There are two main categories of cooking: the type we have to do and the type we want to do. This Beef Stroganoff Cottage Pie with Crispy Parmesan Topping is the perfect meal to make when you have some time up your sleeve and feel like pottering around at home, while something delicious blips away on the stove. I love cottage pie and I also love beef stroganoff, so it was only natural that this was going to be an absolute winning combination at our place.

This is cottage pie with a difference! The filling is a creamy beef stroganoff and the topping is made cheesy and crispy with a layer of parmesan.
This is cottage pie with a difference! The filling is a creamy beef stroganoff and the topping is made cheesy and crispy with a layer of parmesan.

This comforting meal is loaded with chunky, fall-apart beef and all of the traditional flavours you know and love in a delicious, creamy, homemade stroganoff. The stroganoff filling is topped with mashed potatoes and a light sprinkling of parmesan before being baked in the oven until crispy and golden brown. The result is a luscious, creamy mushroom and beef pie with a crispy, cheesy potato topping. Easy to make with simple, low-cost ingredients, you can’t go wrong with this absolutely delicious pie that’s also freezer-friendly.

Which cut of beef is best for slow cooking? 

I use chuck steak or gravy beef (braising steak) for most of my slow-cooked meals. I find these produce the best results and are also generally the most affordable. Cooked low and slow, they transform from being tough into amazingly tender and melt-in-the-mouth. Another delicious, flavourful cut of beef I love is oyster blade (flat-iron/butler’s steak), although it costs a little more.

I have followed the recipe but my beef is still not tender, what do I do?

There are two main reasons for this. One, the wrong cut of beef has been used. Two, it has not been cooked long enough. Cuts of beef suitable for slow-cooking (like chuck, gravy, braising steak or oyster blade/flat-iron/butler’s steak) are nearly impossible to overcook. The longer they are cooked on a low heat setting, the more they break down and the more tender they become. There are so many variables that can affect cooking time, from the quality of the cut, the size of the cut and the type of pan you’re using (some retain heat better than others). But the rule of thumb is to simply cook your beef for longer, to allow it to break down and soften. I have included lots of instructions in the recipe to help guide you if you’ve experienced problems in the past.

The beef stroganoff filling in this cottage pie is cooked low and slow for 21/2 hours, resulting in meat that is melt-in-the-mouth tender.
The beef stroganoff filling in this cottage pie is cooked low and slow for 2 1/2 hours, resulting in meat that is melt-in-the-mouth tender.

Can I prepare this meal ahead of time?

Yes! Beef Stroganoff Cottage Pie with Crispy Parmesan Topping is perfect for meal prep. I like to prepare it as per the recipe, then portion in individual containers (I find it easier to reheat). Refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw completely in the fridge overnight prior to reheating for best results. My preference is reheating in the microwave (it’s fast and the pie remains juicy!).

What are some other quick one-pan dinner/freezer-friendly meal ideas?

I love any freezer meal that is going to give me back time during my busy week. Mexican Pulled Tacos, One Pan Gnocchi Bolognese, Easy Butter Chicken, Roasted Pumpkin Soup and Beef Rissoles are a few of our favourites, but you can check out all of my freezer-friendly recipes here.

This hearty cottage pie makes an absolutely delicious winter warmer. As it’s freezer-friendly, have some ready to thaw and cook for when you need a comforting meal.
This hearty cottage pie makes an absolutely delicious winter warmer. As it’s freezer-friendly, have some ready to thaw and cook for when you need a comforting meal.

Beef Stroganoff Cottage Pie with Crispy Parmesan Topping

What are some variations? We don’t like mushrooms!

If mushrooms aren’t your favourite, you can leave them out completely. Try adding 2 cups of finely diced celery and/or carrots at the same time as the onions. You can also amp up the vegetables by adding frozen peas or a few handfuls of baby spinach in the last few minutes of cooking.

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Beef Stroganoff Cottage Pie with Crispy Parmesan Topping Recipe

Beef Stroganoff Cottage Pie with Crispy Parmesan Topping

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5 from 2 reviews

A comforting, filling and wholesome Beef Stroganoff Cottage Pie with Crispy Parmesan Topping, filled with classic stroganoff flavours you know and love, with a cheesy potato topping. This is the perfect family dinner to make ahead of time and freeze, ready for when you need it!

  • Total Time: 3 hours 45 mins
  • Yield: 6 1x

Ingredients

Scale

Pie Filling

  • 800 g (1 lb 12 oz) chuck steak, gravy beef or braising steak (or any beef suitable for slow-cooking), cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp cracked black pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, roughly diced
  • 1 tsp garlic, freshly minced
  • 400 g (14 oz) mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tbsp plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste (concentrated puree)
  • 1 tbsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 cups (500 ml) beef stock
  • 2 tbsp sour cream

Mashed Potato Topping

  • 1.2 kg (2 lb 10 oz) all-purpose potatoes, peeled and quartered
  • 2 tbsp (40 g) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup (250 ml) milk, slightly warmed (see note 1)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Olive oil spray
  • ½ cup (50 g) freshly grated parmesan

Instructions

Pie Filling

  1. Sprinkle the beef with the salt and pepper.
  2. Using 1 tablespoon of the oil, brown the beef (in batches if you need to) in a large heavy-based frying pan over medium–high heat for 8–12 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
  3. Using the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil, cook the onion and garlic in the same pan over medium heat until softened, 2–3 minutes.
  4. Add the mushrooms and cook for 2–3 minutes until softened.
  5. Add the flour, stirring continuously for 30 seconds (it will form a lumpy paste).
  6. Add the tomato paste, sweet paprika, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard and beef stock.
  7. Return the beef and any juices that have pooled on the plate back into the pan.
  8. Return to a rapid simmer, then simmer over medium–low heat, covered, for 1 hour 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. If the sauce is sticking to the base of the pan, add 1/2 cup (125 ml) of water. The gravy should be just bubbling (not bubbling rapidly).
  9. Uncover and cook for an additional 1 hour to thicken.
  10. The beef should easily pull apart with a fork. If not, cook in 15-minute intervals until it is tender, adding 1/2 cup (125 ml) of water at a time to ensure the sauce isn’t sticking to the base of the pan (see note 2).
  11. Once the beef is tender, stir through the sour cream to create a thick, creamy sauce. Set aside to cool.

Mashed Potato Topping

  1. Place the peeled, quartered potatoes in a large pot and add water so that they are covered by at least 8 cm (3¼ inches).
  2. Place over high heat, bring to the boil and simmer for 15–20 minutes or until the potatoes are soft enough to pierce with a fork.
  3. Remove the pot from the heat. Drain the potatoes in a colander and place them back in the pot.
  4. Allow them to steam-dry for 1–2 minutes. This removes any excess water.
  5. Mash the potatoes with a potato masher, add the butter, milk and salt, and continue mashing until the potatoes are soft and creamy.

Assemble Pie

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) (180°C/350°F fan).
  2. Transfer the beef stroganoff mixture to a baking dish approximately 30 x 25 cm (12 x 10 inches) (see note 3).
  3. Spoon the mashed potato on top of the beef mixture. Add small spoonfuls all over the pie until the filling is completely covered (instead of big spoonfuls that you need to spread out). Do this while the mashed potato is hot, as it’s much easier to work with while warm (cold mashed potato stiffens). Use a fork to rough up the surface gently and to spread the potato to fill in any gaps.
  4. Spray with olive oil and sprinkle with parmesan. Bake for 30 minutes or until the topping is golden and crispy.

Notes

Note 1 – Heat the milk in the microwave or on the stovetop; it helps to keep the mashed potatoes smooth and creamy.
Note 2 – The total slow-cook time in the recipe is 2 hours 30 minutes. If your beef is still not tender, continue cooking. The total cook time will depend on the cut of beef you’re using and how hot your stove is. A high heat will result in the base catching, but if the heat is too low the beef will take longer to cook. Continue cooking in 15-minute intervals until the beef is tender (it will only further tenderise as you cook it). If the sauce is looking dry and catching on the base of the pan, add 1/2 cup (125 ml) of water at a time. It shouldn’t take longer than 4 hours – any longer than that and the beef will start disintegrating completely!
Note 3 – This is not a stiff pie filling; add the beef and any residual sauce to the baking dish.

Make ahead

If you want to prepare Beef Stroganoff Cottage Pie with Crispy Parmesan Topping ahead of time to eat at a later date, assemble the pie but don’t bake it. Cover it with a layer of baking paper and two layers of foil. Refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw it completely overnight in the fridge and bake as per the recipe.

Leftovers

Leftovers are best portioned in individual airtight containers for easy reheating. Refrigerate for up to 3 days and freeze for up to 3 months. Reheat in the microwave.

  • Author: Nicole
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 3 hours 30 mins
  • Category: mains, beef, batch cooking, freezer-friendly
  • Method: pan, baking
  • Cuisine: Australian, Russian, United Kingdom