Healthier Cottage Pie - Arthritis Action

Healthier Cottage Pie



400g (14oz) lean beef mince (10% fat or less)

300g (10z) cup mushrooms

1 onion

2 sticks of celery

2 medium carrots

500g (1lb) celeriac (or cauliflower, see notes above)

1 medium sized potato

1 low salt beef or vegetable stock cube

½ small glass red wine (optional, can be replaced with water)

100ml (4 fl oz) semi-skimmed milk

Black pepper and salt (a pinch)

Olive oil

Recipe Summary

You can’t beat a good cottage or shepherd’s pie on an Autumn day. My version is packed full of vegetables and much lower in saturated fat than many traditional recipes but still tastes rich and comforting. Red meat can be an important source of iron for people with arthritis. Anaemia is common in sufferers due to both the inflammation caused by the disease and the side-effects of non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Choose the leanest cuts you can find to reduce the levels of saturated fat and always eat it alongside plenty of vitamin-rich vegetables to help your body absorb the iron.

If you have very sore hands or wrists this may be a slightly trickier dish to make. I certainly don’t attempt it when my hands are very bad, but I find using a food processor helps immensely. Celeriac can be baked whole for 30 minutes in the oven and then allowed to cool before chopping to soften it or try replacing it with cauliflower florets.


Top and tail the carrots (peel them if they have very thick skins). Put the onion, celery, mushrooms and carrots in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.

Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large frying pan and tip in the chopped vegetables. Cook on a medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened. Add the mince and cook for a further 10 minutes. Crumble in the stock cube and red wine, and stir. Leave to simmer on a low heat for 10 minutes then tip out into a medium, oven-proof dish. Spread into an even layer and leave to one side whilst you prepare the mash.

Peel and slice the celeriac into medium-sized chunks. Do the same with the potato. Put in a large pan and cover with boiling water. Simmer for 20-25 minutes or until the vegetables are soft. Drain and then return the vegetables to the pan. Add the milk. Mash the celeriac and potato, either by hand or using a blender, food processor or electric whisk. Season to taste.

Spread this mash mixture on top of the prepared mince. Fork the top into attractive lines and drizzle with a little olive oil.

Bake the cottage pie for 25-30 minutes at 180C/375F or until the top is golden brown. Allow to rest for 5 minutes and then serve.

Nutrition Information
Nutritional values for 1 serving (based on 4 portions)  
Energy 367 kcal
Carbohydrate 30.3g
Sugars 6.5g
Protein 27.5g
Total fat 16.3g
Saturated fat 5.8g
Fibre 6.0g
Salt 0.41g

FFQ Information
Food Group Food item
RED MEAT Beef including mince, stews, lasagne, bolognese
POTATOES Boiled, mashed, instant or jacket potatoes
EGGS & DAIRY Semi/skimmed milk
VEGETABLES Onions, leeks
VEGETABLES Other (will need to write celeriac in)
DRINKS Wine, white, red or glass

No need to count black pepper and the stock cube.