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The Best Shepherdess Pie (Turkey Shepherds Pie)

Shepherdess Pie (Turkey and Veggie Shepherd’s Pie)

  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 6-8 1x


Shepherd’s Pie made with turkey is a healthier take on a classic. This homemade recipe is simple and easy to make with the best cauliflower mashed potatoes and a veggie-packed turkey layer that’s gluten free and dairy free. A great make ahead meal that everyone will love.



For the Mashed Potato Layer:

  • 4 medium-sized russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 2 pounds) potatoes)
  • 2 cups cauliflower florets (about 12 ounces or 1/2 a head)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (or use coconut oil)
  • 1/2 cup milk (regular or unsweetened dairy free)
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

For the Turkey and Vegetable Layer:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 23 cups diced onion (about 1 large)
  • 1 cup diced peeled carrots (about 2 medium)
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen (thawed) sweet corn kernels
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen (thawed) peas
  • 1 cup diced red bell pepper (about 1 medium pepper)
  • 2 cups finely chopped kale
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 3 tablespoons oat flour (or use all purpose flour)
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

For Serving:

  • Paprika, smoked paprika, or chopped fresh herbs (optional)


  1. Preheat your oven to 350F and lightly spray the sides of a 9 x 13 baking dish with oil.

For the Mashed Potato Layer:

  1. Boil the potatoes and cauliflower for 12 to 15 minutes over medium heat, or until tender, and drain well.
  2. Transfer the cooked potatoes and cauliflower to a large mixing bowl. Add the milk, oil salt, pepper and garlic powder and mash with a masher until just a few small chunks remain. Season with additional salt and pepper, to taste.

For the Meat and Vegetable Layer:

  1. While the potatoes and cauliflower are cooking, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the turkey and sauté. (breaking up the turkey) until cooked through and no longer pink, about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove the meat to a bowl and drain any excess liquid from the pan.
  2. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil to the skillet. Add the onion and carrots, and sauté until the onion is translucent and the carrots just begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the corn, peas, red pepper and kale and the thyme and paprika sauté for a minute or 2 until the kale is wilted. Remove the vegetables to a bowl.*
  3. Add the cooked meat back into the pan. Whisk the oat flour into the skillet, stirring constantly for about a minute, until the meat is evenly coated in the flour. Slowly whisk in the stock, continue to stir until the liquid becomes smooth. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the sauce thickens. Add the cooked vegetables back into the pan and stir in the 1 teaspoon salt and black pepper. Taste and add more seasoning, if needed.

Assembling the Pie:

  1. Spoon the meat and vegetable mixture into the prepared baking dish and even out.
  2. Spread the potato mixture on top of the meat in an even layer. Sprinkle the top of the casserole with paprika, if desired.
  3. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until heated through and the potatoes are just brown on the top.
  4. Garnish with freshly chopped herbs or sliced green onions, if desired. For leftovers, cover and refrigerate leftovers for up to 1 day. This pie freezes really well.


  1. *My largest skillet was a little too small to comfortably stir the vegetables and meat together without it ending up all over my stove. Removing the vegetables before adding the cooked meat back to the pan is not completely necessary if you have a HUGE skillet.
  2. Make-Ahead Tip: This dish can be prepped a day in advance and stored in the refrigerator, or frozen for enjoying at a later date. If frozen, increase the cook time to 40 minutes, or until heated through.
  3. Veggie-ful Vegan Option
    Substitute 1 to 11/2 pounds coarsely chopped vegetables for the meat, skip step 3, and cook the added vegetables for a few minutes with the onions and carrots. We like Portobello mushrooms and zucchini in this recipe. Use vegan no-chicken broth or mushroom broth in place of the chicken broth.
  4. Shepherd’s Lean Variation
    Use lean ground buffalo or beef (preferably grass-fed) in place of the turkey and beef broth instead of chicken broth.

Recipe Adapted from Alisa Fleming’s Eat Dairy Free Cookbook

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes