Cajun Beef Cottage Pie With Mashed Cauliflower – Each time I post a recipe for this type of pie people seem to love to discuss the differences between cottage pie and shepherd’s pie. Beef is typically used in cottage pie and ground lamb in shepherd’s pie. In my kitchen cooking is about fun and family and not getting too terribly troubled by such things. I usually make them both with ground beef since ground lamb is more pricey and not as readily available. This Cajun spiced beefy cottage pie is not only a nice twist on flavors adding a bit of heat but, it’s topped with creamy mashed cauliflower in place of the potatoes.
While I don’t want to make the claim that mashed cauliflower tastes just like mashed potatoes it is pretty darn close. I whip them using my hand mixer which leaves a bit of texture that we really enjoy. If you’re a stickler for texture quality and prefer them to be completely smooth, you’ll need to puree the cooked cauliflower using a food processor. The dairy products in this dish can be substituted with lighter versions too, with great results.
One other thing I love about this dish is; it’s a one dish meal incorporating meat, vegetables and a creamy mashed cauliflower topping. I often assemble it in advance then cover with plastic wrap and chill until I’m ready to bake it. Preferably it should be brought to to room temperature prior to baking but if there’s no time increase the baking time by 10-15 minutes and bake until heated through and it’s golden on top. It’s tasty and easy and in my opinion, it doesn’t get any better than that.
You may also like: Whole Roasted Cauliflower, Instant Pot Low Carb Loaded Cauliflower Soup, Roasted Cauliflower with Chickpeas, Low Carb Cauliflower Deep Dish Pizza and Cheddar Cauliflower Soup with Bacon.
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 medium green bell pepper, diced
- 1 medium red bell pepper, diced
- olive oil
- seasoned salt and black pepper to taste
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 cup diced carrot
- 3 lb lean ground beef
- 1  oz can pureed tomatoes
- ⅔ cup ketchup or chili sauce
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 3 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 Tbsp Cajun seasoning, adding more or less to taste
- few dashes of hot sauce [optional]
- 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- For the Mashed Cauliflower:
- 2 lb cauliflower florets
- 1  oz onion & chive cream cheese, softened
- 5 Tbsp butter, divided
- 1½ tsp garlic salt
- Preheat the oven to 375°F and spray a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Set aside.
- In a large skillet cook the chopped onion and diced peppers in a few drizzles of olive oil. Season with seasoned salt and black pepper to your taste. Cook for 2-3 minutes then add the diced carrots.
- Cook the carrots for 5 minutes then add the garlic and ground beef. Cook until no pink remains in the ground beef and the carrots are tender.
- Drain any excess fat from the pan then add the pureed tomatoes, ketchup, Cajun seasoning and frozen peas. Mix well, taste and adjust the seasonings then remove from the heat.
- Meanwhile separate the cauliflower florets and cook in salted water until fork tender. Around 12-15 minutes. Drain well.
- To the cooked cauliflower add the softened onion and chive cream cheese, 4 Tbsp butter and garlic salt. Whip with a hand mixer until creamy. Some chunky pieces will remain.
- Pour the filling into the prepared dish and sprinkle with 1 cup shredded cheese.
- Spread the mashed cauliflower on top and dot with the remaining Tbsp of butter.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes until bubbly around the edges. Broil, for a few minutes at the very end of baking to brown.
- Rest on the counter for 5 minutes, then serve with additional hot sauce, if desired.