How to sneak veggies into cottage pie

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How to sneak veggies into cottage pie

No judgement here, we know how tough it can be to get kids to eat veggies, which means sometimes dramatic action is necessary. Here are our favourite ways to sneak veggies into cottage pie, so your little ones will be none the wiser.

The base

If we’re honest, the base of a cottage pie is the perfect vehicle for hiding all manners of sneaky veggies. Considering you start with onions, carrots and celery, you’re already off to a great start, and you could simply add more of these than the recipe calls for. Another great addition is grated courgette, which you can add in once your mince is browned, and chopped tomatoes certainly wouldn’t feel out of place here either. Lastly, you could even add some mushrooms, if your kids will eat them – simply chopped and added in along with the beef. And before you even think of topping this, you can also pop some frozen peas or baby spinach in for extra greens.

The mash

Mash is another great accessory for hiding veggies, as long as you stick to the tried-and-trusted smooth texture. If it purees well, it can go into a mash, but one favourite of ours is a half-and-half combination of sweet potato and regular potato. Cauliflower also makes for an excellent mash, which will also bring the carb content down. If you’re looking to add a bit more protein, consider mashing some white beans too. Blitz a drained can of beans with a bit of olive oil and lemon juice and you’ve got yourself a quick and tasty dairy-free mash.

Inspired? These are our favourite cottage pie recipes.

Abi’s gran’s classic cottage pie

Get the recipe for Abi’s gran’s classic cottage pie here.

Beef and cauli mash shepherds pie

Get the recipe for beef and cauli mash shepherd’s pie here.

Korma chicken cottage pie

Get the recipe for Korma chicken cottage pie here.


Jess Spiro Article by: Jess Spiro

Jess Spiro is a freelance food writer, chef and restaurant critic based in Cape Town, who can often be found in search of the next great plate of food. Follow her on Instagram @jess_spiro to see what she's eating.

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