Whole30 Shepherd’s Pie (Paleo, GF)

Grain-free, Dairy-free

Whole30 Shepherd's Pie | Perchance to Cook, www.perchancetocook.com

I’m on day 6 of the Whole30 and I have been surprised by how much I have gotten out of it so far. One of the main things that I have realized is that I don’t need to use natural sweeteners (like honey, or maple syrup), as much.

For example, normally, I would have thought to add honey to this Whole30 Shepherd’s Pie recipe, but it totally isn’t necessary! In fact, this Whole30 Shepherd’s Pie is perfect without it. It’s comfort food at it’s healthiest and it’s finest! And I am sooo excited to share this healthy recipe!

There is a spiced ground beef gravy with carrots on the bottom, and a peppered cauliflower and potato mash on top; it’s basically a fantastic shepherd’s pie, that happens to have the added perk of being Whole30, Paleo, dairy-free, and gluten-free.

Whole30 Shepherd's Pie | Perchance to Cook, www.perchancetocook.com

Can I just say how happy I am that potatoes are part of the Whole30?!

I mean, besides the fact that it made this Whole30 Shepherd’s Pie possible, it just makes the Whole30 process seem a bit less daunting. Maybe it’s because I’ve been eating Paleo for a few years, but I’m a bit sweet potatoed out.

My husband and I’s 80/20 approach became more 70/30 lately and then we stopped eating Paleo for 2 weeks while on vacation with my family.

So this Whole30 could not have come at a better time!

Whole30 Shepherd's Pie | Perchance to Cook, www.perchancetocook.com

So far, I have more energy, feel more hydrated, and don’t feel hunger as strongly as normally. I have also noticed some patterns and mindsets that need to be changed.

My late-night chocolate or paleo baking cravings got a bit out of control over the holidays, and I have realized that I don’t need to act on a craving.

Maybe the best part of this whole thing is that the “challenge” and guidelines of the Whole30 have really awakened my desire to be creative in the kitchen.

So, when I noticed that my favorite traditional Shepherd’s pie was made with Worcestershire Sauce, I knew I had to get creative on how to recreate that flavor in the gravy portion of the recipe.

Whole30 Shepherd's Pie | Perchance to Cook, www.perchancetocook.com

So, I used a lot of black pepper, 1/4 tsp of ground cloves, 1/2 tsp chili powder, and 1 Tbs of apple cider vinegar to the meat while it cooked.

I loved the kick that these spices added to the dish, but I feel like I should tell you that you may want to add less if spices aren’t your thing.

Smell the ground cloves, and if you think cloves aren’t for you, only put a pinch in, but I found the flavor gave this dish more of a Worcestershire Sauce flavor while keeping it Paleo and Whole30. I love it.

I also tend to mix the mashed potato/cauliflower top into the ground beef gravy, so the flavors melt into each other. So maybe the flavors aren’t as strong for me when I eat it this way.

Whole30 Shepherd's Pie | Perchance to Cook, www.perchancetocook.com

To make this Whole30 Shepherd’s Pie recipe, you need to start boiling the potatoes and cauliflower before doing anything else, and then you’ll mash them after the ground beef and carrot gravy.

I like to leave the skin on the potatoes in mine, but if you don’t like the skin, you can peel it before boiling.

You’ll be mashing the potatoes and cauliflower together with coconut cream, garlic powder, onion powder, olive oil, salt, and black pepper.

Note: Savoy Coconut Cream tastes the best because it has no preservatives… I can’t guarantee as good of a result with brands that have guarguam and other extra preservatives and ingredients in them.

The ground beef and carrot gravy is so good here!

I think it is because the carrots are sautéd first.  And the ground beef is spiced with salt, pepper, thyme, and cloves.

Note: Add half the amount of pepper to the meat if you want less of a kick. And add half the amount of ground cloves if that isn’t your spice.

Once the ground beef and carrot gravy is done, it is poured into a 9 x 13 inch pan and topped with the mashed potatoes.

I liked to scoop spoonfuls of the mashed potatoes and evenly place them on top of the ground beef.

Then, I smoothed the mashed potatoes and cauliflower out.

The whole process was rather relaxing. And it resulted in many a hearty and comforting healthy dinner and lunch.

Whole30 Shepherd's Pie | Perchance to Cook, www.perchancetocook.com

Whole30 Shepherd's Pie | Perchance to Cook, www.perchancetocook.com

Whole30 Shepherd's Pie | Perchance to Cook, www.perchancetocook.com
Whole30 Shepherd's Pie (Paleo, GF)
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
55 mins

A spiced ground beef gravy with carrots on the bottom, and a peppered cauliflower and potato mash on top. Paleo, dairy-free, and Gluten-free

Servings: 6
Author: Dominique Fasano | Perchance To Cook
Mashed potato topping ingredients:
  • 6-8 medium potatoes , cut into 1 inch slices
  • 1/2 of a head of cauliflower , cut into smaller florets
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder , divided
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp ground black pepper (start with 1/4, add more to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp salt , divided
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 3 Tbs coconut cream , divided (Savoy tastes the best to me and has no preservatives)
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
Shepherd's pie filling ingredients:
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 3-4 carrots , sliced (this was 2 cups for me)
  • 1 onion , diced (this was 1 cup for me)
  • 2 cloves of garlic , diced
  • 1 lb of ground beef
  • 1/2-1 tsp black pepper (start with 1/2 tsp and use more for a kick, I used 1 tsp)
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbs coconut flour
  • 2 Tbs tomato paste (Cento is paleo)
  • 1 Tbs apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes (Pomi is my all time favorite)
  • 1 cup chicken stock or bone broth
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Boil the sliced potatoes, and the cauliflower florets in water for 20-25 minutes, until you can easily stab the potatoes with a knife. Set aside.
Make the Shepherd's pie filling:
  1. Put 2 tsp of olive oil and 2 cups of sliced carrots into a large pot, mix, and heat over medium-high heat. Sauté the carrots until tender, about 4-5 minutes. Add 1 cup of diced onions and the diced garlic, mix and sauté for 1-2 minutes.
  2. Reduce the head to medium, add the ground beef to the pot and mix breaking it up into smaller pieces. Top the ground beef with 1/2-1 tsp of black pepper (I used 1 tsp bc I liked the added kick), 1 tsp of salt, and 1 tsp of dried thyme. Mix and cook until the meat is browned, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add 1 Tbs of coconut flour to the meat and mix well. Then add the 2 Tbs of tomato paste, 1 Tbs of apple cider vinegar, 1/4 tsp of ground cloves, 1/2 tsp of onion powder, and 1/2 tsp of chili powder to the meat and mix. (Note: if cloves aren't your thing, put a pinch in, but I found this gave it more of a Worcestershire sauce flavor while keeping it Paleo and Whole30). Add 1 cup of chopped tomatoes, mix, and simmer for 2 minutes.
  4. Add 1 cup of chicken stock or bone broth and simmer until the sauce reduces to a gravy, about 5-7 minutes.
  5. Pour the shepherd's pie filling into a 9in x 13 in glass dish.
Make the mashed potato topping:
  1. Put 1/2 of the boiled potatoes and cauliflower florets into a large bowl. Top with 1/4 tsp of garlic powder, 1/4 tsp black pepper, 1/4 tsp salt, and 2 Tbs of coconut cream. Mash everything together until smooth. Then, add the rest of the potatoes and cauliflower, and top with 1 Tbs of olive oil, 1 Tbs of coconut cream, 1/4 tsp of garlic powder, 1/4 tsp of onion powder, 1/4 tsp of salt, and mash until smooth. Optional- add an extra 1/4 tsp of ground black pepper. I liked this because it added a spice to the mashed potatoes, but taste it first before adding it.
  2. Scoop the mashed potatoes onto the filling in the pan, evenly distributing it and then smooth it out with a spatula.
  3. Bake for 20-25 minutes.


❤ Note: This post contains Amazon affiliate links. This means that if you click on a link and make a purchase, I will receive a small commission at no cost to you. Thank you for supporting Perchance to Cook!


  1. The post is so great! I really love your blog:)


    1. Thanks so much for the nice comment! 🙂

  2. Jessica Guerrero

    Do you think this recipe would work with chicken instead? I don’t eat beef, but am beginning the Whole30 here very soon… just rounding up some recipes. 😀

    1. You could use ground chicken or ground turkey. I bet ground turkey would taste really good! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *