If you have parchment paper, place a strip, long enough so that it hangs out on each side, in each section of the muffin tin. This will help when you remove the mini pies.
I had planned to share these with my neighbors…. but ended up eating them all – that’s how much I love them! I based both the ground beef filling and creamy mashed potatoes on my recipe for Shepherds Pie, with a few adjustments. – – http://myyellowfarmhouse.com/2013/01/10/shepherds-pie/
Mini Shepherds Pies are easy to make! The recipe calls for purchased pie crust and – if you’re short on time – a 24 oz. container of ready-to-eat mashed potatoes can be used. Making these mini pies is fun and easy – and so is eating them.
Ingredients and Method
- 1 box refrigerated pie crusts
- 24 oz. refrigerated mashed potatoes – OR – homemade mashed potatoes
- Homemade Mashed Potatoes
- 5 cups cubed Yukon Gold potatoes ++ Peeled and cut into 2″ chunks
- 3/4 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- 2 – 3 Tbs. butter
- 1/3+ cup milk or Half and Half ++ I used Half and Half
- Ground Beef & Vegetable Filling
- 1 Tbs. butter or olive oil
- 1/2 medium-sized onion, chopped ++ About 1/3 cup
- 1/2 lb. ground (minced) beef ++ I used 80%
- 3/4 cup frozen corn ++ No need to thaw
- 3/4 cup frozen peas ++ No need to thaw
- 1 Tbs. tomato paste ++ Freeze tomato paste in 1 Tbs. portions in a ziploc bag.
- 1 beef or chicken bouillon cube
- 1/3 cup water
- 3/4 tsp. salt
- 1/3 tsp. pepper
- 1 Tbs. tomato paste
Place 5 cups chopped, peeled Yukon Gold potatoes in a medium-sized saucepan. Add enough cold water to cover. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Lower heat and cover saucepan. Allow potatoes to simmer for 25 – 30 minutes or until potatoes can easily be pierced with a sharp knife. ++ It’s better to cook the potatoes longer than end up with lumpy potatoes!! I know – Been There – Done That!
While potatoes are cooking, begin beef/veggie filling. Place 1 Tbs. butter In a large non-stick skillet. Add 1/3 cup chopped onion. Cook onions, stirring often, over medium heat until they soften. Add 1/2 pound chopped (minced) beef. Continue to cook until beef loses its pink color. ++ Break up any large chunks of beef. ++ Remove any extra grease, although I leave about 2 Tbs. – for the flavor.
Add 3/4 cup still-frozen corn and 3/4 cup still-frozen peas, 1/3 cup water, 1 Tbs. tomato paste, 3/4 tsp. salt, 1/3 tsp. pepper and either a chicken or beef bouillon cube.
Continue cooking, stirring often, for an additional 4 to 5 minutes… until most of the liquid has been absorbed. Set aside.
Now it’s time for the mini-pie crusts. This is fun! ++ Remove the pie crusts from the refrigerator about 15 minutes before so the crusts will be soft enough to work with.
Unroll pie crusts. Roll each crust into a 12″ circle, which only takes a second ’cause the crusts are almost that big already. Using a 4″ circle (I used the 4″ top of a plastic food container – or you could use a piece of cardboard) cut out 12 circles.
Place one pie crust circle in each of the sections of a 12-cup muffin tin. Gently press pie crust to fit.
Bake at 400F for 8 minutes. ++ Lower oven temperature to 350F once you’ve removed muffin tin with bottom crusts from oven.
Finishing the mashed potatoes
Drain cooked potatoes. Mash down with a potato masher. Add 2 – 3 Tbs. butter, 3/4 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. pepper and approximately 1/3 cup milk – or ‘Half ‘n Half‘ – or Single Cream – and beat with a mixer until the potatoes are creamy but still stiff enough to hold their shape on top of the beef filling.
Putting it all together
Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup, put a portion of the meat/vegetable filling in each section. Top with 1/4 cup mashed potatoes. ++ If you have extra mashed potatoes, add a bit more to each mini-pie.
Sprinkle with a bit of paprika to give the Mini Shepherds Pies a bit of color. You know, part of finding a particular food delicious is often due to it’s color, so adding a bit of paprika not only makes things taste better but also gives them better eye-appeal. You can also sprinkle on a bit of cheese!
Bake the Mini-Shepherds Pies at 350F for 25 – 30 minutes. Potatoes and crust will be slightly browned.
++ Let stand 10 minutes before serving, which helps the pie crust to not fall apart when you remove the mini-pies. Enjoy !!
++ Recipe adapted from myfridgefood.com/recipes/entree-beef/mini-meat-pies