Keto Cottage pie is one of our staple family meals. It has a meaty ground beef filling full of flavor and a buttery cauliflower mash topping. Low carb, gluten free and so good you may want to come back for seconds.
Cottage pie is a classic British comfort food dish and this low carb cottage pie recipe is on regular rotation in our house during winter. It is ridiculously satisfying!
The filling of the pie is pretty much the same I've been making since my pre-low carb days. Some cottage pies use stewed beef, but I find that ground beef is the quicker and easier option.
But of course, I've replaced the mashed potatoes with a mashed cauliflower topping to make it healthier and keto diet friendly.
If you know how to do it right, cauliflower mash really delicious and does not taste of cauliflower at all. Follow all the tips in this post and you're going to love it.
Here are the ingredients you will need:
- Cauliflower florets - the fresher, the better! And you need to make sure to cook the cauliflower until it is really soft. If it still has crunch, it will also have that sharp cauliflower taste we want to avoid here.
- Butter - This really helps to make the mash taste very similar to potato mash.
- Optional: either cream cheese or grated cheddar/mozzarella. Both increase the creaminess of the cauli mash.
- Vegetables: carrot, celery, onion. In my opinion, all of these are 100% essential for a tasty sauce.
- Herbs: Rosemary, thyme, bay. I like to use fresh herbs where I can because the flavour is simply better.
- Garlic - Again: fresh always wins over dried.
- Red wine - If possible, don't skip the wine. The alcohol cooks off and it really does add to the deliciousness of this dish.
- Tomato puree - That's the double concentrated kind
- Coconut aminos - This is a tasty umami flavouring sauce. Soy sauce or Tamari work as well.
See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.
Turn it into a keto shepherd's pie and use ground lamb instead of the beef. Or use ground turkey!
Add vegetables of your choice to the filling or add bacon lardons when frying the ground beef.
Add grated cheddar cheese or parmesan cheese to the cauliflower topping.
Use 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce instead of the coconut aminos.
This section contains step-by-step instructions and photos that show how to make this recipe. See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities
Step 1: Place the cauliflower florets in a large pan with boiling water and cook until soft and tender. Drain.
TOP TIP: Place the cauliflower back in pan over medium heat to dry off, but don't let the florets burn or stick to the pan.
This prevents the mash from being soggy.
Step 2: Blend the cauliflower with the butter and optional cream cheese or grated cheese until smooth.
Step 3: Fry the carrot, celery, onion and herbs in a skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic, then add the ground beef and fry until cooked though.
Step 4: Pour in the red wine plus the tomato paste, coconut aminos. Season with salt and pepper and continue cooking.
Step 5: Add the beef broth and reduce the heat a touch. Let the filling simmer until the liquid reduces and it's nice and thick. It should still have a bit of sauce and moisture.
Step 6: Transfer the meat mixture to a casserole dish and spread over the mashed cauliflower topping. Level with a spatula or use a fork to create ridges all over the top. This makes for a crispier finish.
Step 7: Bake the pie until the mash topping is golden brown and the filling starts to bubble up the sides.
Make this recipe one day ahead. This way, the flavors have time to mingle.
We thought the pie tasted even better on the second day!
Top the keto cottage pie with a good drizzle of olive oil and fresh thyme or parsley.
We like to serve it with sautéed kale, cavolo nero or green beans. Or simply enjoy it with a crunchy green salad.
Make it dairy free by using olive oil instead of the butter.
Of course Bake it in individual ramekins for single serve cottage pies.
Store keto cottage pie in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Yes, this dish freezes well. Freeze for up to 3 months.
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The Tastiest Keto Cottage Piefrom Sugar Free Londoner
Note: The servings slider only changes the first amount in each line and not any subsequent amounts. Please make your own calculations where necessary.
- 1.5 lb cauliflower 700g, florets
- 2 tablespoon butter or olive oil
- Salt to taste
- Optional: ¼ cup / 60g cream cheese or ⅔ cup / 60g shredded cheddar or mozzarella
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil plus more to serve
- 1 medium carrot 1 cm cubes (2.1oz / 60g)
- 2 ribs celery 1 cm cubes (2.8oz / 80g)
- 1 small onion finely diced (2.4oz / 70g)
- 1 tablespoon rosemary chopped (or 1.5 teaspoon dried)
- 1.5 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves chopped (or 1.5 teaspoon dried)
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1.5 lb ground beef 700g
- ½ cup red wine 120ml
- 3 tablespoon tomato puree 1.6oz / 45g, double concentrated
- 1 tablespoon coconut aminos or tamari / soya sauce
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 cup beef stock 240ml
- Place the cauliflower florets in a large pan with boiling water (enough to just cover the florets). Cook on a medium heat for 10 - 12 minutes, or until soft and tender. Drain well.
- Place the cauliflower back in pan and dry off (about 1.5 minutes) on a medium heat, but don’t let it burn and stick to the pan.
- Add to a blender along with the butter and optional cream cheese / grated cheese and pulse until smooth - you may need to scrape the sides with a spatula a couple of times. Option to use an immersion blender.
- Preheat the oven to 190C / 170C fan / 375F.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a clean large pan. Add the carrot, celery, onion and herbs and fry for 3 minutes on a medium heat. Add garlic for 1 minute. Add beef mince and fry for about 6 - 7 minutes or until cooked though.
- Add the red wine, tomato puree, coconut aminos or soy sauce, salt + pepper and cook for 2 minutes until the red wine cooks off a bit.
- Add the stock and reduce the heat a touch cooking for about 10 minutes until nice and thick. It should still have a nice bit of sauce and moisture.
- Transfer the filling to an 11 x 8 inch baking dish.
- Add mash over the filing and smooth with a spatula.
- Bake for about 20 - 25 minutes until the filling starts to bubble up the sides. Top with a good drizzle of olive oil and fresh thyme.