Transitioning to solids is such an exciting time in a baby’s – and Mama’s – life. Finally, you get to start playing with food, and trying new recipes! Watching the immediacy and wonder of your baby exploring new flavours and textures is downright adorable, and something many parents look forward to.
Most health care practitioners will tell you to hold off on Baby’s first foods until he or she is about 4 – 6 months old. The Canadian Pediatric Society recommends exclusive breastfeedingfor the first 6 months – where possible – to allow Baby’s digestive system to mature enough to handle solids.
Once you’ve determined that your little one is ready to give it a go you can start experimenting slowly with new foods. It’s particularly important to add new foods to Baby’s diet slowly so as to be aware if there is an allergic reaction. Start with one solid food feeding a day (it will probably be very little – around a tablespoon – watch your baby for cues) and work your way up to several tablespoons daily. Continue with breastmilk or formula during this time.
Below are some tried and true recipes guaranteed to help expand your little one’s delicate new palette and show off your amazing skills in the kitchen.
Baby Avo Dish
Avocados are rich in healthy fats and carbohydrates – essential nutrients for a developing baby. They are also rich in fibre, Vitamin E, B6, potassium and folate. Avocados are listed as one of the 15 foods containing pesticide. They are safe and delicious!
– 1 very ripe avocado
– 1 sharp knife
– 1 Fork
– Using the knife, carefully slice the avocado skin around the pit, pulling the two halves apart. Scoop the avocado out of the inside of one-half and gently mash it with your fork.
Ta-da! You are a kitchen goddess.
Prior to 2010 it was recommended to delay introducing whole eggs until 1 year of age to avoid rare allergic reactions to egg proteins. However, new guidelines published in a joint statement from Health Canada, the Canadian Pediatric Society, Dietitians of Canada and the Breastfeeding Committee of Canada have clarified that whole eggs can safely be introduced at 6 months of age. In fact, they are a great source of protein, fat, Vitamins A, D, E and B12, and folate. Eggs are also a source of choline, which plays an important role in brain development.
– I organic free range egg (or whatever sort of egg you have in your fridge)
– A couple of drops of olive oil
– 1 Frying pan
– Heat the oil in the frying pan and when it’s hot, crack the egg. As it cooks, “scramble” the egg using the spatula. Remove from heat once the egg has cooked through. Allow to cool.
You are practically Martha Stewart.
Apple sauce is often considered an easy first food to introduce as it is fairly easy to prepare and digest. However, apples are considered one of the more heavily pesticide sprayed crops so consider peeling them and/or buying organic. Too much of a good thing can cause problems as well: constipation can result from too much applesauce, bananas, or cereal. Consider introducing pears, peaches and prunes in order to avoid the consternation of constipation.
– 1 ripe apple
– dash of cinnamon (optional)
– 1 small pot of boiling water
– 1 sharp knife
– 1 blender or Magic Bullet (or, in a pinch, a potato masher)
– Set the pot of water to boil (note you only need about an inch of water – enough to just cover the cut apple)
– While the water is heating up, peel and slice the apple into little chunks.
– Once the water is boiling, add the apple and cook until soft.
– Once the apple is cooked, pour the contents of the pot into a blender and puree until smooth. Add a dash of cinnamon for kick (Baby might prefer applesauce plain) and away you go!
NOTE: Before offering food to your youngster, check that it is sufficiently cool: the tried and true method is to use the sensitive skin on the back of your hand or on your cheek. If Baby is fed food while too hot it may turn them off solid food, not to mention hurt them terribly.
Warning: Your baby will assume that you are a highly skilled chef capable of whipping up fancy meals at a moment’s notice. Do not deny this. Own your awesomeness!