Shepherds pie. It’s basically the pie incarnation of meatloaf + mashed potatoes. Saucy. Rich. Stick-to-your-ribs satisfying. The great news: it doesn’t have to be unhealthy. With a couple of tweaks, we’ve made a rich and delicious shepherds pie super packed with veggies, and lighter on carbs and calories than your mom’s version.

This is one pie you can eat every week! Sorry…no progress yet on a low-carb lemon meringue. We’ll keep you posted. Serve it with a green salad. Or don’t — this shepherds pie is chock full of veggie goodness already, so it’s a meal in a bowl.

Try making it ahead when you have time, and popping it into the oven before dinner. If you’re baking it from a chilled state (you’ve made ahead and kept in the fridge, in other words), double your bake time to ensure it heats through.

Note: Though this recipe is easy on the carbs, it’s not gluten-free. To make a gluten free version, omit the flour  from the filling portion, and reduce the broth, adding just a splash at a time to achieve your preferred consistency. You won’t have the same “gravy” consistency but it will still taste delicious. If you are okay with gluten, try the original version. The thick gravy is worth it! And it’s just 1 tablespoon of flour for the entire pie. Plus, did we mention gravy?

low-carb shepherds pie

For the topping:

  • 4-5 medium Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 1 medium to large head cauliflower
  • 1/4 cup full-fat yogurt
  • splash chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • pinch nutmeg
  • sea salt & fresh black pepper

For the filling:

  • 1.5 lb ground beef, pork, or lamb
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, finely chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp each dried oregano, thyme, and rosemary
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt & fresh black pepper

1. Peel potatoes & quarter. Chop cauliflower into large chunks and combine with potatoes in large pot. Cover with salted water and bring to a boil; reduce to medium heat & simmer 20-25 minutes until very tender. When done, drain well and return to pot; allow to dry a few minutes. Add yogurt & butter, and mash well by hand. Add chicken broth as needed to moisten to desired consistency. Season, add nutmeg, and stir.

2. While potatoes/cauliflower are boiling, prepare filling: heat olive oil in large skillet over medium-high heat; brown meat well.

3. Remove meat to a plate and drain all but 1 tbsp drippings; adjust heat to medium.

4. Saute onion, celery, & carrot in drippings 2-3 minutes until softened; add garlic and sauté 1 minute more until fragrant.

5. Deglaze with broth and scrape pan well to release the crusty bits.

6. Add meat, tomato paste, bell pepper, & herbs to pan. Combine well.

7. Dissolve the flour into 1 tbsp cold water and add to pan. Bring to boil, reduce heat to low and simmer 15 minutes until thickened and reduced. If needed, add additional flour (dissolved in equal parts cold water, working with just 1 tsp flour at a time) or broth to achieve desired consistency.

8. Add peas & stir to combine.

9. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray or grease a deep baking dish. Pour meat mixture into dish. Use a spatula to dollop potato-cauliflower mixture and spread evenly. Bake 20-30 minutes until bubbling & lightly browned. Cool 5-10 minutes before serving.