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This recipe is classed as easy

Rating 3.54 / 5 (65 votes)

Prep time:
20 min
Cook time:
1 hr 30 min

Brian Turner’s traditional farmhouse favourite is a simple and economical way to feed the family


1. For the filling:melt the dripping in a large frying pan and add the onion and carrot. Cook for a few minutes until soft but not coloured.

2. Add the minced lamb and fry for 2 minutes, then add the tomato purée, garlic if using it, and flour, and mix well.

3. Add the stock and bring to the boil, then simmer for 10-15 minutes until the stew thickens but does not stick to the pan.

4. Stir in the Worcestershire sauce, parsley and some salt and pepper, and remove from the heat. Put into a pie dish of about 850ml and leave to cool.

5. For the topping:peel the potatoes then cut them into even pieces and put into cold salted water. Bring to the boil and cook until tender, then drain and return to the pan. Put back on the heat to dry out carefully, stirring all the time.

6. Put the double cream and 85g of the butter into a clean pan and bring to the boil.

7. Mash the potatoes or pass them through a potato ‘ricer’ and add to the cream mixture. Stir well, season with salt and pepper and add some nutmeg. Allow to cool. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4.

8. Put the potato into a piping bag with a 2cm plain nozzle and pipe on to the meat mixture in the pie dish. Put the pie dish into the preheated oven for 10 minutes to set the potato topping.

9. Melt the remaining butter and carefully brush over the top of the pie. Put back in the oven for a further 20 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately.


For the filling

  • 25 g beef dripping, or lard
  • 1 large onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled and diced
  • 450 g cooked lamb, minced
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed (optional)
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • 1 tsp tomato purée
  • 300 ml beef stock
  • 1 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley

For the topping

  • 450 g potatoes
  • 2 tbsp double cream
  • 115 g unsalted butter
  • 1 pinches nutmeg, freshly grated

Tips and suggestions

This is essentially a leftover recipe, but you can make it with fresh lamb (or beef). Buy mince, and cook it with the vegetables for longer than above. Also, you don’t have to use a piping bag for the potato. Spoon it on evenly and level with a palette knife dipped in olive oil or melted butter, then scroll to make a pattern. For variations, try adding fried mushrooms or sun-dried tomatoes to the filling, or grated cheese to the potato topping.

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Latest Comment


Superb recipe.

nosheenM35851 nosheenM35851  Posted 29 Nov 2011 2:32 PM

MadeehaA26855 MadeehaA26855  Posted 22 Jun 2011 8:57 PM

Just how I have always made my Shephards Pies except I always grate some chease over the top.

RaymondS23096 RaymondS23096  Posted 14 Jan 2011 11:10 AM

absolutely amazing pie dish very enjoyable, family loved it.....

Mads7 Mads7 Posted 28 Feb 2010 2:31 PM

Yes we loved this one. I've been cooking indifferent shepherds pie for 47 years despite my efforts to do better. Well I won't have to try anymore, this recipe is the one for me>

TerryA55774 TerryA55774 Posted 19 Feb 2010 7:17 PM

My family really enjoyed it,very tasty will definitely cook it again.

ChristineB7467 ChristineB7467 Posted 09 Dec 2009 7:49 PM

The results are okay and the taste is okay, the use of Lamb ans beef in what was essentially a poor man's dish, not sure, possibly mutton would be more traditional and I left out the double cream as was supposed to be a poor farmworkers dish. oh yes I didn't pipe the mash over I used the spoon in fork over approach, less is most definitely more! but tasty! try with pint of Bishop's finger Ale.

markM10630 markM10630 Posted 25 Jun 2009 6:05 PM

My husband says this is the best sheperds pie he has eaten.

deb85 deb85 Posted 29 Mar 2009 4:47 PM