Entree Instant Pot Recipes Recipes

Instant Pot Shepherd’s Pie

Instant Pot Shepherd's Pie
Written by Emily Buys

Instant Pot Shepherd's Pie

Just before Christmas I started hearing buzz about the Instant Pot. I didn’t quite understand what it was or how it worked, so I ignored it. Then my mom got one and told me I needed one! I tend to trust my mom when she tells me I really need something, and after she told me how quickly and easily she could cook dinner with the Instant Pot, I was quick to believe. Our Instant Pot Shepherd’s Pie would have to wait because although I put the Instant Pot on my Christmas wish list, it didn’t quite make it under the tree.

6 Qt Instant Pot

Because I wanted to wait for a good deal, I kept putting off purchasing the Instant Pot. After multiple uses and her constant surprise at it’s ability to make dinner a breeze, my mom continued to press me to get one. “It would be great to create Instant Pot recipes for the blog,” she would say. I finally caved and purchased this 6-Qt Instant Pot, which is a programmable electric pressure cooker – in case it’s new to you too! Plus, it happens to be on sale right now, and it’s got great reviews! I can’t recommend it enough – it will change your life! I’ll be mostly more tried and true recipes too.

Instant Pot Shepherd's Pie

I’ve had my Instant Pot for a couple of weeks now and it is my new favorite kitchen appliance! I am continually amazed at what it can do. Get this – aside from the time it takes to get up to pressure, this bad boy can cook FROZEN chicken breasts in just 10 minutes! Perhaps a recipe for another time? Let me know if it’s one you need me to share. In the meantime, I want to share one of our family’s new favorite recipes, for Instant pot Shepherd’s Pie. I grew up on Shepherd’s Pie so I just had to put my favorite appliance to the test, to see if I could create an oldie but goodie with less dirty dishes and in less time. If the taste could compete then even better!

Instant Pot Shepherd's Pie

Shepherd’s Pie has a few components – the meat, vegetable and the mashed potatoes. After all of those things get cooked, the casserole gets assembled and cooked some more. There are typically several dirty dishes involved, but not with this recipe! Everything gets cooked IN the Instant Pot, and in under 30 minutes!! I hope your family enjoys this recipe as much as we do!

Instant Pot Shepherd's Pie
Serves 6
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
18 min
Total Time
28 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
18 min
Total Time
28 min
Ingredients
  1. 4-6 potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
  2. 2 cups water, divided
  3. 2 tsp salt, divided
  4. 1 egg
  5. 1 tsp garlic salt
  6. 2 Tbs butter
  7. 1 lb ground beef
  8. 1 tsp pepper
  9. 1/2 large yellow onion, diced
  10. 1 cup frozen peas
  11. 1 tsp beef bouillon
  12. 3 Tbs flour
  13. 1 cup Colby Jack cheese
Instructions
  1. Toss potatoes, 1 cup water, and 1 teaspoon of salt in the Instant Pot. Cook on manual (high) for 8 minutes. Drain cooked potatoes and transfer to a mixing bowl where you will add the egg, garlic salt and butter, and mix with a hand mixer. Cover with foil or lid while the meat is prepared.
  2. Add ground beef to the empty Instant Pot and sauté for approximately 5 minutes - just until meat begins to brown. Add onions, frozen peas and remaining salt and pepper. Continue cooking until meat is completely cooked.
  3. In a small bowl, mix bouillon and flour into the remaining cup of water. Pour over meat mixture in the Instant Pot and stir to combine.
  4. Top the meat and veggie mixture with the prepared mashed potatoes and smooth over the top. Cook on manual (high) for 10 minutes.
  5. Quick release the pressure and top with shredded cheese. Allow to sit for a few minutes so cheese can begin to melt, and serve.
Notes
  1. Can use more or less potatoes, depending on how much of the mashed potato layer you want, and how big your potatoes are. It never hurts to have leftover mashed potatoes either!
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About the author

Emily Buys

23 Comments

  • Fail. I ended up with a gloppy mess that was mostly liquid. I had to ladle out a bunch of liquid from the top to make even edible.

  • I was careful to follow the recipe to a T. I think that maybe if I had put on a thicker and more even potato cap it may or may not have acted like a lid and kept the liquid with the meat. It was still very tasty, just a little more homogenous than it should have been. BTW I subbed ground lamb, I don’t know if that would have altered the moisture level.

  • Followed the recipe to a T. Final step once I layered with the potatoes and attempted to cook for the final ten minutes the instant pot was burning. Attempted to add a little water to the bottom(below the potatoes) and it still read burn after several attempts. Ended up with a soupy mess.

  • Sheldon, I’m sorry that happened! The meat mixture should have a cup of liquid and the potatoes should kind of seal that in – preventing any burning. I’m confused how you ended up with a soupy mess when the IP was reading “burn” because that usually means not enough liquid. Kind of puzzling. 2 things that I have found can affect the recipe is the fat content of your beef (mine is very lean) and making sure to allow the dish to rest, and set up some, before serving.

  • I’m so sad. Tried this recipe and followed it… except adding more liquid to the meat mixture… all it kept saying was BURN… ugh fail. I ended up having to dirty 2 more pans to get the meat mixture thicker, and then cook it in the oven. Not sure how everyone else was able to get it to work, with less liquids….. 🙁

  • I just bought an IP today and for it’s maiden voyage I made this recipe. I used 80/20 beef and subbed the peas for corn. I very rarely cook (my husband is the chef in this family). It turned out AMAZING! Not soupy, perfect consistency. I cooked the meat until almost done so I could be sure that most of the grease could be drained. I made sure I drained the grease very well before putting it back in the pot. It was DELICIOUS & even my super picky husband was impressed! Thanks for the tips and a great recipe for a chilly winter day!

  • Such a shame – I’m sorry it didn’t work for you Jamie! I’m really curious what the key is – fat content in the meat, thicker mashed potatoes, etc. It’s a mystery!

  • Absolutely delicious! My whole family loved it! Will be making again for sure. Thank you for the great ( and mostly healthy) recipe!!

  • Yes, it turned out great. I did use ground venison instead of beef, which is very lean. I’m thinking that the failed attempts from other people are due to using meat with a higher fat content?

  • I think the problem is… do you pressure cook the potatoes? Or manually cook them without the lid? Because I notice for the last step it is assumed that you pressure cooked it because you note that you need to release the steam. If that’s the case you should specify that the potatoes are pressure cooked.

  • I got a burn notice, too. I left about and inch of room around the edges of the mashed potatoes because I figured it wouldn’t be able to come to pressure if I sealed in the liquid with the mashed potatoes. When I opened it after the burn notice, I saw that I ended up with a lot of brown liquid on top of the potatoes somehow. I poked some holes in the mashed potatoes to let the liquid sink back to the bottom, then put the whole inner pot into the oven to cook it the rest of the way.

    I like the general recipe, and I’m making it again today, but this time I’m only cooking the raw potatoes using the Instant Pot, and then putting the beef and mashed potatoes in a casserole dish in the oven.

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