This is a low-carb version of cottage pie, replacing the usual mashed potato topping with cauliflower. The result? Absolutely mouthwatering.
I hope you’re having a great summer! This past week it actually cooled down to 65 degrees one evening here in New York. That’s when I made this low-carb cottage pie with cauliflower mash.
It’s a delicious comfort food for those days when you just want to curl up on the couch and watch a good movie with your family.
What’s the difference between cottage pie and shepherd’s pie?
Both are classic dishes of the United Kingdom made exactly the same way except cottage pie is made with beef and shepherd’s pie is made with lamb.
Cottage pie has always been a favorite dinner here in my house. But, since John and I have started following a low-carb diet, I decided to try a low-carb version of this recipe, replacing the usual mashed potato topping with cauliflower. The result? Absolutely mouthwatering.
Why is cauliflower healthy?
And did you know that cauliflower is considered a superfood? It’s rich in nutrients, vitamins (especially Vitamin C), minerals, and antioxidants. It’s said to help prevent cancer and boost heart health and brain health.
You can make cauliflower mash taste just like mashed potatoes that traditionally top cottage pie. Promise. I think you’re going to love this low-carb version.⠀⠀
Also, I switched out the Worcester sauce found in most cottage pie recipes for Red Boat. All of Red Boat’s products are gluten-free. They don’t contain wheat or wheat by-products and are produced in a gluten free facility. The sauce ingredients are quite simple: just anchovies and sea salt.
Ingredients you’ll need
- a head of cauliflower
- and half and half
For your meat
- extra-virgin olive oil
- an onion
- a carrot (optional)
- ground beef
And for your gravy
- tomato paste
- Red Boat
- 1 cup gluten free beef stock or homemade bone broth
- parsley for garnish
And butter to dot on top of your cauliflower mash
How to make it
*Free printable recipe card is available at the end of the post.
Ready to cook up some healthy low-carb cottage pie? Here we go.
For cauliflower mash
First, steam your cauliflower florets until tender, about 10 minutes. Then purée the cauliflower in your food processor, adding the half-and-half, butter, salt, and pepper. If you want your cauliflower more creamy, add more half-and-half.
Now for the meat
Heat a little extra-virgin olive oil in a large skillet. Add onion and carrot and cook on a low heat for 10 minutes. If you’re following a low-carb way of eating, you can eliminate the carrots. Then, add garlic and cook for another minute. Next, add the ground meat and stir over medium heat, breaking up the meat with a spatula while it browns for 5 more minutes. Drain the beef mixture.
Low carb, gluten free gravy
Finally, you’re ready to make the gravy. For the base, you will need gluten-free beef stock. You can use store-bought gluten-free stock or make yours homemade. Pour the stock into the skillet over the beef mixture and add the Red Boat sauce, tomato paste, salt, and nutmeg. Simmer for 5 minutes until slightly thickened.
Then, transfer the meat with its gravy to a casserole dish. Top with your cauliflower mash. Dot the cauliflower with two tablespoons of butter. Bake for 40-50 minutes until golden. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley and serve.
What goes with cottage pie?
This low carb cottage pie with cauliflower mash casserole could be a complete meal on it’s own. I suggest just serving it with a simple side salad or sautéed broccoli.
Doesn’t that look yummy? I can’t wait for you to taste it. The bonus is that you’ll probably have more than enough for dinner. So pack up the leftovers and you’ll have a healthy, low-carb lunch for the next day all set and ready to take to work.
And if you make this low-carb cottage pie with cauliflower mash, share your snap on Instagram and tag #glutenfreehomestead. I always love seeing your photos.
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Super Low Carb Cottage Pie With Cauliflower Mash
- 1 head of cauliflower
- 4 tablespoons butter divided
- 2 teaspoons salt divided
- dash of pepper
- 1/4 cup of half and half
- 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 onion minced
- 1 carrot diced (optional)
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 3 pounds of ground beef
- 1 tablespoon gluten free tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon Red Boat
- 1 cup gluten free beef stock or homemade bone broth
- dash of nutmeg
- Preheat oven to 400℉.
- First steam cauliflower florets until tender, about 10 minutes. Then drain and place in the bowl of your food processor fitted with the large chopping blade. Add half and half, 2 tablespoons of butter, 1 teaspoon of salt and a dash of pepper. Process until fluffy and set aside.
- Next to brown the meat, heat oil in a large skillet. Then add onion and carrot (optional) and cook on low heat for 10 minutes. Then add garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Finally, add ground beef and stir over a medium heat, breaking up meat with a spatula for 5 more minutes. Drain meat mixture.
- For the delicious gravy, pour in your stock, Red boat, and add tomato paste, 1 teaspoon of salt, and nutmeg. Stir. Simmer until slightly thickened for 5 minutes.
- At this time, spoon meat mixture with the gravy into a 2-quart casserole dish. Spoon the cauliflower mash around the top. Dot the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter around the cauliflower. Finally, bake for 40-50 minutes. Ovens may vary so check after 40 minutes and bake until the casserole is done to your liking.
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Thanks can’t wait to try it
Hey, Sheena. I know that you like watching movies so you’d probably love to curl up on the couch with a plate of this and a good movie too. 🙂
Yum! I’ll have to try this, thanks for the recipe!
Hi, Gretchen. Welcome to our blog. I hope you do enjoy all the tastiness going on in this recipe. 🙂
GiGi Eats says
I AM DROOLING! I need to make this! I have a whole head of cauliflower WAITING for me in the fridge right now – sooooo NO EXCUSES!
I used your recipe as a guideline and made the following substitutions based on what I had on hand: 1 lb. ground turkey, 1/2 cup chicken broth, 2 oz. grated carrots, 1 teaspoon dried shallot, 1 teaspoon dried minced garlic, 1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce, and 1 tablespoon ketchup. It was four servings at 360 calories each.
Terrific! Turkey sounds delicious and I love shallots. Thanks for coming back and leaving this note.
Have a great weekend. 🙂