Looking to fix up an Irish-inspired meal to go along with your Guinness and whiskey this St. Patrick’s Day? Shepherd’s Pie is an easy choice you can whip up for you and your family that only requires minor cooking skills and a single trip to the grocery store.
Here Are the Ingredients You’ll Need
For the potatoes:
-2 pounds of potatoes (Your choice on the kind, but we prefer red. If you’re inspired and want to put a twist on the traditional meal, try sweet!)
-1/4 cup half and half
-1 egg (yolk only)
-1 tablespoon of butter
-1/2 teaspoon of salt
For the filling:
-1.5 pounds of lean ground beef (Want it even leaner? Try it with ground turkey or chicken. Beef, however, is the traditional choice.)
-2 medium carrots, peeled, cut in half, sliced (You’ll need about a cup.)
-1 cup of pearl (or diced) onions (Pearl onions creep me out, so I dice or mince mine. Again—whatever you prefer.)
-2 tablespoons of flour
-1 cup beef broth
-1 14.5-ounce can of diced tomatoes
-1 tablespoon tomato paste
-2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
-1 cup French-cut green beans (You can also substitute diced celery or even peas for this. Or do both. All of the above? Go green. ‘Tis the season.)
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-1/4 teaspoon pepper
Easy Step-by-Step Directions
Pre-heat your oven to 400ºF. Spray a casserole dish (at least three quart) with cooking spray and set it aside.
Place the potatoes into a pot and fill it with water. Bring it to a boil, and continue to cook over medium-low heat for 10-15 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Drain them.
Mix the half & half, egg yolk, 1 tablespoon butter, and salt in the same saucepan. Cook over medium heat until the butter is melted. Add the potatoes and beat them until they’re fluffy and happy. Set them aside. Your Shepherd’s Pie topping is complete!
Cook the carrots, onions, celery (if included), and ground meat of choice in a non-stick pan. Cook over medium heat until the meat is browned. Drain the fat. Sprinkle your mixture with flour and cook for five more minutes. Add all the remaining ingredients except the salt and pepper. Cook the mixture until it just about comes to a boil. Continue cooking 5-7 minutes or until mixture thickens. Stir in the remaining salt and pepper and continue cooking 1 minute or until heated.
Pour meat mixture into your casserole dish. Spoon mashed potatoes on top of the meat mixture. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the potatoes are golden brown and the dish bubbles along the edges.
You can add variations to this recipe depending on your family’s eating or dietary habits. Instead of potatoes for the topping, you can use cauliflower for a low-carb option. Simply steam the cauliflower head to cook it, then use an immersion blender or food processor to mash it down. You can add garlic, spices, salt, and pepper to your liking. Use the veggie-based topper in lieu of the potatoes.
As mentioned above, you can also swap out turkey or chicken for the beef in case you don’t eat red meat or simply want a low-fat option.
You can also try this vegetarian option which incorporates shiitake mushrooms and lentils. Happy eating!