For centuries, savory cottage pie and shepherd’s pie have been enjoyed  as simple and frugal, yet flavorful and hearty comfort food that fills the belly, while warming the heart.


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup sliced fresh carrots
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped sweet onion
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1.25 lbs ground grassfed beef (or ground turkey)
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 Tbsp ketchup (for Whole30, use 1 Tbsp tomato paste)
  • 1 cup frozen green beans
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas (omit for Whole30)
  • 1 (15oz) can diced tomatoes (fire-roasted is best)
  • 5 cups mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes (seasoned w/salt & pepper to taste)
  • Optional: 1 cup shredded grass-fed cheddar cheese (omit for Whole30)


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil and sauté carrots, onion and garlic until onion begins to soften (about 2-3 minutes).
  2. Add ground beef (or turkey), breaking up meat with a wooden spoon; cook until no longer pink, about 4-5 minutes.
  3. Next, add salt, pepper, thyme and ketchup (or tomato paste). Then, add frozen veggies and diced tomatoes; stir until well combined.
  4. Reduce heat to medium, cover pan and allow to cook about 5 minutes until vegetables soften.
  5. Spoon mixture into a 9×12-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with shredded cheddar, if desired. Spoon mashed potatoes (or mashed sweet potatoes) over top and use an offset spatula to spread potatoes evenly across the meat mixture.
  6. Bake approximately 30-35 minutes until potatoes are lightly browned and mixture is bubbly. Allow casserole to rest 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

Not to be a culinary nerd, but technically speaking, there is a difference between “cottage pie” and “shepherd’s pie” … it’s all about the meat … Shepherd’s pie is made with lamb, whereas cottage pie is made with beef.

Of course, I have no idea what to call it if you opt to make cottage pie with ground turkey instead? (Which just so happens to be a personal favorite around here.) Technicalities aside, this is definitely a savory, hearty dish that comes together easily (especially if you have leftover mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes on hand).

This one bowl meal makes it easy to enjoy while sitting cross-legged on the floor next to the fireplace. Sometimes it’s nice to take a break from dinner at the table and instead enjoy a rustic meal gathered around a crackling fire on a cold winter’s night!

This article first appeared on The Nourishing Home.

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