Light Sweet Potato Shepherds Pie
I love this shepherds pie! It’s not the kind of cottage pie you may be thinking of with ground beef and white potatoes. This is a modern twist on meat pie, lightened up (no sugars or butters) and loaded with holiday flavors. Many years ago I tried making a one pot type shepherds pie with Thanksgiving day left overs. I used to watch Rachel Ray’s 30 Minute Meals and once upon a time I had her cookbook. Her energy and gusto in the kitchen cracked me up! She made everything look so easy and delicious. These days our family has warmed up to sweet potatoes. When I say warmed up I mean really, really super duper loves them.
This almost a one pan meal – one pan plus the pot used to cook the sweet potatoes, not bad. It’s fun to layer everything up and serve it straight out of the skillet.
What’s great about this recipe is that you can use up Thanksgiving left overs if you still have any of those laying around – layer it up and add cheese. Maybe the left overs are long gone but your family is craving a bit more of those yummy holiday meal tastes. I like using lean ground turkey and cooking it up fresh. This recipe is versatile in that aside from turkey and potatoes, you can mix up the middle layers. Add corn, peas, gravy or celery. Our preference is to keep it simple. We all like corn, half of us like peas. It’s best to have the veggies offered separately on our table.
This meal can be broken down into 5 easy steps.
- Cook the lean ground turkey (or shred and warm up your left over turkey)
2. Peel, chop, cook, and mash the sweet potatoes:
3. Add veggies of choice on top of cooked meat in skillet. Spread mashed sweet potatoes on top:
4. Sprinkle with low-fat cheese
5. Broil in oven until cheese is melted
Since this is a fairly ‘carb-heavy’ dish be sure to serve it with a some fresh greens. Today we had a tasty cranberry pecan kale salad with spicy dijon dressing. It was so good!
Please excuse the lighting and quality of the food photos this round friends. I just didn’t have it together enough to cook up this sheperds pie and capture the magic hour lighting today. Normally I’d do it again earlier in the day to get better photos but I really wanted to share the recipe sooner than later in case you could use up some of those left overs! One day when I have uber amounts of time on my hands I will go through and re-do the pic’s with funky lighting. For now you’ll have to trust me that this recipe is easy, good for you, and delicious. I hope you try it and that your family likes the sweet potato twist.
Also, I quickly want to share that I really appreciate a handful of you OvenHuggers who have tried my recipes and shared typos or omissions with me. I have a couple proof-readers here at the house but even they miss things here and there. I am so not perfect!! I’m a mom like many of you, I work, and I juggle life. The goal is to get something healthy on the table that will get eaten. Please continue to bring mistakes and any input to my attention. Thank you!!
- 2 pounds fro be turkey or left over turkey shredded
- 2 pounds sweet potatoes (around 5)
- ½ large onion diced into ½ inch size
- 1 can organic corn (green peas can be subbed)
- 1 teaspoon salt (1/2 tsp salt in sweet potatoes ½ teaspoon in turkey)
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- few sprinkles nutmeg
- liberal shakes of Italian seasonings
- 1 garlic clove or ½ teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil plus spray oil
- ½ cup low-fat or nonfat milk
- ⅓ cup low fat shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- Heat olive oil in large skillet
- Cook onion on medium low until almost clear, about 3-5 minutes
- Add minced garlic to pan and cook another minute or two
- Add ground turkey meat - if using left over turkey shred it with a fork and heat in pan
- Sprinkle in ½ tsp of the salt and a few grinds of pepper
- Cook ground turkey on medium high heat, turning and breaking it up with a spatula as it cooks and starts to brown about 8 minutes or so
- Turn skillet down to simmer as you prepare the sweet potato layer
- Peel sweet potatoes
- Chop into large chunks
- Cover with water in a pot
- Put a lid on the pot and bring to a boil
- Remove lid, lower heat a bit and cook about 10 to 15 minutes until you can poke with a fork and potatoes are soft but not mushy
- Drain water, add spices and salt
- Add milk and mash with potato masher or large fork
- Set mashed sweet potatoes aside
- Layer corn, peas, celery, or veggie of choice on top of cooked ground turkey in skillet (we like corn)
- Smooth mashed sweet potatoes over cooked turkey meat and veggies
- Sprinkle grated low-fat cheese
- Broil in a 400 degree oven while still in skillet u nil cheese is melted, about 6 minutes
- Serve with a fresh green salad