Mary Berry’s ‘luxury’ cottage pie is the ultimate cheesy autumn dinner

Autumn is here which means the weather now is beginning to get a lot colder, and most people are looking for something rich and comforting to eat to warm themselves up during the frostier weather.

Cottage pie is a classic British dish filled with tender mince, buttery vegetables and a delicious amount of gooey cheese on top, and nothing can beat a hearty autumn dinner such as a filling lasagna, delicious bangers and mash or a rich warming stew 

However, cheesy cottage pie is another perfect dish for a cold autumn day, and cooking legend Mary Berry has put her own twist on this simple recipe by adding dauphinoise potatoes on top, making it even creamier.

This cottage pie is slow-roasted to make sure both the meat and vegetables are perfectly tender, but it does not take long to prepare this easy dish.

Mary Berry first shared her cottage pie recipe with the BBC, in which she is said to have elevated this pie to “new luxury levels.” Mary Berry added: “It’s so much smarter than the usual cottage pie and is perfect for casual supper parties too.”

How to make Mary Berry’s cottage pie


  • 1.5kg of sliced potatoes (3lb 5oz)
  • 900g of beef mince (2lb)
  • 50g of plain flour (1¾oz)
  • 250g of sliced chestnut mushrooms
  • 100g of grated cheddar (3½oz)
  • 250ml of red wine (9fl oz)
  • 300ml of beef stock (½ pint)
  • 100ml of double cream (5fl oz)
  • Two chopped onions
  • Four diced sticks of celebrity
  • Two tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce
  • Two tablespoons of light muscovado sugar
  • One tablespoon of chopped thyme
  • Salt and pepper
  • Olive oil (for cooking)

Kitchen equipment:

  • Pan with lid
  • Pot
  • Slotted spoon
  • Mixing bowl
  • Colander
  • 2.4-litre ovenproof shallow dish (4 pints)

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To begin, cook the beef mince. Heat up oil in a frying pan and add your beef mince. Cook on a high heat until a golden brown colour. Use a slotted spoon to remove the mince and set it aside for now.

Next, add the onions and celery to the pan and cook until the vegetables begin to soften, then add the beef mince to the pan again.

Add the wine and flour to a bowl and mix until it becomes a smooth paste. Add in the stock and mix until fully combined. Add to the pan along with the sugar, thyme and Worcestershire sauce.

Bring the minced beef mixture to a boil and keep stirring until the sauce has thickened. Add the mushrooms plus the salt and pepper seasoning. Let it simmer for 45 minutes or until minced beef is fork tender.

Now it is time to make the potato topping. Add the sliced potatoes to a pot of salted boiling water and cook for around five minutes or until the potatoes have softened. If the potatoes are hard then they will not aboard the cream when placed later. Drain the potatoes using a colander and then leave to cool.

Preheat the oven to 220C (or 425F). Once both the beef mixture and potatoes are ready, add the beef mixture to your ovenproof dish. Place a layer of potato on top and pour half of the cream on the potatoes. Make sure to place the rest of the potatoes on top and season generously between layers. Then add the remaining cream and also add the grated cheese on top.

Let it cook for around 30 minutes for until the top is golden brown, and then your warming cottage pie is ready to serve.

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