Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

By: Jacqueline Gomes, RDN, MBA

When you think of St. Patrick’s Day thoughts of Irish potatoes, soda bread, and corned beef are just a few of the traditional favorites that come to mind. But don’t think of  potatoes as worthless starch, here are some stellar attributes of these spuds:

  • Potatoes are an excellent source of vitamin C and good source of potassium.
  • Potatoes are more energy-packed than any other popular vegetable and have even more potassium than a banana.
  • Versatile and delicious, potatoes can be enjoyed cold, hot, baked, mashed, sautéed and many other tasty ways!

Irish Shepherd’s Pie is a traditional dish that was prepared to use up leftovers and prevent waste. It’s a delicious and satisfying dish to celebrate St. Patricks’ Day. Cottage pie is the term used when beef is used instead of traditional lamb. And as always with Eat Well, we’ll be using a lean 93% ground beef and adding in lots of veggies to this comforting dish. So, let’s get started!


Easy Shepherd’s Pie

shepherds pie

Prep: 40 minutes

Bake: 15 minutes

Makes: 6 Servings



Mashed potatoes:

  • 5 lbs Russet potatoes
  • ½ cup 1% Milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons butter

Beef filling:

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 lb 93% lean ground beef
  • 2/3 cup diced onion
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon rosemary
  • 1 bag frozen mixed vegetables (corn, peas, carrots)
  • 8 ounces canned tomato sauce
  • ½ cup cheddar cheese, reduced fat, shredded



  1. Peel and rinse potatoes, cut into quarters and place in a large stockpot filled with cold salted water. Bring to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer. Continue to simmer until the potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes. Drain the potatoes.
  2. Combine the milk, butter and salt, and heat to a simmer.
  3. Place the potatoes in a bowl and mash using hand masher. Slowly pour in the warm milk mixture and continue to mash the potatoes until smooth with a few lumps.
  4. Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven or heavy pot. Add the onion and garlic, sauté for 3 to 4 minutes until soft and translucent. Add in the ground beef and brown.
  5. Stir in the Worcestershire sauce, thyme, cumin, rosemary and salt.
  6. Add the frozen vegetables, tomato sauce and bring the meat to a simmer
  7. Continue to cook 10–15 minutes, partially covered, stirring occasionally.
  8. Pour meat into an oven safe casserole dish. Top the beef mixture with mashed potatoes.
  9. Sprinkling cheese over the potatoes. Bake in a preheated 400°F oven for about 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are lightly browned and the filling bubbles.


Nutrition information: 538 calories; 48g carbs; 9g fat; 22g protein; 4g fiber

Recipe: Jacqueline Gomes, RDN, MBA