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Butternut Squash Shepherd’s Pie

By admin | In Nutrition | on October 12, 2012

I had never been too excited by the idea of traditional white potato topped Shepherd’s pie. But I think it’s the color of butternut squash/pumpkin topping that tempted me to give this a try. Also,  since it’s one of those  use-up-leftovers and a one-dish meal recipe, it’s ideal, especially post workout!


  • 2lb ground beef
  • 1 large (~3lb) butternut squash (can use pumpkin instead if you prefer)
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 onions chopped
  • 1-2 carrots
  • 2-3 stalks of celery
  • (And any other vegetables you feel like adding)
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 3 tsp paprika
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp Kerrygold butter (WLC approved!)
  • Few sprigs of cilantro chopped for garnish

For the mashed butternut squash:

  1. Split the squash length wise (if it is too hard to cut through, microwave on high for 2-3 minutes to soften it a little). Scoop out the seeds.
  2. If using an oven, place the squash cut side down and roast in the oven for 35-45 minutes at 350F until it is soft. I used a microwave – put the squash in pyrex dish, cut side up and microwave on high for 8 minutes. Then cover with a plastic lid and microwave for another 12 minutes (check at the 8 min mark to see if it has softened). Discard the liquid collected. Be careful – the squash will be very hot!
  3. Scoop out the flesh in a separate bowl. Add some salt, butter and 2 tsp paprika and mash. This itself is an excellent snack!

Ground beef:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375F.
  2. While the butternut squash is in the microwave, chop and prep all your vegetables.
  3. In a large pan, heat some coconut oil. Add the onions, celery and carrots. Season with salt.
  4. When these vegetables are tender and slightly brown, add the ground beef. Season with salt and brown the beef.
  5. Add the herbs, rosemary and thyme along with the can of crushed tomatoes. Add 1 tsp paprika, and let it cook on medium for 5-6 minutes.

Assembling the Shepherd’s Pie:

  1. Place the cooked ground beef in a large pyrex baking dish.
  2. Top it with the mashed butternut squash spread evenly (about an inch thick).
  3. Let it bake in the oven for 30 minutes.
  4. After 30 minutes of baking, turn on the broil for another 20 minutes.
  5. Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve!

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