Here are some tips on how to introduce new foods to your 4–6 month old, some tasty recipes and advice for safe storage.
Only introduce a few new foods at a time to your 4-6 month old and leave a couple of days to watch for a reaction, (perhaps a rash on baby's bottom, a rash on their face, diarrhoea, or increased fussiness).
Avoid giving your baby eggs, honey and cow milk before their first birthday. Also any other foods family members are allergic to, as allergies can run in a family. Allowing a baby's digestive system to mature a little longer before introducing those foods may help prevent an allergic reaction.
Although bananas, apple sauce and rice cereal are common first solid foods, they may cause constipation. If this happens foods high in fibre may help: apricots, prunes, peaches, plums, pears and peas.
These baby food recipes don’t need added salt or sugar. Feel free to thin any puree with water, breast milk or formula. You can also thicken with rice cereal to achieve desired consistency.
Peal a ripe banana. Mash to desired texture. You should not need a blender for this.
Avocados do not need to be cooked. Simply peel, remove the pit, and mash. You should not need a blender for this.
Peel the pear. Cut into pieces. Steam cook until tender. Place the fruit in a blender or food processor and puree.
Wash the potato and poke holes in it with a fork. Wrap the potato in plastic wrap and microwave for 5–10 minutes or until tender. Remove the skin. Place in blender or food processor and puree.
Peel, core, and dice desired number of apples. Steam gently in a small amount of water in a saucepan. When tender, use blender or food processor to puree.
Fresh beans: snap ends off and wash. Steam until tender. Puree in blender. Fresh peas: open pod and scrap peas out. Steam until tender. Puree in blender. Frozen beans or peas: cook according to directions on packaging. Puree in blender. Tip: a blender often works better than food processor for beans and peas.
Peel and cut carrots into pieces. Steam until tender. Puree in blender.
Store homemade baby food in your refrigerator for up to 48 hours, or your freezer for up to two months. Freeze food in ice cube trays for easy portions. Be careful when heating baby food in the microwave as foods may heat unevenly.
Remember – when feeding your baby solid foods keep a keen eye for a reaction, introduce healthy foods and store those foods safely. Watch for cues they want more food or are done, and don’t force your baby to overeat.
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