Shepherd's Pie


This shepherd's pie is a comforting casserole of savory ground beef stew, topped with a layer of cheesy mashed potato that's guaranteed to satisfy even the pickiest of eaters. Plus, it's a great way to sneak some extra veggies into dinner!

Prep Time:
30 mins
Cook Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
50 mins
1 (2 quart) casserole

Shepherd's pie is the ultimate all-in-one dish. It's got everything you could ask for in a meal: hearty meat, starchy potatoes, colorful veggies, and gooey cheese. It's no wonder why the Allrecipes community has given this recipe over 1,500 5-star reviews.

This shepherd's pie comes together in less than an hour and it's sure to be your new favorite casserole.

high angle, close up on a large serving of Shepherd's pie on a plate.

Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

What Is Shepherd's Pie?

Shepherd's pie is a comfort food casserole that originated in England. It's traditionally made with minced meat (usually ground lamb), gravy, vegetables, and mashed potatoes.

You may also hear it called "cottage pie." The two terms are used interchangeably, but technically traditional shepherd's pie is made with ground lamb and traditional cottage pie is made with ground beef.

Shepherd's Pie Ingredients

Shepherd's pie is made with fairly simple ingredients. Here's what you'll need:

Ground Beef
You could also ground lamb if you prefer.

Mashed Potatoes
Use starchy potatoes (like russet or Yukon Gold) for the best mashed potatoes. The mashed potatoes are also made with butter, onion, and Cheddar cheese.

This shepherd's pie includes carrots and onions.

All-purpose flour will thicken the beef gravy.

Ketchup will add a little tang to the ground beef mixture.

Beef Broth
Beef broth creates a gravy-like consistency in the middle.

Top the shepherd's pie with extra Cheddar for a cheesy finish.

How to Make Shepherd's Pie

Shepherd's pie may seem complicated, but it's actually quite simple to make. You'll find the full, step-by-step recipe below — but here's what you can expect when making this top-rated recipe:

Make the Mashed Potatoes

Boil the potatoes until tender, but still slightly firm. Mash the potatoes and mix in the butter, cheese, and onion. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Make the Carrots

Boil the carrots until tender, but still slightly firm. Mash the carrots.

Make the Meat

Cook the onions and ground beef until the onions are clear and the beef is browned. Drain the fat, then add flour, ketchup, and beef broth. Simmer the mixture for 5 minutes.

Assemble and Bake

In a casserole dish, add the ground beef mixture. Next add the carrots, then the mashed potatoes. Finally, top the casserole with cheese and bake until golden brown.

Learn more: How To Make Shepherd's Pie

What Goes With Shepherd's Pie?

One of the best parts about shepherd's pie? It's so hearty that it doesn't really need a side dish. However, if you can't go without a side (or two), we recommend serving this shepherd's pie with a light partner. Try a side salad or a vegetable side dish.

How to Store Shepherd's Pie

Store shepherd's pie in an airtight container in the fridge for up to five days. Reheat in the oven or microwave until warmed through.

How to Freeze Shepherd's Pie

Wrap the completely cooled shepherd's pie (baking dish and all) in a layer of storage wrap then a layer of aluminum foil. It's probably easier to bake the shepherd's pie in a disposable foil baking dish for easy freezing. Store the entire baking dish in the freezer for up to three months.

Defrost in the fridge overnight, then reheat in the oven until warmed through.

Allrecipes Community Tips and Praise

"Outstanding! I am British and have been making Shepherd's Pie for years. This is a very savory recipe and I followed it to the letter. Next time I will throw in mushrooms, corn and perhaps additional veggies. The mashed carrots are a great touch! This will be a staple in my house," raves AnimalCrackers.

"This is great. Leftovers are good and I even had some to freeze for later. I added corn to the meat mixture. It would be good with any other veggies on hand as well," says one Allrecipes community member.

"My whole family likes this! It's a great comfort food or rainy night dinner. I added a little Worcestershire sauce to the meat after draining it, and I added a little milk to the mashed potatoes. I also didn't mash the carrots; I just boiled them and layered them on top of the ground beef. Came out great," according to Amy Jarvis.

Editorial contributions by Bailey Fink


  • 4 large potatoes, peeled and cubed

  • 1 tablespoon butter

  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped onion

  • ¼ cup shredded Cheddar cheese

  • salt and pepper to taste

  • 5 carrots, chopped

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 1 pound lean ground beef

  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1 tablespoon ketchup

  • ¾ cup beef broth

  • ¼ cup shredded Cheddar cheese


  1. Gather all ingredients.

    All ingredients gathered to make Shepherd's pie.

    Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes. Drain and mash. Mix in butter, finely chopped onion and 1/4 cup shredded cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste; set aside.

    Potatoes cooked until tender, then mashed.

    Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

  3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add carrots and cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes. Drain, mash and set aside. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C.)

  4. Heat oil in a large frying pan. Add onion and cook until clear. Add ground beef and cook until well browned. Pour off excess fat, then stir in flour and cook 1 minute. Add ketchup and beef broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

    Ground beef and onion cooked until browned.

    Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

  5. Spread the ground beef in an even layer on the bottom of a 2 quart casserole dish. Next, spread a layer of mashed carrots. Top with the mashed potato mixture and sprinkle with remaining shredded cheese.

    Layering of ground beef, mashed carrots and then mashed potatoes.

    Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

  6. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

452 Calories
17g Fat
53g Carbs
23g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 452
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 17g 22%
Saturated Fat 7g 37%
Cholesterol 65mg 22%
Sodium 295mg 13%
Total Carbohydrate 53g 19%
Dietary Fiber 7g 26%
Total Sugars 6g
Protein 23g
Vitamin C 53mg 267%
Calcium 128mg 10%
Iron 4mg 21%
Potassium 1443mg 31%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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