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Cook It Kosher

Shepherd's Pie

Shepherd's Pie


Shepherd’s pie, also known as cottage pie, makes for a delicious and filling weeknight supper. Serve it with salad or steamed green beans and you’ve got a complete meal. If your family members are meat-and-potatoes eaters, this one’s for you!

Some may argue that this can only be called cottage pie because I used beef and not lamb, but since colloquially shepherd’s pie is used to refer to both, I am taking the liberty of calling it that. You may, of course, call it cottage pie if you prefer.

First you'll need to fry up some onions. I find that adding fried onion to both layers really enhances the flavors.

Next, peel and boil the potatoes until soft. If you want them to cook more quickly, cut the potatoes into slices before cooking. Drain the potatoes and mash while still hot. Pour in half the fried onion, along with the oil in which they were fried, and mix. Add salt and 1 egg, mixing well so there are no lumps. Set aside.

Mix the ground beef with the other half of the fried onion, an egg and the rest of the seasoning. Press the ground meat into the bottom of a pan, spread the mashed potato over it and cover tightly with foil. Bake covered for 30 minutes, remove the foil and bake for another 20-30 minutes.

Let sit for 10-15 minutes before serving. Stays good in the fridge for several days, and freezes decently too. Reheat either in the oven or in a frying pan.


  • 2 large Spanish onions, diced
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 3 tsp. kosher salt, divided
  • 2 very large (or 4 medium) potatoes, boiled
  • 2 eggs
  • 1.5 lbs. ground beef
  • 1 tsp. basil
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 2 tbsp. ketchup
  • 2 tbsp. mustard
  • 1/4 c. matzah meal


  1. Fry the onions in the oil and 1 tsp. of salt, until nicely caramelized.
  2. Boil the potatoes until soft. Drain and mash while still hot. Mix in half the fried onions along with the oil in which they were fried, 1 tsp. salt and 1 egg. Set aside. (Taste and add more salt if desired.)
  3. Mix the ground beef with the rest of the fried onion, 1 egg, matzah meal, ketchup, mustard, basil, oregano and 1 tsp. salt. Press down into the bottom of a 9' x 13' baking dish.
  4. Spread mashed potatoes over the meat mixture and cover pan with foil. Bake covered on 350°F for 30 minutes, then remove foil and bake another 20-30 minutes uncovered. Let the pie sit for 10-15 minutes before serving.

Yields: 1 9'x13' pan - approximately 12 pieces.

It's not the prettiest dish, but it's hearty and filling and great for cold nights. What do you put in your shepherd's pie? Any special ingredients?

Miriam Szokovski is the author of the historical novel Exiled Down Under, and a member of the editorial team. She shares her love of cooking, baking and food photography on’s food blog, Cook It Kosher.
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Discussion (18)
January 23, 2017
browning the beef
If you have time, browning the beef definitely adds flavor.
Miriam Szokovski
January 22, 2017
Do you brown the ground beef before baking?
November 16, 2015
poultry :)
We call it Farmer's Pie when we make it with Chicken and a layer of veggies tween the meat and potatoes.
As it is almost that time here in Arizona, another variation we call Thanksgiving Pie. Turkey of course with the left over cranberries, those 'no body really eats them' green beans plus whatever other veggies, and topped with dressing rather than potatoes. Probably not healthy but taste yummy:)
TC Carr
November 11, 2015
I made this a few weeks ago for my family and it flew off of the table!!! The kids loved it, it was gobbled up in seconds!
Talia forer
October 1, 2015
Would it still be good with boxed mashed potatoes?
September 2, 2015
frozen veggies mixed in meat is also tasty
January 18, 2015
re pastelle
re Tzvi Yitzchok's comment - I am not sure but yes my inlaws and husband are from North Africa. so perhaps you are referring to the same thing. The interesting thing is once I saw in a Mishna Berura in English that something of a similar name was listed as a Shabbat food and that's a book of Ashkenazi halachot, if I am not I wasn't sure what it was referring to!
January 16, 2015
I add brown gravy on top of meat, then add English peas on that, then mashed potatoes.
Diane McKinney
November 16, 2014
Shepherd's Pie
Re the "pastille" referred to by Esther of Montreal, could this be realted to Pastilla which features in Notrh African and Moroccan cuisine?
Tzvi Yitchok
November 15, 2014
microwave option.
i have done it in the microwave and always had a layer of either green peas or green beans below the meat.
North Miami Beach
Cook It Kosher features recipes from food blogger Miriam Szokovski, as well as guest bloggers and cookbook authors. Let us know if you’d like to contribute!
Miriam SzokovskiMiriam Szokovski is the author of the historical novel Exiled Down Under, and a member of the editorial team. She shares her love of cooking, baking and food photography on’s food blog, Cook It Kosher.
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