Mexican Shepherd’s Pie

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This is the first dish in my Friday Lightlife meals series. I had been craving comfort food so I decided to make a hearty dish, but instead of a traditional shepherd’s pie, I wanted to infuse the dish with Mexican flavors. I used Lightlife’s Mexican veggie crumbles, along with a Mexican three cheese blend and jalapeno. Also, instead of topping the dish with potatoes, I used fluffy, starchy yuca (also called cassava). The end result was great–comforting and spicy, and I really liked the yuca. I served the dish with a green salad … and yes, you guessed it, a cold Negra Modelo.

Mexican Shepherd’s Pie (Printable Recipe)


2 lbs. yuca (2 medium sized)

1 cup vegetable broth

2 tablespoon Goya sofrito

1 tablespoon Goya recaito


1 small red onion–diced

1/2 yellow bell pepper–diced

1 jalapeno–diced

1 ripe tomato–diced

large dollop of sour cream (vegan or regular)

2 cups frozen corn

1/2 – 1 cup mexican blend shredded cheese (vegan or regular)

olive oil

salt/black pepper

1 package Lightlife Mexican veggie crumbles


*Preheat oven to 400 degree F. Slice off ends of yuca. Cut off the thick, fibrous skin. Slice lengthwise and remove the center core (this is also very fibrous… be sure to remove it). Add the yuca, vegetable broth, sofrito, and recaito to a pot. Add water to the pot so that the yuca is covered. Add large pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Bring to a boil, drop the heat to medium low. Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes or until the yuca is tender.

*Once the yuca is tender, remove the yuca from the cooking liquid and add it to a large bowl. Smash the yuca with 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid and 1 large dollop of sour cream. Season with salt/pepper.

*In a medium sized frying pan, heat 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add chopped onion, bell pepper, and jalapeno. Saute 10 minutes until soft. Add veggie crumbles and tomatoes. Stir and season with salt and pepper. Turn off heat.

*Add meat mixture to the bottom of a 9″ x 9″ glass dish. Add frozen corn and cheese if using cheese. Dollop yuca on top of the corn and gently spread until yuca is smooth. Bake until just golden brown on top.

Written by

Tiffany M. Griffin is the woman behind Como Water, Washington DC’s premiere veg-centric cuisine consulting company. Through cooking classes, demonstrations, catering, and consultations, Como Water gives people the opportunity to learn how to prepare veg-centric cuisine that boasts maximum flavor, with minimal effort. Tiffany is quickly becoming a go-to expert on the future of veg-centric cuisine, and is a regular contributor to Como Water, the blog, as well as to vegetarian and vegan sites across the Internet. For over a decade, this self-taught, entrepreneurial expert has developed a set of tried and true techniques for making simple, delicious, and sometimes decadent veg-centric dishes. Featured on the Steve Harvey Show and other leading media outlets, Tiffany was born and raised in Springfield, MA. She then earned Bachelors degrees in Psychology and Communications from Boston College and a PhD in Social Psychology from the University of Michigan. She now resides in Washington DC, where she has worked in the US Senate and at a federal agency on issues around health, food, nutrition, and international food aid/development, and of course, as the owner of Como Water. Tiffany gets culinary inspiration from the food she grew up eating, and from her travels throughout Latin America, the Caribbean, Western Europe, and Sub-Saharan Africa. She is dedicated to sharing her wealth of knowledge on veg-centric cuisine with others and to help others live by her mantra—love life, live long, and eat veg-centric cuisine!


  1. Oooh love this- i like the use of yuca! I have never used that before but I love eating it!

  2. Yum. We love making Sheperd’s Pie, but I’m always happy to have new variations! Thanks for sharing.

  3. I love your idea of adding spices to Shepherd’s Pie!

  4. Ohhhh… clearly I’m obsessed with Mexican. This may have reached a whole new level of Mexi-dence (Mexican decadence). 🙂 *drool*

    Happy Friday!

  5. Boy this looks – especially a rainy night like this!

  6. Wow Tiff that is a beautiful dish. You’ve piqued my curiosity about Yuca. After 4 days of smoothies this would soooo hit the spot. Along with a cold one!

    • Haha! I’m detoxing, so no beer for me for 5 more days!

  7. Tiffany, Mexican Shepherd’s Pie looks super yummy:)
    I love Mexican cuisine.
    Here is my new vegetarian delight…hope you will like it, thanks:)

  8. I have never had yucca, but after looking at that shepherd’s pie, I want to try some. What a delightful dish you made!

  9. I would have never guessed that that was yucca. What a cool substitution. I think shepherd’s pie is totally comfort food too, and I love this take on it. Thanks for sharing your recipe.

  10. Wow… Yuca! I have never used it and you did it so beautifully. I must try it now. Lovely recipe! Yum, yum, yum!! : )

  11. I’m going to have to try yuca. Seems to be a smash hit in this lovely pie. Also lovely the layer of corn you have added. Delicious.

  12. Lovely shepherd’s pie sounds very fabulous

  13. Niiiiiiiiice! Great use of cassava! This is an awesome, creative and undoubtedly delicious dish. The addition of Negra Modelo? Pretty much genius 🙂

  14. haven’t had like this looks healthy

  15. OH YUM! I’ve never had a shepherd’s pie with a Mexican flair…sounds like a fantastic meal!!

  16. Yuca instead of potatoes, sounds great! I’ll remember this the next time I make one.

  17. This looks like a very hearty and delicious meal…! Love the Mexican flavour!

  18. Wow look at that! I didn’t know cassava is also called yuca. What a nice change to make a shepherds pie with yuca. Your step by step pictures of adding ingredients…. I got more and more excited. LOL. It was fun and yummy post to read on. 🙂

  19. Oh yum! What a great idea to give Shepherd’s pie a Mexican twist! And I love yuca… it brings back so many memories of my travels. An absolute must try!!! Have a great Sunday Tiffany! <3

  20. This looks fabulous! I linked to you on my most recent post. I hope you don’t mind, just praises and shout outs and all good things. Stop by to take a look, if you’d like. 🙂

    Happy Sunday Bloggin’!

    • Oh, my, gosh! How/why could/would I mind! 😀 I mentioned you in my post today!

  21. A totally different twist on Shepherd Pie…not just that it’s Mexican style, but with the Yucca, in place of mashed potatoes. Also the meatless version looks so much like meat, it’s totally fool proof, and delicious:DDD

  22. This looks amazing!!! I just love the way you made this..ohh what a wonderful flavors!!
    yummy, and awesome photos!!!

  23. I am looking forward to every Friday now, this recipe looks delicious! Love the flavor combination you have put together:-) I have not worked with yuca yet, but I have been meaning too, thank you for sharing how to cook it:-)
    Hugs, Terra

  24. How creative! Never thought yucca can do such wonder to this fabulous and yummy dish…

  25. This is such a bad thing to read before breakfast… Now I want to skip it all together and have such pie for lunch! It looks so so delicious! Thanks for sharing and have a wonderful week 🙂

  26. Oh, what a great twist on shepherd’s pie (one of hubby’s favorites!). Love these flavors!

  27. I like this.. can I as U something? is Yuca same with casava?

    • Yes! It’s the same! I go back and forth, we call it both!

  28. What a great idea! Looks scrumptious!

  29. I love this idea…and recipe. Great way to get the comfort food with out the guilt 😉

  30. Delicious recipe and very nicely presented! Thanks for sharing!!

  31. Ohmygoodness – this looks SOOO yummy! Look at all the fresh vegetables, yum. I love Mexican so this will be going on my list to try – thank you!

  32. What a great idea to add some Mexican flavor and fair… definitely a comfort food dish 🙂

  33. Thanks for your feedback!

  34. This is marvelously creative and absolutely delicious. We love Shepherd’s Pie in it’s traditional forms but the next time we’re up for it it will definitely be this one!

  35. now this is indeed a true sheppard pie, or charro, vaquero, whatever you call ’em … I too have never cooked with yucca but it sounds so versatile….

  36. Tiffany…thank you for introducing me to yuca! I’ve never tried it before. But this looks so delicious and comforting! Beautiful as always! : )

  37. Thanks for showing me how to prepare & cook yuca. I’ve always wanted to buy one when I see them at the market but didn’t know what to do with it. Now I do! I see yuca recipes in the future… 😀

  38. YUM! with the Yuca topping it’s almost like a deconstructed Pastel casserole! lol I’m thinking a Masa/Tamal topping would work nicely too (i’ve found alot of people–ie my gringo husband–cant stomach the extreme starch of yuca). This would be a good potluck casserole, to say the least!

  39. Yum yum yum! I have made a similar dish to this using a crockpot. I love the addition of yuca in this. Wonderful!

  40. Love the Mexican twist you’ve put on Shepherd’s Pie – especially using yuca as a substitute for mashed potatoes. I’ve never cooked with yuca but now I’m intrigued!

  41. What genius to use yuca instead of potatoes in your shepherd’s pie for a great Latin touch. I do an Indian version with sweet potatoes (it’s called hachis parmentier here in France). I guess the sky is the limit on different versions of this…total comfort food, totally delicious!

  42. Hmmm. Yuca. Never used it either! But this looks great. I love shepherd’s pie and anything resembling it!

    Thanks for sharing

  43. WOW–this sounds and looks amazing. Must try asap!