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Delicious shepherd’s pie for toddlers and babies

A hearty shepherd’s pie is a wonderful meal to cook for the entire family!

This toddler shepherd’s pie is a perfect way to get some veggies into your little one and is an easy recipe that serves all ages. 

Shepherd's pie for babies and toddlers in a small ramekin

Although there is some assembly required, it’s a super simple dinner to make. 

It has been one of my go-to dinners for the family since I started weaning my first baby. 

It’s so easy to mash and blend into a puree, but because it’s made from lamb mince it’s already a good consistency for babies who are getting used to lumps in their food. It’s also great for babies at six months who are following baby-led weaning! 

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Baby and toddler shepherd’s pie recipe 

There isn’t a whole lot you need to do differently to make a shepherd’s pie that’s suitable for babies and toddlers. 

You’ll want to keep the salt content as low as possible and get some vegetables into the sauce so that they’re getting one or two of their five-a-day. 

My recipe does use a stock cube, although you could always make your own or forgo the stock altogether. 

I do recommend you use some stock though as it helps with the flavour. 

Shepherd's pie recipe for the family

I use low salt stock cubes to ensure I’m not over salting their food. I like the low salt stock cubes from Kallo

If you’re short on time, as us mums often are with kids in the mix, then you could buy pre-made mashed potato to save yourself some time. 

Add a little extra vitamin C to their diet by switching white potatoes for sweet potatoes! 

Mini shepherd’s pie for kids

When assembling your shepherd’s pie you can simply use a pie dish that makes one pot big enough for the whole family. 

Mini shepherds pie for babies and toddlers in a small ramekin

Alternatively you can use little ramekins to make individual mini shepherd’s pie for your toddler or baby. 

When making a meal for the whole family simply pop a couple of tablespoons of the meat mixture into the bottom of the ramekin and top with a couple of tablespoons of the mashed potato. Then you can cook the adult’s portion in your larger pie dish. 

Try ramekins like these ones for mini shepherd’s pies.

Remember if you’re making individual mini shepherd’s pie for your toddler that the inside will be seriously hot when fresh out of the oven and the potato topping means the heat gets retained in the middle.

For this reason it’s important to let your pies cool down for around 10 minutes and to double check them before serving to avoid burned tongues. 

You can also batch cook and freeze this meal! Simply divide your mixture and mash between several ramekins and freeze before the oven cooking stage.

To reheat, defrost thoroughly first and then cook in the oven for 40 minutes.

Shepherd’s pie for weaning babies

If you baby is eating purees for their meals then simply use a blender or mini chopper to mix the cooked shepherd’s pie into a smooth puree. 

However if you’re feeling brave and don’t mind the mess then pop a serving on a plate and let them serve themselves. 

Related post: How to make homemade baby food

Weaning meal plan at 6 months

Hidden vegetables in shepherd’s pie for kids

I like to finely chop carrot to hide away into the sauce of my shepherd’s pie. 

Some members of our family don’t like chunks of carrot, so I pop the carrots into a mini chopper (I use this one) and whizz them up until they’re almost like a paste before cooking. 

You can do the same with the onions. Doing this means the flavour is there but there just aren’t big hunks of carrot in the sauce. If your child is a fussy eater then this can be a good solution to get them eating vegetables in their shepherd’s pie! 

Shepherd's pie mashed potato and lamb mince

Toddler cottage pie recipe

What about if anyone in your family hates lamb mince?

No problem just swap it for beef mince and follow the exact same recipe and you have a cottage pie that babies and toddlers will love! 

I personally love shepherd’s pie and that’s normally what I cook but we very occasionally have the beef version. 

Of course it’s cheaper to buy beef mince than lamb mince so if you’re on a budget then this is a sensible swap. 

Shepherd’s pie for toddlers and babies

Shepherd’s pie for toddlers and babies

Yield: Serves 4
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Additional Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes

A simple shepherd's pie recipe for babies and toddlers with low salt and hidden vegetables.

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil or vegetable oil
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 2 carrots finely chopped or whizzed in a food processor until they form a paste
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 500g lamb mince
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • Splash Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 low salt beef stock cube
  • 900g potatoes peeled and cut into small chunks
  • 50g butter
  • 5 tbsp milk

Instructions

  1. Place potatoes in a pan and cover with boiling water from the kettle. Put on a medium heat to simmer for 18mins to 20 mins. They are ready when tender.
  2. Preheat oven to 170C (fan).
  3. Meanwhile fry the lamb mince in the olive oil over a high heat until browned all over.
  4. Reduce heat and add the onions and fry for 3 minutes.
  5. Add the carrot and cook for 2 minutes.
  6. Add the can of chopped tomatoes to the mince along with the stock cube. Half fill the empty can with water then pour this into the pan. Stir.
  7. Add the Worcestershire sauce and tomato puree then stir well and leave to simmer for 10 minutes.
  8. Drain the potatoes when they are ready. Leave in the colander for a minute to allow steam to reduce a little.
  9. Put the potatoes back into the pan you boiled them in and add the butter and milk before mashing well. You could use a potato ricer if you choose.
  10. Put lamb mix into a pie dish. Divide some of the lamb mince between ramekins if making mini shepherd's pies for your kids. Top with mashed potato.
  11. Place the dish into the oven and cook for 30 minutes until potato has started to brown.
  12. Remove from oven and serve with peas!
Shepherd's pie recipe for babies and toddlers

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