Dinner tonight: shepherd’s pie recipe

Dinner tonight: shepherd’s pie recipe

Shepherd’s pie is traditionally made with lamb (shepherds really did make it!), but ground beef is a popular alternative. To give the beef more oomph, add ground mustard in the mix. A little horseradish brightens things up, too.

Dinner tonight: shepherd’s pie recipe
Dinner tonight: shepherd’s pie recipe

Shepherd’s pie

Prep time 20 min

Cook time 1 hr


  • 8 potatoes (1 kg/2 lb), peeled and cubed
  • 500 g (1 lb) ground beef
  • 175 ml (3/4 c) chopped onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 45 ml (3 tbsp) vegetable oil, divided
  • 100 g (1 c) chopped fresh mushrooms
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) tomato paste
  • 125 ml (1/2 c) beef broth
  • 10 ml (2 tsp) prepared horseradish
  • 5 ml (1 tsp) ground mustard
  • 7 ml (1 1/2 tsp) salt, divided
  • 1 ml (1/4 tsp) freshly ground black pepper
  • 125 ml (1/2 c) seeded and diced green pepper
  • 125 ml (1/2 c) seeded and diced red pepper
  • 75 ml (1/3 c) milk
  • 125 g (1 c/4 oz) shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 egg whites

Preparation instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F). Grease an 27 x 18-centimetre (11 x seven-inch) baking pan.
  2. Cook the potatoes in boiling salted water until tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain, then transfer to a large bowl.
  3. In a large nonstick skillet, brown the beef, onion and garlic in 30 millilitres (two tablespoons) of the oil. Add the mushrooms. Cook and stir until the mushrooms begin to release their juice, three minutes; drain.
  4. Place the tomato paste in a small bowl. Gradually whisk in the broth until smooth. Stir in the horseradish, mustard, five millilitres (one teaspoon) of the salt and the pepper. Add to the meat mixture. Pour into the baking pan and set aside.
  5. In the same skillet, sauté the peppers in the remaining oil until tender, about three minutes. Drain and spoon over the meat mixture.
  6. Warm the milk in the microwave for 30 seconds. Add it to the potatoes, along with the cheese and the remaining salt.
  7. Beat the egg whites in a small bowl until stiff peaks form. Gently fold them into the potatoes. Spoon over the peppers. Bake, uncovered, for 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to 180°C (350°F) and bake until bubbly, about 20 minutes longer.

One more notch!

  • For a richer potato topping, use heavy cream instead of milk.
  • You can also save the egg yolks and mix them into the potatoes along with the cheese and salt.

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