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Leftover Turkey Shepherds Pie

When it comes to using up holiday leftovers, everyone has their own unique approach. If you’re tired of gazing at the same old turkey sandwiches, why not try transforming your leftover bird into a scrumptious shepherd’s pie? This show-stopping dish is the perfect way to repurpose those extra mashed potatoes, too. To give it an added layer of depth and richness, you can add in sautéed onions, fresh herbs, and even some vegetables. And let’s not forget the crowning glory: a generous helping of Guinness to tie everything together.

How to Make Cottage Pie with Turkey Leftovers

While this dish may not be a traditional cottage pie or shepherd’s pie, it shares similarities in its preparation method. Feel free to refer to it as whatever suits your taste buds best.

To begin, heat a cast iron skillet over high and sauté the onions until they’re translucent. Next, add the tomato paste and cook for a few minutes before pouring in the Guinness and adding butter. Allow the mixture to simmer for ten minutes, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, boil chopped potatoes until tender; if using leftover mashed potatoes, skip this step.

Add the carrots, parsnips, celery, and garlic to the pan, along with dried thyme. Cook, stirring frequently, for five minutes. If incorporating cooked leftover vegetables, add them towards the end of the cooking time.

Once the potatoes are cooked, drain them (unless using leftover mashed potatoes) and mash in butter, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, sour cream, onion powder, and thyme. Season with salt and black pepper to taste.

Combine the shredded turkey with sage, then add it to the pan along with the remaining Guinness, bone broth, and simmer for about 15 minutes.

Finish by piping the mashed potatoes atop the turkey filling and baking in the oven for half an hour. Serve hot, garnished with fresh parsley.

Tweaks and Variations

The versatility of this leftover turkey shepherd’s pie is what makes it a staple for post-holiday gatherings. With the ability to incorporate various leftovers, you can tailor the recipe to your family’s preferences and dietary needs.

One of the best aspects of this recipe is its adaptability. You can use leftover turkey (or ground turkey) alongside creamy mashed potatoes, green beans, or other veggies that might be lingering in the fridge. If you don’t have enough mashed potatoes on hand, simply cook some more or experiment with alternative root vegetables like cauliflower, rutabaga, or parsnips.

The liquid component of the dish is also open to interpretation. You can substitute Guinness for another dark beer, use chicken or beef broth in place of turkey broth, or even opt for a rich, savory stock if you have it on hand.

If you’re looking for ways to repurpose excess turkey, consider pairing this recipe with our leftover turkey and rice casserole. Alternatively, try incorporating sweet potatoes, turkey gravy, or a layer of stuffing to create a unique and satisfying meal. Whatever holiday leftovers you’re working with, this shepherd’s pie is the perfect canvas to showcase your creative flair.

And don’t forget to round out the meal with a tangy cranberry sauce on the side – it’s the perfect accompaniment to this comforting dish.

Leftover Turkey Shepherd’s Pie FAQs

When it comes to storing and reheating leftovers, what’s the best approach? For classic shepherd’s pie, keep it in an airtight container or covered with plastic wrap or tin foil in the refrigerator for up to four days. Reheat it in the microwave or on the stove as needed. If you’re looking to reduce carbs after indulging over the holidays, consider modifying this turkey shepherd’s pie recipe. One option is to swap mashed potatoes for a low-carb alternative like cauliflower mash. You can either boil and drain fresh cauliflower or use frozen mashed cauliflower. You may have come across the term ‘pince’ in recipes before, but what does it mean? To pince something simply means to cook it until it reaches a golden brown color, much like caramelizing ingredients for added flavor. In this recipe, we’re using tomato paste and browning it brings out its rich, intense flavor.

Leftover Turkey Shepherd’s Pie Recipe

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Leftover Turkey Shepherd’s Pie

When the holiday season comes to a close, many of us are left with a fridge full of leftovers. For Bella Bucchiotti, that means finding creative ways to repurpose turkey – and what better way than a hearty shepherd’s pie infused with the rich flavors of Guinness? This recipe is a perfect excuse to use up those leftover mashed potatoes too. With just 10 minutes of prep time and an hour and 20 minutes total cooking time, this dish is a stress-free solution for using up holiday leftovers, serving nine happy diners in the process.


As the aroma of roasted vegetables wafts through the kitchen, it’s time to prepare the savory turkey filling. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C) and place a deep cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. While that heats up, sauté diced onions in olive oil for three minutes before adding tomato paste and cooking for an additional five minutes. Stir in Guinness stout and butter, then reduce heat to low and cook for ten minutes. Meanwhile, bring salted water to a boil in a Dutch oven, then add four cups of potatoes and cook for 15 minutes. Next, add the carrots, parsnips, celery, garlic, and dried thyme to the skillet, stirring to combine before cooking for five minutes. Drain the cooked potatoes and mix with melted butter, crushed garlic, Worcestershire sauce, sour cream, onion powder, thyme, salt, and pepper, mashing until smooth. Allow the mixture to cool as the turkey filling cooks. Combine shredded turkey with sage and add it to the skillet, stirring well before pouring in the remaining Guinness and bone broth. Bring the mixture to a simmer, then reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 15 minutes. As the filling nears completion, pipe cooled mashed potatoes over the top using a piping bag. Finally, place the dish into the oven and bake for 30 minutes, garnishing with fresh chopped parsley before serving.