Shepherd's Pie


My regular Monday family meal used to be spaghetti bolognaise but as I have become more successful at weaning the children off the grains I have introduced Shepherd's Pie as the Monday meal.

It's great as I make a huge big batch of it and it serves not only as the Monday night meal but I also have a son who trains in Olympic lifting about 5 times a week and the leftovers become the pre-training meal.

I use the pressure cooker which helps in being able to control the final consistency and make it more into a 'pie' rather than runny mince with mashed kumara floating on top

What I like about it is:

  • It's cheap and easy to cook
  • Provides a good protein and healthy carb mix
  • Grain free
  • Loaded with onions it is a great pre-biotic, and
  • A meal that tastes better when it is reheated as leftovers

Preparation time

Preparation time is simply cutting up the vegetables and takes about 10 minutes.

I use the pressure cooker to pre-cook the filling which breaks the cooking up into a couple of stages but I think adds a better result. The advantage with the pressure cooker is you can just set the timer and go off and do other things.



You have some standard ingredients but you can put together a number of variations by combining different vegetables and spices.

For this version I used:

Shepherd's Pie filling:

  • About 3/4 to 1 kg of mince (there was only one pack of the 'premium' mince left on the supermarket shelf so I used another of the budget, fatty mixes which saves a bit of money and works fine)
  • 3 brown onions chopped (where a recipe calls for 1 onion I will generally add 3 as they boost the taste and are a fantastic sources of FOS (fructo-oligosaccharides) which is a pre-biotic essential
  • 2 or 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons of raw virgin coconut oil
  • 1 handfull of button mushrooms, finely sliced
  • 2 carrots, grated
  • 1 zucchini, grated
  • 1 small tub of Leggo's tomato concentrate
  • Slurp of Worcester sauce
  • Dried herbs (I used oregano and basil in this version)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons of Coconut Culinary Flour (high fat)

Shepherd's Pie topping:

  • About 1/2 kg of orange kumara
  • Tablespoon of butter (you can use coconut oil)
  • A slurp of milk if you like
  • Handful of grated cheese (leave out for the Paleo version)
  • Mix in some Caspian Sea Yogurt for a bit of extra zing

Preparation & cooking

Step 1

First step is the Shepherd's Pie filling. I do this on the run:

  • Set the pressure cooker on saute for 10 minutes
  • Dice the onions and garlic and saute in coconut oil until clearish
  • Add the mince and saute until browned
  • Add the tomato paste and Worcester sauce
  • Grate the carrots and zucchini into the mixture
  • Add your herbs of choice
  • Close the pressure cooker lid, turn to pressure cook and cook for about 15 minutes



Step 2

While the filling is cooking cut up the kumara and steam. Should only take about 12 minutes.

Once the kumara is about 80% cooked:

  • Add some butter and milk
  • Mash to your desired consistency


Step 3

When the filling is cooked the pressure cooking will have forced quite a lot o f moisture out of the raw meat and vegetables.

To get it to a consistency that is going to make it stand up as a pie I use about 3 tablespoons of Coconut Culinary Flour (high fat). Because coconut flour is hydroscopic (absorbs large amounts of liquid) a small meausre can thicken a large amount of liquid.

In fact it is so effective all you need to do is pour into the mixture and it spreads out and absorbs the water without any beating or preparation. Whisking around with a fork a few times is all that is required to distribute throughout the filling.

It also amplifies the taste and adds a delicious sweetness that enhances this dish.


Step 4

The final step is putting the filling and topping together. I use a large pyrex baking dish. Simply:

  • Pour the filling into the pyrex dish
  • Smooth the mashed kumara over the top
  • Sprinkle with a handful of cheese
  • Drizzle over some yogurt, and
  • Put in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes at about 170 degrees

Add some garnish and an accompanyment of steamed vegetables and you have a fantastic, delicious meal!

That hangs around for a few days and provides the answer to that perennial question, 'I'm hungry, what is there to eat?'

  • Shepherd's Pie GI
  • Orange Kumara Sliced GI
  • Button Mushrooms Montage GI
  • Brown Onions Montage GI
  • Shepherd's Pie GI
  • Orange Kumara Sliced GI
  • Button Mushrooms Montage GI
  • Brown Onions Montage GI

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