Canned baby food tastes horrible. It has a slightly saltier, bland taste, but cooking and pureeing your own takes forever. That’s why I like to make my baby food from ingredients I don’t have to cook. Besides, any food your baby takes before the age of 9 months is just for practice anyways.
There are many different ingredients you can use to make No-cook baby food, but here are my favorites:
- Berries (Strawberries & Blueberries)
- Baby Spinach
- Apple Sauce (unsweetened)
- Plain Whole-milk Yogurt
I introduce foods like these around 6 to 8 months, but only after they have nursed for as long as they want. At this stage, I serve food as a fun practice time to get them ready to eat solids and start to wean. Some of my children have not shown an interest in food at all until 7 or 8 months and that is fine with me! It just makes introducing food so much easier because they have the ability to chew small pieces of soft food and don’t need everything to be pureed.
My Favorite No-Cook Baby Food Recipes
Why no-cook? There are so many reasons like convenience, nutritional value, and superior taste to name a few. I try to always have a few of these ingredients on hand so I can quickly whip up some food if my child is showing an interest.
They are also great to have for picky eaters who only like to feed themselves. I watch a friend’s baby and she won’t take a bottle or any kind of food, but loves to feed herself. I can easily mash these recipes together with my baby food mill and freeze them in little dots on parchment so she can feed herself.
Finally, if you’ve tried the store bought green vegetable baby food, you are brave. I know that if I can’t stand eating it, my baby probably won’t either. I find frozen or fresh green vegetables taste much better.
Peas and Apple Sauce
I like to introduce a green vegetable first, as that seems to be what most children reject when given a choice. Now, my children will eat frozen peas for a snack. They say they’re just as good as crackers.
For my babies, sometimes I’ll skip the apple sauce and food mill altogether and just see if my baby likes eating frozen peas whole. Babies love to try and pick the bright little green spheres up, so it is a great fine motor exercise as well! If my baby gags a lot, for his first taste I’ll mash up the peas in my food mill and then blend it up with a little apple sauce to taste. Of course you can skip the apple sauce if your baby likes the peas plain.
Avocado and Banana
This is another no-cook recipe that you can give to your baby as a finger food. Although avocados might be a little challenging especially if they are very ripe. This baby food recipe can be mashed in the food mill or blended really smooth if your baby tends to gag. The flavor is mild and sweet, but packs a big nutritional punch with the healthy fats your baby needs for brain development.
Pears and Berries
I like to eat this one myself. If your berries are fresh, they add a little tanginess to the sweetness of the pear. If you have ever tasted the store bought pears, they are very sour for baby’s first taste. Ripe fresh pears have a more mild flavor.
Mango and Baby Spinach
For this recipe, you’ll want to make sure your mango is very ripe so it isn’t too sour for baby. The spinach does lighten the tanginess a bit though. I don’t use very many spinach leaves, just a few for the whole mango, but they really chop up nicely in the blender so your baby won’t choke and you could probably add more.
The great thing about all of these recipes is that you can mix and match all the ingredients. I also like to mix a little plain yogurt with any of these to give my baby’s stomach a little live active cultures.
What are your favorite no-cook baby food combinations?
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