While there are many different options for first foods, some parents may be wondering if they can give their baby strawberries. The answer is yes: babies can eat strawberries as a first food.
In fact, strawberries are a perfect introduction to solid foods for many babies. Strawberries are soft, easy to chew, and full of nutrients. Whether you’re looking to give your baby fresh or frozen strawberries, here’s what you need to know.
Strawberries as a Nutrient Source
Strawberries are what’s known as a “functional food.” This means that its health benefits are above and beyond nutritional needs – with anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative effects.
Below, we’ll break down the main nutritional benefits of strawberries. Whether you’re learning about baby led weaning or updating your puree recipe collection, there are many ways you can introduce strawberries into your little one’s diet.
Fibre is an important aspect of your child’s digestive health: promoting healthy bowel movements and allowing them to feel fuller for longer. For every 100g of strawberries, there is 2g of fibre.
Antioxidants are key in the body’s fight against free radicals. Free radicals steal electrons from other molecules, which can damage DNA and cell membranes as a result. To switch off these destructive effects of free radicals, antioxidants offer up their own electrons: neutralising the negative impact on the body. Strawberries are one of the richest sources of antioxidants in the human diet.
Vitamin C is needed for the body’s production of collagen. Collagen is a fibrous protein found in the body’s connective tissue, nervous and immune systems, bone, and cartilage. Strawberries are recognised as a great source of vitamin C, with approximately 60 mg per 100g of fresh fruit.
Strawberries are packed with other nutrients—they are a healthy and versatile addition to your baby’s diet. As well as including folate in high amounts, strawberries also contain vitamins such as:
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin K
Strawberries also have minerals such as manganese, iodine, magnesium, copper, iron and phosphorus.
How to Serve Strawberries to Your Baby
There are a few different ways you can serve strawberries to your child. Read on to discover our best baby food recipes involving purees, sliced strawberries and more. It may take a little experimentation to find your child’s favourite recipes; but once they discover this sweet and nutritious fruit, they’ll enjoy them for life.
6 Months – 1 Year
From the age of 6 months, strawberries can be included in your baby’s diet: start by pureeing to avoid choking hazards.
13 Months – 2 Years
As your child grows, strawberries can become a tasty snack to fuel their energetic needs. One way to prepare strawberries is in the form of a smoothie! It’s easy to make, and offers great nutrition for your child.
To make a banana and strawberry smoothie, follow the recipe below.
1 large banana
1/2 cup fresh or frozen strawberries
2 tsp wheatgerm (optional)
1/2 cup of prepared formula
1/2 cup low fat strawberry yoghurt
- Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
- Divide between glasses and serve.
For a delicious ice-cream alternative, pour the mixture into ice trays. Place in the freezer until solid.
From the age of two, your child is ready to progress to a much broader range of dishes! While they’re still sure to enjoy the strawberry smoothie recipe above, they’ll likely want to experience more and more diversity in their meals as they explore solid foods.
Enjoy this time, as you watch your infant’s taste buds develop. Their current diet will help shape their eating habits in the future: it’s important to know how to prepare strawberries, so they can learn to enjoy a wide variety of fruits and vegetables.
Benefits of Strawberries for Your Baby’s Diet
When you introduce strawberries to your child through baby led weaning or otherwise, you can help them delight in the joy of new tastes and textures. The sweeter taste of strawberries is something most children enjoy: helping to create a positive relationship with fruit from a young age.
By sparking a lifelong love of strawberries, you can help to promote beneficial effects in your child’s diet.