Root vegetable shepherds pie

Filipa Kays take on a traditional Shepherds pie is topped with mashed root vegetables, giving it a sweeter taste and a rich golden colour
Root vegetable shepherds pie
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Effort: easy


For the root vegetable topping

  • 1.5 kg root vegetables, such as sweet potato, swede or parsnips, peeled and chopped into 2.5cm chunks
  • 50 g butter
  • 100 ml milk
  • fresh thyme, to garnish (optional)

For the meat base

  • 500 g lean minced beef
  • 1-2 carrots
  • 1 onion
  • 400 g canned chopped tomatoes
  • 2 beef stock, cubes, use gluten free beef stock if you are making this as a gluten free recipe
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 150 g petit pois, (optional)
  • 150 g mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce, use a gluten free version if you are making this as a gluten free recipe
  • 1 tbsp cornflour, dissolved in 2 tbsp water

Tips and Suggestions

Try adding grated cheese to your topping. If you are pressed for time, finish your pie under a hot grill rather than in the oven.


1. For the root vegetable topping: Place the root vegetables in a pan of boiling salted water and simmer for around 15 minutes, until tender.

2. Drain and mash the root vegetables along with the butter and milk. Season to taste.

3. For the meat base: brown the mince in a large saucepan for 5 minutes.

4. While the mince is browning, peel the carrot and then finely slice using a food processor. Repeat the process with the onion but slice it less finely than the carrot. (If you do not have a food processor, grate the carrot and finely chop the onion).

5. Drain the fat from the mince and transfer the meat to a plate or bowl. Put the onion and carrot into the pan that had the mince in. Cook for 3-4 minutes until soft.

6. Return the mince to the pan along with the tomatoes, stock, thyme, tomato puree, garlic, peas, mushrooms and Worcester sauce. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add the cornflour paste to the pan and mix well. Keep stirring for a couple of minutes then reduce the heat. Simmer for 10-15 minutes until the vegetables have softened and the juices have thickened.

7. For the pie: build the pie by spooning the mince evenly into the bottom of an ovenproof dish (or individual dishes if you prefer). Top with an even layer of mashed vegetables and use a fork to make furrows all over the top.

8. Dot the top with butter to help it to crisp.

9. Bake for around 10 minutes in a hot oven until the top is crispy and the sauce bubbles around the edges of the dish.

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