Shepherd's Pies

Prep Time:
40 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 10 mins

These pies, filled with ground lamb and topped with potato, are hearty comfort food for the fall weather.


  • 2 pounds freshly ground lamb

  • 1 large onion, finely chopped

  • 4 carrots, coarsely chopped

  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste

  • 2 tablespoons flour

  • 1 to 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

  • Coarse salt and ground pepper

  • 10 ounces frozen peas, thawed

  • 2 ½ pounds russet potatoes, peeled and quartered

  • 1 cup milk

  • 6 tablespoons butter


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Heat a large skillet over high heat. In two batches, cook lamb until no longer pink, about 5 minutes per batch. Transfer lamb to a colander set in a bowl; let fat drain off and discard.

  2. Add 1/4 cup water to the skillet, scraping up browned bits with a wooden spoon. Reduce heat to medium; add onion and carrots. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomato paste. Add flour; cook, stirring, 2 minutes.

  3. Add Worcestershire sauce, 2 cups water, and lamb. Season with 2 teaspoons salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Simmer until thickened, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Stir in peas; cook 1 minute. Divide among eight 8-ounce ramekins or two 9-inch glass pie dishes.

  4. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, cover potatoes with salted water by 1 inch; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer until fork-tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain.

  5. In pan, bring milk and butter to a simmer; remove from heat. Return potatoes; mash. Season with 2 teaspoons salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Spread over pies; use a fork to make peaks. Bake on a baking sheet until tops are browned, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool slightly; serve.

Cook's Notes

This recipe for traditional lamb potpie makes 8 individual servings (or 2 large pies instead). Cool pies completely before covering with plastic and freezing for up to 3 months. Reheat frozen pies (small or large) in a 375-degree oven for about an hour.

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