Our Top 12 Shepherd's Pie Recipes

Paleo Shepherd's Pie served out of a red casserole dish
Photo: Bibi

These shepherd's pie recipes run the range from the traditional (featuring ground or minced lamb) to the modestly modified (ground beef instead of lamb) to the more modern and experimental (vegan or paleo shepherd's pies). You can't go wrong with any of these savory one-pot comfort-food casseroles, complete meals that also feature veggies, a savory gravy, and a mashed potato (or a surprise) topping. Along with the recipes, we'll also feature some top tips from the Allrecipes community for making the best shepherd's pies yet.

01 of 13

Sophie's Shepherds Pie

Sophie's Shepherds Pie in blue Dutch oven

Let's start with a traditional take, made with lamb mince! "It's so cheap, quick, and easy to make. This is a 'larder cupboard' recipe, which means you can substitute for whatever you have handy in the cupboard," says SophieScott.

02 of 13

Chef John's Irish Shepherd's Pie

Chef John's Irish Shepherd's Pie on a blue plate
Ryan Harris

A shepherd's pie with just a wee touch of an Irish twist. This one's made the traditional way with ground lamb but features shredded Irish Cheddar cheese (like Dubliner by Kerrygold) mixed into the creamy mashed potato topping. To top the pie with mashed potatoes, Chef John recommends laying down several large spoonfuls of potatoes on the meat mixture, instead of placing one giant dollop of mashed potatoes in the center and spreading it out with a spatula.

03 of 13

A Scotsman's Shepherd Pie

A Scotsman's Shepherd Pie on a white plate
Katie Ogletree

Before we move on from the British Isles, let's give one last crack to a Scotsman: "Yes, shepherd's pie is predominantly thought of as Irish or British," says Larry Short. "But since I'm Scottish, I thought I'd give it a unique twist to suit my ancestral tastes. The use of lamb, the smoky, heather taste of Guinness Draught (Irish, I admit), and the topping of sharp Cheddar and smoked paprika give this version its unique, smoky-sweet flavor."

04 of 13

Moroccan Shepherd's Pie

Moroccan Shepherd's Pie in a white dish
David Rawlings

And we're off to Northern Africa! This shepherd's pie features the traditional minced lamb, but from there the recipe takes things in a sweet-and-savory direction. "This is a Moroccan take on shepherd's pie," says Maryam. "With lamb and turmeric simmered with cinnamon, raisins, and sweet potato. This dish also looks pleasant and each happy eater gets their own ramekin!" You can also take a cue from reviewer KMax3050 who used a Moroccan spice mix called Ras al Hanout instead of the (very similar) spices this recipe calls for.

05 of 13

Zippy Shepherd's Pie

Zippy Shepherd's Pie on a white plate
Rock_lobster

With this top-rated recipe, we're heading into ground beef territory. Things get kind of zippy with mild curry powder as an ingredient -- add more or less curry as you like. "The ground beef mixture can be made ahead and frozen," says LAURA BELA. "You can substitute instant potatoes for the real thing if you're in a hurry."

06 of 13

Shepherd's Pie VI

Shepherd's Pie VI on a white plate
JustBeachy07

An easy ground beef-based shepherd's pie with veggies in homemade gravy, topped with Cheddar cheese mashed potatoes. "For something a little different, add cooked barley to the meat mixture," suggests Jacquie.

07 of 13

Paleo Shepherd's Pie

Paleo Shepherd's Pie served out of a red casserole dish
Bibi

What makes it paleo? "This shepherd's pie uses coconut oil and cauliflower mash in lieu of potatoes," explains Lora. "I used grass-fed ground beef. Make the filling early in the day and refrigerate it so that all the spices soak into the beef."

08 of 13

Vegan Shepherd's Pie with Sweet Potato

Two servings of Vegan Shepherd's Pie with Sweet Potato on a floral tablecloth
MyNutriCounter

From lamb to beef to totally meatless. "This vegan shepherd's pie is comforting, healthy, delicious, and really easy to make," says MyNutriCounter. "You can also make it in batches to freeze and serve when you don't have much time to cook. We used lentils to make ours, but you could use chickpeas instead if you'd prefer. Serve with fresh cilantro if desired."

09 of 13

Instant Pot® Shepherd's Pie

Instant Pot® Shepherd's Pie
fabeverydayblog

"Shepherd's, cottage, meat and potato Pie — call it what you want, it's really good! I added mushrooms and zucchini. Still don't care what it's called. It's easy, a great use of the Instant Pot, and delicious," reviewer Vicki Page says.

10 of 13

Traditional Shepherd's Pie

Traditional Shepherd's Pie
Allrecipes

"This rich and meaty classic shepherd's pie is made with a mixture of lamb and sirloin and topped with a creamy, cheesy mashed potato topping," says NicoleMcmom.

11 of 13

Chef John's Shepherd's Pie

Chef John's Shepherd's Pie
fabeveryday

Chef John uses lean ground beef and beef broth for this popular version. "Shepherd's Pie recipes are traditionally done with lamb, but are great with any ground meat--turkey and beef being the most popular modern versions," says Chef John. "Give this great casserole a try, and watch everyone flock to the table."

12 of 13

Autumn Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie

Autumn Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie in a white dish
Angela Sackett Superhotmama

Sweet potatoes, canned pumpkin, and cinnamon give this take on shepherd's pie its comforting fall flavor. "Was an absolute hit at my house tonight. Wanted to try something new and this was it! Super easy to make and absolutely delicious," reviewer chrisabruzzio says. "The flavors are terrific and compliment each other well. I will definitely be making this again a new fall favorite!"

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