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shepherd's pie puree cooked in mason jars

I just love celebrating holidays with family. Even if your baby is technically too young to understand what is exactly going on, I believe food traditions are an important part of a child's upbringing. Now in our family on St. Paddy's Day, we usually do Corned Beef & Cabbage but Corned Beef has nitrates in it and if you make it with brisket, it has sugar... Not ideal food inclusions in this 1st year! HOWEVER, Shepherd's Pie has its roots in Ireland and is comfort, home-cooked food at its best! Plus, once the idea to cook it in mason food jars struck I couldn't think of any other St. Paddy's meal that would be better... I mean really?! So freaking cute in the jars! Let's bring the luck of the Irish to this tasty 1st holiday, shall we? 

I'd love to hear what you think of the recipe or see your pictures! You can comment here or tag us @simplebabyfoods on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter!



Side note: this can absolutely be made as a toddler meal, big kid meal or family meal! We are using 4 oz jars for the baby food - but throw a little salt in the meat & potatoes, put it in a bigger jar and you are good to go!

Also, there are contradictory statements on the safety of cooking in mason jars. If you are worried about the glass, you can use a water bath. Be sure not to put the jars straight from the oven into the cold, as this could cause the jar to crack - let it cool completely before refrigerating. Make sure to check the mason jar for any cracks, etc before feeding. I had absolutely no problem with any of this with my jars... but better to be SAFE THAN SORRY!

shepherd's pie puree

  • This is a stage 2 puree (8+ months). Always ask your pediatrician before introducing new foods.
  • This can be made into a family meal
  • BEWARE it will be HOT when coming out of the oven. IT WILL NEED TO COOL BEFORE SERVING!
  • Freezes for up to 3 months

prep time:

10 minutes

cook time:

35 minutes

total time:

45 minutes


about 2 lb. of puree - 2 (16 oz) ice cube trays or 8-10 4 oz mason jars/simple pouches.


beef mixture :

  • 1 lb ground beef (we used top sirloin 90%/10%)
  • 2 carrots
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn
  • 1 shallot
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp rosemary
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 2 tsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbl flour
  • 1 cup no-salt chicken broth
  • 2 tbl extra virgin olive oil
  • onion powder, garlic powder & pepper to taste

mashed potatoes: 

  • 1.5 lbs russet potato
  • 1/2 cup cream/milk
  • 5 tbl no-salt butter
  • pinch of paprika
  • onion powder, garlic powder & pepper to taste


beef mixture (this can be done in tandem with the potatoes to cut down on cooking time):

  1. Dice shallot. Wash, peel & small dice 2 carrots. Chop garlic, rosemary & thyme.
  2. Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees. 
  3. Heat olive oil in a saute/sauce pan over medium heat. Once shimmering, add shallot & carrot. Cook for 2 minutes then add garlic. Cook another minute.
  4. Add the ground beef with a pinch of onion powder, garlic powder & pepper and brown. (3-6 minutes) 
  5. Drain the fat. Add flour & stir to coat. Add tomato paste. Cook for another minute. 
  6. Add rosemary, thyme & chicken broth. Stir to combine. add in corn & peas. Bring to a boil, then simmer until the sauce thickens (about 10 minutes).
  7. Transfer to your blender and pulse to desired consistency.  
  8. If baking in mason jars, fill them 1/2 way with the mixture. If cooking this for the family place the mixture in a casserole dish. If mixing into pouches/trays set aside - no additional baking will be necessary. 
  9. Once the potatoes have been layered on top, brush reserved melted butter butter & a pinch of paprika on top. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes until the potatoes are golden brown. 
  11. Serve! If you plan on serving at a later time, make sure the jar is completely cool before you put it into the refrigerator. Extreme temperature changes could make the jar crack. 

mashed potatoes: 

  1. Wash, peel & cut potatoes into large chunks. Place in a pot of cold water. Bring them to a boil, then turn down slightly & cook for 10-12 minutes. Until fork tender. 
  2. Drain the water & put potatoes in a bowl. Hand mash (do not put into a blender, they will become gooey) with cream/milk, 4 tbl of butter (reserving 1 tbl melted butter) , pinch of garlic powder, onion powder & pepper. 
  3. Fill the top half of the mason jars with the potatoes or layer on top of beef mixture in a casserole dish. If you are using ice cube trays/pouches you can mix the potatoes & beef mixture together now and pouch - no additional baking is necessary. 

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

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