Indian-Inspired Shepherd’s Pie

Deliciously savory, Indian-inspired shepherd’s pie recipe made with lean ground turkey, veggies an a perfectly spiced potato topping. This lightened up shepherd’s pie recipe makes a wonderful, hearty fall dinner that you can even freeze and serve later! Recipe from the Skinnytaste Meal Prep cookbook.

Prep Time
45 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
1 hour 15 mins

Hello gorgeous! This incredible shepherd’s pie recipe is from my friend Gina‘s latest and greatest cookbook, Skinnytaste Meal Prep, and I cannot wait to share it with you because it’s pure deliciousness in a pan!

If you haven’t purchased one of Gina’s cookbooks yet, it’s about time you do. They’re absolutely perfect for families because the recipes are comforting, healthy and always come out perfect.

indian shepherd's pie in a baking dish on a wire rack

Indian-inspired shepherd’s pie ingredients

Making a shepherd’s pie from scratch can look tricky, but it’s easier than you think and uses some great pantry staples. This Indian inspired shepherd’s pie is so warming thanks to the incredible Indian spices in it. Here’s what you’ll need to make it:

  • Yukon Gold potatoes: the topping of this delicious shepherd’s pie recipe is made with mashed potatoes and plenty of delicious spices.
  • Sour cream: you’ll want to use sour cream or full-fat yogurt to add the right amount of moisture to the mashed potato topping.
  • Cozy spices: to add flavor to the topping we’re using ground turmeric, garam masala, ground cumin, chili powder & salt.
  • Ghee or unsalted butter: you’ll cook down the veggies and turkey in a bit of ghee or unsalted butter.
  • Yellow onion: for a little flavor added to the turkey mixture.
  • Garlic: gotta have that garlic goodness in every bite.
  • Freshly grated ginger: I love cooking with fresh ginger because it adds such a delicious, unique flavor.
  • Lean ground turkey: this recipe calls for 93% lean ground turkey to keep the shepherd’s pie lightened up without sacrificing taste.
  • Tomato sauce: you’ll need tomato sauce and a bit of water to cook down the turkey mixture.
  • Fresh cilantro: for the turkey mixture and a little fresh garnish.
  • Red chile pepper: you’ll also add a red chile pepper to the turkey mixture. Yum!
  • Frozen peas: stir in some frozen peas for a delicious veggie boost.

turkey filling for healthy indian shepherd's pie in a pan

What is shepherd’s pie?

Traditional shepherd’s pie, or “cottage pie,” is actually English and is a meat mixture (typically ground beef or lamb) cooked with onion and a gravy or sauce, topped with mashed potatoes and baked. It’s incredibly hearty and perfect for the colder months.

This shepherd’s pie is made with spices often used in Indian dishes like turmeric, garam masala, ginger and cumin making it Indian-inspired. I love how Gina was able to make it a little more interesting, flavorful and different! A wonderful AK reader also let me know that the ground turkey portion of the recipe is called “keema” in India, and that this dish is a take on “keema with aloo” (or ground turkey with potatoes).

indian-inspired shepherd's pie in a baking dish on a wire rack

How to make Indian-inspired shepherd’s pie

This healthier, Indian-inspired shepherd’s pie is easier to make than it looks. Here are the basics:

  1. First, boil your potatoes until tender. You’ll then add all of your cozy spices & sour cream and mash everything together until smooth and creamy.
  2. Next, cook your onion, garlic and ginger in a skillet with a bit of ghee or butter until fragrant.
  3. Add the ground turkey and salt to the skillet. Brown the meat, using a wooden spoon to break it into small pieces, until cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the tomato sauce, water, cilantro, chile pepper and the remaining spices you used in the potatoes. Cover and cook on low heat for 20 to 25 minutes, then stir in the frozen peas and cook for about 3 minutes more, until the peas are warmed through.
  4. Transfer the meat mixture to an 8 or 9-inch baking dish or deep pie plate, spreading it across in an even layer. Dollop the potatoes across the top and gently push them around until they cover the entire top of the casserole, then run the tines of a form across the top for texture. Dust with the chili powder for color.
  5. Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F. Place the pie on a sheet pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until heated through. Adjust an oven rack 4 to 6 inches from the heating element and turn the broiler to high. Finish under the broiler for 2 to 3 minutes. Serve as is or sprinkled with cilantro and enjoy!

indian shepherd's pie in a baking dish with a spoon

What makes this shepherd’s pie healthier?

This healthier shepherd’s pie is lightened up a bit without sacrificing any flavor!

  • We’re using lean ground turkey instead of red meat.
  • The potato mixture uses a bit of sour cream (or protein-packed yogurt) instead of gravy or half and half.
  • This one is gluten & grain free as we’re not adding in any flour to the mixture. It’s perfectly thick and delicious as-is!

healthy shepherd's pie in a baking dish with a spoon scooping

How to freeze & reheat homemade shepherd’s pie

  1. Assemble the unbaked pie in a foil or freezer-to-oven proof baking dish or pie plate.
  2. Cover the pie with foil and freeze.
  3. When ready to bake, transfer the baking dish to a sheet pan and bake, covered, in a 350 degree F oven until heated through in the center, about 2 ½ hours. (If you thawed it the night before, bake 30 to 35 minutes.)
  4. Adjust an oven rack 4 to 6 inches from the heating element and turn the broiler to high. Finish under the broiler for 2 to 3 minutes.

scoop of indian shepherd's pie on a plate with a fork

More healthy comfort foods to try

Lightened Up Chicken Pot Pie

The Best Healthy Turkey Lasagna You’ll Ever Eat

Mom’s Slow Cooker Beef Stew

Vegan & Gluten Free Curry Chickpea Pot Pie with Sweet Potato ‘Crust’

Cheddar-Stuffed Sweet Potato BBQ Turkey Meatloaf

I hope you love this delicious, healthier Indian-inspired shepherd’s pie recipe from Skinnytaste. Be sure to pick up a copy of the Skinnytaste Meal Prep cookbook!

Indian-Inspired Shepherd’s Pie

4.67 from 9 votes
indian-inspired shepherd's pie in a baking dish with a spoon
Course Dinner, Gluten Free, Grain Free, Lunch, Nut Free
Cuisine Indian
Keyword indian shepherd's pie
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Serves 6

Deliciously savory, Indian-inspired shepherd's pie recipe made with lean ground turkey, veggies an a perfectly spiced potato topping. This lightened up shepherd's pie recipe makes a wonderful, hearty fall dinner that you can even freeze and serve later!

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and diced into 1-inch pieces
  • Kosher salt
  • ¼ cup sour cream or full-fat yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¾ teaspoon chili powder, plus more for dusting
  • 2 teaspoons ghee or unsalted butter
  • 1 large yellow onion, minced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1 pound 93% lean ground turkey
  • ¾ cup tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish (optional)
  • 1 red chile pepper, seeded and minced
  • ¾ cup frozen peas

Instructions

  1. Place the potatoes and 1 tablespoon salt in a medium saucepan. Cover with water, bring to a boil and cook for 16-18 minutes, until tender. Drain and return to the saucepan. Add ½ teaspoon salt, the sour cream, ½ teaspoon turmeric, ¼ teaspoon garam masala, ¼ teaspoon cumin, and ¼ teaspoon chili powder, and mash with a potato masher. Set. Aside.
  2. Heat a large, deep nonstick skillet over medium heat and melt the ghee. Add the onion and cook until golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
  3. Add the ground turkey and 1 teaspoon salt to the skillet. Brown the meat, using a wooden spoon to break it into small pieces, until cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the tomato sauce, ¼ cup water, cilantro, chile pepper, remaining ¾ teaspoon garam masala, remaining ½ teaspoon cumin, remaining ½ teaspoon chili powder, and remaining ½ teaspoon turmeric, and stir well. Cover and cook on low heat for 20 to 25 minutes, then stir in the frozen peas and cook for about 3 minutes more, until the peas are warmed through.
  4. Transfer the meat mixture to an 8- or 9-inch baking dish or deep pie plate, spreading it across in an even layer. Dollop the potatoes across the top and gently push them around until they cover the entire top of the casserole, then run the tines of a form across the top for texture. Dust with the chili powder for color.
  5. Serve now: position an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F. Place the pie on a sheet pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until heated through. Adjust an oven rack 4 to 6 inches from the heating element and turn the broiler to high. Finish under the broiler for 2 to 3 minutes. Serve as is or sprinkled with cilantro, if using.
  6. Freeze and serve later: Assemble the unbaked pie in a foil or freezer-to-ovenproof baking dish or pie plate. Cover the pie with foil and freeze. When ready to bake, transfer the baking dish to a sheet pan and bake, covered, in a 350 degree F oven until heated through in the center, about 2 ½ hours. (If you thawed it the night before, bake 30 to 35 minutes.) Adjust an oven rack 4 to 6 inches from the heating element and turn the broiler to high. Finish under the broiler for 2 to 3 minutes.

Recipe Notes

Freeze and serve later: Assemble the unbaked pie in a foil or freezer-to-ovenproof baking dish or pie plate. Cover the pie with foil and freeze. When ready to bake, transfer the baking dish to a sheet pan and bake, covered, in a 350 degree F oven until heated through in the center, about 2 ½ hours. (If you thawed it the night before, bake 30 to 35 minutes.) Adjust an oven rack 4 to 6 inches from the heating element and turn the broiler to high. Finish under the broiler for 2 to 3 minutes.

Nutrition
Servings: 6 servings
Serving size: 1 cup
Calories: 271kcal
Fat: 10g
Saturated fat: 3.5g
Carbohydrates: 28g
Fiber: 4.5g
Sugar: 5g
Protein: 19g

Recipe by: Monique Volz // Ambitious Kitchen | Photography by: Eat Love Eats

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