Shepherd's Pie

Meat and potatoes can you ever really go wrong? Here's my take on this comforting classic. I say "my take" because I believe shepherd's pie is like making Bolognese - everyone has their own touch on it that makes it "special." In this recipe I used ground beef but I've also done it with ground bison or lamb and it always comes out delicious. I also make a Guinness gravy to pour over the whole affair, and if you enjoy this dark stout you will love this! Not a Guinness fan? Use red wine instead. Be sure to serve it up with some warm bread to swipe up that extra sauce!

Time: 1 hour

Serves: 6


For the pie:

  • 2 lbs of ground beef

  • 2 1/2 lbs of Yukon potatoes

  • 1 cup of peeled and sliced carrots

  • 1 onion, finely chopped

  • 1 cup of peas

  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste

  • A dash of Worcestershire sauce

  • 1 cup of Guinness Stout

  • Fresh rosemary

  • Salt and pepper

  • Cooking oil

  • 3 tablespoons of butter

  • 1/4 cup of milk

  • 1 cup of grated cheddar cheese

For the gravy:

  • 1/2 cup of Guinness stout

  • 3 tablespoons of butter

  • 1-2 tablespoons of flour

  • 1-3 tablespoons of maple syrup

  • salt and pepper

You'll Need:

A large cast iron skillet or heavy bottom oven proof pan.


  1. Preheat oven to 350.

  2. Prep your ingredients- finely chop onion, peel and dice carrots thin, and remove rosemary stems from stalk and chop fine.

  3. Peel potatoes and cut into quarters, add to a pot of water. Sprinkle in salt, bring water to a boil, turn to low and cover with a lid. Potatoes are done when they are fork tender. When the potatoes are done drain from water and place back in the pot. Add a few tablespoons of butter and the milk to the potatoes. Take a masher or big spoon and mash up the potatoes. Set aside.

  4. In the meantime, place cast iron over high heat. Add some cooking oil and add the onions. When the onions have crisped up add the ground beef. Break up the beef with a large spoon as it browns. Next add the carrots and peas and season with salt and pepper to taste.

  5. Stir in the tomato paste and add the Worcestershire sauce, stir to incorporate.

  6. Keeping the stove on high heat add the Guinness to deglaze the pan. Stir in the fresh rosemary.

  7. Take the mashed potatoes and use a spatula to spread out over the meat mixture creating the top layer. Place in the heated oven for 15 minutes.

  8. Remove the pie from the oven and distribute the cheese over top.

  9. Turn the oven to broil on high. Place the pie back in for 3-5 minutes until there is nice golden top.

  10. Sprinkle on more fresh rosemary if desired.

For the gravy:

  1. In a small sauce pan melt the butter over medium high heat.

  2. Add the flour and whisk constantly.

  3. Pour in Guinness and keep whisking until smooth.

  4. Turn pan to simmer until the gravy has reached desired thickness, you may need to add more Guinness or some water to thin it.

  5. Add in maple syrup, salt and pepper to taste.

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