Darrol Henry had his first taste of homemade baby food! Here’s what I’ve learned so far about making food for my little babe.
A few weeks ago Darrol Henry was kind of a mess. He was eating constantly and spitting up more than I’d ever seen. Finally, I rushed him to the pediatrician, thinking that he must be sick, and do you know what she said?
She told me that even though he was only 3 1/2 months old, it might be time to start him on a little solid food. Her thinking was that his little baby body couldn’t hold enough formula to satiate him, so he was overeating. That would explain the spitup and the fussiness.
The normal range to start babies on solids is 4-6 months, so 3 1/2 is more than a little bit early. We’re taking things very slow, since he’s so young. So far, Darrol Henry has been eating probably only 1/2 teaspoon a day of his homemade baby food, and so far he’s only eaten one food: sweet potatoes.
Making sweet potato baby food is the easiest thing ever. Are you ready?
1. Bake your sweet potato, let it cool, and then remove the skin. You could skin it first, but once it’s cooled it’s so easy to just pull the skin right off.
2. Toss it into the blender with enough water to make a smooth puree.
When I posted the original version of this at Eat Drink Better a few weeks ago, Darrol Henry was just eating plain sweet potato. Since then, I’ve added a pinch of cinnamon and a dash of ground ginger to my homemade baby food recipe, and he loves it! I’m also planning to start introducing more foods, now that he’s past the 4-month-old mark.
Homemade Baby Food Resources
Dr. Hermann said to give him 12 teaspoons a day, max, to start and then increase it as he seems interested. So far, he’s eating more like 1-2 teaspoons total per day, though he does manage to get about 50 teaspoons’s worth of sweet potato puree on his face and bib!
As he gets bigger, I’m excited about adding even more healthy fruits and veggies to Darrol Henry’s diet! If you’re making your own homemade baby food, too, it helps to have some good recipes, and my pediatrician suggested a few sites that have been a big help:
- Wholesome Baby Food – This site is great! It has recipes and info on how to store and when to feed your baby what.
- Healthy Children – This isn’t so much a recipe resource, but when it comes to sorting out what is safe and how to feed your baby, it’s very helpful.
- Baby Center – I often find Baby Center’s forums confusing and frustrating, but their articles come from credible sources and can be a big help. If you’re not sure where to start with making baby food, they have you covered, even talking about equipment!
What Not to Feed Your Baby
What foods are and aren’t safe for babies is kind of a hot topic, so think of this list as a jumping-off point. You definitely want to talk to your pediatrician about what foods are and aren’t safe for your baby. This is also not a 100 percent complete list – it’s a compilation of what I was able to find online and what my pediatrician said on our last doctor’s visit. Before introducing any new food to your little one, I’d suggest googling it to make sure it’s OK, even if it’s not listed below.
- Peanut Butter – because peanuts and tree nuts are such common allergens, you should wait until your baby is at least a year old, if not 2 years, before introducing it.
- Citrus – the acidity in citrus can cause your baby to break out in a rash. You may want to wait until he is 6-12 months on this one.
- Corn – Another common allergen, wait until your baby is 6-12 months old.
- Milk – dairy can block iron absorption, so waiting until your baby is 1 year old is best.
- Whole Grapes – these are a choking hazard but are OK to feed your baby after 1 year.
- Shellfish – This is another common allergen, so hold off until your baby is 1-2 years old.
- Carrots – Homemade carrot puree is high in nitrates, which can be dangerous for babies. Nitrate poisoning can cause “Blue Baby Syndrome,” where your child becomes unable to absorb the oxygen in his system. Talk to your pediatrician about when it’s OK to introduce homemade carrot puree.
- Wheat – Another allergen. You want to wait until 6-12 months.
Do you make homemade baby food? What are your favorite resources and recipes? I’d love to hear about what you’re feeding your little ones!