Ready to dip your toe into the world of purees as your baby starts to eat solids? It’s recommended that iron-rich foods should be introduced first, such as iron-fortified cereals or pureed meat, chicken, fish or legumes. After which, there are no other recommendations on the order of foods to introduce. To complement these iron-rich foods, we’ve got some delicious and nutritious baby puree combinations that your little one will love.
What Constitutes a Puree?
A puree is simply a smooth, consistent texture of mashed or blended food. Baby purees can be either sweet or savoury – or sometimes both – and can mix together various fruits, vegetables, dairy products, grains or meats that are pureed into a smooth consistency, perfect for babies. All baby purees should be easy to swallow and digest, as well as contain essential nutrients for healthy growth and development.
Introducing solid foods to babies is often much easier with purees, as they are easy for your bub to eat and swallow in small mouthfuls. Purees are versatile and can be made using a range of different food types, which allows you to expose your baby to different tastes and textures.
By preparing your own purees, you can also control the quality and nutritional value of your baby’s food intake. By gradually introducing new and varied nutritious pureed food recipes, you can rest easy knowing your baby is getting the essential nutrients to help them learn and grow.
What Age is Appropriate for Purees?
The ideal time to begin introducing purees to infants is at around six months of age, but not before four months. At this time, your baby will often be ready to start tasting and swallowing solid foods, and purees are a gentle and easily digestible way to support their developing digestive system.
Single Ingredient Purees vs. Multi Ingredient Puree
It’s a good idea to start with single-ingredient purees first, as this can help ensure your baby isn’t allergic to any particular ingredient. You can then start mixing different ingredients for more creative and tasty purees.
Be aware that it’s important to wait three to five days between introducing new foods to monitor for any potential allergic reactions.
Nutritious and Delicious Purees for Babies
White Bean and Sweet Potato Puree
White bean puree provides protein and fibre, while the addition of sweet potato offers a good source of vitamins A and C. Together, these ingredients provide a filling and nutrient-dense meal for growing tummies. The natural sweetness of the sweet potato also pairs well with the mild flavour of the beans, making it a tasty option for inquisitive babies.
- 1 small sweet potato, peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup cooked white beans (rinsed and drained if using canned)
- Place diced sweet potato in a steamer basket over a pot of boiling water and steam for 10-12 minutes until soft. Alternatively, boil the sweet potato directly in the pot of water.
- Drain and rinse the white beans and add them to the blender with the cooked sweet potato.
- Add 2–3 tablespoons of water, breastmilk or prepared formula and blend until you have a smooth puree.
- Pour the puree into a container and serve (make sure it’s cool enough for your baby to eat without burning their mouth) or store in your fridge for up to three days.
Swap out sweet potato for other vegetables like carrots, spinach or kale for added nutrients and flavour. Or you can swap the white beans for chickpeas or lentils to provide a different source of protein.
Cheddar Broccoli Puree
Broccoli is a nutrient-dense vegetable rich in vitamins K and C, fibre and iron, which are essential for a baby’s growth and development. Cheddar cheese is a good source of calcium and protein, important for strong bones and muscles. When combined in a puree, the cheese adds a creamy texture and mild flavour that your baby will love. Introducing broccoli early on can also help your little one develop a taste for vegetables, setting a healthy eating pattern for the future.
- 1 cup broccoli florets
- 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- Steam the broccoli florets until they are tender and easily pierced with a fork, about 10–12 minutes.
- Once the broccoli is cooked, transfer it to a blender or food processor. Cool.
- Add the shredded cheddar cheese to the blender.
- Blend the mixture until it reaches a smooth, pureed consistency. If the puree is too thick, add water, breastmilk or prepared formula until it reaches your desired consistency.
- Serve immediately or store in an airtight container for up to three days in your fridge.
You could substitute the cheddar cheese with other mild cheeses like mozzarella or cream cheese. You could also add other vegetables like carrots or cauliflower, or even add some pureed cooked chicken or turkey for a protein boost.
Parsnip and Pea Puree
Peas are a great source of vitamins, minerals and dietary fibre, which aid digestion and promote healthy growth and development. The sweetness of parsnips balances out the strong flavour of the peas and provides additional vitamins and minerals. Pureeing parsnip and peas together creates an easy-to-digest meal that is perfect for introducing your little one to a variety of flavours and nutrients.
- 1 medium-sized parsnip, peeled and chopped
- 1 cup frozen green peas
- Boil a pot of water then add the chopped parsnip. Reduce heat and let the parsnip cook until soft, for about 10 minutes.
- Add the frozen peas and cook for another 2 minutes.
- Drain the water and transfer the parsnip and peas to a blender or food processor.
- Add water, breastmilk or prepared formula as needed to reach the desired consistency.
- Serve the puree immediately or store for up to three days in your fridge in an airtight container.
Instead of parsnips, you can use carrots or sweet potatoes. Alternatively, spinach or kale can be added for extra nutrients and a different taste.
Butternut Pumpkin and Carrot Puree
Butternut pumpkin and carrot puree is a nutritious and delicious option for babies due to its high vitamin A and C content, which support healthy vision, skin and immune system. Butternut pumpkin and carrot are also a great source of fiber, potassium, and beta-carotene. Together, these vegetables create a smooth and slightly sweet puree that can provide your little one with important nutrients for their ongoing growth and development.
- 1 cup butternut pumpkin, peeled and cubed
- 1 cup carrots, peeled and chopped
- Steam the butternut pumpkin and carrots until they are tender.
- Add the steamed vegetables to a blender or food processor.
- Pour in 1/4 cup of water, breastmilk or prepared formula and blend until smooth. If the puree is too thick, add additional liquid in small amounts until it reaches the desired consistency.
- Serve immediately or store in the fridge for up to three days in an airtight container.
Consider adding other root vegetables such as sweet potato or parsnip to the mix. You could also add a pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg for some extra flavour.