These Lightened-Up Shepherd’s Pies are the ultimate single serving comfort food made healthier with ground turkey and cauliflower in place of potatoes! Easy to make and your family will love this!


So last week I took a bunch of requests for recipes that YOU all would like to see lightened-up and shared.  Well a lot of you mentioned wanting to see more paleo and clean recipes, so of course, I wanted to deliver!

I’m a huge advocate of eating clean and it’s something that, even though may be a difficult transition at first, is something we’re working towards everyday and finding there are some really delicious recipes!  I should probably also note that shepherd’s pie is my mom’s staple – I grew up eating it, it’s specifically requested every time my brother comes home and her recipe is the one I typically follow anytime Chris and I are in the mood for a hearty dinner.  I mean who wouldn’t love creamy mashed potatoes, ground beef cooked in heavy gravy with some veggies thrown in for good measure??

Yes this recipe needed lightening up, stat.


For starters, I used cauliflower in place of potatoes mashed with chicken stock, egg and lots of herbs as a substitute for butter and milk.  Who knew this would taste just as amazing?!  The fresh herbs in this recipe are KEY and simply wouldn’t taste the same without them.  Feel free to use ground turkey, beef or even chicken and throw in any added veggies you’d like!  I used carrots, mushrooms and corn, but choose the ones you like best.  Eating clean doesn’t mean sacrificing flavor, if anything I think you learn to add more flavor to your dishes!

Another great thing, which was requested by a few readers as well, is this is very low in carbs and high in protein!  Also, If you’d prefer to make one big entree rather than using mini ramekins, feel free to use a casserole dish and enjoy leftovers all week!  Hope you enjoy!

And on a side note, if I don’t move into this new house in the next two weeks, I literally might go stir crazy!  We’ve been living in an apartment filled to the brim with boxes and I’m soooo beyond ancy to get settled in.  So loan people, if you are reading this (and I highly doubt it), pretty please give me a closing date.  I will forever be grateful.

5 from 1 vote

Lightened-Up Shepherd’s Pie

These Lightened-Up Shepherd's Pies are the ultimate single serving comfort food made healthier with ground turkey and cauliflower in place of potatoes! Easy to make and your family will love this!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 6


  • 1 lb. ground turkey or beef
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 large carrots, chopped
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh rosemary, divided
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh sage, divided
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh thyme, divided
  • 1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp chicken stock
  • 1 Tbsp potato starch
  • 1/2 head cauliflower, chopped
  • 1 egg
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
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  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  • In a large skillet, saute ground turkey or beef on medium heat until browned. Add onion, garlic, carrots and mushrooms and cook until soft, about 3 minutes.
  • Add a 1/2 cup of chicken stock and potato starch and bring mixture to a light boil, mixing often.
  • Turn off heat and add half of your fresh herbs (you’ll reserve the other half for your cauliflower mash) along with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  • Fill a medium saucepan with water and bring to a rolling boil. Cook cauliflower for about 7 to 10 minutes, until nice and soft, and drain.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together egg, 2 tablespoons of chicken stock (or more if needed) and cauliflower. Using a potato masher or whisk, mash cauliflower until smooth and add reserved herbs along with a good pinch of salt.
  • Evenly divide 6 ramekins with the meat mixture until almost entirely full. Using a spatula, spread cauliflower mixture over top until meat is completely covered.
  • Place ramekins on a baking sheet and cook in the oven for 10 minutes then switch your oven to broil and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Allow a few minutes to cool and enjoy!


Serving: 1ramekin | Calories: 147kcal | Carbohydrates: 10.9g | Protein: 17.5g | Fat: 6g | Fiber: 2.4g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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As a self-proclaimed foodie and fitness enthusiast, I have a passion for cooking and a huge desire to show that living a healthy lifestyle can actually be easy and fun!  Feel free to use the meal guide above to find your new favorite meal ideas or the dietary guides to the right to narrow things down even more!

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  1. Lauren Steinhoff says:

    Making these tomorrow! Can you give me advice to freeze ahead and baking frozen pies?

  2. Katie Rushing says:

    Looks delish! Do you think it would work to make these ahead and put the ramekins in the freezer before baking?

  3. Andrea says:

    I finally got to cook this last night. It is absolutely amazing! I substituted flower for the potato starch and it turned out just fine.

  4. bob says:

    This is a cottage pie not a shepherds pie

  5. Brittney says:

    I made this last night for myself and fiance, and can I just say amazing? With each bite it was more and more flavorful and moist and delicious! I don’t leave feedback very often but this recipe certainly should get all the credit it deserves. Thanks a million for sharing this, it will definitely be made again and again in my house!

    1. Kelly says:

      So glad you enjoyed this! 🙂