Our 30 Minute Easy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe

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Today I am sharing our 30 minute Easy Shepherd’s pie recipe.  Shepherd’s Pie or cottage pie? We call it Shepherd’s Pie but I know many call it cottage pie.  It’s one of the staple dishes in our home that my mom would make all the time when I was a kid. Follow to the end of the post where I share the full printable recipe.

I wanted to update this recipe to include our cheese and corn version (keep reading) as they are very popular right now over on Pinterest and the perfect Fall comfort food! I personally think the picture of our Shepherd’s Pie with cheese, corn and ground beef is stellar and looks mouth watering!

This shepherd’s pie recipe will bake for 30 minutes and the prep time will take about 20 minutes if you choose to boil and make your mashed potatoes from scratch or you could make shepherd’s pie with instant mashed potatoes to save time.

How to Make Shepherd’s Pie

Let’s take a look at this easy shepherd’s pie recipe and determine if adding cheese, turkey or cauliflower is your favorite or if the good old fashioned version is more your speed!

30 minute shepherd's pie easy recipe
Easy shepherd’s pie recipe with corn and mashed potato

This easy Shepherd’s Pie with a 30 minute bake time which is more of an old fashioned shepherd’s pie recipe which I grew up eating as a kid. To save time and cut your prep time in 1/2, you can make instant potatoes if you are in a hurry!

My gram loved the Betty Crocker Brand with Butter.

An interesting fact from Wikipedia:

More recently ‘shepherd’s pie’ has generally been used for a potato-topped dish of minced lamb. According to the Oxford Companion to Food, ‘In keeping with the name, the meat should be mutton or lamb; and it is usually cooked meat left over from a roast


Shepherd’s Pie with Corn

A handful of alternative ingredients that you could add would be green beans, onions or even frozen peas.

What goes on the bottom of Shepherd’s Pie?

Want to learn how to layer shepherd’s pie?

Shepherd’s pie is all about layering your ingredients starting with instant mashed potatoes (or boiled real potatoes).

  1. Layer your shepherd’s pie by starting with melted butter on the bottom of the pan and then add a layer or instant or real mashed potato
  2. Next layer your ground beef
  3. Layer your canned (or frozen) corn and creamed corn
  4. Final layer – mashed potato

I am planning to make this same shepherds pie with cornbread or crust topping soon. I found 2 really great recipes with a light buttery crust that I think would taste so yummy!

Shopping tip: These Pyrex measuring cups shown below are the best and come in a set of 4!

If you are looking for more simple shepherd’s pie recipes, how about a healthy shepherd’s pie with mashed cauliflower instead of mashed potatoes?

Click through 4 of our easy shepherd’s pie recipes below for instructions

Shepherd’s Pie Easy Recipe Healthy

My Mom’s Cauliflower mash Shepherd’s Pie is not only healthy but delicious. There is no mashed potato so if you are looking for a low carb easy shepherd’s recipe, this is for you!

Cauliflower shepherd's pie rice as mashed potatoes, cream cheese, ground beef, milk
Shepherd’s Pie Recipe with Cauliflower is so yummy!

Shepherd’s Pie can be made from sweet potato, instant potato and even whipped cauliflower. This healthy version above above is made with mashed cauliflower (you can use frozen or fresh) and is delicious.

Ground Turkey Shepherd’s Pie

If you are looking for another healthy shepherd’s pie recipe, you can also try our Sweet Potato  Pie with ground turkey. Turkey shepherd’s pie is light and so easy to make.

Baking tip: Use these baking crocks to make individual servings! I have the brown ones but the gray ones linked are pretty too!

Have you ever tried using sweet potato?

Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie with ground turkey
Healthy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe with ground turkey for the win!

We have a few diabetics in our family so sweet potatoes are better than regular mashed potatoes and we also use ground turkey when we make the sweet potato version.

It actually tastes delicious and is a nice change from traditional pie.

Shepherd’s Pie Recipe Easy with Cheese

We recently shared our shepherd’s pie with cheese and ground beef that was also amazing. This is my favorite when I am looking to cheat on my healthy diet and go all in!

cheeseburger shepherd's pie with bacon and cheese navy blue bowl
One of my favorite easy shepherd’s pie recipes with cheese

When my gram was alive, she would always say, “Shepherd’s Pie is a staple kind of food.” She said she made it all the time when her kids were little because it was affordable and filled them up.

Our 30 Minute Bake Easy Shepherd’s Pie

How to make an easy Shepherd’s Pie with a 30 minute bake time. To save time and cut your prep time in 1/2, you can make instant potatoes if you are in a hurry! My gram loves the Betty Crocker Brand with Butter.
Print Instructions
Easy Shepards Pie


  • baking dish

Supply List

  • Ingredients:
  • 2 lbs lean beef I used 93% lean ground beef
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 can creamed style corn
  • 1 bag frozen corn
  • 10 boiled potatoes you can use instant potatoes as well to save time
  • 1 cup light cream or milk
  • 1 stick butter or substitute
  • Salt pepper & paprika

Instructions : Step by Step

  • Instructions:
  • Boil potatoes and mash. Stir in 1 cup light cream and melted stick of butter. Sauté onions in a skillet until brown and then add meat. Cook meat fully and season to taste. Cook frozen corn and set aside.
    saute ground beef stove top
  • In a 9×11 baking dish, spread a layer of meat, then creamed style corn and potato. Repeat this layering process using the cooked frozen corn. Season top layer of potato with salt, pepper and paprika.
    layer potato, ground beef and corn shepherds pie
  • Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.



How to make an easy Shepherd’s Pie with a 30 minute bake time. To save time and cut your prep time in 1/2, you can make instant potatoes if you are in a hurry! My gram loves the Betty Crocker Brand with Butter.


Calories: 450kcal
Servings: 6
Calories: 450kcal
Author: Jessica Bruno
Cost: under $20

My gram was all about good old fashioned shepherd’s pie and making many of her dinners from scratch.

I kind of agree with her. If you need an inexpensive meal that feeds a lot of people, this is a great recipe. If you are looking for ways to reheat shepherd’s pie, visit this post.

Looking for more dinner ideas? Be sure to check out my mom’s crockpot chicken & dumplings corned beef & cabbage  chicken casserole and chicken pot pie.

I would love to hear who has another recipe version of an easy Shepherd’s Pie recipe on hand, especially with instant mashed potatoes. Like I said earlier, I’ve read that some make simple shepherd’s pie with cornbread which sounds amazing! I love cornbread.

Sometimes changing the recipe around is fun and I am always looking for alternative ideas.

Leave your recipe ideas in the comment section below!


Meet Jessica

What started as a hobby, Jessica’s blog now has millions of people visit yearly and while many of the projects and posts look and sound perfect, life hasn’t always been easy. Read Jessica’s story and how overcoming death, divorce and dementia was one of her biggest life lessons to date.


  1. Christine says:

    Hi Jessica,
    I’ve been a blog follower for quite some time now. I’d love to see your recipes made available in a printer friendly version.

    1. I totally agree! I actually had a plugin I was using and it kept cutting off the end of my post :(. I am trying to find a better alternative. Soon! 🙂

  2. WOW! A great recipe, a great mom who works full time and cooks most of the meals – you are incredibly blessed! Way to go MOM!

    1. We sure are blessed! She loves her crockpot and dishes that she can prepare ahead of time. That’s always been her “thing” 🙂

  3. Jonni Shannon says:

    Can I make this ahead & freeze 1/2 of it for the following week?

    1. I have never tried that. Google it and see but I don’t see why not. Good luck 🙂

  4. Making this meal tonight and my 16 year old daughter is going to love it!

  5. I’ve never had shepherd’s pie before, but it looks good! I love potatoes so anything with potatoes sounds good to me! I like that you also have a healthier version with sweet potatoes – I like those too!

  6. Claudine A. Shoulders says:

    I love the plaid drinking glasses you have in the White & Gold table decorations picture. Do you remember where you bought them?

  7. My mom would add a can of tomato soup to the beef and onion mixture, then add a can of green beans, and top with mashed potatoes.

  8. Sarah Carpenter says:

    If you do mashed potatoes, how much should I make? Thx!!

  9. 4 stars
    I am usually pressed for time so I make min with ground beef, 1 can of chunky ground sirloin veggies soup with either corn , carrots, sweet green peas or all 3 with Chedder, munster, and Harvarti cheeses, it’s delicious…

    1. That’s a great idea! I am always pressed for time too and love tips like that!

  10. 4 stars
    You could also add a thin layer of cornbread mix on bottom to hold it all together and add a little different flavor

    1. shawna that sounds delicious! I never thought of that. I make a yummy cornbread casserole for Thanksgiving that calls for the Jiffy cornbread mix and it’s soooooo good! 🙂

  11. I’ve made Shepherd’s Pie for years. My family loves it! Several years ago, my babysitter (wonderful lady, awesome cook) told me she adds a can of cream of mushroom soup to her ground beef. Delicious!

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