Prepared Meals and Side Dishes for Babies
Baby-friendly holiday recipes may include a variety of prepared sides and meals. Applesauce, for example, can substitute green bean casserole, a holiday favorite. Baby-safe applesauce is often frozen in cubes. You can add spices such as nutmeg or cinnamon to suit your baby's tastes. The sweetness content may be less important for younger babies. Then again, you might have to add extra sugar, too.
When preparing prepared meals and side dishes for babies, always follow proper sanitary procedures to prevent cross-contamination. Cooked foods should be either mashed, pureed, or chopped finely. Avoid uncooked grains, which may be toxic to babies. Also, avoid foods and baked goods that contain honey. Honey may have harmful bacterial spores and can cause serious illness. Canned food should be sterilized before serving.
To introduce meat to your baby, use finely ground chicken. You can also blend leftover shredded chicken with cooked sweet potatoes and peas. If your baby is too young to eat meat, use a pureed version of beef & veggie. Blend the meat and vegetables together with the puree and sneak a taste for yourself. Another popular puree is ratatouille. It features traditional ratatouille ingredients plus a super grain.
Whenever possible, prepare finger foods. Foods that are soft can be easily squished between the fingers of a toddler. Foods that are too hard may cause an allergic reaction, as well as choke the baby. Try to choose foods that have the same consistency as your own. When preparing vegetables or fruits, remember that the consistency of the food should be smooth. Usually, people think about steaming or cooking the vegetables and fruits. However, it is important to know how to make pureed food for babies.
To make purees, push the vegetables through a sieve or strainer. Then, blend the food in a blender or food processor. Alternatively, you can add herbs and spices to the cooked vegetables. Some fruits such as avocados, bananas and ripe berries don't need to be cooked. Simply smash them with a fork and blend them. This way, they won't have to eat a lot of calories.
Tips for introducing new foods to your baby
When introducing new foods to your baby, you may find it easiest to start with a small portion at first. However, it will be important to remember that your baby may not be able to handle larger pieces of food. In order to help your baby build up their iron reserves, try offering a serving of iron-rich foods at each meal. To prevent botulism, undercooked food must be avoided. Also, do not use raw or cooked honey.
To minimize the risk of your baby developing allergies, try introducing new foods to your baby slowly and gradually. It is best to introduce new foods for at least four days at a time. A four-day trial helps identify if your baby is allergic to the new food. Cooked veggies are easier for babies to chew, but avoid letting your baby eat whole raw foods. Instead, make them soft and mashable with a fork.
When introducing new foods to your baby, choose a time of day that is free from distractions. Offer food at least one to two hours before family mealtime. For safety and to show your baby how to eat, try to make your baby sit down for the first feeding. You can place prepared foods on a tray for your baby to explore. Some babies may put the food directly into their mouth, so make sure to watch carefully and supervise.
Regardless of the method of cooking, the texture of new foods should be checked for squishability. A simple test can be performed by pinching it between your fingers. Moreover, cut food into small pieces to minimize the choking hazard. Remember that some raw vegetables and fruits, such as carrots, are choking hazards. Always cook food according to the manufacturer's instructions to reduce the risk of foodborne illness.