In the spirit of the impending snow storm that is about to hit the Midwest and Northeast parts of the country this weekend, I thought it would be fitting to share another one of my comforting dinner go-to’s.
My Paleo spin on a comfort food classic is sure to keep you feeling warm and happy on the inside as large amounts of snow pummel us for the next 3 days 🙂 I made this meal over New Year’s Eve weekend when Matt and I were staying at my parents’ lake house. When my Dad called me to ask what I was making for dinner, he asked me to explain what Shepherd’s Pie is. He didn’t sound too thrilled, but I made it anyways. Matt and I beat them up to the cabin, so I had dinner ready when they got there. My parents raved about this dinner for the rest of the weekend, so either it was the best meal I’ve made in a while, or they were just really hungry… In any case, I hope you give this satisfying and comforting meal a try and enjoy it as much as they did!
You can substitute green peas in for the green beans if you do not need it to be Paleo/Whole30, and use whatever type of milk you have available. I like coconut milk as a non-dairy option because the full-fat version I buy from Trader Joe’s keeps the potatoes nice and creamy, and believe it or not, you cannot taste any coconut in the finished product! The nutritional yeast in the mashed potato topping is optional, but I like it because it really adds to the flavor. If you can find ground lamb or bison at the grocery store and want to try something different, both are wonderful in this dish in place of the beef.
Makes 4 servings
For the topping:
4 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 2″ cubes
1/3-1/2 C full-fat coconut milk
2 T ghee
3 T nutritional yeast
Salt & pepper
For the filling:
1 lb grass-fed ground beef
1 medium yellow onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 c trimmed green beans, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 t dried rosemary (or 2 t fresh)
1 t dried thyme (or 2 t fresh)
1/4 t crushed red pepper
3 T tomato paste
1/2 C chicken broth
Fresh parsley for serving
Place peeled and cubed potatoes in medium-sized pan filled with cold water. Water should be about an inch over potatoes. Bring to a boil, and cook for about 12-15 minutes, until they are tender when poked with a fork. Drain water from pan and mash potatoes. Add 1/3 C coconut milk, ghee, and nutritional yeast, and continue to mash. If they are too dry, go ahead and add a little more milk. Add salt and pepper to taste, and set aside while you make filling.
Preheat oven to 375° and lightly grease 8 x 8 glass pan.
Heat medium/large skillet with sides over medium heat. Brown the ground beef, breaking it up as it cooks. When all pink is gone, drain fat and set beef to the side. Leave remaining drippings in pan.
Add 1 T olive oil or ghee, along with diced onions, carrots, celery, and green beans. Sautee for 4 minutes, stirring frequently. Add minced garlic, herbs, crushed red pepper, tomato paste, and chicken broth, and mix to combine. Cook for another 5 minutes, until it starts to thicken. Remove from heat and spoon mixture into prepared pan.
Add mashed potatoes on top of ground beef filling, and even out with spatula. Cook in preheated oven for about 25 minutes, until bubbling on the edges and hot in center. You may want to put a sheet pan on the rack below, to catch any filling that bubbles over the edges of your pan.
Tip** If your Shepherd’s Pie doesn’t have a nice golden brown top after baking, set oven to Broil for about 3 minutes. Keep a close eye on it so it doesn’t burn!
Top with parsley and enjoy!