The Only Shepherd Pie VS Cottage Pie Resources You Will Ever Need

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Where is the difference between Cottage Pie and Shepherds Pie”you ask?, Well I’m glad you asked its in the meat. Shepherds Pie should only be named as such if it contains Lamb, and “Cottage usually applies to one made with Beef.

 History of Cottage Pie

The name “Cottage was applied to this kind of meat pie around the time Potatoes were being introduced in the UK, because they were an affordable for thing for peasants, many of whom would live in cottages, to eat.

 The Unexpected Origin Of Shepherd’s Pie

The term Cottage Pie predates shepherds by nearly a century,  but each was used synonymously with the other for a long time.


The Chilean version of Pastel De Papa, a dish similar to Shepherds Pie eaten in many parts of the world, also contains hard-boiled eggs, raisins and black olives.

 hachis_parmentierThe same dish in France is named Hachis Parmentier, after the Frenchman who convinced his country to eat potatoes. Hachis, which takes its root from the English word hatchet, means a dish containing chopped or minced ingredients.


According to the Oxford Companion to Food, once upon a time, Scotland made its Shepherds Pie with pastry instead of mashed potatoes.

 c7352a09ebce670e01c69eba4c79084eIndian cooks once considered Shepherds Pie to be a perfect dish for Tiffin (a word used to mean a light snack in British India).

Recipe’s With Two Variations 

Traditional Shepherds Pie

Traditional Cottage Pie

Hachis Parmentier

Pastel De Papa

 Many vegetarians and vegans call a meat-free version a “Shepherdless Pie. Topping the potato crust with breadcrumbs actually turns your dish into a Cumberland Pie.

Although variations of this dish crop up throughoutkarl-drais-meat-grinder history, no name for it came into use until the Introduction of the Mincing Machine.

Before that, the meat would have to be chopped by hand, or made from leftovers.


4 thoughts on “The Only Shepherd Pie VS Cottage Pie Resources You Will Ever Need

  1. Stacey that would be so amazing I’d truley appreciate that so very much wow 1796 When I was making a list of chef’s that I’m going to write about in the history of section I came across the name Hercules He was the Chef for President George Washington So I’m very excited to get to write about that.

      1. I may be able to help you out on that one, but it will be a few days before I can research it out. I have an old cookbook from 1796 and, if I’m not mistaken, it’s in there. I believe the book is from the Boston School of Cooking.

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