paleo shepherd’s pie.

Braveheart happens to be one of my all-time most favorite movies…  So when Adam told me he had never seen the movie a couple years back I jumped on the idea of preparing a classic Anglo-Saxon dish to celebrate the heritage.  I prepared none other than Elana’s Pantry shepherd’s pie!


If you haven’t heard of Elana, well now ya have!  She is a pioneer in the gluten free/ grain free movement.  She adopted a gf lifestyle decades ago to combat Celiac disease.  Heralding from Boulder, CO, her blog and countless cookbooks have both inspired and challenged me to think creatively when preparing gf/paleo dishes.

While I love her recipe (which I have included with a link to her blog), the topping is a pain in the rear to prepare.  So, I have altered her recipe in a way that is both delicious, easy, and… friendly to all breastfeeding moms out there!!  (Cauliflower and babies don’t mix well)

Instead of making her cauliflower topping, I baked four large sweet potatoes at 350 degrees for a couple hours.  After letting them cool I scooped out the potato, whipped it all up with two tablespoons of grass-fed butter, and let that serve as my topping.




I followed Elana’s recipe to a T, except for the topping!  I have bracketed the altered steps… here it is!

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 pound turkey or pork bacon, cut into 2 inch slices
  • 2 cups diced carrots
  • 2 cups diced celery
  • 1 pound organic grass fed ground beef
  • ½ teaspoon Celtic sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • ((2 large heads cauliflower, trimmed, chopped and steamed until very soft))
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  1. Heat olive oil in a very large frying pan
  2. Saute onion for 15 minutes until soft
  3. Add bacon pieces to pan and sauté until cooked, about 10 minutes
  4. Add carrots and celery to pan and sauté in bacon fat for 10 minutes until soft
  5. Add ground beef to pan and sauté until brown, just a few minutes
  6. Season with salt, pepper and smoked paprika
  7. Add chicken broth and cook down broth until 60% evaporated
  8. ((Place cauliflower in food processor and puree with olive oil until smooth))
  9. Pour ground beef mixture into a 9 X 13 inch baking dish
  10. ((Pour mashed cauliflower over beef mixture))
  11. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes





We usually make this recipe when we watch “The Hobbit,” “Lord of the Rings,” “Braveheart,” or “Far and Away.”  The warm, peppery, savory flavors of this dish go so well with a Black and Tan!  It’s a family favorite for sure!




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