5 Recipes to Start Baby-Led Weaning

babel · June 28, 2022
If you want to start baby-led weaning with your infant, take a look at the recipes we've prepared for you in the following article.

Do you want to start baby-led weaning with your little one? Following recipes for your baby to learn to eat with their hands is key to achieving better acceptance of different food textures. This way, your child will be able to recognize and assimilate them from the early stages of life, which will help prevent rejection in the future. For this reason, baby-led weaning is the feeding method increasingly recommended by experts, as it allows children to acquire healthy and lasting eating habits.

However, it’s important to offer the child preparations suitable for picking up with their hands and above all, avoid those products that can increase the risk of choking. At the same time, it’s important to offer healthy and high-quality foods to meet all their needs in this stage of great growth.

Here are some practical recipes to implement this feeding method today. Take note!

Read also: What’s Best: Pureed Baby Food or Baby-Led Weaning?

3 great recipes to start baby-led weaning

1. Avocado with coconut, one of the easiest recipes to start baby-led weaning

Fresh avocado.
Avocado is a food full of essential nutrients for the proper functioning of the infant body.

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • Shredded coconut, quantity needed

Step-by-step instructions

  1. Scoop out the flesh of an avocado and cut it into slices lengthwise.
  2. Lightly coat them in shredded coconut to improve the consistency when the little one grabs them.
  3. Offer them on a plate and enjoy!

Why include this dish in your baby’s diet?

You should know that avocado is a very complete food and it’s an exquisite source of fatty acids of the omega-3 series. These elements have been shown to support the proper process of brain maturation, as evidenced by research published in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology.

2. Cinnamon and banana pancakes

Pancakes and banana slices.
Bananas are a source of fiber and high-quality prebiotics, which help to improve the health of the intestinal microbiota.

Ingredients

  • One egg
  • One ripe banana, mashed
  • Cinnamon powder, one tablespoon

Step-by-step instructions

  1. Break an egg into a bowl and beat it.
  2. Then, add a mashed banana and a little cinnamon and stir well until you obtain a liquid mass.
  3. Then, coat a frying pan with butter and introduce small portions of the dough into it.
  4. Cook them well on both sides and let them cool before offering.

Why include this dish in your baby’s diet?

This is a recipe that has several essential nutrients and will improve the functioning of the digestive system thanks to its high prebiotic content.

3. Bread with vegetables and Parmesan cheese, a favorite recipe for baby-led weaning

Fresh parmesan bread.
This dish combines animal and vegetable proteins and is a much more complete alternative to traditional bread or sliced bread.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup cornflour
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 zucchini, 1 carrot, and a handful of boiled spinach

Step-by-step instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 340 degrees and spray a baking pan with oil.
  2. In a bowl, mix the plain flour, cornflour, cheese, baking powder, and baking soda (dry elements).
  3. In another smaller bowl, pour the eggs, buttermilk, and olive oil (wet ingredients).
  4. Integrate the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients and stir everything well to unify.
  5. Then add the spinach, zucchini, and carrots, all cut into small pieces.
  6. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out dry.
  7. Let cool well and serve.

Why include this dish in the baby’s diet?

Cheese provides proteins of high biological value, which are essential nutrients to ensure the correct growth and development of children. If there’s a deficit of these elements, the infant’s health could be seriously affected.

At the same time, vegetables provide fiber, vitamins, minerals, complex carbohydrates, and proteins. As for olive oil, it offers excellent quality fatty acids.

4. Banana pasties, one of the recipes for any occasion

Homemade empanadas.
If you have an event away from home and don’t know what to offer your baby, take along these empanadillas to ensure a healthy and delicious meal for your little one.

Ingredients

  • Puff pastry dough
  • 1 banana
  • Manchego cheese, one portion
  • 1 tablespoon cream cheese
  • Orange zest
  • 1 egg

Step-by-step instructions

  1. Roll out a puff pastry dough and cut it into individual wafers.
  2. Place a couple of banana slices, a triangle of Manchego cheese, and a tablespoon of cream cheese in the center of each wafer.
  3. Grate some orange peel over the top and close the pasties.
  4. Coat them with beaten egg and bake them in the oven at 200 degrees for 10 minutes.
  5. When cool, offer them to your little one.

5. Chicken croquettes

Chicken crochettes in a bowl.
Chicken is a meat that’s suitable for consumption from the beginning of complementary feeding. However, always prioritize that which comes from farm animals that have been raised in a natural way and without hormones.

Ingredients

  • 8 cups of milk
  • 1 cleaned chicken breast
  • 2 slices of cooked ham (only for children over 1 year old)
  • 1 glass of olive oil
  • 2 glasses of plain flour
  • Salt and nutmeg (only for people over 1 year old)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of bread crumbs

Step-by-step instructions

  1. Put the milk in a casserole and put the raw chicken breast in it to cook it.
  2. Then, drain it, let it cool, and cut it into small pieces.
  3. At the same time, clean the ham, remove the fat and chop it very finely.
  4. Place the extra virgin olive oil in a frying pan, then add the flour and stir with a whisk.
  5. Gradually add the milk from cooking the chicken, stirring constantly until it thickens. Add a little salt and nutmeg and also add the chopped chicken and ham.
  6. After about 10 minutes remove the preparation from the heat and when the dough is cold, make the croquettes with your hands.
  7. Dip them in flour, egg, and breadcrumbs.
  8. Fry everything in plenty of virgin olive oil and let them cool before serving.

Prepare these recipes to start baby-led weaning

As you’ve seen, there are many options of recipes to start baby-led weaning. All the dishes we’ve shown you have a high nutritional density, so they can be included in the context of a varied and healthy diet. In addition, they’re not difficult to prepare and are quite economical.

Remember that to maintain a good state of health with the passage of time, it’s crucial to establish good dietary habits from the beginning. Therefore, it’s best to take advantage of childhood to promote variety and quality in food intake every day.

  • Chang, J. P., Su, K. P., Mondelli, V., & Pariante, C. M. (2018). Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids in Youths with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: a Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Clinical Trials and Biological Studies. Neuropsychopharmacology : official publication of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology43(3), 534–545. https://doi.org/10.1038/npp.2017.160
  • Richter, M., Baerlocher, K., Bauer, J. M., Elmadfa, I., Heseker, H., Leschik-Bonnet, E., Stangl, G., Volkert, D., Stehle, P., & on behalf of the German Nutrition Society (DGE) (2019). Revised Reference Values for the Intake of Protein. Annals of nutrition & metabolism74(3), 242–250. https://doi.org/10.1159/000499374