The Best Shepherd’s Pie. Ever.


The Best Shepherd’s Pie. Ever. is incredibly hearty, with beef and vegetables cooked in a savory gravy, topped with creamy mashed potatoes — the ultimate comfort food!


Top o’ the evenin’ to ya’!

That’s my happy St. Patrick’s Day greeting. ;)

Ben and I were going to hit up an all-you-can-eat St. Paddy’s Day buffet at Hy-Vee tonight (unlimited Reubens & corned beef?!) but I thought nah, lets keep it homemade with Irish Shepherd’s Pie! 

I was kind of annoyed with myself for choosing to make this classic meat pie, originally known as Cottage Pie back in the 1790s, instead of going to the buffet. I figured it would take at least an hour to make.

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Turns out it was actually a cinch! Just brown ground beef with onions and garlic; cook in flour, chicken broth, tomato paste and other seasonings, then simmer ’til thick.

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Toss in some frozen veggies, and you’re nearly there!

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While I was making the filling, I whipped up ~4 cups worth of garlic mashed potatoes on a burner next door.


Assembly time!


Pour the filling into an oven-proof casserole dish,


and top with mashed pa’tators.


I know how you feel…


Popped into the oven for 20 minutes,


(insert cleaning the kitchen here)


and BINGO!


Bubbling its little heart out as I pulled it out of the piping hot oven, which totally made me giggle. I just love it when comfort food smells, tastes and sounds like comfort food, you know?


I scooped us out a big serving and almost fell into the tunnel of mashed potato love!!!


The Best Shepherd’s Pie. Ever.

Serves 5-6


The Best Shepherd's Pie. Ever. is incredibly hearty, with beef and vegetables cooked in a savory gravy, topped with creamy mashed potatoes — the ultimate comfort food!


  • 4 cups mashed potatoes
  • garlic salt
  • 1lb ground beef
  • 1/3 cup onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 Tablespoons flour
  • 1 Tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 can (14.5oz) chicken broth
  • 2 cups frozen vegetable medley
  • salt & pepper


  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Brown ground beef, onions and garlic in a large skillet on med-high heat. When meat is completely cooked, stir in flour and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  2. Stir in tomato paste, worcestershire sauce, soy sauce and chicken broth. Simmer for 5-6 minutes, or until sauce is thick. Turn the heat off and stir in frozen vegetables and salt and pepper, to taste.
  3. Pour beef mixture into a large, oven-proof casserole dish. Top with mashed potatoes and smooth with a spatula. Sprinkle garlic salt on top of mashed potatoes.
  4. Place casserole dish on a large sheet pan (in case the sauce overflows) and bake for 20-30 minutes, or until top is golden brown. Ladle and serve!

This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats,


Meat & potatoes at its finest. Savory and so comforting!


Ben took his first bite…

“omg, this is life altering right now. This is the best Shepherd’s Pie you’ve ever made…”

“It’s the only Shepherd’s Pie I’ve ever made.”

“No…” (makes horrible face)

“Oh. Right. That Shepherd’s Pie. So it’s only the best when compared to the second AND worst Shepherd’s Pie I’ve ever made…”

“Um, yeah I guess so.”

Oh husbands, I love giving them a hard time. ;)


Seriously what a cozy, yummy dinner. So glad to have one last excuse to whip up something hearty like this before I turn to lighter, Springier fare. Keep it for next year, yeah?


In other news, my parents babysat my nephew all day today, so I stopped by to give him millions of hugs and kisses after work!!!!


Look at his outfit!! “It’s the smallest hat I could find!” my Mom shrieked.


Inside we matched it all back up. Goodbye neon hat and random sweatshirt. Hello baby track suit. Baller.


Followed by a session showing off all of his best tricks. “CHEEEEEEEEEESE!!!”






In other news, Ben and I have opposing views as to how we should spend the remainder of our St. Patrick’s Day:

Him: basketball + beer + more basketball + more beer.

Her: Mint Oreo Blizzard.

ps why don’t husband’s ever crave ice cream? Like ever? Seriously!

Wish me luck… ;)


What’s your Dairy Queen/fave ice cream parlor pick?

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  1. Hahaha you and Ben crack me up to no end. Tell him you made dinner so he better get ice cream with you!

  2. Stephanie 03.17.2011

    We compromised. We got beer and pizza….and I got mint gelato. :) Haha. Such crazy party faces we are these days. :)

  3. Erin 03.17.2011

    That’s funny…mine wanted ice cream last night but I didn’t. That NEVER happens but it was too cold for ice cream!

  4. erica 03.17.2011

    OREO BLIZZARD! but MINT oreo blizzard sounds even better!!!!

    the shepards pie looks deeeeeelish! and your nephew is a total cutie patootie!

  5. Doesn’t matter what the flavor is–just as long as it is ice cream!! :)

    Although, I am not a huge fan of neapolitan. Not sure what is about it, I just don’t really dig it.

  6. Lauren 03.17.2011

    Haha SO TRUE!!! I ALWAYS want to go for ice cream and my hubby could always leave it. So weird! I’ll go for a mint Oreo blizzard with you girl. :)

  7. I made shep’s pie with cauliflower topping- a bit ligher, and with ground turkey! My fav ice cream is hard ice cream, in a cone, with choc jimmies for licking! :)

  8. Michelle 03.17.2011

    Mmmhm yum, Shepherd’s Pie. We make ours with melty cheese on top of the mashed potatoes!

  9. You need to come down to KC and have a foodie weekend…or just an ice cream weekend. We have an amazing local chain called Sheridan’s Frozen Custard (we’re talking way better than Culver’s or Freddy’s) and they have a wedding cake concrete that comes with a FULL slice of wedding cake in it. Luckily, my boyfriend loves it just as much as I do, and we always compare the sizes of chunks of buttercream frosting and cake in our cups. SO amazing.

  10. Jenny 03.17.2011

    Mine always wants ice cream. ALWAYS. It’s out of control.

  11. Daisy 03.17.2011

    go with the beer tonight. trust me. ;)

    you make the most amazing meals.

  12. Yummy food and cute kid:)
    I love ice cream- my favorite is vanilla soft serve!

  13. Rebecca 03.17.2011

    Oh yes, can’t we just talk about that for a minute….nearly every time we go out to eat, about halfway through my meal I say to my boyfriend, mmm you know what we should do after dinner? And I wait for him to say “go get ice cream”, and he sits there with a blank look on his face. HE KNOWS THIS, and he also knows that that’s his cue for getting to eat the remaining part of my meal so that I don’t feel bad for eating the ice cream. Why oh why do they make it difficult? ;)

  14. Your nephew is so adorable! I agree with Ben, that Shepard’s Pie would be life changing!

  15. Lindsey 03.17.2011

    My favorite would be Oreo Overload at Coldstone Creamery. Yummm!!! Not a big Shepherd’s Pie fan though. Can’t quite get the ground beef and mashed potato combo to work on my palate. :)

  16. girliefriend 03.17.2011

    omg! Finn is adorable!

  17. My hubby was definitely in the beer and basketball camp, however we were already out for dinner so I was able to convince him to drive through a local ice cream place for a sweet treat. I didn’t go with a “green” fav like mint oreo, but I was certainly tempted!

  18. Melissa 03.17.2011

    Ahhh! That is one cute little man. Baller! Hilarious!

    I always go Butterfinger for Blizzards, but on St. Patty’s Day, you gotta go mint! Hope it works out for ya! :D

  19. Sara 03.17.2011

    I made shepherd’s pie tonight, too! So good and comfort-y. Although mine bubbled over the bottom of the stove. Oops.

    My husband is the one who always has ice cream cravings. He’s sweet, I’m salty. But when I do have an ice cream craving, I want:
    – Baskin Robbins chocolate and peanut butter
    – A DQ Hawaiian blizzard
    – Pistachio ice cream or gelato

  20. Coffee ice cream with toffee bits – mmm!

  21. stacy 03.17.2011

    your nephew is seriously too cute for words!!!!!

  22. Meredith 03.17.2011

    That is my absolute favorite from Dairy Queen. I could eat one every day. My fiancé doesn’t really like mint things and I can never understand it. Mint Oreo blizzard= heaven!

  23. Eve P 03.17.2011

    I love coffee flavored Ice Cream, especially from Moo Roos in Waterloo/Cedar Falls. (Its a local dairy farm from Hudson, Iowa.)

  24. jen 03.17.2011

    I’m in love with Peachwave, our self serve frozen yogurt place. It’s ah-mazing!

  25. Britt 03.17.2011

    wow i’m really glad you posted this recipe bc i’ve been looking for a simple shepards pie recipe for weeks now but I couldn’t find one I liked. I will deff. be making this sometime this week. Looks amazing. I made homemade Irish soda bread today. BTW I went to bedbath&beyond and they didn’t have the donut pan!!
    :( Guess I’ll have to order it online..

  26. Lesley 03.17.2011

    That shepherd’s pie does look pretty life changing. Are those huge chunks of garlic on top of the potatoes? Yummy!

    My favorite blizzard flavor is a triple tie between Reese’s, Heath, and Butterfinger…..I guess I like my candy, haha. Standard ice cream parlor favorite is cookies n’ cream!

  27. Love that you celebrated with an Irish dish! I made Colcannon last night!
    And I think I’m getting the best of all worlds…beer earlier, a processed sugary green cookie sandwich for dessert, and now basketball!

    wish I could have had a shamrock shake though!

  28. Stephanie 03.17.2011

    What an awesomeeeeee dinner, you did a fantastic job on that Shephard’s Pie!!!!

    I’m totally a Reese’s PB Cup Blizzard girl… ooooo those are my weakness!

  29. I’ve never been able to eat DQ ice cream because something in it makes my tongue sting! It’s the weirdest thing, it must be an allergy or something, I don’t know. I also gave up ice cream at the end of last summer because I’m lactose intolerant and decided to stop pretending I wasn’t, but I think just one time this summer I’m going to get my favorite thing from the ice cream stand down the street: chocolate soft serve with marshmallow sauce. I might even throw some sprinkles on there!

  30. BANANA CREAM PIE BLIZZARD. And yes I had to put it in all caps because it’s that serious. I LOVE those things!

    • Kristin from MN 03.18.2011

      Oh yes I agree!!! I love banana cream pie blizzards too!

  31. j/k 03.17.2011

    Butterfinger Blizzard or Lemon soft-serve from the local ice cream shop.

  32. emily ruth 03.17.2011

    My fiance NEVER wants to go out for ice cream! I have to beg him. I refuse to go alone because it is a slippery slippery slope : )

  33. Sharon 03.17.2011

    My husband has to have his four, heaping scoops of ice cream every night! But he will only eat Vanilla, Cookies ‘N Cream, or Cookie Dough!

  34. Kelli H 03.17.2011

    I totally know what you mean. I always have random cravings for sweets but he never does! I’m more of a frozen yogurt girl these days and our town has lots of them! My favorite is this one called Yogurt Farms. Delicious! I love their Red Velvet Cake flavor!

  35. Cookie jar! MINI! plus a little beer ;)

  36. hahaha my husband’s birthday is today & he gets the day off from work, so he’s been parked in front of the TV allllll day :) but it’s his birthday so i can’t complain :)

  37. Sharon 03.17.2011

    On a side note-I have become addicted to the Peanut Balls! I always have some in my fridge to nibble on if I am craving something sweet. Tonight I added coconut, and it was amazing!!! You need to try it! :)

  38. Emily 03.17.2011

    you’re nephew is SO cute!!!! i want one!

  39. Omg I am the icecream queen… I get so mad when my boyfriend doesnt want icecream!! hah
    Dairy Queen: Chocolate Extreme Blizzard
    my favorite is Braums: Chocolate soft serve icecream with reeses!!!

  40. Dream Mom 03.17.2011

    Oh, I just love the part about falling into the mashed potato tunnel of love. Made me laugh! Seriously, the pie looked very easy and oh, so delicious!

    As for Dairy Queen, it would have to be a Butterfinger Blizzard. Cold Stone Creamery would have to be my first pick however-their Cake Batter Ice Cream is to die for…seriously, I only go there once a year because it’s just too rich and too many calories. My favorite ice cream treat right now are these organic ice cream bars at Whole Foods for $3.39 (3 in a box) and they are 250 calories/bar. I usually slip one of these babies into my cart once a month or so.

  41. Kristen 03.18.2011

    Ahh, I went British instead of Irish (hubby’s fam is British) and had a hearty steak and ale pie!
    DQ used to do this amazing thing called Frozen Hot Chocolate that I was obsessed with. This was like 10 years ago, so who knows, they might still do it.

  42. Karla 03.18.2011

    I find this so funny. My fiance and I are the same way. I ALWAYS want icecream. I even tried to talk him into having it for dinner. It was a no go! My favorite DQ blizzard is PB cup! In fact, last Saturday, I already put it in my own head that tonight after dinner my fiance and I will go get blizzards. Wish me luck brining that up while were eating dinner!

  43. Rachel 03.18.2011

    My favorite is the Reese’s PB Cup blizzard, occasionally made with chocolate ice cream (depending on my mood). The sad thing is, any time I go to DQ for treats, it almost always results in some sort of bad argument between my husband & I! If I go to the other ice cream shop on the other side of town, we’re fine, though! It’s kind of laughable, really.

  44. Amy 03.18.2011

    Mint (flavored) Ice Cream with Cookie Dough bits!

  45. Hope 03.18.2011

    I’ve never had shepard’s pie before. I totally saved this recipe because it looks way too good to pass up! I suppose I should make it sometime soon because it doesn’t seem like a spring type dish. Haha!

    I LOVE Dairy Queen! I do the same thing with my boyfriend. I am always in the mood for ice cream every single night and I drag him to go get some. I think he really does like that I suggest it though because he seems to enjoy it. :) I usually make my own Blizzard at DQ. I like chocolate ice cream with cone dip. The cone dip hardens up and it becomes like dark chocolate chips. I love it!

  46. Kristin from MN 03.18.2011

    That recipe looks delicious! I have to try it SOON! Your nephew is adorable! I really love the mint oreo blizzard and the shamorck shake, but my all time favorite is probably the blueberry muffin batter from Cold Stone with whip cream, blueberries and pie crust for mix-ins.

  47. joe 03.18.2011

    Shepherd’s pie with hamburger? How gauche. You should make it with stew beef at least. Lamb would be the best option, but I’m certain that’s regarded as ‘icky’. C’mon, give me a big ‘eeeeeewwwwww’, gurls. OK, now back to your cupcakes.

  48. McKenzie T 03.18.2011

    I hope you got your mint Oreo Blizzard. It is the finest choice on the menu and would have been my vote. I thought about doing the Shamrock shake myself but didn’t, boo!

  49. Scotty 03.18.2011

    That looks very yummy – but its def a Cottage Pie cos its made with beef mince. A Shepherd’s Pie has to be made with lamb – cos shepherds look after sheep!!!

  50. Machelle 03.18.2011

    Oh Boy….what’s NOT a favorite at Dairy Queen??? Ha! Unfortunatly, too much ice cream upsets my tummy, so I have a one scoop limit. I love a small vanilla cone dipped in chocolate, small cherry Blizzard, small chocolate shake made w/hot fudge, or a Dilly Bar. I also REALLY LOVE the Jamocha shakes at Arby’s. If you’ve never tried one I urge you to do so!

    • John 04.02.2013

      I’ve been looking for a decent Shepherd’s Pie recipe, and this one looks like a winner. Also, I agree with Machelle, DQ soft serve vanilla ice cream cones, dipped in chocolate, as well as dilly bars, are da’ BOMB imo. :)

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