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Big slice of homemade classic shepherd's pie on a white serving plate.
4.92 from 12 votes

Shepherd's Pie Recipe

The Best Shepherd's Pie Recipe! Tender ground lamb (or beef) and chopped vegetables cooked in a rich gravy, topped with a creamy layer of delicious mashed potatoes and baked.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 20 mins
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 752kcal


For the Potatoes

  • 3 pounds russet potatoes - peeled and cut into quarters
  • 6 tablespoon butter
  • 1.5 cups milk
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • salt and pepper - to taste

For the Filling


For the Potatoes

  • Prepare potatoes - Peel potatoes and chop them into chunks approximately equal in size for even cooking.
  • Cook potatoes - Transfer potatoes to a large stockpot and sprinkle with approximately 1 teaspoon of salt. Cover potatoes with cold water and bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, until potatoes are fork-tender, approximately 20-25 minutes (cooking time will vary depending on the size of potato chunks). Remove from heat and drain then return back to the pot.
  • Heat the milk and butter - Add the butter, milk, sour cream, salt, and pepper to a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook until hot stirring often.
  • Mash the potatoes - Meanwhile, use a potato masher to mash the potatoes. Pour the heated milk and butter mixture in with the mashed potatoes and continue to mash and mix until desired texture and consistency are reached. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

For the Filling

  • Preheat oven. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. and spray a large casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Cook the lamb and beef. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ground lamb and use a wooden spatula to break it apart into smaller pieces. Continue to cook until browned - approximately 5 minutes. Drain any excess fat and remove the ground lamb to a clean plate. Set aside.
  • Sauté the vegetables. To the same skillet add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, approximately 3-4 minutes. Stir often. Add the carrots and celery to the skillet and continue to cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring often. Add the minced garlic and sauté for 60 seconds, stirring continuously, before seasoning with salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning.
  • Sprinkle with flour and mix with tomato paste. Reduce heat to medium and sprinkle the vegetables with 3 tablespoons of flour, mixing thoroughly to incorporate the flour into the vegetables. Mix in the tomato paste, reducing heat if necessary to prevent it from burning.
  • Add broth and Worcestershire sauce and simmer. Slowly add the chicken broth and mix well to combine. Add the Worcestershire sauce and fresh chopped rosemary and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and continue to cook for approximately 5 minutes. 
  • Return the ground lamb and peas. Return the lamb to the vegetables and add the peas. Mix well to combine and cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat.


  • Put it together. Spread the lamb and vegetable mixture evenly into your greased 9x13-inch baking dish. Top with a thick layer of mashed potatoes.
  • Bake. Transfer to the oven and bake at 400 degrees F. for approximately 20-30 minutes, or until the potatoes are golden and the filling is bubbling around the edges.
  • Garnish and serve. Remove from the oven and drizzle with melted butter, and sprinkle with fresh herbs, if desired.
  • Store leftovers. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. You may also freeze extras in a freezer-safe dish for up to 3 months.


  • Feel free to substitute the ground lamb for any combination of ground turkey, ground beef, ground pork, or ground chicken.
  • Make this recipe vegetarian by omitting all ground meat and doubling the vegetables. You may also use a ground beef substitute such as Beyond Beef or Gardein.
  • To make this recipe gluten-free substitute the all-purpose flour for rice flour or cornstarch instead. Double-check to make sure your Worcestershire sauce is gluten-free.
Originally published October 3, 2019


Calories: 752kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 49g | Saturated Fat: 22g | Cholesterol: 135mg | Sodium: 721mg | Potassium: 1442mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 1987IU | Vitamin C: 31mg | Calcium: 162mg | Iron: 5mg
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