family,  Food

Gluten Free Fireside Pie and Kids In the Kitchen – #BornOnTheFarm

Gluten Free Fireside Pie is the perfect comfort food for March weather. March Break is fast approaching and I don’t know about you but we are likely to be close to home. My older girl is traveling with a youth group, so my younger daughter and I will be hanging out together. Lucky for me, my youngest LOVES to cook and bake with me. I try to encourage that as often as possible. Cooking is a skill for life.


This week we made a Gluten Free Fireside Pie together and it was the perfect comfort food for a Friday evening family dinner. March, might be the start of spring, but the weather is rarely warm. On a typical March Break we might do a day trip, cook or bake a couple of recipes together at home, and then squeeze in some skiing and maybe a movie too. If she’s lucky her friends might be around for a sleepover too.

If there is snow this March break my daughter and I will go skiing. But I don’t think we will travel too far. I adore travel and have done a lot of press trips and personal trips already this year. I don’t adore getting gauged during March Break with flights that are twice the price just because kids and teachers are on spring break. So baking and cooking and skiing sound just right. And Gluten Free Fireside Pie is perfect food for after skiing.


My girls are 15 and 12, almost 13, and they have been great helpers in the kitchen ever since they were small. We started having them wash potatoes, or add things to soups or crockpot meals. Then we slowly evolved over time. Cracking eggs, as long as they wash their hands afterwards, can be fun for any age. Mixing dough is also a treat for children. Flipping pancakes and baking cookies are always fun for toddlers and young children.


If you give kids the responsibility of helping with meals early on they tend to take ownership and enjoy what they make. There can be less fighting over what’s for dinner and, as they grow, it’s nice to see them bake or cook for the family too. My oldest can make meals on her own and sometimes she will if I ask her to do dinner. She has a small but growing list of dishes she enjoys cooking and feels comfortable with making in the kitchen. We are working on my younger daughter too.


My youngest has a few favourite meals she loves to make. One is salmon patties, because they are hands on sensory fun. She has sensory processing disorder, which I have written about here before. Another of her favourites is a tuna casserole. But I am slowly winning her over to a wider range of dishes and recipes. Last year we made salmon a few times together and sautéed asparagus and meals that she LOVED. It doesn’t hurt that she adores shows like MasterChef Canada.


For those of you who don’t know, Fireside Pie is essentially like Shepherd’s Pie, but with cheese and a couple more spices. With this meal, I was able to ask my daughter to help chop the carrots and also make the mashed potatoes that go on top. That is another of her all time favourite side dishes – mashed potatoes. For a bit of a creamier texture we thought we’d add Gay Lea Low Fat Sour Cream to the mashed potatoes. I think it worked. My teen really enjoyed the Gluten Free Fireside Pie.

I think the smile means it met her high standards.


We are not exclusively gluten free but I have been for lengthy periods in the past. Now I try to only have gluten in moderation and I am still working hard on making low sodium foods here for all of us. This fits both those categories. This Gluten Free Fireside Pie recipe is one your kids will be able to help with if you are planning to cook together this spring break.



Gluten Free Fireside Pie and Kids In the Kitchen - #BornOnTheFarm #ad

Paula Schuck
Great Comfort Food, this Gluten Free Fireside Pie is one the kids can help you make for dinner.
4 from 3 votes
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Servings 7 -8 servings


  • 1 1/2 pounds to 2 pounds Lean Ground Beef
  • 1/2 cup of Low sodium Beef Broth
  • 1 teaspoon of tarragon
  • 1/4 teaspoon of fresh ground pepper
  • 5 Potatoes - peeled
  • 12 mini carrots diced
  • 1 teaspoon of thickener - corn starch or potato starch we used cornstarch
  • 1 diced Onion
  • 2 cloves of Garlic
  • 1/2 cup of green peas
  • 2 Tablespoons of Gay Lea Light Sour Cream
  • 1/2 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
  • Optional - add parsnips diced to the vegetables.


  • Heat oven to 350 degrees
  • Brown the ground beef in a frying pan.
  • Add the diced onion and 2 cloves of diced garlic too.
  • Drain any excess fat.
  • Add the beef broth
  • Add tarragon and pepper.
  • Reduce heat and stir.
  • Add a bit of the thickener and stir until broth looks more like gravy
  • Boil the peeled potatoes and the carrots together.
  • Remove the carrots from the water and chop into small pieces.
  • Add the peas to beef and onion mixture
  • Add the carrots to the browned beef, onion mixture.
  • Drain the potatoes and mash them
  • Add the sour cream and keep mashing until smooth.
  • In a long rectangular casserole dish, scoop and place all the beef and vegetables mixture.
  • Spoon mashed potatoes on top and spread them out across the length of the dish. You can make them smooth or leave little peaks on the top to brown.
  • Sprinkle shredded cheddar on top.
  • Put the dish in the oven with foil over it.
  • Cook for about 35 minutes, remove foil and serve.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

This year I am a Gay Lea ambassador and so you will be seeing recipes monthly created with Gay Lea ingredients. I am a fan of Gay Lea products because they are Canadian. Gay Lea is a dairy products cooperative that started in 1958 and is owned by dairy farmers. Their products are born on the farm and that’s what sets them apart.

We use Gay Lea sour cream for a lot of meals and we like this product specifically because it is smooth and fresh. It is also nut free, kosher and only available in Ontario.  There are numerous varieties of this Gay Lea sour cream product. I opted for the low fat version here. You can also buy or use Original, Lactose Free, Fat Free, and Gold Premium. Gay Lea sour cream is a staple for baking, for dips and tacos and potatoes too.

Do your kids help in the kitchen? What are you doing for March Break?

I created this post as a paid ambassador with Gay Lea Foods and PTPA for 2017. My opinion is all my own and it is truthful. I only work with brands I love and use.

Mom of two beautiful active girls, traveller, fitness junkie, social media consultant, and keeper of the sanity.


  • Heather

    This looks like a nice family dinner. I’m a big fan of simple easy and no fuss recipes that I can pop into the oven. We are a busy family during the week so that’s important. This looks yummy too and gluten free to boot!

  • Laura

    This recipe would be perfect to make ahead for my husband’s lunch. He’s always looking for something new to try and this would be super filling.

    • Paula

      That’s exactly what it is perfect for in my opinion. We make extra and save some for lunches. Thanks for commenting!

  • Sandy N Vyjay

    The fireside pie surely looks appetizing. Thanks for sharing the recipe it looks wonderful as well as easy to make. Perfect for a family dinner. Moreover, it would taste great the vegan way as well. I couldn’t be more happier about this recipe!

  • Lisa Favre

    My mouth is watering just with the mention of sour cream. I am always looking for new recipe ideas and all of these ingredients are to my family’s liking! I just like the fact that it doesn’t look too difficult to make. Bravo!

  • Censie Sawyer

    This is a total husband recipe in our house. My husband would be in heave if I made this. This looks like a great one dish/pan meal for a great family meal. Thanks for the idea.

  • NYC Single Mom

    I love that your kids like to cook with and agree its a life skill. Well I have to try your Fireside Pie because it looks super simple to make and delicious. Plus it has ingredients my daughter loves, ground beef, potatoes and sour cream, of course all the better to hide the veggies.

  • Bites for Foodies

    This reminds me, I haven’t made Shepherd’s Pie in a long time!! I think my kids would love it. I usually make a vegan version for me but it’s pretty easy to make two different versions at once.

  • Tiffany

    3 stars
    This sounds and looks great! I think I would actually be able to get my normally picky eaters to eat this without too much debate. Thanks for the recipe !


    4 stars
    Always in need of gluten free recipes because I am in a supper club with some friends, and one of them has Celiac’s. So this will definitely come in handy! I also love that you are sharing the love of cooking with your daughters. Something I wish my mom would have done more with me. I don’t have many of those “family recipes” and kitchen traditions and I wish I did. Good for you!


  • Tamara Bowman

    I agree completely that kids will take responsibility if given the chance to be in charge of meals from an early age. I have a friend who works at a youth outreach and the thing that reaches the kids the most is the fact that they can help plan the meals and have a chance to “take over the kitchen” to prepare it. It makes a huge difference in their attitude and their drive to be responsible.

  • Victoria

    This definitely looks like some real comfort food. I could have used that over the weekend when we were lounging around recharging from our long week. Glad to see it doesn’t take too long to make as well. I may have to give this a try to see how the boys like it.

  • Elizabeth Matthiesen

    5 stars
    This looks absolutely scrumptious and no doubt I’ll be making this in the future. I’m not going anywhere for March break and since my 7 are all adults and have flown the nest so to speak I’ll be able to relax and take it easy – well apart from going for a meal to celebrate my upcoming birthday with 3 of my kids and 4 grandchildren. And then there’s the hockey tournament my 8 yr old grandson is playing in this weekend and I’ll also be taking the dog in. Otherwise I’m hoping it will be calm and peaceful.