Italian Shepards Pie (crockpot base)

10
Didi Dalaba

By
@didicoffeegirl

This is a recipe I long ago tweaked to fit my family's busy lifestyle. I love Shepard's pie, ADORE IT!! However it can be quite time consuming as you know to make for a busy mom during the work week.

This certainly can be made with ground beef only as the traditional way. However, I wanted to kick it up a notche, simply because I love vegetables.
So I created this dish for the base of the shepherds pie to be cooked in the crock pot, chock full of vegetables. But the best part was using Italian sausage as the base. Can you say "absolutely out of this world good"??
WE CAN!!

Rating:

★★★★★ 2 votes

Comments:
Serves:
8-10
Prep:
35 Min
Cook:
45 Min

Ingredients

  • INGREDIENTS PIE BASE

  • 5
    italian sausage casings removed and crumbled
  • 2 medium
    yellow/orange/red (whatever you have on hand) peppers roughly diced
  • 3 c
    button bella mushrooms sliced in half
  • 1 large
    onion roughly diced
  • 3 large
    carrots roughly diced
  • 2 large
    celery stalks roughly diced
  • 2 small
    zucchini roughly diced
  • 3 Tbsp
    olive oil
  • 1 tsp
    dried thyme
  • 1 tsp
    each salt & pepper
  • 1 tsp
    granulated garlic powder
  • 1 can(s)
    (14.5) oz beef broth
  • TO BE ADDED AFTER CROCKPOT COOKING

  • 1/3 c
    instant mashed potato flakes
  • 1/4 c
    parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 c
    fresh chopped parsley
  • MASHED POTATO TOPPING

  • 8 medium
    potatoes peeled and diced in cubes
  • 1 tsp
    dried thyme
  • 3/4 c
    grated parmesan cheese
  • 1
    egg
  • 4 Tbsp
    butter
  • 1/2 c
    milk
  • 1/2 tsp
    salt
  • ·
    pinch of pepper
  • EXTRA TOPPINGS

  • 1/4 c
    pecorino romano (or any sharp cheese ex, asiago)
  • 1/2 tsp
    paprika
  • ·
    pinch of pepper

How to Make Italian Shepards Pie (crockpot base)

Step-by-Step

  1. In a large skillet add your 3 tbsp of olive oil and heat to high, add your casings removed sausage and saute till no longer pink.
  2. Prepare your crock pot by drizzling 1 tbsp olive oil and coating it.

    Dice all your veggies and and place in crock pot. I usually do this the night before except for the mushrooms and keep them in water till the next morning when I'm ready to prepare this.
  3. Add your dried seasonings over the veggies and finally add your sausage. Pour in your beef stock. Cover and cook on high for 3-1/2 - 4 hours or on low for 6-1/2 - 7 hours. This will ensure nicely cooked vegetables without them becoming mushy.

    When you come home, remove the shepard's pie base mixture from the crock pot and using a slotted spoon (you don't want all the excess juices), add the mixture to a pre coated 13 x 9 casserole dish). Add in your instant potato flakes, your Parmesan cheese and finally your fresh parsley. Stir thoroughly and set aside to cool.
  4. As the base is cooling, let's start on the decadent mashed potato topping!
    Peel and cube your potatoes and place in pan with enough water and a few pinches of salt till nice and tender, about 15-20 minutes.

    Once cooked till tender, drain and return potatoes back to pan. Using a hand masher, mash larger chunks etc. Add remaining ingredients except the Parmesan cheese and egg into the hot potatoes. Using a hand mixer now, whip till nice and creamy.
    Now add your egg & Parmesan cheese and whip again. Set aside.
    Preheat oven to 375F.
  5. Spread the whipped mashed potatoes over the base mixture and spread evenly.
  6. Sprinkle Pecorino Romano cheese along with the paprika and pepper
  7. bake for 35-45 minutes till topping is nicely golden brown. Remove from oven and let stand 10 minutes.
    This would be a perfect time to slice up some fresh tomatoes to go with this, or toss together a salad.

    Cut into squares, try and contain yourself, heaven's knows I had to!!!
  8. Plate onto plate and serve with your favorite salad or vegetable, grab yourself a glass of wine and enjoy!! Knowing you made this amazing gourmet meal in 1 hour on a work week night!! *cheers*

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