Shepherd's Pie Recipe


Equipment needed:

Large heavy cast iron pot - like Lodge 6.5 quart - or 7qt cast iron Dutch oven.

Pot large enough to boil potatoes.


6 to 8 russet potatoes (about 2 pounds) - cooked and mashed

Rice bran oil - enough to cover the bottom of a heavy pot - 1 to 3 tablespoons

3 lb lamb or mutton - ground - alternate beef or a combination of

5 (or more) cloves garlic - minced 

1/2 onion - diced

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 pound frozen sweet corn (a bag) or more (4 plus cups)


vegetable or chicken stock
3 oz butter (or more)

Sea Salt and Tellicherry Black Peppercorns freshly ground, to taste at the table

Shepherd's pie is one of those dishes that I love so much that I am constantly tweaking the recipe every time I make it to make it better.

It doesn't mean that the previous version, which was absolutely fabulous, was bad; it just means that the dish is an old friend, and we are constantly jiggling how we bond together.

From broad brush strokes to little pokes and dashes of this and that, helps to find our way, changes the taste, yet keeps the core the same.

It is the dish that I have had on my birthday for over 20 years now. It's simple like me, it's calming, it's home, it's friendly, it's fulfilling, and it's wonderful as a leftover.

What more could you want from a friendship that is virtually impossible to screw up? It is just plain right.


Shepherd's Pie Recipe

With a great history and many variations, this is so hearty and tasty and easy to do. 

No flour or dairy needed. We like to add salt and pepper when serving. We have found some like it really salty and others don’t want any salt at all.

If planned correctly (pre-make the mashed potatoes) you can finish this over an open fire when camping.

1. Peel the potatoes and cut into thirds - or relatively equal sized pieces so they cook evenly and place in a large enough pan to boil. Cook in vegetable stock or chicken stock if you want.

2. Cover the potatoes with water. Boil the potatoes until tender - about 15-20 minutes. - This takes about the same amount of time it takes to cook and assemble the meat and corn.

3. In a large cast-iron pan or heavy skillet sauté cook the ground meat with the garlic on medium to high heat.

4. Add onion and Worcestershire once the ground beef starts to cook.

5. Salt and pepper

6. Drain the potatoes of the water. Leave a small amount of liquid in the pot.

7. Mash the cooked potatoes. You can add milk and butter or chicken stock at this point if you want a creamier feel. We like to keep the potatoes drier and salt free as it stores better. We can add salt to our hearts content when eating.

8. Spread the meat/onions to be level and add the corn on top of the meat.

9. Add the mashed potato on top.

10. Use a fork to flatten and or make waves in the potato. (It’s actually quite fun. Bring out your inner Starry Night)

11. Place the pie in the oven at 350-degress covered for 20 minutes, then continue to heat uncovered for an additional 15 to 20 minutes to get crispy wisps of potatoes on top.

It always seems to taste best when right out of the oven. Though really, it’s great for days as leftovers.

Salt each plate individually at the table. Flake salt adds just the right crunch.