Hello Friends, welcome to Sunday Supper – on Saturday! Today we are revisiting a great recipe for a cold day. A classic casserole with a healthy twist; savory, herby meat and veggie filling topped with creamy and fluffy Cauliflower Mashies make this Shepherd’s Pie a lighter take on the original.
Shepherd’s Pie is great, but I never make it because of the mashed potatoes. Don’t get me wrong, I love mashed potatoes, but they’re heavy. I was so happy with the flavor and texture of the Cauliflower Mashies we made with our Smoked Meatloaf, I wanted to use them to top this Shepherd’s Pie, in place of mashed potatoes. What a revelation!
This Shepherd’s pie is super flavorful and not at all heavy. While potatoes are not bad for you, cauliflower is less starchy with fewer carbs and calories. Cauliflower is a great source of fiber, folate, vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin B6 and potassium. To get the most health benefits of potatoes, you need to eat the skins; but to get silky mashed potatoes to top your Shepherd’s Pie you want to peel those potatoes! That’s why I think these Cauliflower Mashies are the perfect solution.
Meat and Veggie Filling
Herby, tomato-y meat and veggies fill a Shepherd’s Pie. This dish originated in the United Kingdom; technically, when it’s made with lamb, it’s Shepherd’s Pie and when it’s made with beef, it’s Cottage Pie. So what I have here today is really Cottage Pie. We will start with browning the meat, onions, herbs and spices over medium heat.
Add the Worcestershire sauce and garlic. Sprinkle the flour over the meat mixture and add the tomato paste. Stir to combine and to cook the flour and the tomato paste.
Then add the beef broth and veggies, stir to combine and bring to a boil, then simmer for about 5 minutes, until the liquid has reduced a little and the whole mixture becomes a thick meat/veg sauce. Taste the filling and adjust the seasoning to suit your taste. Set the filling aside and make the Cauliflower Mashies, you can find that recipe here. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Shepherd’s Pie Assembly
I have an 8 x 8-inch square casserole dish for this pie, you can use a 9 x 9-inch, or a 7 x 11 – whatever smallish baking dish you have will work. We want the pie to have some height to it. Remove the rosemary sprigs and Pour the meat and veggie filling into the baking dish. Use a spatula to flatten the mix into an even layer.
Top with the Cauliflower Mashies and use a rubber spatula to smooth it evenly over the top.
Top with the Gruyere and place the casserole on a rimmed baking sheet to catch any drips.
Bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes. Until the top is golden and browning. Remove from the oven and let sit for about 10 minutes before serving.
Use a sturdy spatula to cut a square and scoop into a shallow bowl or plate. Top with fresh parsley if you like and enjoy!
The Cauliflower Mashies topping this Shepherd’s Pie are so flavorful and light! In fact, the cauliflower has so much flavor you almost don’t even realize they aren’t mashed potatoes – and the texture is smooth and fluffy. There’s a reason why this is a comfort food; it’s the perfect Sunday Supper as we wait for spring to arrive. Definitely try this one, friends, it’s a keeper!
Thank you so much for spending some of your Sunday with me today. Remember, you can follow me on Pinterest; pin and save recipes for later and share them with your friends and family!
Shepherd's Pie with Cauliflower Mashies
A savory, herby meat and veggie filling topped with creamy and fluffy Cauliflower Mashies make this Shepherd's Pie a lighter take on the original.
- Meat Filling
- 2 tbsp. Olive Oil
- 1 cup Yellow Onion, chopped
- 1 lb. 80/20 Ground Beef, or Ground Lamb
- 2 tsp. Dried Parsley
- 2-3 Sprigs Fresh Rosemary
- 1 tsp. Dried Thyme
- 1/2 tsp. Kosher Salt
- 1/2 tsp. Ground Black Pepper
- 1-2 tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce
- 2 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 2 tbsp. All Purpose Flour
- 2 tbsp. Tomato Paste
- 1 cup Beef Broth
- 1 cup Frozen Mixed Veggies (Corn, Peas, Carrots, Green Beans...Whatever mix you like)
- 1/2 cup Frozen Corn Kernels
- 1/4 cup Gruyere or Parmesan (for topping the casserole, optional)
- Fresh Parsley (for topping the casserole after it's baked, optional)
- Cauliflower Mashies
- 1 Head of Cauliflower, cut into small florets
- 1 Clove Garlic, minced (if you don't want to use the garlic raw, sauté in olive oil until fragrant)
- ¼ cup Parmesan Cheese, shredded
- 1 tbsp. Cream Cheese
- ½ tsp. Kosher Salt
- ⅛ tsp. Freshly Ground Black Pepper
In a skillet over medium-high heat, heat the oil and add the onions. Cook for about two minutes, then add the ground meat.
Season with parsley, thyme, salt and pepper and add the rosemary sprigs. Cook the meat, breaking it up with a firm spatula as it cooks.
Once browned, add the garlic and Worcestershire Sauce. Stir and cook for about one minute.
Sprinkle the flour and add the tomato paste. Stir and cook for about one minute.
Add the broth and the frozen veggies. Stir and bring the liquid up to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes, until the liquid reduces and the mixture forms a thick, meat/veg sauce. Taste filling and adjust seasoning if needed. Set the filling aside.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Steam the cauliflower pieces for 15-20 minutes. Check it after 10 minutes to gauge doneness. The cauliflower should be fork tender.
In a food processor, process half the steamed cauliflower until the texture resembles dry mashed potatoes.
Add a little more cauliflower at a time until all the cauliflower is processed to a creamy consistency.
Add the cream cheese, Parmesan, garlic, Kosher salt and pepper.
Process until smooth and creamy.
Shepherd's Pie Assembly
Remove and discard the rosemary sprigs from the filling.
Spread the filling into a 8x8-inch or up to a 7x 11-inch baking dish, use a spatula to flatten the filling into an even layer.
Top with the Cauliflower Mashies and spread evenly over the top.
Sprinkle Gruyere or Parmesan cheese over the casserole. Place dish on a rimmed baking sheet.
Bake for 25-30 Minutes or until top is golden brown and filling is bubbling up around the sides.
Let Shepherd's Pie sit for about 10 minutes before serving.
Top portions with fresh chopped parsley.