Shepherd’s Pie with Buttermilk-Chive Mashed Potato Crust

Lean ground turkey and buttermilk-mashed Yukon gold potatoes give this seasonal family favorite all the flavor and creaminess you'd expect from a shepherd's pie—with none of the actual butter or cream. Translation: a low-cal, low-fat meal sure to soothe any wintertime craving, guilt free.

Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.

Reader Recipe Tester: Laura Cline Littlestown, Pennsylvania “I made this dish for my father-in-law because traditional shepherd’s pie is one of his favorite meals. He was shocked by how much he loved this new, healthier version! This dish was simple to shop for, easy to make and very enjoyable to eat.” 

Nutritional Bonus: Dine on a serving of our shepherd’s pie tonight to get 40% of your daily requirement of protein, which breaks down to make amino acids. Those amino acids maintain bones, blood, organs and muscles, which is why it’s beneficial to incorporate some protein into your diet after exercise.

Shepherd's Pie with Potato Crust
Photo by Yvonne Duivenvoorden

Looking for more turkey recipes? Check out our collection here

Prep Time
25 min
Cook Time
35 min
60 min


  • 1 lb Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 clove garlic, whole, plus 1 tsp garlic, minced, divided
  • 2/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tbsp chives, chopped
  • Sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • 4 tsp olive oil, divided
  • 1 lb lean ground turkey breast
  • 1 yellow onion, finely chopped (1 cup)
  • 3 medium carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into half moons (about 1 cup)
  • 1 celery stalk, diced (about 1/3 cup)
  • 1 tsp fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas


  1. Preheat oven to 375˚F.
  2. Bring potatoes and whole garlic clove to a boil in a pot of water set over high heat. Cook until potatoes are tender, about 15 to 20 minutes, then drain well. Mash potatoes and garlic with a potato masher, ricer or food mill until smooth. Add buttermilk and chives and season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, heat 1 tsp oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high. Add turkey and cook, stirring often and breaking meat into small pieces with a wooden spoon. Cook until no pink remains, about 8 minutes. Drain and discard fat; set turkey aside.
  4. Heat 2 tsp oil in skillet over same heat. Add onion, carrots, celery and rosemary and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft, about 8 minutes. Add reserved turkey, broth and tomato paste and continue to cook until most of liquid is absorbed, about 5 minutes. Stir in peas, transfer mixture to a shallow baking dish and cover with mashed potatoes in an even layer. Run a fork over top of potatoes in a crosshatch pattern or swirl with a spatula or the back of a spoon. Brush top with remaining 1 tsp oil and bake in oven until filling is bubbling and top is golden brown, about 30 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size 1 1/2 cups Shepherd’s Pie
  • Calories 160
  • Carbohydrate Content 10 g
  • Cholesterol Content 40 mg
  • Fat Content 4 g
  • Fiber Content 2 g
  • Protein Content 20 g
  • Saturated Fat Content 0.5 g
  • Sodium Content 150 mg
  • Sugar Content 4 g
  • Monounsaturated Fat Content 0 g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat Content 0 g

Trending on Clean Eating