Shepherd’s Pie gets an upgrade for fall – ground turkey, brussels sprouts and even a little cranberry sauce is topped with luscious pumpkin mashed potatoes in this Pumpkin Shepherd’s Pie.
One of my son’s favorite meals is Shepherd’s Pie. I think it’s a direct result of his Harry Potter obsession. And while I love the traditional beef and mashed potato version I decided to get creative and make a pumpkin version with ground turkey, brussels sprouts and even some cranberry sauce to sweeten the gravy. Can you tell I have Thanksgiving on my mind?
I debated using fresh pumpkin to mash in with the potatoes but I wanted this to be a simple weeknight meal so I decided to go with canned pumpkin puree. The addition of pumpkin to mashed potatoes with a little baby Swiss, nutmeg and thyme makes for an incredibly flavorful shepherd’s pie topper. It’s really, really good. I’d consider these mashed potatoes by themselves as a new side dish for the Fall season.
The filling of my pumpkin shepherd’s pie starts with a little butter and bacon. You can’t go wrong with that kind of beginning right? Onion, brussels sprouts, ground turkey, cranberry sauce (the secret ingredient), broth and a little flour to thicken it all, combine to make the delicious filling for underneath those cheesy pumpkin mashed potatoes.
It’s really hard to beat a good, old-fashioned meat and potatoes dinner for when those Fall nights start turning really cold. And adding pumpkin is just the icing on the cake (or the pie in this case).
Tips for Pumpkin Shepherd’s Pie:
- I used a cast iron skillet similar to this one to bake my pumpkin shepherd’s pie. You could use a 9×13 Pyrex dish instead if you don’t have a cast iron skillet.
- Here’s a short video showing how to prepare fresh brussels sprouts for cooking.
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Pumpkin Shepherd's Pie
- 4 cups russet potatoes peeled and chopped
- 1 cup pumpkin puree not pumpkin pie filling
- 1 cup baby Swiss cheese shredded
- 1/2 cup milk or cream
- 6 tbsp butter divided
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp fresh thyme
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 3 slices bacon chopped
- 1/2 yellow (or sweet) onion chopped
- 2 cups fresh brussles sprouts stems removed and sliced
- 1 lb 99% fat free ground turkey
- 1 cup chicken or turkey broth
- 1/3 cup jellied cranberry sauce
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- In a large pot cover the potatoes with cold water. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer. Cook the potatoes until fork tender. Drain the potatoes and add the pumpkin puree, milk or cream, 4 tablespoons of butter and salt. Mash well. Stir in the shredded cheese, thyme and nutmeg and set aside.
- Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in a cast iron skillet (12 inches in diameter) until melted. Add the bacon, onion and brussels sprouts. Cook over medium heat until bacon is browned, about 10 minutes. Add the turkey and salt. Cook, stirring often to break up the turkey. Once the turkey is cooked through stir in the broth and cranberry sauce and simmer for about 5 minutes. Stir in the flour and cook for an additional 2 minutes to thicken up the sauce.
- Remove the skillet from the heat. Spread the pumpkin mashed potatoes evenly over the cooked turkey mixture.
- Or if you don't have a skillet for baking, transfer the filling to a 9x13 pyrex (or similar) baking dish. Top the filling with the pumpkin mashed potatoes.
- Bake the shepherd's pie at 400 degrees for 35 - 40 minutes. Serve.
This recipe is part of Food Networks’ Fall Fest PUMPKIN recipe roundup. For other tasty pumpkin recipes check out the links below:
The Lemon Bowl: Healthy Pumpkin Bread
Foodtastic Mom: Pumpkin Shepherd’s Pie
Creative Culinary: Pumpkin Spice Muffins with Molasses Walnut Crumble
Dishin & Dishes: Overnight Pumpkin French Toast
The Mom 100: Pasta Shells with Pumpkin in a Creamy, Cheesy Sauce
Devour: Give ‘Em Pumpkin to Talk About with 4 Instagram-Ready Desserts
The Fed Up Foodie: Pumpkin Gnocchi Soup
A Mind “Full” Mom: 5 Must-Try Pumpkin Recipes That Are Not Pie
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Eggless Pumpkin Pie
Taste with the Eyes: Fabulous Fall Dessert: Pumpkin Ricotta Wonton Ravioli
Mom Loves Baking: Pumpkin Chocolate Swirl Bundt Cake
Pinch My Salt: Buttermilk Pumpkin Spice Bread
Swing Eats: Pumpkin Whoopie Pies with Molasses Marshmallows (GF)
Hey Grill Hey: How to Grill Pumpkin
In Jennie’s Kitchen: No Bake Pumpkin Cream Pie
FN Dish: 6 Surprising Ways to Use Canned Pumpkin for More Than Pie
Lisa Lotts says
I just want to dig a spoon into that casserole! Pass some my way, please!
Thanks Lisa! Wish I could pass some to you 🙂
Donna Mansour says
Oh I love this creative take on Shepherd’s Pie. Sounds absolutely delicious, and has all my favorite flavors in there 🙂
Thank you so much Donna. Fall flavors are my favorite.
I still need to try making a vegan shephards pie again! yummy!
You could definitely make a vegan version. Sub mushrooms for turkey, leave out butter and bacon and so on…
I love this– pumpkin in the potatoes is a fabulous idea! (And I always cheat and used canned puree lol)
Thanks! Pumpkin puree is just so convenient – except for when there is a shortage. That happened in our store a couple of weeks ago. Glad it’s back 🙂
Shashi @ RunninSrilankan says
I so love your use of pumpkin in this shepherds pie – ooh and the Brussels sprouts in the filling too!
Julie | Bunsen Burner Bakery says
I loooooove this, so much. Everything about this sounds delicious. Pinning to save for later!
Thank you Julie and thanks for the Pin!
Okay, this is just genius! So many great flavors in this shepherd’s pie!!
alan slimm says
I am not crazy about shepherd pie ,but this looks terrific
Heidy L. McCallum says
How creative and flavorful looking. I have to hand it to you I would have never thought of this. Great idea and I am pinning for a later date to try out.
Thank you so much for the Pin! I appreciate it. If you have time, come back and let us know what you think!
Whoa! Mind blown! My son also loves a shepherd’s pie but he actually loves pumpkin as well. I think he would totally be on board for this. Love the idea.
What is it about sons and shepherd’s pie? LOL Nothing like a good meat and potatoes comfort food. Thank you so much Christine!
Cindy Gordon says
I LOVE the addition of pumpkin to this shepherds pie! This sounds divine!!
Thank you so much Cindy!
That is just inspired! I love this recipe and I’m making it ASAP! Apparently, I have Thanksgiving on the brain too!
Thank you so much for your kind words Beth, I appreciate them 🙂
I love that you’ve hidden even brussels sprouts in this creative fall dish. I’m sure my hubby would be thrilled if I’ve baked him your pumpkin’s shepherds pie:)
They are kind of hidden once the cook down 🙂 I hope you try it!
Elaine Benoit says
I would eat every single spoon of this! I love shepherd’s pie and your pie looks fabulous and delicious!!
Thank you so much Elaine!
This was so good! I used this recipe as inspiration. For the base I roasted butternut squash instead of brussel sprouts. For the mashed potato part I added sweet potato, regular potato and pumpkin. I seasoned both parts with cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice. Thank you so much for this recipe, I will definitely use it again!
Great! I love hearing how my readers change up the recipes to make them their own!
Veronica Wylie says
Do you think it would work with just pumpkin and no potatoes? I have SO MUCH pumpkin left from my pie pumpkins but all the potatoes have been eaten already. Just wanna use up leftovers! 😇
I’m sorry for the late reply on this. I think the pumpkin by itself might be too loose and not set up. Let me know how it turned out if you already tried it with just pumpkin. Thanks!
Made this recipe last night…amazing!! We ate it outside by the fire last night. Truly comfort food with a great fall twist!! I had a little too much potato so might cut that down next time but otherwise wouldn’t change a thing.
Really love hearing this. Thanks for taking the time to comment and leave a 5-star review. Happy Holidays!