How to Make a Healthy, Simplified Shepherd’s Pie


Shepherd’s pie is comforting fall dish, but it can be complicated to make and is full of calories and fat.

This recipe aims to cut back on some of the fat and calories without sacrificing flavor. The steps have also been simplified so that it’s easy to prepare in even the smallest of kitchens.

Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes

What You’ll Need

  • 1 glass baking dish (12” x 7”)
  • 1 medium-sized frying pan
  • 1 medium-sized pot
  • 1 mixing bowl
  • ½ pound of organic ground beef (at least 90% lean)
  • 1 package of Trader Joe’s Organic Foursome frozen vegetables (you can also substitute any frozen mixture of green beans, carrots, peas, and corn)
  • 6 red potatoes
  • 1 small Spanish onion (peeled and diced)
  • 1 24 oz jar of marinara sauce
  • Paprika
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Hot Sauce

How to Make It

  1. Take the frozen vegetables out of the freezer. This will give them an opportunity to thaw slightly before use.
  2. Prepare the potatoes. Wash, peel, and cut the potatoes into large cubes.
  3. Boil water in the medium-sized pot over high heat.
  4. Place the potatoes into the boiling water and boil until potatoes are tender (approximately 15 to 20 minutes).

While the potatoes are boiling, you’ll want to start preparing the rest of the dish.

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place frozen vegetables at the bottom of the baking pan. They should be as evenly distributed as possible so that they are evenly cooked.
  3. Sauté ground beef and chopped onions over medium high heat. The beef should only be cooked until brown to avoid drying the meat out.
  4. Pour the marinara sauce and add hot sauce over the ground beef and chopped onion mixture. Cook until the sauce starts to bubble. You can use as much (or as little) hot sauce as you’d like depending on how spicy you’d like the final product to be.
  5. Place mixture over frozen vegetables in the baking pan.
  6.  Scoop out the potatoes from the water, place them in a mixing bowl, and mash potatoes with a fork or a potato masher.
  7. Take ¼ cup of the boiled water and pour over the potatoes in the mixing bowl. This will take the place of the traditional use of milk and/or butter in mashed potatoes.
  8. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Mix together with spoon and scoop into baking dish. The mashed potato mixture should be the top layer.
  10. Add paprika to taste to the top of the dish.
  11. Cover top of baking dish with aluminum foil and place in 350 degree oven for 30 minutes.
  12. Remove after 30 minutes from oven and serve immediately.


This dish serves 4-6 people. Refrigerate any unused portion and consume within 3 days for optimal freshness. This recipe works well as a make-ahead meal that is easy to transport for lunch at the office and tastes even better the second day!


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