Skillet Shepherd’s Pie

February 1, 2013 · 9 comments

in beef,healthy,potatoes


Our “mild” winter took a turn recently to subzero temps that have me wondering, once again, why I live in the Midwest. And yes, I know, it’s winter in Chicago so I shouldn’t expect mild temperatures to begin with, but the teasing is so not cool. Also not cool? A windchill temp of -19.

The cold winter blues definitely call for some warm comfort food. Shepherd’s pie is one of the most comforting dishes to me. I don’t make it often (though I’ve managed to Greek-ify it in the past), but when I eat it, I’m always reminded of how much I love it. First of all, mashed potatoes are one of my favorite comfort foods of all time. I don’t even need a main dish to make me happy when mashed potatoes are in the picture. Secondly, the meat and vegetables all simmer together in  a really fragrant and hearty sauce. This makes it not only delicious, but also a one-pot meal. Score! We did have salads with this, just for something crisp and fresh – but since there are vegetables in the filling it’s not really a necessity. This is also a healthier version of this classic dish. Truth be told, there doesn’t seem to be much of a difference in the filling, which is fairly healthy to begin with (assuming you’re using a lean meat) but the potatoes aren’t butter and heavy-cream laden, and still manage to taste pretty damn good.

In addition to being a meal in itself, this is mostly made in one skillet. Sure, you need a separate pot to cook the potatoes but ultimately, you’re not doing a ton of dishes or spending a lot of time on this. It takes a little while to cook (close to an hour) but most of that is inactive cooking time, and since you really only have that potato pot to wash in the meantime, you can do other fun stuff, like read Curious George Goes to the Library approximately one billion times to your toddler.

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