Poultry · Recipes

Lighter Shepherd’s Pie

Shepherd's Pie Turkey

If you’re looking for an alternative to Corned Beef and Cabbage this St. Patrick’s Day, give this recipe a try.  This Shepherd’s Pie is lighter in fat than your average pie and jam packed with tender vegetables.  The heaviest (and most unhealthy) part of this meal is the potato topping.  You can lighten the fat content even more so by using butter or milk substitutes or even sweet potatoes as a topping instead.

Turkey Shepherd's Pie2

I would make this dish any time of year, but it seemed appropriate given the Irish holiday that is right around the corner.  To me, Shepherd’s Pie is the ultimate comfort food.  Every bite is filled with meat and potatoes – everything a growing Irishperson needs.  Let’s just pretend you and I are Irish for a moment.  Thank you for your cooperation.  Plus you’ll need something delicious to soak up all of the whiskey you’ll be drinking on St. Patty’s Day.


Lighter Shepherd’s Pie

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Yields: About 6

Calories per serving: About 290

Fat per serving: 11g

Lighter Shepherd’s Pie


  • 1 1/2 pounds potatoes (yukon gold, red, sweet), mostly peeled and chunked
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup skim milk, or more
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 3-4 carrots, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup frozen sweet corn kernels
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and diced (you can use some canned tomatoes too)
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth


  1. Boil the potatoes in salted water and cook until fork tender. Drain the potatoes and place them back in the same hot pot. Add the butter, garlic powder, salt and pepper and mash. Add the milk and mix gently until creamy. Add more milk if necessary. Taste for seasoning then set aside.
  2. Heat a large skillet to medium heat. Add a bit of olive oil and the ground turkey. Crumble and cook the turkey until browned. Remove the meat from the pan and set aside.
  3. Remove all fat from the pan and add a bit more olive oil. Add the carrots and saute over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add the celery and onion and saute for another 2 minutes. Add the peas, corn, and flour, and cook, stirring for 2 minutes. Add the cooked turkey, Worcestershire, soy sauce, paprika, thyme, rosemary, tomato and broth, combine and bring to a low simmer. Cook for another 2 minutes.
  4. Once the mixture is slightly thickened, pour the turkey mixture into a casserole dish (9x13 for a thinner casserole, or an 8-inch square for a thicker casserole). Top with potatoes and decorate if you'd like (some people scrape a fork across the top, others pipe their potatoes on. I personally just slather it on.) Sprinkle some paprika on top of the potatoes and bake for 20-30 minutes, or until the potatoes are golden brown.


To freeze: Follow directions up until baking, then cover tightly with saran wrap and aluminum foil. To reheat a frozen casserole: Thaw completely and bake, covered with aluminum foil, at 350 for 30-40 minutes. Remove the foil during the last 10 minutes of baking.


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