Chilli cottage pie recipe

(81 ratings)

This chilli cottage pie is a mash up dish of chilli con carne and cottage pie - comforting and cosy but with a serious kick as well.

Chilli cottage pie in a round baking dish
(Image credit: Getty / Mariha-kitchen)
Preparation Time20 mins
Cooking Time1 hours
Total Time1 hours 20 mins
Cost RangeCheap

This chilli cottage pie combines two classic dinner dishes in one: traditional cottage pie and chilli con carne.

The result is all the comfort food factor of a potato-topped pie, plus the spicy hit of chilli con carne. It's a great twist on a regular cottage pie, and great if you're batch cooking chilli con carne as you can make the two meals at the same time and freeze on of them. Serve with some sour cream for anyone who is daunted by the spiciness, otherwise just some dark green veggies like kale or broccoli are all you need.


  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 700g lean minced beef
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • 250ml hot beef stock
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tsp chilli powder
  • 400g can kidney beans

For the topping:

  • 900g potatoes, peeled and cut into small pieces
  • 25g butter
  • Milk
  • 125g mature cheddar cheese, grated




  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan or deep sauté pan. Add the onion and fry until lightly browned.
  2. Add the beef and fry until browned. Reduce the heat and add the tomato purée or ketchup and stir well.
  3. Sprinkle on the flour and stir well, then pour on the stock and add the tomatoes and chilli powder.
  4. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to simmer, cover and cook for 40 – 45 minutes until thickened.
  5. Meanwhile cook the potatoes in boiling salted water for about 20 minutes until tender, then drain and add the butter and a little milk. Mash until smooth and lump free.
  6. Preheat the oven to 190⁰C/376⁰F/Fan 170⁰C/Gas Mark 5.
  7. Add the kidney beans to the meat mixture and stir together well. Spoon the meat mixture into an ovenproof dish and smooth it over evenly. Spoon the mashed potato on top of the meat and smooth it over.
  8. Sprinkle the grated cheese over the potato topping and bake in the oven for 20 – 25 minutes until the pie is golden and crisp. 

Top tip for making chilli cottage pie

Easy swaps: use baked beans instead of kidney beans if you prefer. Any type of mince can be used, including Quorn for vegetarians. If you don't have any tomato purée, use a squidge of tomato ketchup.

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Octavia Lillywhite
Food and Lifestyle Writer

Octavia Lillywhite is an award-winning food and lifestyle journalist with over 15 years of experience. With a passion for creating beautiful, tasty family meals that don’t use hundreds of ingredients or anything you have to source from obscure websites, she’s a champion of local and seasonal foods, using up leftovers and composting, which, she maintains, is probably the most important thing we all can do to protect the environment.