This hearty Crock Pot Shepherd’s Pie is one of my family’s favorite recipes. Made with a delicious tomato and meat mixture that is filled with vegetables and topped with delicious mashed potatoes, this is the perfect cozy meal for the cold winter months!
Easy Crock Pot Shepherd’s Pie Recipe
When my husband been has been working outside in the cold weather, he always appreciates coming inside to a warm and hearty meal.
This recipe seems to hit the spot with him. He especially appreciates coming in and finding out that we are having this meal for dinner. It is the type of dinner that warms you, body and soul.
This recipe makes a generous amount of food, which means it is perfect for leftovers over the next few days. When reheating the leftovers, I like to warm them up on the stove and add a splash of milk. It really livens up the leftovers and adds an extra touch to them.
What is Shepherd’s Pie?
Shepherd’s Pie is a peasant’s dish that dates back to Ireland in the 1700s. It was created as a way to use up various leftover meat and vegetables.
Traditional Shepherd’s Pie has a layer of mashed potatoes on the bottom of the pan as well as along the sides of the pan. The meat and vegetable mixture was completely surrounded by the mashed potatoes.
Even with its humble origin, Shepherd’s Pie has become a favorite dish, known for its comforting ability to warm you from the inside out.
It is a dish that is known for having the same main ingredients, but with many variations to it as it seems each cook likes to add his or her own touch to this humble dish.
What is the Difference between Shepherd’s Pie and Cottage Pie?
There really is only one significant difference between Shepherd’s Pie and Cottage Pie, and that comes down to the type of meat that is used. Traditionally, Shepherd’s Pie is made with lamb or mutton, while Cottage Pie is made with beef.
It seems that nowadays, the Shepherd’s Pie name has come out on top and is used more commonly, regardless of what type of meat is use.
Given that, this recipe is technically a Cottage Pie, but I chose to use the more familiar term of Shepherd’s Pie.
This recipe calls for premade mashed potatoes. I find this recipe is a perfect way to use up leftover mashed potatoes from another meal.
I particularly enjoy making this recipe after Thanksgiving when we tend to have a generous amount of mashed potatoes leftover.
Even if you do not have leftover mashed potatoes, it is still easy to whip up a fresh batch of mashed potatoes for this meal. My favorite way to make mashed potatoes is in the Instant Pot.
Making mashed potatoes in the Instant Pot is so easy because you do not need to babysit them as they cook. You can start the potatoes in the Instant Pot while you cook the beef and assemble the rest of the ingredients for this recipe.
If you are in need of an Instant Pot mashed potatoes recipe, I have you covered! Here is a link to my Farmhouse Style Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes. These mashed potatoes are so delicious! Made with simple ingredients, they are quick and easy to whip up.
Crock Pot Shepherd’s Pie with Corn
The beauty of Shepherd’s Pie is that you can really use whatever vegetables you have on hand. I prefer adding in corn to my Shepherd’s Pie mixture. Not only does it add a nice flavor to the dish, but I also like how it adds a dash of color as well.
Isn’t it fun to make food that not only tastes delicious, but also looks like a work of art?
Hearty Crock Pot Shepherd’s Pie Recipe
3-4 cups mashed potatoes (here is a recipe for easy Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes)
2 lbs ground beef
1 yellow onion, diced
20 oz frozen mixed vegetables
6 oz tomato paste
1 cup tomato juice
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp garlic powder
1 1/2 tsp salt, divided
1/2 tsp black pepper
On the stovetop, cook the ground beef and onion on medium heat. As the beef and onion cook, add the thyme, garlic powder, 1 tsp salt, and pepper.
Once the beef mixture is cooked through, transfer it to the crock pot.
Add the frozen veggies, tomato paste, tomato juice and 1/2 tsp salt. Stir to combine.
Evenly spread the mashed potatoes on top of the beef mixture.
Cook on HIGH 2-3 hours or LOW 5-6 hours
Hearty Crock Pot Shepherd's Pie
- 3-4 cups mashed potatoes
- 2 lbs ground beef
- 1 yellow onion diced
- 20 oz frozen mixed vegetables
- 6 oz tomato paste
- 1 cup tomato juice
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 ½ tsp salt divided
- ½ tsp black pepper
- On the stovetop, cook the ground beef and onion on medium heat. As the beef and onion cook, add the thyme, garlic powder, 1 tsp salt, and black pepper.
- Once the beef mixture is cooked through, transfer it to the crock pot.
- Add the frozen vegetables, tomato paste, tomato juice, and ½ tsp salt. Stir to combine.
- Evenly spread the mashed potatoes on top of the beef mixture.
- Cook on HIGH for 2-3 hours or LOW for 5-6 hours.
Kathleen Argersinger says
Thank you, Maggie, for the article and recipe. We live in a subdivision, but I enjoy embracing the country habits-especially letting the sun determine our schedule and hanging the clothes outside to dry. It is amazing how many days it is possible to use our compact clothesline; the sun and wind do their job even on days when the highs are in the 40’s it they are hung early enough. Glancing over the fence at our neighbor’s chickens makes me forget about cold fingers!
That is the perfect way to embrace the country life!