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Italian Shepherd's Pie

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With garlic, tomato sauce and ricotta cheese, the flavors in this Italian Shepherd's Pie recipe from Anne Colagioia are definitely different than the ones found in your typical shepherd's pie recipes. Still, this easy shepherd's pie will please even picky eaters.


To save time you could use instant mashed potatoes prepared according to the package instructions to make 6 cups then stir in the ricotta mixed with an egg yolk and 1 teaspoon of garlic powder. Additionally you could substitute a bag of frozen Italian veggies in place of the diced veggies in this recipe. If you are following a gluten free diet be sure to use gluten free bouillon.

For more gluten free recipes from Anne, be sure to check out her Featured Foodies profile page.

To see exactly how Anne makes this gluten free recipe, watch this cooking video:


For more recipes that are great to make ahead of time, check out a collection of 13 Make Ahead Dishes for Any Meal.

Preparation Time30 min

Cooking Time25 min

Cooking MethodCasserole


  • 20 ounces lean ground turkey
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 ribs celery, diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 small zucchini, all diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced (1 for the meat layer, 3 in the potatoes)
  • 1 cup peas
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon beef bouillon
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 cup milk (1/2 cup in the meat layer, 1/2 cup in the potatoes)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3/4 cup part skim ricotta cheese
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 egg yolk
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F or 190 degrees C.
  2. Add the potatoes and the 3 halved garlic cloves of to a large pot of salted water and put it on the stove to boil. Then in a small bowl stir together the ricotta cheese, diced butter, egg yolk, 1/2 cup milk, salt and pepper to taste, then set aside.
  3. In a large skillet sprayed with nonstick spray crumble and brown the turkey with the bouillon powder. If the pan is very dry add a tablespoon or two of olive oil.
  4. Once the turkey is nicely browned add the garlic and all of the diced veggies and sauté for five minutes. Add the wine and simmer for 2 minutes then add the tomato sauce and 1/2 cup of milk, stir to combine, lower the heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes then stir in the peas and remove from the heat.
  5. Once the potatoes are fork tender, drain them and return them to the pot and begin mashing then add the ricotta mixture and continue mashing until you’ve achieved your desired consistency then add additional salt and pepper if needed.
  6. Spoon the meat mixture into the bottom of a greased 10 x 10 inch baking dish. Top with the mashed potatoes and bake uncovered at 375 degrees F or 190 degrees C for 25 minutes. Let it cool for 10 minutes before serving.

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