Classic Shepherd’s Pie Recipe

This classic Shepherd’s Pie recipe is one of our go-to winter meals. With this polar vortex we’re experiencing, I thought this might be a good time to republish. If you look up “comfort food” in the dictionary, you might just find a picture of this Shepherd’s Pie!

This homemade Shepherd's Pie recipe is the ultimate comfort food.

The other night, I was sitting around at about 4pm with a pound of hamburger meat defrosting, and no idea WHAT to do with it. I had some leftover mashed potatoes in the fridge, so I thought, Shepherd’s Pie!

I love Shepherd’s Pie, but for some reason I haven’t made it in years, and I don’t have a tried and true recipe. So I used my good friend, The Google, and I found this Easy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe on Simply Recipes. I printed it out and went to work. I even decided to go ahead and boil fresh potatoes to make sure it would turn out perfectly, and it did. It was probably the best Shepherd’s Pie I’ve ever eaten. Seriously.

The next time I made it, I used 2 pounds of meat rather than the 1-1/2 pounds the recipe called for because we’re rather fond of red meat around here, and besides, I can only seem to buy ground beef in 1-pound portions anymore. I omitted the peas and corn because we didn’t have any, and I diced up some turnip instead. This has become one of our go-to winter meals.

Shepherds Pie Closeup

How good does that look!? I’m telling ya right now, if I had any leftovers, I’d heat ’em up for breakfast.

Shepherds Pie
Recipe Type: Main Dish
Cuisine: Comfort Food
Author: Jo-Lynne Shane
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6
Such a great comfort food dinner for cold winter nights.
  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 cup vegetables (I used diced carrots and turnip)
  • 2 lbs potatoes
  • 8 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Peel and quarter the potatoes, boil in salted water for 20-25 minutes or until tender.
  2. While the potatoes are cooking, melt a half stick of butter in a large frying pan and sauté onions, carrots and turnip in butter until tender.
  3. Add ground beef and sauté until no it’s cooked thru.
  4. Add salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce along with the beef broth and cook, uncovered, over low heat for 10 minutes.
  5. Mash the potatoes in bowl with another 4 TBSP butter, and season to taste.
  6. Place the beef mixture in a baking dish and spread mashed potatoes on top. Don’t worry about making them smooth, some texture allows them to brown nicely.
  7. Cook at 400 degrees for 30 minutes, and serve hot.


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36 Responses

  1. That looks divine, and I have all of the ingredients on-hand! I’ll be making this tomorrow for sure – looks like a perfect dinner to enjoy while cozying up to the fire and watching the snow fall!

  2. YUM!! and I love “The Red Meat” comment 😉 I don’t believe I’ve ever had Shepard’s Pie but this looks good! Might have to slip that into Hubby’s “what to cook” menu plan (yes, I know I am lucky to have a husband who does ALL the cooking after working from 7am-4:30pm everyday-love him!)
    Thanks for the yummy food pictures first thing in the morning lol

  3. Having spent the morning thinking over all my favourite proper home-cooked meals (like mum makes), for my latest blog post, Shepherd’s Pie is without doubt, top of the list! I just love this dish and shop bought NEVER tastes as good as homemade. Your’s looks absolutely divine. And now I’m hungry. And have no hamburger meat to cook. Ugh.

  4. I made shepherd’s pie this week too. The family loves it! I added garlic, chopped mushrooms and bell pepper when cooking the meat/onion/carrots and put canned and drained french style green beans on top of the meat layer. Also, I sprinkled a little cheese over the taters before baking. Comfort food at it’s best that’s a sure winner with the fam…and anyone else who happens to be here!

  5. If you’re planning to make a good Shepherd’s Pie, you must add The Bisto!! Beef broth AND Bisto gravy powder (or granules). It’s a British product, but available in a lot of grocery stores. There are people I cooked meals for 12 years ago who still rave about The Gravy! I fiddle with the preparation directions because we like very rich and very thick gravy!! Go get a box…asap!

    1. Is Bistro gluten -free? I know where I can get it. My husband’s British so if I can’t find it they could send it to me next time they send a car package..lol but Id hate to go through the trouble unless it’s gluten free so many broths and bullion have gluten in them and gluten makes me so ill. Why I love these meals plans, they are all gluten free 🙂

  6. I made Shepard’s Pie when we were snowed in last week. It’s one of DH’s fave comfort foods.
    I do throw a layer of corn between my meat & taters.

  7. Awesome! I needed a new shepherd’s pie recipe because mine is time consuming. I usually make 2 batches at once and freeze one because it takes so long to prepare.

  8. I hadn’t thought about making a Shepherds Pie in ages. Now I know what’s for dinner. Like Melissa stated above I always add cheese on top. I usually use Monterrey and Colby jack cheese sliced real thin like and layered on top, cook until the cheese is all melted. Yep that is so what’s for dinner.

  9. So, I’ve never made Shepherd’s pie before, not sure if I’ve ever eaten it either….but I may be having it for dinner tonight!! thanks for the idea….hubby has been on me to cook more at home….we eat out too much. So he should like this!

  10. OOoh, never made this, but I will surely try it! Sounds like something G. would love. And I am all for another recipe for ground beef; seems like I have a million recipes all for chicken, lol!

  11. Mmmm. I have not made Shepards Pie in ages. What a great idea! Going to have to add this to my Menu Planning Monday next week! Thanks for the rec!

    I just tried a new beef stew recipe this week. Ohmigosh! It was out-of-this-world DELISH!!! (link on blog if you’re interested)

  12. We had shepherd’s pie last night! We actually have 2 recipes we like. This one we have been eating for a while (https://www.agriculturesociety.com/?p=4167) and this one we just tried last night and LOVED (https://heavenlyhomemakers.com/shepherds-pie). And this Mexican Shepherd’s pie is on the menu for next week (https://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/mexican-shepherds-pie/59db6e97-287a-477e-b594-4c7c3df831e2?WT.dcsvid=NDEyNjEyMjIyNQS2&rvrin=8A5F47AE-99C7-4385-BB1F-49E38250F1D5&WT.mc_id=Newsletter_DME_01_02_2011) (Wow, that’s a long URL).

    I LOVE shepherd’s pie!

  13. I think I have a lonely pound of ground beef in the freezer. Or maybe not, I have this feeling that I did indeed use it awhile ago and now I’m disappointed. Well, if I do have it still this will be dinner around these parts tonight. Hopefully it’ll be better than the should have been yummy but the crust was under done pizza of last night.

  14. I made “The” shepherd’s pie last night too! No recipe…but it came out pretty good. We are just starting our healthy eating journey, so this is the first time I actually made the mashed potatoes for this myself. :0)

  15. Not so much a beef eater, but hmmm. Subbing in ground turkey. Now there’s an idea. And definitely adding the cheese on top.

    So, quick question on the thawing thing. I always thaw my chicken breasts in water in the fridge. They thaw so much faster that way. Can you think of any reason why that wouldn’t be okay? Just curious because it seems there’s usually something wrong with the fastest way to do things.

  16. Looks absolutely delicious! How do you get the potatoes to brown? Mine get like a toasted texture, but never really brown like yours. Is it your butter content or the peaks maybe?

    1. Not sure, I think it was the peaks b/c the second time I made it, they were smoother, less peaks, and didn’t brown up as well. You can always broil for a few min to get them to brown too.

  17. We are very much red meat eaters so I will probably bump up the meat quantity too! I can’t think WHEN last I made Shepherd’s Pie, so this is definitely one to make soon, before winter disappears! Thanks for sharing this delicious recipe with us!

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