Ground Turkey Shepherd’s Pie
This Ground Turkey Shepherd’s Pie is a gluten free, macro-friendly version of the comfort food classic using ground turkey instead of ground lamb. It has ground turkey with veggies in a savory gravy topped with mashed potatoes and (optional) cheese baked to perfection. This recipe is perfect casserole recipe for meal prep, and it’s a dinner the entire family will enjoy!
TABLE OF CONTENTS
What Makes This Recipe Great
If you’ve never tried shepherd’s pie with ground turkey, you’re in for a treat! This was one of my favorite foods my mom used to make when I was growing up. She used to make a version with ground beef, creamed corn, and mashed potatoes. I decided to make a healthier version using lean ground turkey, a gluten free gravy, and lightened up mashed potatoes. It has all the flavor and will leave you feeling great! It is a balanced meal with lots of healthy protein, carbs, and fat. This gluten free shepherds pie is also perfect for making ahead of time and baking later. If you’re looking for a keto shepherd’s pie recipe, check out my Skillet Shepherds Pie made with mashed cauliflower!
- Easy shepherd’s pie recipe
- Meal prep-friendly
- Gluten Free
- Dairy Free option
- Great source of protein with 44g per serving
- Comforting and delicious
Shepherd’s Pie Origin
You may be wondering where name came from, and what traditional shepherd’s pie is made of. Traditional shepherd’s pie is a hearty dish with origins in the United Kingdom and Ireland containing ground meat cooked in gravy, onions, carrots, celery, and a mashed potato topping. It came about in the late 1700s and early 1800s when supposedly housewives were trying to be frugal and make the best use of leftovers.
Traditional shepherd’s pie uses ground lamb, where “cottage pie” uses ground beef. Here in America, it’s been widely accepted to use any type of ground meat in shepherd’s pie. They originally named it “shepherd’s” pie because shepherds herded sheep, and the casserole was traditionally made with ground lamb and pastry.
Ground turkey: I like to get ground turkey at Costco where I can buy it in bulk and freeze extras for another time. Any type of ground turkey will work, but I prefer to use lean. Ground chicken will also work in this recipe.
Potatoes: I’ve found that russet potatoes work best to get the creamiest mashed potato topping.
Peas & carrots: If you can’t find a frozen bag containing both, you can just use 1/2 cup canned or frozen peas, and 1/2 cup canned or frozen carrots.
Butter: Feel free to use vegan butter for dairy free. Ghee also works.
Coconut aminos: This is one of my favorite gluten free alternatives to Worcestershire sauce that gives recipes a similar flavor. You can also use gluten free Worcestershire sauce if you do not have coconut aminos. I do not recommend using soy sauce.
Parmesan: Use nutritional yeast instead for dairy free, or you can omit this completely.
Arrowroot powder: This is a gluten free thickening agent similar to cornstarch. Both can be used interchangeably in this recipe.
How To Make Ground Turkey Shepherd’s Pie
- Preheat the oven to 400. Grease a 9×13-inch casserole dish. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the ground turkey and saute for 5-7 minutes until the turkey is mostly cooked through. Add in the garlic and stir for 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Add the rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper, coconut aminos, and tomato paste. Stir until well-incorporated and everything is well-combined.
- Add the chicken broth, frozen peas, carrots, and corn Cook over medium high heat for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Combine the arrowroot powder and water together to make a slurry. Pour it into the pan and stir until thickened about 30 seconds. Transfer the mixture to the casserole dish.
- While the beef mixture is cooking, bring a pot of water to a boil for your potatoes. Add them and cook for 15-18 minutes until fork tender. Drain and return to the pot. Add the butter, Nutpods (or half & half), garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
- Mash using a potato masher until combined. Stir in the parmesan cheese.
- Add the mashed potato topping on top of the ground turkey mixture in the casserole dish. Use a spatula to spread it out evenly.
- Top with cheddar cheese, if desired. Bake for 25-30 minutes until browned and bubbling!
Yes – freezing shepherds pie is quite easy! Simply follow the instructions to bake the casserole, then let it cool completely. Tightly cover it with aluminum foil and freeze for up to 2 months. To reheat, you can remove it and thaw overnight, or bake at 350 for one hour from frozen.
Traditional cottage pie is made with beef, and shepherd’s pie is made with lamb.
There may be too much liquid from the ground turkey filling. If you feel like your filling is too thin, simply mix 1 more tsp arrowroot powder with 1 tbsp water and add it into the bubbling mixture on the stove. This will help to thicken the sauce and ensure the casserole stays together.
4 oz. of ground turkey has approximately 160 calories. There are approximately 640 calories in 1 lb ground turkey. It is a great source of lean protein.
Remove it from the freezer the night before you plan on using it and let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight. This is the safest way to thaw ground turkey.
4 oz of raw ground turkey has approximately 22g of protein
Ground Turkey Shepherd’s Pie
Mashed Potato Topping
- 3 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
- ¼ cup butter or ghee, vegan butter for dairy free
- ¼ cup Original Nutpods , or half & half
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- ¼ cup parmesan cheese, sub nutritional yeast for dairy free
- ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese, for topping, optional
- 9×13 inch casserole dish
- Preheat the oven to 400. Grease a 9×13-inch casserole dish.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
- Add the ground turkey and onion and saute for 5-7 minutes until the turkey is mostly cooked through. Add in the garlic and stir for 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Add the rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper, coconut aminos, and tomato paste. Stir until well-incorporated and everything is well combined.
- Add the chicken broth, frozen peas & carrots and corn. Cook over medium high heat for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Combine the arrowroot powder and water together to make a slurry. Pour it into the pan and stir until thickened about 30 seconds.
- Transfer the ground turkey mixture to the greased casserole dish and spread out in an even layer.
Mashed Potato Topping
- While the beef mixture is cooking, bring a pot of water to a boil for your potatoes. Add them and cook for 15-18 minutes until fork tender, drain and return them to the pot.
- Add in the butter, Nutpods (or half and half), garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Mash using a potato masher until combined. Stir in the parmesan cheese.
- Add the mashed potatoes on top of the turkey mixture in the casserole dish and spread out in an even layer. Sprinkle cheddar cheese on top, if using.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes until browned and bubbling. Serve and enjoy!