Crispy Potato Topped Cottage Pie

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Cottage Pie topped with a single potato. Feed the family, use up leftovers.

Whether you’re stretching a little bit of food to feed the whole family or you’re using up leftovers, this crispy potato topped cottage pie is sure to please. Tasty and inexpensive.

Cottage pie was on the menu plan the other night, but when I went to the fridge there was one solitary potato rolling around in the crisper (if you’re wondering, I keep spuds in the fridge in summer – it’s the only way to stop them from rotting in the QLD heat and humidity).

Undeterred, we had our cottage pie with a lovely crispy top rather than the usual mash, which of course makes it cheaper and less carb-full. And I have to admit, I prefer it this way.

There are a million different ways to make cottage pie, this is a method I used devised around the ingredients we had on hand, that was both easy and tasty.

Crispy Potato Topped Cottage Pie
Yield: 4 serves

Crispy Potato-Topped Cottage Pie

Cottage Pie topped with a single potato. Feed the family, use up leftovers.

This recipe uses one potato to top the cottage pie because that's all I had and I wanted to show how to stretch ingredients when you realise you don't have enough for a recipe.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes


  • 1 spud (or more if you have them)
  • 500g beef mince
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 1 carrot, finely diced
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp mixed herbs
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 cup peas
  • a handful of mushrooms, chopped
  • squirt or two of bottled tomato sauce (ketchup) to taste (optional)
  • 1/2 cup grated cheese


  1. Wash and parboil potato until slightly under tender. Refresh in cold water and leave to cool.
  2. Meanwhile, brown mince in a large frypan over high heat.
  3. Add the onion and carrot and saute until tender.
  4. Add the garlic and herbs and cook for a further minute. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute.
  5. Add the stock, Worcestershire sauce, peas and mushrooms. Stir, season and simmer for 20 minutes or until the stock has almost gone.
  6. At this point, taste the mixture and add a little tomato sauce if preferred.
  7. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200C. Slice the potato as thinly as possible. Pour the mince mixture into a greased baking dish, arrange the potato slices over the top and then top with the grated cheese. Bake for 20 minutes or until the potato is golden. Alternatively, place the baking dish under the griller until the potato is golden.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 495Total Fat: 27gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 125mgSodium: 398mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 3gSugar: 16gProtein: 41g

Nutritional information is calculated automatically using the Nutritionix database. Nutrition information can vary for a recipe based on factors such as precision of measurements, brands, ingredient freshness, serving size or the source of nutrition data. We strive to keep the information as accurate as possible but make no warranties regarding its accuracy. We encourage readers to make their own calculations based on the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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  1. Now I know exactly what I,m having for dinner….Thanks.

  2. Sounds great, I’m not a fan of mash anyway! I suppose you could use any similar type of vege – sweet potato, pumpkin, parsnip?

  3. What a great idea – a clever use of what little there might be on hand!

  4. Sarah, I never thought of that – thanks. Sweet potato would be yum!

  5. I’m going to make this tomorrow night but with beans, corn and other things lurking in the fridge ha!

  6. Kathy Harrison says:

    I have been lookingfor a blog like this. I’m so glad I found the link (and the recipe is great with lots of potential for getting creative. Thanks.