Reuben-Style Shepherd’s Pie

Delight your family with this all-in-one, potato-topped, reuben-style shepherd’s pie.


  • 2 pounds baby red or yellow potatoes
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seed
  • Freshly ground pepper

For the casserole filling:

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1 pound thick-cut good-quality corned beef, chopped
  • 1 pound ground beef sirloin
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2-3 small stalks celery with leafy tops, finely chopped
  • 1 large fresh bay leaf
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 rounded tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup lager beer, at room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 can beef consomme (10 ounces) or 1 1/2 cups beef stock
  • 1 bag sauerkraut (1 pound), rinsed and drained well
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded good-quality Swiss cheese
  • 1 cup shredded or crumbled sharp white cheddar cheese
  • 1 small bunch watercress, chopped

For the Russian dressing topper:

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • A few dashes of hot sauce
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper


Pre-heat the oven to 400°F.

For the potato topper: Boil the potatoes in salted water until just tender. Drain and transfer to a large bowl. Heat the butter and EVOO in a small skillet over medium heat and toast the caraway seed. Pour the caraway mixture over the potatoes and season with salt and pepper. Spread the potatoes on a baking sheet and squish them with the bottom of a water glass to flatten them. Roast until crisp, 25-30 minutes. Leave the oven on.

Meanwhile, for the casserole filling: Heat the EVOO in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the corned beef and cook until browned, then remove to a plate. Add the ground beef and cook until browned. Add the garlic, celery, bay leaf, carrot and onion and season with salt and pepper. Cook until the vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes. Return the corned beef to the skillet.

Heat the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook, whisking, until light golden. Whisk in the beer, Worcestershire sauce, mustard and consomme; season with pepper.

Pour the gravy over the corned beef mixture and stir to combine. Transfer to a casserole dish and top with the sauerkraut, cheeses and potatoes. Bake until the cheese is melted and the casserole is heated through.

Meanwhile, for the Russian dressing topper: Combine the sour cream, ketchup, relish and hot sauce and season with salt and pepper.

Drizzle the casserole with the dressing and garnish with watercress just before serving.

Cook’s Note: The unbaked casserole can be covered and refrigerated for a make-ahead meal. Reheat in the oven before serving.

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