Mini Shepherd’s Pie

Of all the things that taste better the next day — Grandma Jody’s chicken, pasta with Bolognese — I think maybe Shepherd’s Pie is right up there on my list. At least part of the reason for this is because some of my fondest childhood memories involve standing in front of my best friend’s fridge, eating forkfuls of the pie’s spice-spiked meat straight from the dish. But most of the reason? Well, what’s there not to love about something smothered in a crust of mashed potatoes? These miniature cheater’s version are cobbled together from everything left over on Thanksgiving. (Of course Shepherd’s Pie was invented to use up leftovers, like all the best recipes, so technically it’s in fact the opposite of cheating.) I heat up a little shallot in olive oil then add whatever I’ve got stored the tupperware bins (including those bacon bits hangin’ around the brussels sprouts). Once the filling is heated through, I spoon it into ramekins and spread reheated mashed potatoes on top. I don’t even bother baking the pies, but if you’re after a more crusty topping, skip the reheating of the potatoes and bake at 375° for about 20 minutes, sprinkled with some shredded cheese if you’re feeling decadent. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Needless to say, it’s a big hit with the kids for Friday lunch.

Is there anything better than leftovers? Man, I could eat this screen right now. What leftover moves do you have in your Thanksgiving arsenals? Would love to know.

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Wha–? You’ve never made a real Shepherd’s Pie? I make it all the time in the winter FROM YOUR RECIPE (in Time for Dinner). Too funny. You should try it some time– it’s good! Doesn’t beat Thanksgiving leftovers, though.


That’s so funny, Allie. I forgot about that one. And while I would love to call it “my recipe” the credit goes to Victoria Granof who is the architect of almost all the recipes in Time for Dinner. I just edited and wrote around them!


Well, it’s delicious and it just so happens it is on the menu at our house tonight– totally by coincidence and planned a few days ago when I did the shopping. No special moves for Thanksgiving leftovers (except eat, repeat) but since everyone brings a dish, we have gotten smarter about sharing and trading so everyone goes home with a mix and not just what he/she brought. Happy Thanksgiving!


I have been inspired to make shepherd’s pie after watching Masterchef Jr.! As for our Thanksgiving leftovers, we do a version of that with lots of swiss cheese, creamed onions (if we have them), shredded turkey and brussels sprouts. Mix it all together and bake. It’s our family’s Bubble and Squeak.


As Californians, we are all about the Thanksgiving Quesadilla in our house. We grate the cheese and set out the tortillas and the leftovers and everyone creates their own masterpiece. Cranberry sauce is a must. They can be difficult to flip, but well worth the effort. Last year we also added the Thanksgiving Pizza (Caramelized onions, Boursin, cranberry sauce, and turkey with a sprinkling of mozzarella. We may have even recreated that one on a Pizza Friday in April) and turkey hash made with stuffing and over easy eggs.


My favourite Thanksgiving leftover is a Creamy Turkey Dijon soup. It’s a basic cream soup but you add 1.4 c. Dijon mustard and it is so delicious. I’m always sad when we get invited out for turkey and have no leftovers to make it.


While it makes my husband and son queasy, I love pan-fried stuffing with two eggs cooked sunny-side up on top. The stuffing is loaded with sage sausage, onion, celery, mushrooms– it gets a bit crispy on the bottom, then once the eggs are plopped on I cover it to keep some steam in so the eggs cook properly and the stuffing stays fluffy on top. Lots of black pepper and a bit of salt and Bob’s your uncle.

Margit Van Schaick

Turkey pot pie, either baked in a 9×13 Pyrex dish or in individual 5-inch ramekins/bowls. Freezes well, if you’ve got lots. So good for future lunches, etc. I do love the idea of these impromptu Shepherd’s pies. Maybe with a side salad of fresh greens and a freshly-baked biscuit or roll, to mop up gravy and whatever juices remain. I feel hungry just thinking about it!

A Life From Scratch

I’m with Jen……a turkey posole! The fresh limey broth is JUST what the DR for the post Thanksgiving bloat. Writing about the recipe on my blog next wednesday – it’s soooo good!


Oh-where to begin? A must is turkey soup made with the leftover turkey bones and meat. Think traditional chicken noodle soup with added canned tomatoes, fresh mushrooms and potatoes seasoned with all-spice and thyme. Also high on the list are potato cheese croquettes made from leftover mash. A fun twist is to take leftover cranberry sauce and turn into Indian-style chutney with spicy curry cilantro shrimp for dipping.


I am not from US, but I like to make a savory bread pudding from holiday leftovers. Imagine with turkey, brussels sprouts and onion for example might be good.


Turkey Tettrazini, just because my mom always made it! Otherwise, we are just happy eating mini plates of the dinner all over again. Oh and my daughter loves Boxty, an Irish pancake, made with the leftover mashed potatoes.


I don’t think there’s anything better than a turkey sandwich with cranberry sauce, lettuce, and mayo on potato bread, mashed potatoes on the side. Leftovers never last more than a day in my house!
PS – the DALS Bloglovin feed hasn’t been showing new posts – just me?


Noooooo! Your suggestion looks delicious, but that is not a shepherd’s pie! A shepherd’s pie is made with lamb – either left over roast lamb and gravy or starting from scratch with minced lamb. You’ve possibly made a cottage pie, although that’s usually beef these days. Also, I’m not sure that as a foreigner I can weigh in with ideas for Thanksgiving leftovers but over here in England our Christmas turkey is curried (and then served with bananas and raisins if you’re my grandmother!).