Shepherd’s pie, with sharp Irish Cheddar mashed potatoes over a savory ground beef and vegetable mixture with a flavorful sauce, is comfort food at its finest.
This easy homemade dinner recipe also uses a Guinness Stout to give this delicious meal a huge flavor boost. This is definitely one of my favorite St. Patrick’s Day recipes!
This Irish Cheddar Shepherd’s Pie recipe is the perfect St. Paddy’s Day meal that your family is guaranteed to love. This recipe is the epitome of comfort foods, made completely from scratch and topped with mashed potatoes.
I’ve been making this recipe for years, long before I ever had a food blog. When creating this I wanted to put a fun little spin on the traditional meal. Adding a Guinness Stout to deglaze the pan and mixing in some extra sharp shredded Irish cheddar cheese gives this delicious dinner an additional Irish spin.
I can honestly tell you that this was the best shepherd’s pie I have ever made.
What exactly is Shepherd’s Pie?
Traditional pies are made with ground lamb in a savory gravy, mixed vegetables and topped with mashed potatoes.
The best recipes are seasoned to perfection and transformed into a mouth watering casserole.
My recipe is pretty traditional except that I used ground beef instead of lamb. I also prefer to cook it in a skillet.
Shepherd’s Pie or Cottage Pie?
Confession time: I should have called this recipe Cottage Pie, because the main difference between Shepherd’s Pie and Cottage Pie is that traditional Shepherd’s Pie is made with lamb and Cottage Pie is made with beef.
Why did I call this recipe Shepherd’s pie then? Well, because I don’t think most people know that what I made is closer to a cottage pie. If someone searches for a shepherd’s pie recipe, I want them to find this one because it’s oh-so-good. Also, anyone can easily substitute the ground beef with the lamb if they want.
Personally, I’m not a huge fan of lamb. I’ve tried it several times and am just not a huge fan of the flavor. I’ve found that people who grew up eating lamb love it, but since I didn’t eat it until I was a middle aged adult, I just don’t like it that much. Plus, I have goats that I treat like pets, and they’re just too closely related to lamb for me to enjoy eating it.
Cooking tips for this recipe:
- Save time by preparing the mashed potatoes while your meat is cooking. Homemade mashed potatoes ensure this classic meal is creamy and delicious. You’ll want to boil your potatoes until they are soft and tender, usually about 20 minutes. Drain and mash them well with butter, buttermilk, egg yolk, salt to taste and half of the shredded Irish cheddar cheese. The egg yolk adds to the richness and creaminess.
- Using a large skillet, brown your ground beef with onion. After it has been cooking for about 15 minutes add the celery. Pour on some Guinness stout and scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to deglaze. Throw in some butter and allow it to melt, then sprinkle it with flour and stir. Allow the flour to cook for several minutes before adding beef broth. After the beef broth is mixed in you’ll add tomato paste, Worcestershire, and salt. This meat filling is so full of flavor!
- Now the frozen vegetables can be added. I love to use frozen mixed veggies in this meal for the simple reason that they’re easy and convenient. My favorite veggies to use in shepherd’s pie is the organic foursome from Trader Joe’s. It has exactly what I want in the exact portions.
- When all the mouthwatering ingredients have been added, you will place the mashed potatoes on top of your beef mixture in an even layer. Hearty and delicious, it’s fabulous and doesn’t take that long to put together.
- Sprinkle the remaining cheddar cheese over it and voila, your Irish cheddar shepherds pie is finished and ready to broil on low until the top is a beautiful golden brown.
- Serve warm and enjoy!
This is an easy and delicious dinner recipe:
This recipe made enough to serve our entire family and still have plenty of leftovers.
Not only is this Irish cheddar shepherds pie dish festive but its super easy to prepare, incredibly yummy and sure to please all the meat and potato lovers out there.
Other festive St. Patrick’s Day recipes:
You’ll definitely want to try these:
- Guinness Ribeye Steak
- Guinness Chocolate Cake
- Corned Beef Hash
- Irish Soda Bread
- Irish Cheddar Stout Bread
- Pressure Cooker (Instant Pot) Corned Beef and Cabbage
- Bangers & Mash with Stout Onion Gravy
Irish Cheddar Shepherd's Pie Recipe
- 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
- 1 medium onion (chopped)
- 2 small stalks celery (chopped)
- 3 ounces stout beer (I used Guinness)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 cup beef broth
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 16 ounces frozen vegetables (I used Trader Joe's Organic Foursome with super sweet white corn, sweat peas, julienne sliced carrots, & green beans)
- 2 pounds potatoes (peeled and chopped (I used half russet with skin removed, half baby Dutch yellow with skin on))
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/4 cup buttermilk
- 1 large egg yolk
- 6 ounces Irish cheddar (grated)
- salt and pepper (to taste)
Shepherd's Pie filling:
- Using a very large heavy bottom skillet, brown ground beef with onion. After cooking for about 15 minutes, add celery and continue cooking until meat is crumbly. Add stout and scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to deglaze. Add butter and allow to melt, then sprinkle with flour and stir. Allow the flour to cook for several minutes before adding beef broth.
- Add beef broth and stir mixture well. Add tomato paste, Worcestershire, and salt, stir well, and allow gravy to thicken while the mixture cooks, about 5 minutes. Add frozen vegetables and allow to cook until the entire mixture is nice and hot.
- To make the mashed potatoes, boil the potatoes in water over high heat until very soft and tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and mash well with butter, buttermilk, egg yolk, salt (to taste) and half of the shredded Irish cheddar.
- Add the mashed potatoes to the top of your beef mixture in an even layer. Top with remaining shredded cheddar.
- Broil on low for about 15 minutes, until the top is golden brown.
This post was originally created in March 2015 and has been updated with more fun facts and tidbits for your reading pleasure.