Healthy Turkey Cottage Pie

Chef Dave's Table

It’s the new year and everyone is doing their yearly health goals and I’m no different from anyone else. This year is a little more serious for me after having a few episodes of A-Fib which is being out of heart rhythm and then having to be shocked back into rhythm. Let’s just say it’s not an enjoyable experience so those of you who have ever experienced it know that maybe taking a little better care of ourselves should be on the top of our priority list!

So, this recipe is spawned of the Irish Classic Sheppard’s Pie that is traditionally made with ground lamb. So, in honesty it’s a cottage pie. If you make the dish with beef, pork, turkey or even chicken it should be called Cottage Pie. Just a little culinary lesson there! LOL

It’s still winter time so comfort food is always a craving this time of year so why not dig in to something that is comforting, filling, delicious and healthy! This dish is sure to fill you up without all the calories, fat and cholesterol. I hope you enjoy this dish as much as we do.


Chef Dave

A delicious and healthy version of the classic sheppard’s pie that will be a delight while trying to stay on track for you New Year’s resolutions!


  • 1 Pound Ground Turkey
  • 1 Medium yellow onion (medium dice)
  • 2 Cloves garlic (finely chopped)
  • 8 Ounces crimini mushrooms (sliced)
  • 1 Cup diced sweet potato (medium dice 1/2 in)
  • 1 Tablespoon All purpose seasoning no salt
  • 1/4 Teaspoon ceyenne pepper
  • 1/4 Teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 Teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon dried parsley (or you could use fresh)
  • 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 Cup red wine (something you would drink)
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoon corn starch
  • 1 Cup beef stock (low sodium)

Ingredients for the cauliflower mash

  • 1 Large head Cauliflower (about the diameter of a small dinner plate)
  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter (I prefer grass fed Kerry Gold)
  • 1 Tablespoon All Purpose seasoning no salt
  • 1 Teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon ceyenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 Tablespoon dried or fresh parsley (chopped)
  • 1/2 Teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 Teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Heavy cream (you could substitute coconut milk)
  • 1/2 Cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 Cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese



Before we get to that let’s save some time and get the cauliflower going. 

Core the head of cauliflower and chop into florets and place into a large pot and cover with water.

While that is cooking away we can start with the veggies. Peel and dice the sweet potato, onion and slice the mushroom.

Next add a couple tbsp. of olive oil to a sauté pan and heat to medium high. add the onions and mushrooms and cook until soft. Add the chopped cloves of garlic and cook for a few minutes more.

Add the sweet potato to a small sauce pan, cover with water and bring to a boil and turn down to a simmer. Simmer until a knife easily inserts into the potato. Drain and add to the onion and mushroom mix. Then take off heat and set aside.

You will need these items for the meat: dried parsley, tomato paste, red wine, corn starch, and beef stock. 

Next add a couple TBSP of olive oil to the pan and add the turkey and cook until well browned and once browned add the corn starch and stir until incorporated.

Then add the red wine. You will see it thicken slightly.

Then add the tomato paste, cook for a minute or two and incorporated. Then add the beef stock. Let mix cook until thick and liquid coats the meat. Now add the onion, mushroom and potato back into the meat.

Spray an 8×8 casserole pan with cooking spray and pour the turkey mix into the pan and set aside.


You’ll want this close by: heavy cream, unsalted butter, your spices, cheddar, and parmesan cheeses.

 Drain the soft cooked cauliflower in a colander and let sit for 15 minutes.

Note: I try to do this while I’m preparing the meat mixture

Next place cauliflower into a food processor along with the spices, butter and cheeses.

Process on high for a few minutes until mixture is smooth. While processing add in the heavy cream and process for another minute. Taste and add seasoning to your liking. 

Remember this is the healthy version. (big smile)

Next top the Turkey mixture evenly with the cauliflower mash and smooth out with a spatula then take a fork and make little peaks.

Now here’s the best part. You can make this a day or two ahead and wrap and leave in the fridge for another night or do a double batch of the turkey mixture and freeze for another time. Just take out and set on the counter for 30 minutes and preheat the oven to 400°. Place the pie on a baking sheet and place on the middle shelf and bake for 30 minutes until bubbling on the sides and peaks have browned slightly and internal temp is 160°. If you want darker browning turn on the broiler for 5 minutes but watch closely.

Serve piping hot with your favorite green side dish. This is served with sautéed Swiss Chard and Onion.  

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David Miller

Hey, I'm Chef Dave!

A retired chef of 27 years, I’m so excited to be able to share my love of cooking. My recipes are usually easy to follow, fresh, and simply delicious! Our kitchen is a gathering place where I love being with friends and family. A place filled with laughs, good conversation, great food, and a good glass of wine!

From my table to yours, Cheers!

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