There’s nothing quite like the hearty, comforting aroma of a freshly baked beef pie with potatoes and carrots. Featuring tender chunks of beef enveloped in a flaky, golden crust, paired with the rustic flavors of potatoes and carrots. This dish promises a delightful blend of texture and taste that’s perfect for any season.

Beef Pie with Potatoes and Carrots

Beef Pie with Potatoes and Carrots

What’s the difference between Pot Pies and Meat Pie with Potatoes and Carrots?

Skill Level: Intermediate
This recipe requires some basic skills like sautéing and baking, and handling pie dough. It’s perfect for those who have some experience in the kitchen and are looking to impress at their next dinner party.

Health Benefits:
This beef pie incorporates lean beef, rich in protein and iron, alongside carrots and potatoes which are excellent sources of dietary fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants. The crust, when made with whole wheat flour, can also contribute to your fiber intake.

Time and Servings:

  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Servings: 6

Beef Pie with Potatoes and Carrots


  • 1 lb (454 grams) of lean beef chuck, diced
  • 2 medium potatoes (about 10 ounces/300 grams), peeled and diced
  • 2 large carrots (about 7 ounces/200 grams), peeled and diced
  • 1 large onion (6 ounces/170 grams), chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp (45 ml) of vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp (30 grams) of all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (240 ml) of beef broth
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) of red wine
  • 1 tsp (5 grams) of fresh thyme, chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 recipe for pie crust dough (enough to cover a 9-inch pie dish top and bottom)
  • 1 egg, beaten for egg wash


  1. Prepare the Vegetables and Beef:

    • Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic, cooking until soft.
    • Add the beef and cook until browned. Sprinkle flour over the beef and cook for another 2 minutes.
    • Pour in the red wine and beef broth, bring to a simmer, then add the potatoes, carrots, thyme, salt, and pepper. Cover and let simmer for 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat Oven and Prepare Crust:

    • Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Roll out your pie dough on a floured surface to fit a 9-inch pie dish. Place one layer of dough in the dish, leaving an overhang. (TIP: See “secrets to a flaky crust” here)
  3. Assemble the Pie:

    • Spoon the beef and vegetable mixture into the crust. Place the second layer of dough over the top, trim any excess, and crimp the edges to seal. Cut small slits in the top to allow steam to escape and brush with beaten egg.
  4. Bake:

    • Bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and flaky.
  5. Cool and Serve:

    • Let the pie cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.

The Secret to a Flaky Crust

Achieving a flaky crust in a meat pie (or any pie, really) revolves around a few critical techniques and considerations in the preparation of the dough and the baking process. Here are the key points and tips to ensure a deliciously flaky crust:


  1. Fat Choice: The type of fat used in the crust is crucial. Butter is preferred for its flavor and the perfect flakiness it provides. However, for even flakier results, you can use a combination of butter and shortening; the shortening has a higher melting point, which helps maintain the structure of the dough during the initial baking phase.
  2. Cold Ingredients: Keep your fat (butter, shortening) and water as cold as possible. The cold fat will not blend completely with the flour, creating small pockets of fat that will melt as the pie bakes, creating the flaky layers.


  1. Minimal Handling: Overworking the dough develops gluten, which can make the crust tough. Mix the dough just until the components come together. The dough should not be completely uniform and should have visible bits of butter.
  2. Resting the Dough: Once your pie dough is mixed, shape it into a disc and wrap it in plastic wrap. Let it rest in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before rolling it out. This resting phase allows the gluten in the dough to relax and the fat to solidify again, which helps maintain structure and create flakiness.


  1. Rolling the Dough: Roll out your dough on a lightly floured surface to prevent sticking, but use as little flour as possible because extra flour can toughen the dough. Roll from the center outwards, and try to handle the dough as little as possible with your hands to keep it cool.
  2. Layering: For an extra flaky crust, some cooks use a technique called lamination — folding the dough multiple times to create layers, similar to making puff pastry. This isn’t necessary for all recipes but can be used if an exceptionally flaky texture is desired.


  1. Egg Wash: Brushing the top crust with an egg wash (beaten egg with a little water or milk) will give your pie a beautiful golden color and can help seal in the layers slightly, aiding in the flakiness.
  2. Initial High Heat: Bake your pie initially at a higher temperature (around 400°F or 205°C) for about 10-15 minutes, then lower the temperature (to around 350°F or 175°C) to finish baking. The high heat helps set the structure of the crust quickly before the fat has fully melted, which contributes to creating flaky layers.


By following these tips — selecting the right fats, keeping ingredients cold, handling the dough minimally, and using proper baking techniques — you can achieve a beautifully flaky crust for your meat pie. This not only enhances the eating experience but also impresses anyone who gets a slice of your pie!

Tips for the Perfect Beef Pie with Potatoes and Carrots:

  • Use cold butter and ice water for the flakiest crust.
  • Let the filling cool slightly before filling the pie to prevent a soggy bottom.

Optional Ingredients:

  • Mushrooms, peas, or any root vegetables.
  • Swap beef broth with vegetable broth and red wine with balsamic vinegar for a different flavor profile.

Vegetarian Suggestions:

Replace beef with lentils or a meat substitute like Quorn pieces. Use vegetable broth instead of beef broth.

Serving Suggestions:

Serve with a simple green salad or steamed green beans to add a fresh contrast to the rich pie.

Nutrient Information (Approximate per serving):

  • Calories: 500
  • Protein: 26g
  • Fat: 22g
  • Carbohydrates: 45g
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Sodium: 500mg

Saving Leftovers:

  • Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the oven at 350°F (175°C) until warmed through.

Origin and History:

The beef pie is a staple in British cuisine, tracing back to medieval times when pies were a common meal for the working class. The robust flavors and filling ingredients were favored for providing sustained energy.

Meat Pie vs Pot Pie

Meat pies and pot pies are similar in that they are both savory dishes featuring a filling of meat (and often vegetables) encased in pastry or topped with a pastry lid. However, there are a few key differences that distinguish them:

Meat Pies

  1. Crust: Meat pies are usually fully encased in a pastry shell, having both a bottom and a top crust. The crust is typically flaky and can be made from shortcrust pastry or puff pastry.
  2. Filling: The filling of a meat pie is generally denser and less saucy. It commonly includes minced or diced meat (beef, pork, lamb, chicken, etc.) and may include vegetables or other ingredients mixed directly with the meat.
  3. Shape and Size: Meat pies can vary significantly in size and can be made as individual servings (like the famous Australian meat pie) or as larger pies cut into slices.
  4. Serving: Meat pies are often eaten as hand-held foods, especially the smaller versions, making them popular street food or snack items in various cultures (such as the Cornish pasty in the UK or empanadas in Latin American cuisines).

Pot Pies

  1. Crust: Pot pies typically have only a top crust and no bottom crust, although some variations might include both. The top can be made from a sheet of pastry dough, biscuits, or even mashed potatoes (as seen in some shepherd’s pie variations).
  2. Filling: The filling of a pot pie is usually more like a stew; it is moist and gravy-like, often made with larger chunks of meat and vegetables in a rich, flavorful sauce.
  3. Shape and Size: Pot pies are generally baked in a pot or deep dish (hence the name), and they are usually served in the same container they are baked in, often with a spoon or fork.
  4. Serving: Pot pies are considered more of a meal than a snack and are typically served on a plate and eaten with utensils. They are a common comfort food in places like the United States and Canada.

While both meat pies and pot pies offer hearty, meaty fillings surrounded by pastry, their preparation, presentation, and the consistency of their fillings vary.

These differences define their unique roles in cuisines around the world, with meat pies often serving as portable snacks and pot pies providing a comforting, utensil-required dish.

P.S. Be sure to check out these beef recipes…