Moroccan Sweet Potato & Lamb Shephards Pie

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Admittedly, this is not the fastest recipe I’ve ever created. There is a reason you must still pay attention to it, my people. One, it is freaking delicious AND two, I’m gonna give you a couple shortcuts: First, you can get a prepared spice blend at Whole Foods or Williams Sonoma or another specialty cooking store. Second, if you double (or even triple) the recipe, you can freeze smaller batches in the freezer in Pyrex glass containers (these are an essential purchase), pop out and into the oven and serve with a salad for a super-fast weeknight meal. Oh, and did I mention that you will literally lick your plate clean of every morsel. That should be reason enough. Also, if lamb ain’t yo thang, you can swap with beef, bison, turkey, chicken, or pork. Whatever floats your boat 🙂

Moroccan Sweet Potato & Lamb Shephard’s Pie


1 – 3/4 pound grass-fed ground lamb (can use a mix of lamb and grass-fed ground beef, too)

1 onion, chopped small (#3 cone on Saladmaster)

3 carrots, chopped in 1-inch pieces (#3 cone)

3 zucchinis, chopped in 1-inch pieces (#3 cone)

2 cups chopped kale (about 1 bunch)

4 cloves garlic, chopped

1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons Moroccan Spice Blend (below)

1/2 cup raisins

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 teaspoons honey

½ cup green olives with pimentos, chopped

1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

3 cups Simple Mashed Sweet Potatoes (below)


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook sweet potatoes according to recipe. Heat a 5-7 quart stock pot and add ground meat. Season with 2 teaspoons salt and brown on all sides, breaking up as it cooks. Add onions, carrots, zucchini and spice blend. Mix well, cover, and turn to medium low. Allow to cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add kale, garlic, raisins, lemon, honey, and olives. Stir and continue to cook for another 10 minutes, or until all veggies are cooked. Adjust salt, add cilantro, and remove from heat. Put meat mixture into a cake dish, individual ramekins, or leave it in pot if oven-safe. Cover with mashed sweet potatoes and cook in oven for about 30 minutes, or until heated through and sweet potatoes have browned at the edges. Serve with a simple salad. The leftovers are great for breakfast with a fried egg, too 🙂


Simple Mashed Sweet Potatoes


2 pounds sweet potatoes

1/2 cup butter or coconut oil

1 tablespoon honey (optional)

3 tablespoons orange juice (optional)

Salt and pepper to taste


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Place the potatoes on a foil lined baking sheet and bake until tender and begins to ooze sugary syrup, about 1 hour. Remove from the oven and let sit until cool enough to handle. Cut the potatoes in half lengthwise and scoop out the flesh with a spoon into a large bowl. Add the butter, honey, juice, salt and pepper, and mix with a fork, masher or hand mixer until smooth. Cover to keep warm until ready to serve.


Moroccan Spice Blend

I’ve been making this spice blend for years, courtesy of my favorite chef, Tyler Florence. At the time, this combo on a roasted chicken with apricot cous-cous and green olive sauce was my favorite dish ever. Buy another coffee grinder you use just for grinding spices. No matter how adventurous, coffee don’t taste good flavored with cumin. I swap the brown sugar with coconut sugar.


1 cinnamon stick, chopped in pieces

8 whole cloves

1 teaspoon cayenne

2 teaspoons cumin seed

1 teaspoon fennel seed

1 teaspoon coriander seed

1 tablespoon sweet paprika

11/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 teaspoon coconut sugar


Combine the cinnamon stick, cloves, cayenne, cumin, fennel, coriander, and paprika in a dry skillet over low heat and toast for just a minute to release the fragrant oils; shake the pan so they don’t scorch. In a spice mill or clean coffee grinder, grind the toasted spices together, with 1 1/2 teaspoons of kosher salt and the brown sugar.