Happy Friday friends! Where has the time gone?! I can’t believe its September already. As you can imagine, we are SO excited for fall!! As if our Paleo Pumpkin Cookbook doesn’t give us away, our love for fall recipes will. I just adore everything about the fall season. The changing of the leaves, the new layers of clothes, the cooler weather and of course, all the typical fall flavors are just a few of my favorite things. I can’t wait to experiment with butternut squash, pumpkin EVERYTHING, apple spice and all the different comfort foods. Now I just wish the weather would actually cooperate! September 1st fooled me and had me thinking it was time for fall! The weather cooled off and fall was in the air. Until about 2 days later when the humidity was cranked up again and I was sweating my ass off just sitting and not even moving. While I like summer and all that it brings, I’m so over the hot weather. The humidity has been off the charts this summer. Thankfully it looks like it’ll start to cool off over the next week or so and hopefully we’ll be in full fall effect by September 22nd! For those of you who love summer and don’t like the cooler temps, I’m sorry; this profession of love for fall is not for you. Instead, scroll on to this tasty mini cottage pie recipe!
Before we get to that, I want to talk a little bit about an upcoming trip I have and what I’m most excited about this fall. As you guys know, Candice and I are cousins. I live in Ohio and she lives in Portland so sadly we don’t get to see each other as much as we’d like. This year I finally bit the bullet and booked my flight to the west coast! I’m traveling to Portland in October and CAN NOT contain my excitement!! We are so excited to cook and bake ALL THE THINGS and have fun exploring the city. I’m sure you’ll hear about this in almost every post I write because I’m just SO DAMN EXCITED! Anyway, now that we’ve talked about that, let’s get to this recipe!
I’ll admit I’ve never had a traditional cottage pie, or shepherd’s pie for that matter. I remember when they would have shepherd’s pie at my college cafeteria and it always looked disgusting to me. A big pile of who knows what. It wasn’t until a year or so ago that I stumbled upon a “paleo” shepherd’s pie recipe and realized how tasty this dish actually sounded. It wasn’t until I was thumbing through Fed and Fit’s new cookbook that I realized the difference between a cottage pie and a shepherd’s pie. Apparently one uses beef while the other uses lamb, who knew! After doing a little more research it seems like usually people use the names interchangeably but for the sake of being correct, we shall call these mini cottage pies. Or heck, just call them delicious because that is what they are! I opted for a few different ingredients than are typically seen but I promise you that doesn’t make this dish as less tasty! These mini pies are perfect for a pre-workout snack or a yummy dinner paired with some fresh greens. However you decide to eat them, I promise you’re going to love them!
- 1.5# ground beef
- 1 tbsp grass-fed butter, ghee or coconut oil
- ½ cup zucchini, chopped
- 1 cup squash, chopped
- 1 medium onion, minced
- 2 cups celery, chopped
- 1 cup beef broth (I used Kettle and Fire beef bone broth)
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp pepper
- ½ tsp paprika
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 3 large sweet potatoes, chopped into 1 inch cubes (I used Japanese sweet potatoes)
- Pre-heat oven to 350F.
- Put sweet potatoes in a large pot and cover with water. Place over high heat and boil 20-30 minutes until they are fork tender.
- Place a large sauté pan or skillet over medium heat and melt butter.
- Add in onions and cook until translucent, about 5-7 minutes.
- Next, add in ground beef. Break apart with a wooden spoon and cook until mostly browned.
- Add in the spices, celery, zucchini and squash and stir to combine. Let cook for another 5-8 minutes.
- While that is cooking, you can prepare the sweet potatoes. I like mine a little chunky so I use a masher to smash mine to a consistency I like. If you like yours smooth, use a food processor to smooth them out.
- Once the veggies have softened a little bit, add in the beef broth. Let simmer for another 4-6 minutes.
- Take the pan off the heat and let it cool enough so you can handle the mixture.
- Lightly grease a traditional muffin pan with coconut oil, grass-fed butter or ghee. Portion out beef mixture using about ¼ cup into each muffin cup.
- Once each muffin cup is full, top with mashed sweet potato.
- Place muffin tins in oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until sweet potatoes look slightly crispy.
- Take out and let cool for 10-15 minutes before serving.
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