Healthy Shepherd’s Pie

Healthy Shepherd’s Pie

Awhile back my mom complained that I was not sticking true to my British heritage and I was paying too much attention to the Irish heritage. I joked that when I found a good English recipe that I would make it. After much searching, I decided to make my own healthy spin on Shepherd’s Pie, a British classic. I decided to finally bust out a British recipe this weekend with the coming of Hurricane Sandy. The DC area has horrible “London weather”. It’s rainy and cold and gross. I apologize to all my British relatives, friends, and readers, but the Isles just aren’t as nice as le Midi or Tuscany. Thus, a filling warm meal is perfect for a night like tonight.

Traditionally, Shepherd’s Pie is made with ground lamb, which I don’t eat. Therefore, I substituted ground turkey. Additionally, I reduced the heaviness of the dish with a combination of mashed potatoes and mashed cauliflower. It turned out pretty awesome, if I do say so myself. Without further ado, a Healthy Shepherd’s Pie:

Healthy Shepherd’s Pie


1 Medium head of cauliflower, cut into florets with as much stem removed as possible

1 Russet potato, peeled and cut into 1” cubes

¼ cup of Greek yogurt

1 Tb of unsalted butter

3 Tb of Parmesan cheese

½ tsp of garlic powder

1 tsp of salt

½ tsp of pepper

  1. Steam the cauliflower and potatoes over about 15 minutes. Drain them well and allow them to dry for 3 minutes.
  2. Return vegetables to the pot and over the burner that is now off, whip the vegetables with the yogurt, butter, and seasonings with an electric mixer to ensure that they are smooth. Set aside.


¾ pound of ground turkey

2 Tb vegetable oil

1 medium onion, diced

1 carrot, diced

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 tsp salt

1 tsp black pepper

2 Tb flour

½ cup white wine

1 cup chicken stock

1 Tb Worcestershire sauce

2 tsp Rosemary

1 tsp Thyme

1 cup frozen mixed vegetables (I used a carrot, pea, corn, green bean medley)

  1.  Heat a 12” skillet over medium-high heat and preheat the oven to 400.
  2. After the oil is hot enough that it shimmers, add in the onions and carrots and sauté for 3-4 minutes or until they start to get some color and then stir in the garlic.
  3. Add in the ground turkey, salt, and pepper and brown all the way through (roughly 3 minutes).
  4. Toss in the flour and cook for another minute.
  5. Pour in the wine, chicken stock, Worcestershire sauce, rosemary, and thyme. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to low. Cover and allow to reduce slightly (approximately 10 minutes).
  6. Meanwhile, cook the vegetables in the microwave.
  7. Once the gravy of the meat mixture has reduced, combine with the vegetables and spread evenly in a 1 ½ quart glass baking dish.
  8. Spread mashed “potatoes” evenly over the top and cook for 25 minutes, or until the “crust” starts to brown.
  9. Allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving.

    I used a cupcake decorating set to put the mashed “potatoes” on top. It turned our really well.


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