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Weaning recipes

 

You can be creative with these fruit and vegetable recipes, just remember not to add any sugar and salt. Your baby will have an innate liking for slightly sweeter foods, but not sugary sweet. The natural sweetness from fruit and vegetables like apples, carrots and sweet potatoes make them good staples to use with less sweet-tasting vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower.

There are no rules about the puree consistency, but most mums start quite smooth. If your baby is eating well and enjoying the new flavours you have introduced, you can quickly progress to mashed and small lumps. This will help your baby get used to having food in their mouth, using their tongue and eventually learn to chew.

 

Basic puree recipes to get you started

Apple & pear

Peel, core and roughly chop 4 essential Waitrose apples or pears.

Place into a saucepan with a splash of water (approx 50ml) and allow to cook gently over a low to medium heat until the fruit is mushy.

Transfer to a bowl and blend with a hand blender to a smooth consistency. Spoon into an ice cube tray, cover and freeze.

Carrot

Peel and roughly chop 4 essential Waitrose carrots.

Place into a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to the boil and allow to simmer until the carrots are soft.

Drain and transfer into a bowl and blend to a smooth consistency.

Spoon into an ice cube tray, cover and freeze.

Potato & squash

Place 1 bag of Waitrose ready diced sweet potato and butternut squash into a saucepan, cover with water.

Bring to the boil and allow to simmer until the vegetables are soft.

Drain and transfer into a bowl and blend to a smooth consistency.

Spoon into an ice cube tray, cover and freeze.

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First tastes (from 4 months)

Papaya and carrot

Heat through 1 or 2 cubes of carrot puree. Take a Waitrose perfectly ripe papaya cut in half, discard the pips and scoop out the flesh. Chop and blend together with the carrot.

Sweet potato, butternut squash and lentils

Heat through 2 cubes of sweet potato and butternut squash. Add a tablespoon of essential Waitrose tinned lentils in water and blend.

 

Mango baby rice

Mix a tablespoon of baby rice with baby’s usual milk to form a smooth paste. Take 3 cubes of Waitrose prepared mango and blend together. Enjoy the rest of the mango yourself!

Carrot, apple and yummy blueberries

Heat through a cube of carrot and a cube of apple. Add a handful of essential Waitrose blueberries to the bowl and blend together.

 

Melon, blueberries and pear

Heat through a cube of pear puree and add a handful of blueberries. Quarter a Waitrose Cantaloupe melon, discard the pips and scoop out the flesh. Add to the pear and blueberries and blend.

Banana, strawberries and kiwi

Peel a small kiwi fruit, chop and place in a bowl. Add 3-4 hulled strawberries and blend together. Mash half a banana and stir into the puree.

 

Apple, pear, spinach and strawberries

Place 2-3 handfuls of spinach and a cube each of the apple and pear (see above) into a small saucepan and heat.

Add 4 hulled strawberries and blend.

 

Pear, apple, pea and avocado

Heat through a cube each of apple and pear.

Halve a Waitrose perfectly ripe avocado and scoop out the flesh from one half and mash with a fork. Mix everything together.

Potato, butternut squash & courgette

Roughly chop half a courgette, place in a small saucepan of water and bring to the boil.

Allow to simmer for a few minutes until soft.

Drain then add a cube each of sweet potato, butternut squash and apple and heat through. Blend.

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Early meals (from 6 months)

Banana, apricot, yogurt and rice

Mash half a banana and place into a bowl. Add 2 tinned apricot halves (essential Waitrose apricot halves in fruit juice) and blend together. Add 2 tablespoons of natural yoghurt and 1 tablespoon of baby rice and mix together.

Sweet potato, beans and cheese

Heat 2 cubes of sweet potato and butternut squash with a tablespoon of kidney beans in water.  Blend then add ½ tablespoon of ricotta or a little grated mozzarella.

 

Beef mince, carrot & tomato

Heat a teaspoon of olive oil in a pan, add a tablespoon of beef mince and cook until browned. Add a tablespoon of chopped tomatoes and a cube of carrot puree to the mince and heat through. Blend.

 

Sweet potato, apple, spinach and chicken

Heat through a cube each of sweet potato and butternut squash and apple.

Place 2-3 handfuls of spinach into a small saucepan, add a splash of water and allow to wilt over a medium heat.

Drain and add to the puree. Add a tablespoon of cooked torn chicken and a splash of rapeseed oil and blend.

 

Sweet potato, broccoli & salmon

Heat through a cube of sweet potato and butternut squash in a bowl.

Place 3-4 spears of broccoli into a saucepan of water and bring to the boil.

Allow to simmer until soft, drain and add to the bowl. Add a tablespoon of flaked poached or tinned salmon and blend.

(Take care to ensure there are no bones)

 

Apple, spinach and white fish

Heat through a cube of apple.

Place 2-3 handfuls of spinach into a small saucepan, add a splash of water and allow to wilt over a medium heat, then drain and add to the puree.

Poach a small skinless white fish fillet in a little milk and cook until the flesh is white and tender, then flake into the bowl and add a splash of rapeseed oil.  Blend together.

 (Take care to ensure there are no bones)

 

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Progressing on...

By the time your baby becomes a toddler, they should be able to eat most family meals that are not too salty or spicy. These would include dishes like cottage pie, fish pie, pasta bake and risottos.

In the interim the progression from blended purees to family meals calls for dishes that are soft or have soft lumps. Include a wider variety of different foods, but still exclude ingredients that should be avoided before the age of 1 year, such as salt.

Fruity turkey with rice

Heat a teaspoon of olive oil in a pan, add a chopped spring onion and a tablespoon of turkey mince, cook until soft and cooked through. Add a cube each of apple and pear and heat through. Mix with 2 tablespoons of boiled rice.

Pork and apple with rice

Heat a teaspoon of olive oil in a pan, add a chopped spring onion and a tablespoon of pork mince, cook until soft and cooked through. Add 2 cubes of apple, heat through and mix in 1-2 tablespoons of boiled rice.

Lamb, apricots & couscous

Heat a teaspoon of olive oil in a pan, add a chopped spring onion and a tablespoon of lamb mince, cook until soft. Add 2 halves of tinned apricots, heat through and mash gently. Mix with 2 tablespoons of cooked couscous.

 

Trout with rice, peas & beans

Boil a tablespoon of essential Waitrose frozen peas, drain and then place in a bowl.

Add a tablespoon of kidney beans and gently mash together. Meanwhile, poach or bake a skinless trout fillet until cooked through and you can form flakes.

Mix everything together with a tablespoon of boiled rice.

(Take care to ensure there are no bones)

Vegetable scrambled eggs

Dice half a courgette, place in a saucepan of water and bring to the boil, allow to simmer until soft.

Wilt a few handfuls of spinach, drain, chop finely into a bowl and add the courgette.

Scramble an egg with a little milk and butter and just before it is cooked through, add the spinach and courgette and cook for a further minute or so.

 

Chickpea & spinach gratin

Heat a teaspoon of oil in a pan and add a chopped spring onion then cook for a few minutes until soft.

Add 2 tablespoons of tinned chickpeas, a tablespoon of crème fraiche and 2 handfuls of spinach leaves, cook for a few minutes to heat through and then roughly mash with a fork or potato masher.

Add a tablespoon of breadcrumbs, a sprinkle of grated cheese and warm through.

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For more information

Download the Department of Health’s policy on introducing solid foods by visiting their website

Visit the NHS Choices website for more information on weaning.

 

When to start
Starting at 4 months
Starting at 6 months
Weaning recipes
Allergy risks
Top tips