Weaning recipes your baby will love
Weaning is both an exciting and somewhat stressful time for parents and for babies alike. It is the stage when you introduce your little one to solid foods, and it can be a big adjustment for everyone. As a baby photographer, one of my most popular sessions is my sitter session. These sessions usually fall around the time that weaning has begun. I have so many conversations with parents who come into my studio about how stressful weaning can be.
With that in mind I decided to put this blog together with some useful weaning information I have picked up over the years working with babies and also as a mother and grandmother. I’ve also included a couple of delicious and easy to make recipes which I’m sure your baby will love.
Always follow the advice of your health visitor. They will help you to decide when is the best time to start weaning – they will also talk to you about choosing baby led weaning, traditional puree feeding or a mixture of both.
Baby led weaning
Baby led weaning is a method of weaning where you allow your baby to feed themselves from the very beginning. Instead of purees, you offer your baby soft finger foods that they can easily pick up and eat. This method encourages babies to explore and learn about different textures and tastes, while developing their fine motor skills.
Advantages of baby led weaning include:
- Encourages self regulation of appetite
- Promotes independence and self feeding skills
- Offers a wide range of textures and tastes
- Can help prevent fussy eating habits
Some easy first foods for baby led weaning include soft fruits and vegetables, such as avocado, banana, sweet potato and steamed carrots.
Recipe: Sweet Potato Fries
- 1 sweet potato
- Olive oil
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
- Wash the sweet potato and slice it into sticks. Keep them chunky so that they are easier for little hands to grip. Don’t bother to peel the potatoes, the skin also helps your baby to hold onto the fries.
- Place the sweet potato sticks on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the sweet potato is soft and lightly browned.
- Allow to cool slightly and serve to your baby.
Traditional Puree/Spoon Feeding
The traditional method of weaning involves pureeing foods and feeding your baby with a spoon. This method allows parents to control what their baby eats and ensures they are getting the right nutrients at the right time. It can also be a more efficient method, as babies can consume larger quantities of food in a shorter amount of time.
Advantages of traditional puree/spoon feeding include:
- Allows for control of nutrient intake
- Can be more efficient than baby led weaning
- Can be a good option for babies who have difficulty self feeding
Some easy first foods for traditional puree/spoon feeding include mashed banana, applesauce and pureed sweet potato.
- 2-3 apples
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- Peel and chop the apples in to small pieces.
- Place the chopped apples in a small pot with enough water to cover them.
- Add the cinnamon and bring to the boil.
- Reduce the heat and let cool slightly.
- Mash the apples with a fork or blend them in a food processor until smooth.
- Serve to your baby.
This recipe can be poured into ice cube trays to freeze in handy sized portions.
Weaning can be a fun and exciting time for both parents and for little ones. Whether you choose baby led weaning or traditional puree/spoon feeding, the most important thing is to offer a wide range of healthy and nutritious foods. Don’t be afraid to get creative in the kitchen and experiment with new flavours and textures. And remember to take tons of photos. Weaning is such a fun time, full of new expressions – its a time when your baby’s personality really starts to shine through. Your photos of this time will capture the most precious of memories.
If you would also like some professional portraits of this amazing time, my sitter sessions are perfect. It’s one of my favourite ages to capture, as babies have so much personality at this stage.
I hope you enjoyed this blog on weaning recipes your baby will love. If you would like to book a sitter session to capture this precious time for you and your family get in touch. I would love to hear from you!
All images in this article were taken by Sage and Eve Photography