This simple Dutch Oven Shepherd’s Pie is the perfect meal choice for a cold-weather dinner. It’s one of our Dutch oven camping recipes that has been made easy for outdoor cooking and requires minimal prep work.
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Some shepherd’s pie recipes are made with a roast that uses beef broth and a stewing process to make it tender.
- Other versions use ground lamb.
- The more common meat used in America is ground beef.
- In other parts of the world, when hamburger is used, the dish is called Cottage Pie.
- All versions of these dishes are topped with mashed potatoes and baked like a casserole.
We’re using instant potatoes to make this one of our easy camping meals.
- No peeling potatoes is required.
- You’ll only need to chop some onion and garlic.
Cooking Methods & Equipment
If you are making this as one of our easy campfire recipes, you’ll need to get your fire going to create coals for about 45 minutes of cooking time. You can also use charcoal briquettes.
Step 1. Prepare your ingredients, heat source and equipment as directed.
- For baking at an oven temperature of 350 F degrees, you will need 25 total coals = 17 for the top of the lid / 8 below the bottom if you are using a 12-inch Dutch oven.
- If you are using a different oven size, check our Dutch oven temperature chart to see how many coals you will need.
Step 2. Prepare potatoes and set aside.
Step 3. Brown hamburger in bottom of Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Use a spoon to break meat into crumbles as it cooks. Remove excess grease from pot.
Step 4. Add veggies. Stir into the pot with the hamburger: onion, garlic, celery and mixed vegetables. Continue cooking until the meat is fully browned and veggies are softened.
Step 5. Mix in Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper. Cook with the beef mixture until most of the liquid has evaporated.
Step 6. Add layer of mashed potatoes over the hamburger mixture.
Step 7. Bake at 350 degrees F about 20 minutes, until the potatoes are slightly browned on top.
Step 8. Add cheese over the potatoes, broil until the cheese melts, about 5 more minutes. Remove from heat, let stand about 5 minutes before serving.
Any ground meat works well for this recipe. You can use ground beef, lamb, pork, chicken or turkey. For leaner meats you may need to add a bit of oil to the pan before browning to prevent sticking.
What To Serve With This Recipe
This is one of those camping dinner recipes that includes meat and veggies all in one pot. For these meals, I usually like to add a simple side salad and possibly some dinner rolls on the side.
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This recipe serves 4 but can easily be scaled to feed more people. If you double the recipe, the cook time will increase if you use a 12-inch Dutch oven but will remain almost the same if you increase to a 14-inch Dutch oven.
Leftovers should be kept refrigerated, then, reheated for serving.
If you like warm comfort food, you’ll also like our other winter camping recipes.
- This Hobo Casserole is one giant ground beef patty that’s topped with canned creamy soup, sliced potatoes, cheddar cheese and French-fried onions then baked. Check out all of my yummy ground beef camping recipes.
- Try this Dutch Oven Chicken Pot Pie that has a pillowy upper-crust made with prepared refrigerated biscuit dough.
- Ground beef, andouille sausage, beans, potatoes and canned veggies are combined in a yummy gravy to create this warm and hearty Dutch Oven Cowboy Stew.
- Comfort food gets jazzed up with this bacon-topped Dutch Oven Meatloaf!
- This fork-tender Campfire Stew gets consistent 5-star ratings! Beef chuck roast is simmered in a beef broth and tomato paste-based sauce along with potatoes and carrots to make one of the tastiest stews you’ll ever eat! This is just one of our awesome gluten free camping food ideas!
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Dutch Oven Shepherd’s Pie
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 small onion diced
- 2 large garlic cloves minced
- 2 celery stalks roughly chopped
- 1 (12 oz) package mixed vegetables with frozen peas, carrots, sweet corn and green beans removed from freezer to thaw before cooking
- 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
- Salt to taste
- Pepper to taste
Instant Mashed Potato Topping Ingredients
- 1 (4 oz) package instant potatoes, prepared according to package directions (see * Note)
- 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- If using instant potatoes: Prepare instant potatoes according to package directions, then set aside.If using fresh potatoes: Start preparing the mashed potatoes by placing the cubed potatoes in a large pot of water. Cover pot with lid and place over high heat to bring to boil. Cook until tender, then drain, mash and mix in butter, salt and pepper. Then set aside.
- Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat for frying using bottom-only heat. Place hamburger in the oven to brown, use a spoon to break-up the meat into crumbles as it cooks.
- Some grease is fine but if there is a large amount, just use a paper towel to soak up most of the liquid and discard.
- When the meat is still slightly pink, stir the onion, garlic, celery and mixed vegetables into the pot. Continue cooking until the vegetables are softened and meat is browned.
- Mix in the Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper, stirring until combined. Cook the beef mixture over medium heat until most of the liquid has evaporated.
- Spread the mashed potatoes over the hamburger mixture creating an even layer.
- Place lid on Dutch oven and arrange coals for baking at 350 degrees F (25 total coals = 8 below the oven / 17 on the top of the lid.) Turn the lid and oven in opposite directions every 10 minutes to ensure even baking.
- Bake 20 minutes, then, check the potatoes. They should be turning a nice light golden-brown color on top. If not, transfer all of the coals from under the bottom of the oven to the top of the lid to create a broiler, and, continue baking until they reach a golden-brown color. (see ** Note)
- Sprinkle the cheese over the potatoes, cover with lid and continue to broil until the cheese melts, about 5 more minutes.
- Remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes before serving.
- Store leftovers in a tightly-sealed food storage container in the refrigerator or cooler.
More Yummy Meal Ideas
Every camp meal can be an exciting culinary experience that’s easy to make in the great outdoors. Here’s some inspiration for your next meal plan.