We like to enjoy them with a simple side salad for a complete meal, but you can also serve them as a side dish.
Ultimate Twice Baked Potatoes Recipe
We turned our popular Shepherd’s pie recipe into an epic twice baked potato, by combining our favorite elements of both. These Shepherd’s Pie Twice Baked Potatoes incorporate a rich meat and vegetable gravy stuffed inside a crisp baked potato shell, topped with creamy cheesy mashed potatoes, then baked again to perfection.
These potatoes are quite substantial by slicing off just the top and stuffing the entire thing for a complete meal served with a simple side salad. Or you can slice the potatoes in half, fill with the mixture and double the servings as a side dish. Either way, this dish is comforting, satisfying, and crazy delicious!
What You’ll Need
This is pure comfort food without any complicated ingredients. Here’s what you’ll need to make them:
(Scroll below to the printable recipe card for measurements and details.)
- Meat: Ground lamb is traditionally used for Shepherd’s pie and ground beef for Cottage Pie. They are completely interchangeable, depending on your preference. So use whichever!
- Vegetables: Onion, carrots, and peas are my favorite trio. Plus garlic. I used frozen peas and carrots for ease.
- Gravy: The rich sauce is made up of beef broth, red wine, Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, and seasonings. It’s so delish!
- Potatoes: When making classic Shepherd’s pie I always use Yukon gold potatoes, but for these twice baked potatoes you will definitely want to buy Russet potatoes. The thick skin holds up well to stuffing.
- Extras: Butter, half-n-half, mustard, cheddar cheese, and scallions get mixed into the mashed potatoes for awesome flavor.
How to Make Shepherd’s Pie Baked Potatoes
This recipe is very easy, but can take some time to assemble. If you’re strapped for time, many of the components can be made ahead of time.
(For all the details, scroll down to the complete printable recipe card and don’t miss the video below.)
- Prep and bake the potatoes: Clean and dry the potatoes, then prick them all over with a fork. Rub them with the vegetable oil and bake for 1 hour at 400 degrees F, or until tender. Then reduce oven temp to 350.
- Make the meat and vegetable gravy: While the potatoes are baking, make the meat and vegetable gravy in a skillet.
- Slice the potatoes and scoop out the flesh: Cut a thin slice off the top of each potato and discard. Scoop out most of the pulp into a large bowl, leaving a 1/2-inch rim of the potato intact.
- Add the mix-ins: Add butter and half-n-half to the bowl with the potato pulp; mash well. Add in the mustard, scallions, some cheddar cheese, and salt and pepper; mix until combined and smooth.
- Stuff the potato shells: Spoon 1 cup meat mixture into each potato shell; top with 1/2 cup potato mixture. Spread potatoes with the back of a spoon, then make ridges with the tines of a fork.
- Bake again: Place back into the oven for 15-20 minutes at 350 degrees F until warmed through and cheese had melted. Top with a few finely diced scallions.
Tips for Success
- Use Russet potatoes: These are the best type of potato to use for twice baked potatoes because their thick skin holds up well to stuffing.
- Buy potatoes all the same size: Try and purchase potatoes that are all uniform in size, so they cook the same and the filling will be evenly portioned out.
- Hollow out the potatoes carefully: Be gentle and careful when scooping out the potato pulp, so you don’t tear the shell.
Make Ahead and Storing Leftovers
These are best served fresh right after baking, but since they can take some time to assemble, you can prep some of the components ahead of time for ease the day of cooking.
- Leftovers: Allow any leftovers to cool, then store in an airtight container in the fridge up to 3 days.
- To reheat: To reheat the potatoes, you’ll basically be baking them a third time. Reheat cooked, chilled zotatoes in the oven at 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes. You can tent with foil if they appear to be over-browning.
- Make ahead: You can cook the meat filling and mash the potato pulp up to 2 days in advance. Allow to cool and then store them separately in the fridge in airtight containers.
- Assemble: If making the filling and mashed potatoes ahead of time, assemble right before baking. Or you can assemble the entire dish up to 1 day in advance. Cover and keep in the refrigerator, then on the day you plan to serve them, leave on the counter for at least 30 minutes so they start to reach room temperature, uncover, and bake as directed.
- To freeze: You can assemble and freeze unbaked stuffed potatoes on a baking sheet and once solid, store them in a freezer-safe resealable plastic bag up to 2 months. Partially thaw in the refrigerator overnight and bake as directed, adding extra time until heated through.
What to Serve with Shepherd’s Pie Twice Baked Potatoes
Because of the meat filling loaded with vegetables and the layer of mashed potatoes, these baked potatoes are very substantial and can definitely be considered an all-in-one meal. Sometimes I’ll serve them with a side salad or roasted cabbage to make it even more complete. If enjoying them as a side and you don’t mind carbs on carbs, they also pair nicely with some Irish soda bread!
More Potato Recipes:
- To Die For! Latkes
- Perfect Baked Sweet Potato
- Life changing Mashed Potatoes
- Crispy Smashed Potatoes
- Breakfast Tater Tot Casserole
Shepherd’s Pie Twice Baked Potatoes
- 6 large russet potatoes , scrubbed clean and patted dry
- 4 tablespoons olive oil , divided
- coarse salt
- 1 pound lean ground lamb (or beef)
- 1 medium onion , finely diced
- 3 cloves garlic , minced
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
- dash cayenne pepper
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 12 ounces frozen peas and carrots
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 3/4 cup red wine
- 1 cup low-sodium beef broth
- 1/2 cup butter , cubed
- 2/3 cup half n half
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 2 scallions , diced finely (plus more for garnish)
- 3/4 cup freshly grated sharp cheddar cheese
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place the potatoes on a baking sheet; prick them in several places with a fork. Rub them with half of the olive oil and sprinkle with a little coarse salt. Bake for 1 hour, or until tender.
- Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
- In the meantime, warm the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat; add in the lamb (or beef), onion, and garlic. Cook, breaking it up with a wooden spoon until no pink remains and the onions are soft; about 5 minutes. Drain fat. Season with the salt, pepper, thyme, and a dash cayenne pepper.
- Make space in the center; stir in the tomato paste. Add in the peas and carrots, Worcestershire, and red wine; simmer until vegetables are tender and skillet is nearly dry, about 2 minutes.
- Add the beef broth and simmer until the mixture is saucy, 4-5 minutes. Take off the heat and set aside.
- When potatoes are cool enough to handle, cut a thin slice off the top of each and discard. Scoop out most of the pulp into a large bowl, leaving a 1/2-inch rim of the potato intact so you don’t tear the shell. Lay the hollowed out potato shells back onto the baking sheet.
- Add butter and half-n-half to the bowl with the potato pulp; mash well. Add in the mustard, scallions, 3/4 cup cheddar cheese, and salt and pepper, to taste; mix until combined and smooth.
- Spoon 1 cup meat mixture into each potato shell; top with 1/2 cup potato mixture. Spread potatoes with the back of a spoon, then make ridges with the tines of a fork.
- Bake at 350 degrees F for 15-20 minutes until the top is golden brown and the cheese has melted.
- Top the potatoes with a few finely diced scallions. Let cool 5 minutes before serving and enjoy!NOTE: This recipe is written as serving 6 whole potatoes stuffed with a meat and vegetable mixture, so we consider this a complete meal in one, and the nutritional calculations reflect that. You can certainly slice these in half lengthwise and fill them that way to have 12 side servings instead.