Recipe: Simple Homemade Cottage Pie

Cottage pie has always been one of those meals for me. The ones that just make you feel all warm and cosy. A proper home-made meal.

Last week, we got back from Spain at about 11.30pm on Monday night. As I’m still on my “summer hols” I was off on the tuesday, free to have a bit of a lie in and make a start on the unpacking and doing about a million loads of laundry. M, however, had work at 7.30 on Tuesday morning….ouch!

Obviously, this warranted a proper homely cosy meal for dinner on Tuesday evening, rather than the normal whipping-something-up-from-whatever-I-can-find-in-the-fridge, so I popped to the shops and picked up the ingredients for a simple cottage pie. I’ve been making this cottage pie for years and it always amazes me how quick an easy it is.

It’s just one of those dinners that tastes like it has taken ages, but actually it only takes about 25 of prep, which you can do in advance, and then 25 mins in the oven and you are good to go! Easy peasy!


Serves: 4-6       Time: 50 mins (25 mins prep, 25 mins in the oven)

What You Need:

  • Large Ovenproof Dish
  • Large Frying Pan
  • Large Saucepan
  • 500g Beef Mince
  • 3-4 Carrots
  • 1 Medium Onion
  • 500ml Beef Stock
  • Large Squidge of Tomato Puree (I tend to just go by the squidge than by the spoon, but it’s probably 2 tablespoons-ish)
  • 6-7 Medium-Large Potatoes (approx 800-950g)
  • Dash of Milk
  • Knob of Butter
  • Grated Cheese (I used mozzarella but any other cheese would be fine – a Cheddar and Red Leicester mix works really well too!)

How To Do It:

  1. Preheat oven to 200°C
  2. Chop the Onion and Carrots and soften in the pan for 5-10 mins
  3. Add the Beef Mince and mix until browned through.
  4. Prepare the Beef Stock and add to the meat/onion/carrot mix along with the tomato puree.
  5. Simmer for 10-15 mins.
  6. Peel and chop potatoes and boil in the saucepan until soft.
  7. Drain potatoes. Add a dash of milk and a knob of butter and mash until smooth.
  8. Pour the meat mixture into the bottom of the ovenproof dish.
  9. Carefully layer the potato on top, starting at the edges (to avoid a lopsided pie with more meat at one end than the other!)
  10. Gently run the back of a fork over the top of the pie and sprinkle cheese (lots of it!) on the top.
    (At this point you can set it aside for later – I actually made the pie at lunchtime and then put it in the oven when we wanted it in the evening.)
  11. Place pie in the oven for 25 minutes, or until golden on top and bubbling slightly at the sides.
  12. Enjoy! (Great served with peas!)

Do let me know in the comments below if you have tried this recipe and how you got on! 🙂

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