This Instant Pot Shepherd’s Pie is the ultimate comfort food recipe. Ground beef is cooked in a flavorful gravy, layered with homemade mashed potatoes, and topped off with melty cheddar cheese.
What’s not to love about shepherd’s pie? Meat, veggies, potatoes, and cheese! It’s absolutely perfect for the “meat and potatoes” fan in your family. THIS shepherd’s pie is special, because it’s made in the Instant Pot!
PSST – If you don’t have an Instant Pot, check out my classic Shepherd’s Pie recipe instead!
What is shepherd’s pie?
Classic shepherd’s pie is a minced meat “pie” or casserole made up of a flavorful gravy, mashed potatoes, veggies, and ground lamb—which is where it gets the “shepherd” in its name.
Often people use ground beef instead of the traditional ground lamb (which technically makes it a cottage pie) in shepherd’s pie because it’s cheaper and more accessible. That’s what we’re doing today…and in the instant pot too!
This instant pot shepherd’s pie recipe is packed with comforting and ultra-flavorful ingredients!
- Mashed Potatoes – use a single batch of my instant pot mashed potatoes recipe aka the best mashed potato recipe EVER. They’re quick, easy, and SO creamy.
- Unsalted Butter – used to sauté the onion, carrot, garlic, and beef.
- Yellow Onion, Carrot, Frozen Peas, and Frozen Corn – this simple combo of veggies gives the shepherd’s pie tons of color, texture, and added nutrition.
- Garlic – gives the pie a subtle nuttiness.
- Ground Beef – use lean ground beef to avoid an overly greasy dish, but any will work; just make sure you drain the excess grease! If you’d like to keep this traditional, use ground lamb instead.
- Salt, Black Pepper, Dried Rosemary, and Dried Thyme – a simple, sweet, earthy, and super effective seasoning blend.
- All-Purpose Flour – soaks up excess moisture and thickens the filling, so it’s not too liquid-y.
- Tomato Paste, Worcestershire Sauce, and Chicken Broth – the base for the sauce. Tomato paste adds slightly sweet, acidic flavor, Worcestershire sauce gives the meat a tang, and the chicken broth provides an umami, salty flavor.
- Sharp Cheddar Cheese – melted into the filling, the potatoes, AND used to top of the shepherd’s pie for ultimate ooey-gooey cheesiness.
How to make
I love this instant pot version of a comfort food classic!
- Hit SAUTE on your instant pot then melt butter and add in onion, carrots, garlic, beef, salt, pepper, rosemary, and thyme. Cook until the meat is no longer pink and the veggies are tender.
- Drain off any excess grease, sprinkle on flour, and stir in tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, and broth. Simmer to thicken.
- Mix in peas, corn, and 4 ounces of the cheese, then transfer the mixture to a greased baking dish and cover with foil to keep warm.
- Clean your instant pot then make a batch of instant pot mashed potatoes. Stir in 4 more ounces of cheese.
- Top the beef mixture evenly with mashed potatoes then sprinkle on remaining 8 ounces of cheese.
- Bake at 450ºF for 10-15 minutes then serve and enjoy!
Can you make shepherd’s pie on the stovetop?
You sure can! If you don’t have an instant pot, no problem! Try out my stovetop shepherd’s pie recipe instead!
- Use a different meat. Keep it traditional with ground lamb or try ground turkey or sausage instead.
- Make it gluten-free. Use your favorite cup-for-cup all-purpose gluten free flour. Be sure to check the other ingredient labels to ensure they’re also gluten free.
- Make it vegetarian. Omit the ground beef and supplement with extra veggies, mushrooms, cooked lentils, or a meatless variety of ground beef.
- Use different potatoes. Try mashed sweet potatoes or, if you’re low on time, use store-bought mashed potatoes (although the flavor won’t be quite as good.)
What to serve with shepherd’s pie
Serve your instant pot shepherd’s pie on its own or paired with some delicious sides!
- Dinner Rolls, Drop Biscuits, or Garlic Bread
- Pear, Blue Cheese, Candied Pecan Salad
- Roasted Vegetables
How to store
Store leftover shepherd’s pie in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days or in the freezer for up to 2 months.
To reheat, thaw in the fridge overnight if frozen then microwave or warm on the stove until heated through.
Instant Pot Shepherd’s Pie
Equipment for this recipe
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 yellow onion diced
- 2 carrots finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 pounds extra lean ground beef
- 1 teaspoon salt plus more to taste
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1/2 cup frozen corn
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- 2 (8 oz) blocks sharp cheddar cheese divided
- 1 batch Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes
- Grease a 9x13 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Set aside.
- Hit SAUTE on 6 quart Instant Pot, once it reads HOT, add butter and allow to melt.
- Add in onion, carrots, garlic, beef, salt, pepper, rosemary, and thyme.
- Cook, breaking up the beef as you go, until the meat is no longer pink and the vegetables are tender.
- Drain off any excess grease.
- Sprinkle the meat and veggie mixture with flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
- Stir in the tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, and broth.
- Simmer, if necessary, to thicken.
- Stir in peas, corn, and about 4 oz shredded cheese, then taste and re-season, if desired.
- Pour mixture into prepared dish and cover with foil to keep warm.
- Clean Instant Pot thoroughly.
- Make the Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes according to directions, then stir in 4 oz of shredded cheese.
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees F, then remove foil from the dish and top evenly with mashed potatoes.
- Sprinkle the top with remaining 8 oz cheese, then bake in preheated oven until the cheese has melted and the center is hot, about 10-15 minutes.
- Serve and enjoy!
*Note: Nutrition information is estimated and varies based on products used.