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This lamb shepherd’s pie recipe combines chunks of lamb with vegetables, spices, mashed potatoes, and cheese to make a wonderfully comforting, nourishing one-pot dish the whole family will love!
Cottage Pie or Shepherd’s Pie?
What’s the difference?
Simply put, the difference between cottage pie and shepherd’s pie is that cottage pie uses beef and shepherd’s pie uses lamb. Many times, though, the names are used interchangeably. They are both meat and vegetable pies without crust, usually having a topping of mashed potatoes.
You can actually use either lamb or beef in this recipe, and it will work nicely with either. A recipe for shepherd’s pie or cottage pie can also use either ground meat or meat cut into chunks.
Skillet Shepherds Pie in the Oven
I like to use my cast iron skillet for many of my recipes, as it is sturdy, can stand high heats well, and can transfer from stove top to oven with ease.
Sides For Shepherds Pie
The best shepherd’s pie sides include a side salad and your choice of bread. Most of your meal is included in the shepherd’s pie with meat, vegetables, and starches all included. Adding some extra greens with a salad as well as some bread will make a hearty complete meal.
Reheating Shepherds Pie
Lamb shepherd’s pie is great as a leftover and reheats easily on the stove top or in the oven.
If you refrigerate the entire casserole dish, you can simply preheat the oven to 350 F and heat covered for about 30 minutes. Check that it’s hot all the way through and heat for 5-10 minutes more uncovered if you want it to brown a bit.
If you want to reheat your lamb shepherd’s pie on the stove top, just be aware that it will get all mixed up in the process. If you’re okay with this, simply add the portion you want to reheat to a saucepan and add a small amount of liquid (water or broth). Cover and heat over low-medium, checking often until it is sizzling.
You may also love my Spaghetti Bolognaise recipe – simple yet so delicious pasta sauce!
Lamb Shepherd’s Pie Recipe
- 1 pound lean lamb or beef, cut in small chunks
- 3 Tbsp oil
- 1 large onion, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
- 1 Tbsp dry thyme
- 1 Tbsp dry marjoram
- 3 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 can tomato paste (6 ounces)
- 2 cups beef or lamb broth
- 1 cup carrots, chopped (about 2 medium)
- 1 cup frozen or fresh peas
- 1 cup frozen mixed vegetables
- ½ tsp salt, more to taste
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- 2 Tbsp flour
- 4 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped (about 4 cups)
- water to cover (exact amount doesn't matter – just enough to cover – too much is okay)
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp butter
- ¾ cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded, divided
- ¼ cup milk or cream
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Preheat oven-safe heavy pot (I prefer my cast iron Dutch oven) on the stove top on medium heat (5-6).
- Add oil, onion, thyme, and marjoram and stir to blend. Cook about 5 minutes or until onions are translucent.
- Add lamb or beef to pan and cook for 5-10 minutes or until meat is browned, stirring frequently to brown all sides.
- Add tomato paste and broth, vegetables, salt, and pepper to pan. Mix all together, breaking up tomato paste until smooth with a spoon or whisk.
- Turn down heat to low-medium (about 3), cover and cook for 15 minutes.
- Turn heat down to low. Sprinkle flour over the surface of the food in the pot and blend in thoroughly with a spoon or whisk. Cover and cook 15 more minutes (still on low heat – about 1).
- Meanwhile, prepare potato topping by adding potatoes and water to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, turn down heat to low-medium and cover, cooking for about 10 minutes.
- Uncover meat and vegetable mixture in Dutch oven once 15 minutes has passed, stir, and turn off heat. Let sit while preparing potato topping.
- Once potatoes are fork tender, drain off water. Add butter, salt, ¼ cup of the cheese, and milk or cream. Mash with a potato masher or blend with a hand blender until smooth.
- Add mashed potato mixture a spoonful at a time to the top of meat and vegetables in Dutch oven and spread evenly over the top. (May not cover the entire surface, which is okay.) Scatter the remaining ½ cup of shredded cheese over the top.
- Bake uncovered for 15 minutes or until cheese is melty and a bit browned. Let sit for 10 minutes before serving.
Don’t Forget to Pin For Later!
Other yummy weeknight dinner ideas include my: