The teenager can eat half a Shepherd's Pie in one sitting. So when he expressed a desire to expand his cooking repertoire beyond frozen pizza and grilled cheese, I immediately thought of a "starter version" of Shepherd's Pie...the "for Dummies" part refers to the simplicity and convenience of the recipe, and in no way indicates my opinion of my kid. Usually.
I think this is a good recipe for kids (or adults!) to get an idea for this particular casserole format. You can use pretty much any combination of veggies and meat (or no meat), liquid, and mashed potato topping.
Shepherd's Pie for Dummies
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 bag frozen mixed veggies (16 oz)
- 1 packet brown gravy mix, made according to directions
- Potato Buds
Cook ground beef in large skillet until browned; drain liquid. Add frozen veggies, mix. Turn off heat. Add gravy, mix well. Pour into 8x8 baking dish or deep dish pie plate.
Make the "6-7 serving" amount of Potato Buds. Spread over top of ground beef and veggie mixture.
Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.
NOTE: Leftover stew is a great base for Shepherd's Pie, as is sloppy joe, pulled pork, etc.
A little more complex, but a nice change of pace on regular shepherd's pie, is this recipe for Mexican Shepherd's Pie.
Mexican Shepherd's Pie (from allrecipes.com)
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 can diced tomatoes
- 1 small package frozen corn
- 1 packet taco seasoning mix
- 3/4 cup hot water
- 2 packages corn muffin mix (8.5 oz each)
- Options: this is another recipe where you could just use the frozen mixed veggies. I have also eliminated the tomatoes (for kid who picks them out) and used beans instead (reg veggie baked beans or black beans).
Oven at 400, spray 9x13 baking dish. In large skillet on medium heat, cook beef and onion until beef is browned. Drain liquid. Add tomatoes. Mix well and cook 5 minutes, the add taco seasoning and water. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer until thickened. Add corn and mix well. Transfer to baking dish.
Make corn muffin mix according to directions and spread evenly over meat mixture. Bake for about 20 minutes or until top is puffed up and golden brown.