Kirbie's Cravings

Low Carb Keto Shepherd’s Pie

A low carb and keto-friendly version of Shepherd’s Pie, using Parmesan mashed cauliflower instead of mashed potatoes. This easy dish is very comforting and a great way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.
overhead photo of a shepherd's pie

If you don’t like corned beef, this low carb version of Shepherd’s Pie is also a tasty way to celebrate the holiday. I subbed out the traditional mashed potatoes crust with my parmesan mashed cauliflower. I also sprinkled more parmesan cheese over the mashed cauliflower crust before baking it.

This came out so tasty, filling, and comforting. I didn’t miss the potatoes at all and I think making mashed cauliflower is easier than making mashed potatoes.
photo of a serving of shepherd's pie on a plate

How to Make Parmesan Mashed Cauliflower

I make my mashed cauliflower in a food processor.

First, you need to boil the cauliflower until it is very soft. Then you pat dry the cauliflower before adding it to your food processor to prevent you cauliflower mash from tasting watery.

The cauliflower is mixed with cream cheese and heavy cream to achieve a creamy consistency.

Parmesan cheese gives the mash a delicious flavor and help to mask the cauliflower flavor.

Shepherd’s Pie Filling Ingredients

  • Shepherd’s Pie is traditionally made with lamb, but ground lamb is not as readily available in the US so ground beef is often used as a substitute. You can use either one for this recipe. I love lamb but my husband doesn’t, so I used ground beef.
  • For my vegetables, I used fresh carrots and frozen peas. I would have loved to use English peas but they are harder to find.
  • The rest of the filling ingredients are onions, broth, rosemary, thyme, Worchester sauce and tomato paste. The filling comes together quickly and is very flavorful.

photo of a shepherd's pie

Low Carb Keto Shepherd's Pie

Servings: 6
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Course: Main Dishes
Cuisine: American
A low carb version of Shepherd's Pie using mashed cauliflower instead of mashed potatoes. It's easy to make and just as comforting as the original. 
4 from 1 vote


Mashed Cauliflower

  • 1 lb cauliflower florets
  • 3 oz cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 2-4 oz heavy cream
  • salt to taste

Meat Filling

  • 1 small onion finely chopped
  • 1 lb ground beef or lamb
  • 1/2 cup carrots cut into small cubes
  • 1/2 cup frozen or fresh peas
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 tsp rosemary finely chopped
  • 1 tsp thyme finely chopped
  • 2 tsp Worcester sauce
  • 2 tsp tomato paste
  • salt to taste

Toppings (optional)

  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese shredded
  • 1/2 tsp rosemary or thyme finely chopped


Parmesan Mashed Cauliflower

  • Cook cauliflower in boiling water until soft. Drain and remove cauliflower and pat dry. Add to food processor. Add in Parmesan cheese and cream cheese and blend until cauliflower is completely mashed. 
  • Slowly add in heavy cream, 1 oz at a time, and blend until mashed cauliflower becomes creamy. You do need to be careful to not add too much liquid or the mashed cauliflower may become too thin. Season with salt as needed.

Meat Filling

  • In a large skillet, add onions and ground beef. Bring skillet to medium high heat. Stir and crumble the ground beef as it cooks. Cook until onions are translucent and beef is browned. 
  • Add in carrots, peas, broth, rosemary, thyme, Worcester sauce and tomato paste. Stir to evenly blend tomato paste and Worcester sauce. Add salt if needed. Bring mixture to a simmer and lower heat to medium. Allow mixture to simmer until broth has been reduced and slightly thickened.

Assembling the pie

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Spread filling across a 7 x 11-inch casserole or baking pan. 
  • Spread mashed cauliflower over meat filling. If desired, spread 1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese across mashed cauliflower. 
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes in preheated oven until edges of the mashed potatoes start to brown. Then set oven to low broil and cook a few more minutes until the cheese and surface is lightly browned. This should only take about 2-4 minutes, so I recommend watching the oven carefully.
  • If desired, top with 1/2 tsp rosemary or thyme before serving.


  • You can use dried rosemary or dried thyme in place of fresh rosemary and thyme.
  • Make sure you use a full one pound of cauliflower florets. This is after the outer leaves have been discarded. Otherwise you will not have enough mash to spread across the entire baking pan.
  • Nutrition facts are calculated with 85/15 ground beef and 2 oz of heavy cream. It does not include salt. 


Serving: 0.17of recipe, Calories: 340kcal, Carbohydrates: 9g, Protein: 22g, Fat: 23g, Saturated Fat: 11g, Cholesterol: 90mg, Sodium: 508mg, Potassium: 624mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 2340IU, Vitamin C: 43.6mg, Calcium: 206mg, Iron: 2.6mg, Net Carbs: 7g

The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.

Did you make this recipe?I'd love to see it! Mention @KirbieCravings and tag #kirbiecravings!

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6 comments on “Low Carb Keto Shepherd’s Pie”

  1. Wouldn’t this freeze well?

    • I have not tried freezing. I think it would freeze okay but it will likely be a little watery when you reheat because of the moisture retained by the cauliflower

  2. I made this last night and it was amazing! I used ground beef and the only changes I made were to omit the carrots and peas, which aren’t super keto-friendly and added 2 zucchinis. Otherwise I followed the recipes as it’s written. I will definitely make this again!

  3. In England ‘Shepherd’s Pie’ made with beef is called ‘Cottage Pie’.

    • I have heard that. In the US, it is not as commonly served with lamb since lamb isn’t as available and is pricier, so most version just use beef and still call it Shepherd’s Pie

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