Cheesy mince and vegetable bake

Cheese sauce makes everything better in my book! My toddler has been going through a ‘I don’t like courgette’ phase recently. Served this one up and she ate the lot! 1-0 to mummy!! This isn’t a quick dish but the effort pays off I think- it’s delicious!


2 medium carrots

1-2 courgettes

One large onion

2 cloves of garlic

1 small red pepper (I used red and yellow peppers here as I didn’t have enough red alone!)

 500g beef mine

Handful of raisins

One small tin of sweetcorn

1/2 tin of cannellini beans

Parsley (fresh or dried)

45g butter

45g flour

450ml milk

80g cheddar cheese

2 egg yolks

Prep the veg. Thinly slice the carrots, courgettes, pepper and onion. Finely chop the garlic.

In a deep frying pan heat a tablespoon of oil and cook the onion and garlic on a medium/low heat for 5-6mins until soft

Turn up the heat to medium/high and add the mince. Cook until it’s cooked through and keep breaking it up with a spatula or wooden spoon as you go. If you end up with a lot of excess oil in the pan drain it off at this point.

Add the carrots, courgette, pepper and raisins with plenty of black pepper and a little salt. Mix it all together.

Pop a lid on the pan and reduce the heat to low and leave for 20-25mins. At this point you can put the oven on to warm if you plan to cooking straight away.

After 10-15mins you can start making the cheese sauce. Melt the butter in a pan

Add the flour and cook in the butter for a couple of mins

Add the milk a little at a time whisking constantly as you go

Grate the cheese (you can do this earlier if you’d prefer)

Once the sauce has thickened (having stirred it constantly until it did) add the grated cheese and take it off the heat.

In a small jug or bowl whisk the egg yolks with a fork and add 2-3 tablespoons of the cheese sauce. Mix together then pour back into the main cheese sauce mixture and mix in.

After 20-25mins of cooking the beef and veg add in the sweetcorn, beans and parsley and cook for a further 5mins

Pour into an oven proof dish

Pour over the cheese sauce. Half way through give it a stir to make sure it sinks down through the meat and veg then ensure there’s a good layer of sauce sitting on top as well.

Bake in the oven at 180 degrees for 25mins if cooking straight away or 30-35mins if you’re preparing everything hours or a Day in advance. The top should turn golden brown.

Serve! Hubby likes a bit of crusty bread with his but I’m happy eating mine as it comes!

I was pleasantly surprised by how well baby managed this one at only 6 1/2 months old. She scooped it all up in big handfuls and managed to suck it out of her hand really well. Just goes to show that baby led weaning doesn’t have to only be about finger shaped foods!

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