Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie


We gave this meat-and-potato classic a couple of Southern spins with sweet potatoes and collard greens.

Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie
Serves: 6-8 servings
  • 2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 5½ teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • 1¾ teaspoons ground black pepper, divided
  • 1 pound ground chuck
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound parsnips, peeled and sliced ¼ inch thick
  • 2 cups chopped collard greens
  • 1 cup low-sodium beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
  • Garnish: chopped fresh sage
  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. In a medium cast-iron Dutch oven, bring sweet potatoes, 2 teaspoons salt, and water to cover by 1 inch to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook until potatoes are fork-tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain well, and return potatoes to pot. Add 3 tablespoons butter; using a potato masher, mash potatoes to desired consistency. Stir in milk, 1½ teaspoons salt, and ¾ teaspoon pepper.
  3. Meanwhile, in a 10-inch cast-iron skillet, heat remaining 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high heat. Add beef, flour, cumin, remaining 2 teaspoons salt, and remaining 1 teaspoon pepper; cook, using the back of a spoon to break up meat, until browned, about 5 minutes. Add onion and garlic; cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Add parsnips, collards, broth, and sage; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until collards are wilted, 2 to 3 minutes. Spread mashed sweet potatoes onto beef mixture. Place skillet on a rimmed baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes. Increase oven temperature to broil. Broil until sweet potatoes are lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with sage, if desired.