Cottage pie

Cottage pie

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(248 ratings)

Prep: 35 mins Cook: 1 hr, 50 mins

Easy

Serves 10

This great-value family favourite freezes beautifully and is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal600
  • fat34g
  • saturates16g
  • carbs40g
  • sugars7g
  • fibre4g
  • protein37g
  • salt1.15g
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Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 1¼kg beef mince
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
    Onion

    Onion

    un-yun

    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 3 carrots, chopped
    Carrot

    Carrot

    ka-rot

    The carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root…

  • 3 celery sticks, chopped
    Celery

    Celery

    sell-er-ee

    A collection of long, thick, juicy stalks around a central, tender heart, celery ranges in…

  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp plain flour
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • large glass red wine (optional)
  • 850ml beef stock
  • 4 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • few thyme sprigs

    Thyme

    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…

  • 2 bay leaves

For the mash

  • 1.8kg potatoes, chopped
    Potato

    Potato

    po-tate-oh

    The world's favourite root vegetable, the potato comes in innumerable varieties. A member of…

  • 225ml milk

    Milk

    mill-k

    One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a complete food. While cow…

  • 25g butter
    Butter

    Butter

    butt-err

    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 200g strong cheddar, grated
    Cheddar

    Cheddar

    Ched-ah

    Once cheddar was 'Cheddar', a large, hard-pressed barrel of cheese made by a particular…

  • freshly grated nutmeg
    Nutmeg

    Nutmeg

    nut-meg

    One of the most useful of spices for both sweet and savoury

Method

  1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large saucepan and fry the mince until browned – you may need to do this in batches. Set aside as it browns. Put the rest of the oil into the pan, add the vegetables and cook on a gentle heat until soft, about 20 mins. Add the garlic, flour and tomato purée, increase the heat and cook for a few mins, then return the beef to the pan. Pour over the wine, if using, and boil to reduce it slightly before adding the stock, Worcestershire sauce and herbs. Bring to a simmer and cook, uncovered, for 45 mins. By this time the gravy should be thick and coating the meat. Check after about 30 mins – if a lot of liquid remains, increase the heat slightly to reduce the gravy a little. Season well, then discard the bay leaves and thyme stalks.

  2. Meanwhile, make the mash. In a large saucepan, cover the potatoes in salted cold water, bring to the boil and simmer until tender. Drain well, then allow to steam-dry for a few mins. Mash well with the milk, butter, and three-quarters of the cheese, then season with the nutmeg and some salt and pepper.

  3. Spoon meat into 2 ovenproof dishes. Pipe or spoon on the mash to cover. Sprinkle on the remaining cheese. If eating straight away, heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7 and cook for 25-30 mins, or until the topping is golden. Or follow the steps (below) to freeze.

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Comments, questions and tips

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carollesley
25th Oct, 2016
Really good recipe! Did half the quantity to serve 5.....enough for 4 not 5. Used dried thyme as didn't have fresh. Would definitely do this recipe again.
scottyj1980
10th Nov, 2016
5.05
Only feeds to of us :-)
NicWilkins69
17th Oct, 2016
American here, great recipe! Thanks for naming it a cottage pie rather than a Sheppard's pie--I hate that. Anyway, I used a leftover pulled roast rather than mince. It was great. I used leftover 4 pound roast that was cooked in a slow cooker for 6 hours on high with one package each of dry ranch and aju mix, 1/4 pound butter, and 6 pepperoncinis. It's great by itself on a toasted roll with provolone. Cheers.
scottyj1980
10th Nov, 2016
5.05
Sheppard's Pie is lamb
GregoryF
5th Nov, 2016
Just as an FYI, Shepherd's Pie is usually made from lamb mince (hence the 'Shepherd') whereas Cottage Pie is made from beef mince. :)
fussyflossie
4th Oct, 2016
I made 2 of these as I was catering for a crowd. Like others, I substituted leeks for celery. I thickened the base with cornflower as I have a wheat intolerance. Had lots of compliments, a really good recipe.
jobarr67
28th Sep, 2016
This is a delicious recipe. I tend to make the base at least the day before I need it and then make up the mash and finish off later. Always goes down well. Definitely use the wine - adds good flavour.
thehitchrules
12th Sep, 2016
5.05
Really delicious. Lots of flavours. Easy and enjoyable to make. I halved it down as didn't need ten servings and it was lovely. Agree that the nutmeg is a nice flavour in the mash.
dwatson27
20th Jun, 2016
5.05
Took quite a while to prepare. Decided to prepare one day and assemble the next. The cheeses mash topping is fabulous! I used extra cheese in the mash. The Nutmeg adds a special touch but you could manage without it. I'm going to make it again for a big family gathering so that some of my family (who live away) can take freshly prepared portions home for their next evening meal. Definitely worth the effort!
LamiMN
26th May, 2016
5.05
the mash is out of this world. I have never enjoyed cauliflower as i did with this meal.

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cgibson1989
8th Sep, 2013
i just posted a tip on this

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