Ultimate Turkey Shepherd’s Pie Recipe

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Looking for a delicious and healthy Shepherd’s Pie recipe with ground turkey and sweet potatoes? Look no further! Today I am sharing how to make a tasty Shepherd’s Pie that’s also a great choice for diabetics.

Diabetes runs in my family and finding recipes that my dad loves and is still considered an ultimate comfort food, can be challenging.

Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie

Easy Turkey Shepherd’s Pie With Vegetables

Traditionally, Shepherd’s Pie, also known as Cottage Pie when made with ground beef, is made with ground beef or ground lamb, but for this recipe, we’re opting for lean ground turkey.

The switch to turkey vs ground beef not only reduces the calorie content but also makes it a healthier choice, particularly for individuals with diabetes.

While I absolutely love the rich flavor of ground beef or lamb, it’s nice to have a lighter alternative now and then, especially for my dad who is diabetic.


  • 1 lb Extra Lean Ground Turkey (95% Lean): Lean turkey meat with less fat.
  • 4 Large Sweet Potatoes (Peeled and Cut, About 1 lb): Sweet potatoes for a flavorful topping.
  • 1 Small Onion (Chopped): Adds savory flavor and texture.
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil: Used for sautéing, adds a rich taste.
  • 1 Large Spoonful of Crushed Garlic (About 2 Cloves, Adjust to Taste): For a delightful garlic aroma.
  • 1 Can or Frozen Bag of Corn: Adds sweetness and crunch.
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce: Provides depth and umami flavor.
  • 1/4 Cup Sour Cream (Fat-Free Used): Makes mashed potatoes creamy.
  • 2 tbsp Butter or Alternative (e.g., “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter”): Adds richness to mashed potatoes.
  • 1/2 Cup Milk (1% Used): Makes mashed potatoes smooth.
  • Paprika (Optional): For smoky flavor and color.
  • Olive Oil Cooking Spray: Prevents sticking in the cooking dish.
Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie

Cooking Instructions

First, set your oven to 375 degrees. While it’s warming up, boil the peeled large chunks of potato until they’re soft, about 25 minutes, and then drain them in a strainer.

Now, let’s make the creamy mashed potatoes. Put the cooked potatoes in a bowl, add milk, sour cream, and melted butter, and mix using a potato masher or electric beater until they’re smooth. If they’re lumpy, add a little water to make them smooth.

In a large skillet on low heat, cook onions and garlic in olive oil for about 5 minutes. Then, add the ground turkey and cook for 10 minutes on medium heat until it turns brown.

Spray a casserole dish with olive oil and layer the cooked beef, corn, and sweet potatoes. Sprinkle 2 teaspoons of paprika on top, and bake for 20-25 minutes until it’s light brown. Enjoy your yummy meal!

Leftover Turkey Shepherd’s Pie

If you happen to have leftover turkey from Thanksgiving or any other occasion, this Shepherd’s Pie recipe provides a great way to transform those leftovers into a delicious and healthy meal.

Be sure to visit this post, how to reheat shepherd’s pie, for a full array of options when reheating.

Simply substitute the ground turkey with your leftover turkey meat, and you’ll have a scrumptious dish that brings new life to those Thanksgiving leftovers.

What Can I use To Bulk Out My Shepherd’s Pie?

Add More Vegetables

One of the easiest ways to bulk out Shepherd’s Pie is by incorporating additional vegetables. You can mix in extra peas, carrots, corn, green beans, or any other vegetables of your choice. These not only enhance the nutritional value but also contribute to the texture and flavor of the dish. Adding a tablespoon on low sugar tomato paste to your vegetables will also add extra flavor.

Use Lentils or Legumes

Adding cooked lentils or legumes like chickpeas or black beans will increase the protein and fiber in your shepherd’s pie which will offer a meatier taste.

Top with Extra Mashed Potatoes

If you want to make the top layer of your Shepherd’s Pie thicker and more filling, simply add more mashed potatoes with a dash of paprika!

What To Serve Shepherd’s Pie In

Looking for a unique baking dish serve individual portions of shepherd’s pie? Next time try using oven safe crocks!

Everyone always loves having their own crock at dinner time. It takes a little longer to prepare because you have to layer the Shepherd’s Pie turkey mixture in each crock but sometimes as a treat (and when I have extra time), I pull out the crocks!

My Favorite Oven Safe Crock & Airtight Container On Amazon

These airtight containers are the perfect way to store leftovers instead of using plastic wrap.

Airtight Container

See containers ↗

oven safe crocks

Oven Safe Crocks

See crocks ↗

Love this easy recipe, print it below!
Recipe adapted from the Diabetes Recipes and Nutrition site.

Healthy Turkey Shepherd’s Pie With Sweet Potato

Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie made with ground turkey is a healthier version of the traditional Shepherd’s PIe and great for diabetics too.
Print Instructions
Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie

Supply List

  • 1 lb extra lean ground turkey I used 95% lean
  • 4 large sweet potatoes peeled and cut in half about a lb
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large spoonfull of crushed garlic about 2 cloves *I love garlic so use less if you are not a lover
  • 1 can or frozen bag of corn
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup sour cream I used fat free
  • 2 tbsp butter or alternative I used “I can’t believe it’s not butter”
  • 1/2 cup milk I used 1%
  • Paprika optional
  • Olive oil Cooking Spray

Instructions : Step by Step

  • Preheat oven 375
  • Boil peeled potatoes until soft (about 25 minutes) and place in strainer
  • Add drained cooked potatoes to a mixing bowl, add milk, sour cream and butter and mix on medium until potatoes are smooth. If your potatoes are lumpy, mix in a little water until smooth
  • In a large sauce pan , add olive oil, garlic and onions and saute for about 5 minutes on low heat. Then add ground turkey. Cook ground turkey on medium, mixing until browned. About 10 minutes.
  • Spray 9×11 baking dish with olive oil spray and layer ingredients starting with cooked beef mixture, then corn, then sweet potato.
  • Sprinkle paprika across the top (about 2 tsp)
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes until top is light brown


You can also use lean ground beef instead of ground turkey. See our cheeseburger Shepherd’s Pie and our Traditional Shepherd’s Pie
Servings: 6
Author: Jessica Bruno

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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.

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