Sweet Potato-Topped Southwestern Cottage Pie

Bring new life to your weeknight recipe rotation with this updated classic.

Sweet Potato-Topped Southwestern Cottage Pie
Photo: Photographer: Antonis Achilleos; Prop Stylist: Christine Keely; Food Stylist: Emily Nabors Hall
Active Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 5 mins

Sometimes, we just want a fresh, new take on a classic like cottage pie. A beef-based dish topped with potatoes, cottage pie is a homey, delicious favorite that will warm your soul on a cold day.

To help heat up our Southern taste buds, we have decided to add Southwest flavor to this dish. The sweetness of sweet potatoes combined with peppers, poblano chiles, black beans, and so much more brings a lot of vibrancy not usually seen in traditional cottage pie recipes.

While we love our classics, we also know that it is fun to do something a little bit different every once and a while. This recipe is the perfect weeknight supper option to add your dinner rotation.


  • 3 lb. sweet potatoes (4 medium)

  • 1 ½ tablespoons canola oil

  • 1 ½ lb. ground sirloin

  • 2 medium-size red or yellow bell peppers, chopped (2 cups)

  • 2 medium poblano chiles, chopped (1 1/2 cups)

  • 1 medium-size yellow onion, chopped (1 1/4 cups)

  • 1 (16-oz.) jar green chile salsa (such as Chi-Chi's Salsa Verde Mild)

  • 1 (15-oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed

  • 1 cup fresh corn kernels (from 2 ears) or frozen corn kernels, thawed

  • 1 (1-oz.) envelope taco seasoning mix

  • 2 tablespoons adobo sauce from can

  • 1 tablespoon melted unsalted butter

  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt

  • 1 teaspoon chili powder

  • Fresh cilantro leaves and diced fresh or pickled jalapeño chiles


  1. Pierce sweet potatoes all over using a fork, and place on a microwavable plate. Microwave on HIGH until very soft when pierced with a knife, about 10 minutes. Remove from microwave, and let stand, covered with a clean dish towel for 10 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375°F. Coat a 13- x 9-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add ground sirloin; cook, stirring occasionally using a wooden spoon to break up meat, until partially cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add bell peppers, poblanos, and onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender and beef is cooked through, about 5 minutes. Stir in salsa, black beans, corn, and taco seasoning; remove from heat.

  3. Peel sweet potatoes, discarding skins. Place flesh in a large bowl, and mash using a fork. Stir in adobo sauce, butter, garlic salt, and chili powder until well combined.

  4. Spoon beef-vegetable mixture into prepared baking dish. Top with dollops of sweet potato mixture; gently spread sweet potato mixture in an even layer using a fork to create a decorative pattern. Bake in preheated oven until sweet potatoes are golden in spots and filling is hot and bubbling, 25 to 28 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes. Garnish with cilantro and jalapeños; serve.


Cut down the cleanup time: Instead of using a baking dish, you can make this recipe in a single skillet if you prefer. Top the beef mixture with the potatoes, and bake as directed

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