Classic Shepherd's Pie

Homemade shepherds pie in a cast iron skillet

With St. Patrick’s Day approaching, it seems like the perfect time to make the classic Irish comfort dish: shepherd’s pie. This hearty dish is filled with meat and vegetables in a rich gravy and topped with a golden-brown mashed potato crust. While traditionally it’s made with ground lamb, we’ve swapped it for ground beef.

And considering how simple it is to throw together, it might just become a dinner staple for your family – St. Paddy’s Day or not!

What you need

  • 9x13 baking dish or large oven-proof sauté pan 
    Pro tip: For easy cleanup, use an oven-proof sauté pan (we used a cast iron) instead of a baking dish. That way you can cook the beef mixture and bake it all in the same pan.

Beef Mixture

  • 1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. fresh or dry rosemary
  • 1 tsp. fresh or dry thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste



Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until soft. Drain potatoes and mash with butter, half and half, and salt. Set aside.

Pre-heat oven to 400F.

Heat the oil over medium heat in a large sauté pan and add the onion, garlic, and carrots until tender. Add the ground beef and cook until browned (about 8 to 10 minutes). Drain the fat and add the flour, peas, broth, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, and herbs; mix well. Simmer on low for about 10 minutes until the gravy is thick.

If using a casserole dish, transfer the beef mixture to it and spread evenly. Top with the mashed potatoes. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes and then place under the broiler for two minutes until bubbling and golden brown.

Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes before serving.