Smiley Cottage Pie

Well if this dinner doesn’t bring a smile to everyone around the table, I don’t know what will!

Cottage pie and Sheperd’s Pie are regulars around our dinner table. Cottage pie is made with beef mince and sheperd’s pie is made with lamb. While we usually serve it with mash, I felt like mixing things up, and we always have a packet of these smiley faces in the freezer {they make a fun breakfast addition when the girls have friends over for sleepovers}, so I thought I’d add them to the top.

Fun, don’t you think?

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Smiley Cottage Pie

  • Author: fatmumslim



1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 carrots, finely chopped {or grated if you have fussy kids}
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
1kg beef mince (ground beef)
1 cup frozen peas and corn
1/3 cup plain flour
1/4 cup tomato paste
2 cups beef stock
1 tablespoon of gravy powder {optional}
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp dried thyme
Salt and Pepper

Smiley faces {I used the McCain smiley faces, but you could use potato gems, or even simple mashed potato}


1. Into a large frying pan over medium heat, place the oil and cook the onion until soft {around 3 minutes}. Add in the garlic and cook until fragrant.
2. Add in the carrot and celery and cook for 2 minutes. Add in the mince, and break it with a wooden a spoon, and cook until cooked through. Add in the frozen peas and corn, and mix to combine and warm through.
3. Add in the flour, and stir to mix through. Cook for 2-3 minutes, until cooked through. Add in the tomato paste, and cook for another minute.
4. Add in the beef stock, the gravy powder, Worcestershire sauce, thyme and salt and pepper. Cook on simmer for 20 minutes, or until reduced and delicious.
5. Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Place the cooked mixture into an oven-proof dish. Top with the smiley faces, and pop into the oven and cook for 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are golden. Serve while hot.

NOTES: If you like cheesy cottage pie, you could totally add a generous sprinkling of grated cheese underneath the potato faces.