Heyyy der’ lucky chaps! (<-not Irish at all) It’s the week of the day that people go around pinching people for not wearing a certain color and enjoy all the fascinations that come with St. Patty’s day. Although leprechauns and gold coin chocolates cease to amuse me, every holiday is a chance to get busy with themed foods -such as- these cute little Shepherd’s Pie Mini Cups!
First of all…SO cute right?! St. Patty’s day always makes me think of Shepherd’s pie and it was always a favorite growing up. I searched the blog archives and realized I didn’t have a recipe even relating to Shepherd’s pie. A tragedy that has since been remedied and I am thrilled with the result! I kept these quite simple since that’s always better, and because who wants to slave away in the kitchen when you just wanna get your party on?!
My mom’s (hi mom ✋?) super tasty version involves a creamy mashed potato situation that floods in lovely memories, but also thoughts of mashing potatoes ? [ref: “slave away in the kitchen” above.] Don’t get the idea that these are complicated though, because they are far from it. These shepherd’s pie mini’s use our favoritepotato puff as a pie foundation to speed up the potato involvement and a quick whisk with egg will keep them sturdy enough to hold in your pie ingredients. A high quality marinara will provide the majority of your salty flavor so don’t skimp! Side Note: high quality doesn’t always have to mean expensive. As I have mentioned in the past, we love the grocery store Aldi. They carry a premium line as well as many delicious organic items, one of which is their marinara. I found it to be a perfect fit for the tomato sauce base and complimented the beef. Toss on a few steam-able mixed veggies to throw in color and also satisfy our need for GREEN. Top with cheddar and it’ll be a top a’ tha’ mornin’ to ya mouth. (<-sorry)
I will say it is crucial to use a normal-sized muffin pan for these guys, since my first attempt in a more shallow version sort of overflowed in a big way ?. Be sure to check out my recommended products below for the pan I used, it worked perfectly!
You are going to want to pinch yourself after you realize your shepherd’s pie cravings can be adorable, portioned mini cups. See the notes for directions on perfect cups every time! (hint: cooling is key!)
Mini and portable for parties, portioned and flavorful for any night of the week make ?Shepherd’s Pie Mini Cups? the perfect addition to your weekly meal plan!
Recommended Products Shepherd’s Pie Mini Cups
- Cuisinart Muffin Pan- http://amzn.to/1U1KfXr
- Seasoned Crispy Potato Puffs- http://bit.ly/1P9gBXZ
- Simply Nature Organic Marinara- http://bit.ly/1M3Bfhw
Please see my “Details & Thanks” in the side bar to your right for affiliate information or below if using the mobile version.
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 1½ cups marinara
- ⅓ cup light sour cream (or greek yogurt)
- 1½ cup mixed veggies (frozen in steamable bag)
- 2½ cups potato puffs (thawed and mashed)
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup shredded cheddar
- Cook ground beef in a medium skillet until browned and cooked through and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees and spray each cup of muffin pan thoroughly with cooking spray and set aside.
- Microwave frozen potato puffs for approximately 1 minute on the 'thaw' setting and then add to a medium bowl with 2 eggs. Stir until well combined and add 2 heaping tablespoons of mixture to each muffin cup. Spread mixture up the sides of each cup creating a place for the mixture (see photo above).
- Place the 'pies' in the oven and bake for 6 minutes.
- While the pies are baking, steam vegetables in the microwave according to the directions on the package (usually about 5 minutes).
- Add ground meat to a large bowl and stir in marinara and sour cream until combined.
- Remove pies from oven after the 6 minutes and add about 2 tablespoons marinara meat mixture to each cup and top with 1 tablespoon vegetables. Return to oven for 15 minutes and then remove. Add cheese to each pie and then cook for 5-7 minutes or until cheese is melted.
- Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes (see tips for removing).
*I used light sour cream the first time I made these, and Greek yogurt another time and both tasted the same, so use whichever you like.
*Allow the completed cups to cool for at least 10 minutes and then try sliding a knife around the inside of the cup to separate from the pan, if this doesn't happen easily allow to cool 5 more minutes and try again. Once the pies release from the cup easily with a knife, use a fork to lift each pie out and serve.