 minutes!)

Ingredient Substitutes:

For a gluten-free friendly version, use cornstarch in place of the flour. Be sure to check all of your ingredients to make sure they're gluten free (especially the beef broth! you can use water if you don't have any).

If you don’t like peas, it’s also delicious with chopped green beans.

I hear people make this low carb by using mashed cauliflower they whisk together with 1 egg yolk in place of the mashed potatoes. I love my potatoes, but your call 😉

You can also make this vegetarian by using 2 cups of cooked, brown lentils in place of the ground beef and vegetable broth in place of the beef broth.

This article adapted from this site