Shepherd’s Pie: The Ancestral Table

By : | 19 Comments | On : February 9, 2014 | Category : Recipes, Reviews

photo (27)

When I received my copy of The Ancestral Table from my friend Russ Crandall, the beautiful photography and rich, hearty meals really enticed me. Shepherd’s Pie has always been a favorite dish of mine, so this recipe was definitely something I was thinking my whole family would love to try. Russ generously let me post his recipe on my site to share with my readers.  If you are trying to eat a real food diet, this book is a great resource. The Shepherd’s Pie was seasoned well, the potatoes were fluffy and made a nice crunch when browned. I usually use lamb when making it, but tried it with beef this time and really loved the results. It’s a warm, home-style comfort dish that I’m sure you’ll love!

photo (30)Serves 6

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 1 hour



2lbs russet or yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks

3 TBS butter, divided

~ 1/2 cup heavy cream

1 1/2 tsp sea salt, divided

2 TBS black pepper, divided

1 1/2 lbs ground beef, ground lamb, or a mixture

1 small onion, finely chopped

1 medium carrot, diced

1 celery root, peeped and diced

1 TBS tomato paste

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup chicken broth

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1 small handful fresh thyme, minced

1 small handful fresh rosemary, minced

1/2 cup frozen peas


1.  Place the potatoes in a large stockpot and fill with enough water to cover the potatoes by 1″. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer until fork-tender, about 15 minutes. Drain well, then return to the pot and add 2Tbsp. of the butter. Mash until smooth and firm, adding cream as needed, up to 1/2 cup. Season with salt and pepper to taste (about 1 tsp. each), then set aside.

2. In a cast-iron skillet, brown the ground meat on medium heat until most of the pink is cooked out, about 6 minutes. Drain and set aside the rendered fat to the pan, as well as the remaining 1 Tbsp. butter, and warm it on medium heat until melted. Add the onion, carrot, and celery root and saute until softened, about 8 minutes.

3. Add the tomato past and garlic and saute for another 2 minutes. Add the chicken broth, Worcestershire sauce, herbs and more salt and pepper to taste (about 1/2 tsp. salt and 1 tsp. pepper). Simmer until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the ground meat and frozen peas.

4. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Spread the meat mixture evenly in the skillet, then top the meat mixture with globs of mashed potatoes. Spread with a spatula or fork. Bake until the potatoes are browned, about 30 minutes. Let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

photo (31)

The leftovers made for a pretty lunch the next day.

  • testing comments

  • David Bell

    I would love to add this to my collection. Sounds great

  • Ellen

    From your feedback as well as Stacy’s, I’m thinking Russ’s recipes sound awesome! This pie looks delicious and nourishing. I just made Diane’s from the 21DSD book, but now I think I’ll need to make this one too! Thanks.

  • kate harrison

    This book looks amazing. Shepherds pie reminds me go my homeland so I am very excited to try this.

  • Anthony Duncan

    I’m really excited about this book! And I’m glad you’re doing this giveaway- because I really like your site- I’m very interested in the intersection between the paleo lifestyle and sustainability. Keep up the good work! I liked on on Facebook, and followed you on Twitter (@wendolpho).

  • Petra

    I like you and follow you, and can’t wait to win the book! It looks amazing.

  • Rachel S.

    I would love to add this book to my paleo cookbook collection!

  • Patrick

    Thanks for the giveaway! I followed you on Twitter and liked you on Facebook!

  • Carly Sullivan

    Hoping I win!

  • Liked and followed! Thank you!

  • Courtney

    Thanks for the review. It looks like a great book!

  • Melanie

    I love, love, LOVE shepherd’s pie! I try to keep pretty strict paleo so I made this recipe with a few substitutions…I made a roasted garlic cauliflower puree with ghee and unsweetened almond milk to top instead of the potatoes. And although I believe peas are generally a decent legume to consume, I substituted green pepper for the peas. I did use Lea & Perrin’s Worcestershire sauce as it contains natural ingredients and minimal sugar. It was delish and will definitely be a standard in our dinner rotation. Thanks for sharing!

  • I already like you on FB and follow you on Twitter. What’s not to like? I know I’d sure like a new cookbook, please!

  • Stephen Weinberg

    I have followed you on twitter and liked your page. Thank you for the giveaway!

  • Birdiebee

    I love Shepherd’s Pie and have been making it for years but this recipes sounds so much better. Thank you for the great recipe. I will be trying it out on my family in the very near future and have pinned it to Pinterest. I would love to own the book: The Ancestral Table. I “Like” you on FB and follow you on Twitter.

  • Terry

    I follow you on twitter as birdiebee52 and “Like” you on Facebook. Thanks for the great recipe. I have pinned this to try out on my family.

  • Jennifer

    Followed you on Twitter and Facebook, would LOVE to win this cookbook, I love the domestic man blog and make his recipes ALL the time! He’s probably 90% responsible for me having an easy transition into the Paleo lifestyle!

  • Angeline

    I made this tonight and everyone really liked it. I added some cheddar and Romano cheese to the mashed potatoes before putting it in the 450 degree oven. This one will be a regular.

  • Pingback: [BLOCKED BY STBV] 80 Paleo Recipes with Ground Beef - Rubies & Radishes()

Let's Keep in Touch!
Subscribe to my newsletter today and receive a special gift. "Growing" is a 48 page chapter from The Homegrown Paleo Cookbook and contains everything you need to get started with a vegetable garden. From healthy soil and compost to selecting seeds and when to plant. I hope to inspire you to get growing! Just a couple of steps to signing up and you can download it today.