Solid baby food can be introduced into the the baby's diet from the sixth month of life onwards. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, babies should exclusively breastfeed from birth to six months, while babies who are not breastfed should be fed infant formula.
It is important to highlight that you should not add salt or sugar to baby food, just as you should not totally purree it or put it through a mixer or sieve. The baby food can be mashed with a fork or scraped with a spoon, to help the baby develop chewing and breathing skills. Eating food in its natural state promotes the baby to recognize the different tastes and textures of food.
New foods should be introduced into the baby's diet gradually. Savory baby food is typically offered at lunch or dinner and is made with fresh vegetables, protein and legumes. Fruity baby food can be offered in the morning morning or as snacks to complement breast milk or formula intake.
Sweet baby food recipes
Sweet baby food is made from fresh, well-washed fruits that are peeled. When preparing baby food, it is important to ensure that no large pieces of fruit remain to prevent the baby from choking.
Some options for sweet baby food are:
1. Apple baby food
In addition to being tasty, apple baby food contains fiber that helps the intestines to function properly. Apples are rich in vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin E which strengthen the baby's immune system.
- 1 red or green apple
- 1 liter of filtered water
Wash the apple thoroughly, remove the peel and seeds and cut the apple into small pieces. Pour the water in a pot and add the apple. Boil for about 5 minutes. When the apple is cooked, remove it from the pan, let it cool and mash it with a fork. Wait for it to cool and serve with a spoon in small portions.
2. Banana and papaya baby food
Banana and papaya baby food is naturally sweet and can be made to prevent and combat constipation. Bananas are rich in fiber, which also helps to add bulk to the stool.
- 1 slice of seedless, unpeeled papaya
- ⅓ of a small banana
Mash the papaya slice with a fork, then on the same plate, mash the banana with a fork, being sure not to mix them together. Serve the fruit separately to the baby, ensuring there are no pieces of fruit left behind.
3. Avocado and pear baby food
Avocado and pear baby food is rich in nutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin B complex, vitamin C, vitamin E and vitamin K. It also has excellent amounts of minerals such as potassium, phosphorus and magnesium, which help to strengthen the baby's immune system and improve bowel function.
- ½ cooked pear
- 2 tablespoons of chopped avocado
Split the pear in half with a spoon and place on a plate. On the same plate, mash the avocado with a fork. Serve the fruit separately and in small portions for the baby.
Savory baby food
Savory baby food is made with vegetables, potatoes, grains, and protein. The food should be able to be mashed with a fork, and the meat should be cooked and shredded. All of the food should be served in small pieces.
Fresh spices and herbs such as onion, garlic, parsley or coriander can be used to prepare the baby food, however, salt should be avoided.
Some options for savory baby food are:
1. Potato and zucchini baby food
Potato and squash porridge is rich in fiber, vitamin A, vitamin B and vitamin C, and minerals such as phosphorus, potassium, calcium and magnesium. These are all nutrients essential for the baby's healthy development.
In addition, squash contains high concentrations of water, helping to hydrate the baby and making it an easy-to-digest vegetable.
- 1 small unpeeled English potato
- ½ small squash
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
- Filtered water
Wash the potato, parsley and squash well. Peel the potato and zucchini, cut them into cubes and place in a pot. Cover the vegetables with water and cook for about 5 minutes or until the vegetables are well cooked. Turn off the heat, drain the vegetables and add the chopped parsley.
Place 1 tablespoon of cooked potato on a plate and mash with a fork. Add 1 tablespoon of cooked squash and mash with a fork. Add 1 tablespoon of protein (chicken, meat or fish) to the dish and mash or shred. Then add 1 tablespoon of beans (black eyed peas, chickpeas, etc.). and mash with a fork. Wait for it to cool and serve the food separately to the baby.
2. Sweet potato and carrot baby food
Sweet potato and carrot baby food is rich in beta-carotene, vitamin A, vitamin B and vitamin C. It also has good amounts of fiber, which help to strengthen the immune system and facilitate optimal intestinal functioning.
In addition, this baby good is a great source of energy for baby's healthy growth and development.
- 1 small sweet potato
- ½ carrot
- Filtered water
How to prepare:
Wash and peel the sweet potato and carrots, cut into cubes and cook in a pot of water over a medium heat for 7 minutes or until very soft. Turn off the heat and drain the vegetables.
Place 1 tablespoon of cooked carrots on a plate and mash with a fork. Add 1 tablespoon of sweet potato and mash with a fork. Add 1 tablespoon of protein (chicken, meat or fish) and mash or shred and 1 tablespoon of cooked pulses (beans, chickpeas or soybeans) and mash with a fork. Wait for it to cool and serve each component separately to the baby.
3. Beet and pumpkin baby food
Beet and pumpkin baby food is rich in nutrients such as beta-carotene, vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, zinc, potassium and calcium, which are essential for bone development, boosting immunity, and protecting the baby's nervous system.
- 1 slice of pumpkin
- 1 beet
- Filtered water
Wash, peel and cut the pumpkin into small pieces. Place the pumpkin in a pot with water and boil over medium heat for 10 minutes or until very soft. Wash, peel and slice the beet. In another pot, cook the sliced beet until soft. Turn off the heat and drain the vegetables.
Place 1 tablespoon of cooked pumpkin on a plate and mash with a fork. Add 1 tablespoon of cooked beet and mash with a fork. Add 1 tablespoon of cooked protein (chicken, meat or fish) and mash or shred, and 1 tablespoon of cooked legumes (beans, chickpeas or soybeans) and mash with a fork. Serve the each food separately to the baby.
4. Rice with chicken and vegetables
Rice porridge with chicken and vegetables is rich in proteins that help build muscles. In addition, this porridge also has good amounts of carbohydrates, providing energy for the baby's development and growth.
- 4 tablespoons of washed and chopped spinach
- 1 tablespoon of washed rice
- ½ small carrot chopped into medium cubes
- 2 tablespoons of diced chicken
- 1 teaspoon fresh coriander, washed and chopped
- Filtered water
Place all the ingredients, except the spinach and coriander, in a pot and cover with water. Cook over medium heat until all the ingredients are very soft. About 3 minutes before fully soft, add the spinach and coriander leaves. Wait for them to warm up.
Place 1 tablespoon of the cooked carrot on a plate and mash. Add 1 tablespoon of the cooked spinach and shred or mash with a fork. Add 1 tablespoon of cooked chicken and shred with a fork. Finally, add 1 tablespoon of cooked rice and mash with a fork, serving each food separately to the baby.