Monday, April 4, 2016

Baby's Favorite Foods

Over the past few months it has been so much fun to watch Nolan’s ability to eat more solid and regular foods evolve. Some of his favorite foods today include: avocado, banana chunks, string/shredded cheese, pepperoni slices and basically anything involving pasta. The boy also loves himself some French toast, pancakes and waffles, which is total proof that he is my son.
I must admit that sometimes life can get too crazy to strictly make 100% of Nolan’s baby food, so I supplement and feed him store bought food when needed. For the most part, he gets a healthy balance of my home cooking, fresh produce and regular baby food. As a working mom, there is only so much you can do and that is just alright by me.
One of his favorite foods, which I was impressed and shocked to find, are peas and carrots. You know the frozen bag of pre-cut bite-size peas and carrots? He loves those! I usually take about 1/4 cup of frozen peas and carrots, defrost them in the microwave for 30 seconds with a bit of water, cool them with cold water and let him enjoy. He will go to town on his pile of peas and carrots and gobble them all up! How lucky am I that my son loves vegetables?!?! Hopefully this isn’t a phase and it will stick throughout his childhood. (fingers crossed!)
I’ve talked to a few parents and I must say that I’m pretty lucky. My son is not a picky eater (at this point in his life). Any combination of food I throw his way he eats without questioning. Lately our biggest hurdle is that he insists on feeding himself with a spoon or fork, and that gets messy!
Here are a few of Nolan’s favorite homemade baby food combinations…

Almond Pear
Servings:  approximately 3 cups (6-4 ounce pouches)
  • 6 ripe Pears
  • 2 tablespoons Almond Butter
Peel, core and chop the pears into 1-2 inch pieces. Place in a steamer basket and steam for 12 minutes until soft. Transfer the pears to food processor and add the 2 tablespoons of almond butter. Pulse the food processor until desired consistency. Store in food pouches or freezer safe containers.

Gingered Carrots & Cauliflower
Servings: approximately 2-1/2 cups (5-4 ounce pouches)
Recipe from Real Baby Food by Jenna Helwig
  • 5 large Carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch thick coins
  • 2 cups Cauliflower florets
  • 1/8 teaspoon Ground Ginger
Place the carrot coins and cauliflower florets in the basket of a steamer. Steam for 15 minutes until tender. Transfer the vegetables to a food processor and add the 1/8 teaspoon of ground ginger. Pulse the food processor until desired consistency of puree. You may need to add 1/4 to 1/2 cup water to the processor to assist with proper consistency. Store in food pouches or freezer safe containers.

Tropical Smoothie Blend
Servings: approximately 4 cups (8-4 ounce pouches)
  • 1 pound frozen Tropical Mixed Fruit (I used Dole’s Wildly Nutritious Mixed Fruit Blend with Strawberries, Pineapple, Peaches and Mango)
  • 1 Banana
  • 6 ounces Pineapple Juice
Thaw the 1 pound bag of frozen topical fruit and place fruit in the bowl of the food processor. Add the banana and pineapple juice. Pulse the food processor until desired consistency. Store in food pouches or freezer safe containers. Serve as is or blended with Greek yogurt.

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