16 Healthy, Wholesome & Homemade Baby Food Recipes

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16 Healthy, Wholesome & Homemade Baby Food Recipes

Further eroding the trust between consumer and corporation, a new report by the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) has found detectable levels of lead in baby foods.

Published in June 2017, the EDF analyzed 11 years of data from the FDA and discovered that 20% of 2,164 baby food samples contained lead. Grapes, apples, pears, sweet potatoes, carrots, arrowroot cookies, and teething biscuits were among the worst offenders.

There is no safe level of lead exposure. Consumption of lead by infants and young children is especially alarming because it can cause lifelong behavioral problems and diminished intelligence. Though lead is found naturally in soil, the uptick in lead contaminated foods is caused by decades of pesticide use.

The Benefits of Making Baby Food:

The advantages of preparing your own supply of baby food go well beyond reducing your child’s exposure to lead:

You have control over the quality of ingredients that go into the food. Commercial baby foods are processed with high heat to destroy bacteria which means that much of the vitamins and nutrients are also destroyed in the process. For the most nutritious and wholesome baby food, use fruits and veggies you grow yourself. If that’s not possible, opt for organic produce and foods on the clean fifteen list.

Reduce packaging waste by stowing baby foods in glass jars or ceramic containers. It’s much kinder to the planet and will also prevent your child from ingesting chemicals that can leach out of plastics into the food.

It’s much more cost effective than purchasing jarred foods and pouches.

Making baby food isn’t too difficult or time-consuming, especially when you whip it up at the same time you are fixing a meal for the rest of the family. You can spoon purees into an ice cube tray and pop it in the freezer for quick and single-servings.

Wholesome & Nutritious Baby Food Recipes:

At around the 4 to 6 month mark, your baby is ready to start eating solid foods. As long as they can sit upright, hold their head up, and seem interested in food, you can begin spoon-feeding 1 to 2 tablespoons of solid food per sitting. This is a good time to be mindful of allergies so stick with single-ingredient foods to help rule out any intolerance, then you can mix and match ingredients. Making one-ingredient purees is a snap, just mash them up with a fork or give them a quick spin through the food processor.

Once your child reaches 8 months and older, they are ready for more adventurous foodstuffs. Start by slowly introducing spices, meats, dairy, wheat, and other thick and textured foods.

1. Green Bean, Potato, and Kale Puree

Chock full of vitamins C and K, iron, and beta carotene, this mash up of beans, potatoes, and kale includes healthful chicken stock and fresh parmesan cheese.

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2. Yogurt & Berry Swirl

Introduce dairy to your baby’s diet with whole-milk yogurt without added sugars of flavors. Top with a warmed puree of blueberries and raspberries.

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3. Chicken & Apple Puree

A simple two-ingredient recipe, apple slices and chicken breast are first steamed and then processed until smooth. Drop into an ice cube tray to freeze individual portions.

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4. Baby Cereal

Healthful whole grains like brown rice, barley, oats, or pastina are rich in protein, fiber, micronutrients, and antioxidants. Whip them up with bananas, raisins, or apples.

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5. Healthy Teething Biscuits

Provide some relief for your baby’s sore gums with chewy 3-ingredient teething biscuits, made with dry oats, banana, and coconut oil. This freezer-friendly recipe makes 12 cookies – but be sure to round out the edges so there aren’t any sharp corners.

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6. Carrot Beet Soup

Naturally sweet and easy to digest, root vegetables like carrots and beets are high in vitamins, iron, and fiber. Made with a pressure cooker, this recipe is ready to slurp in just 10 minutes.

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7. Sweet Potato & Carrot Fries

An excellent recipe if you choose to go the baby led weaning route, sweet potatoes and carrots are sliced into thick pieces, tossed in olive oil and paprika, and roasted in the oven for 35 minutes.

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8. Broccoli & Cauliflower Cheese

Tasty enough to serve to the whole family, this casserole is made with cauliflower and broccoli florets (chopped into small pieces) covered in gooey white cheddar cheese.

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9. Tomato & Avocado Scramble

Easy to adapt to your child’s fledgling tastes, scrambled eggs can be fried with diced tomato and avocado but feel free to substitute with any meat, cheese, and veggie combo.

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10. Baby Popsicles

Perfect on a hot day or to just numb those sore gums, baby pops come in two varieties: mangoes, bananas, and coconut milk or peaches, yogurt, and banana.

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11. White Fish, Carrot & Leek Puree

Give your baby’s developing mind a good head start in life with a diet enriched with fish. It’s a brain food that is rife with omega-3 fatty acids that will help boost cognitive function, concentration, and vision.

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12. 3 Cheese Mac

A good source of calcium to keep bones growing strong, this 10-minute recipe is made with parmesan, gruyere, and mascarpone cheese with mini pasta shells.

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13. Mexican Fiesta Stew

This vegetarian and freezer-friendly recipe offers a nutritious medley of onions, sweet peppers, corn, tomatoes, brown rice, and black beans.

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14. Pea Fritters

Yummy hot or cold, little green pancakes are made with peas, eggs, and self-rising flour. Jazz em up with optional add ins like feta cheese, parsley, and spring onions.

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15. Yogurt Melts

A copycat recipe of Gerber’s yogurt melts, this homemade adaptation cuts the sugar out for a healthier treat. It’s super easy too, just blend up your little one’s favorite fruit along with plain yogurt, portion them out on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and freeze.

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16. Banana Sushi

A creative take on PB&B, this 5-minute job uses softened tortillas spread with peanut butter and sprinkled with cinnamon. Wrap the tortilla around a ripe banana and slice them up into one-inch rolls.

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