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Finger Foods and Complex Purees: Baby Food Recipes for 9-12 Months

Category: Baby Feeding
July 19, 2016

As baby nears the end of their first year of life and gets more adept at eating solids, you can start bringing in foods that actually look like Mom and Dad’s meals.  While many meals will still end up going through the blender, as long as your little one is chewing with no problems, this next step will serve the whole family well!  Here are a few great baby food recipes to try in the third stage of introducing baby to solids.

Baby Food Recipes : Beef StewBeef Stew

Baby’s probably tried other soups before now, but beef stew’s a more complex option.  Fortunately, a slow cooker and a blender will get you a great stew with minimal effort.

1 small onion, diced
4 cups vegetable stock
5-6 small red potatoes, diced
½ lb. lean beef, diced
1 sprig of fresh thyme

Add all ingredients to a slow cooker and simmer 5-6 hours on low. Let stew cool once completely cooked. Remove thyme stem and add to food processor. Puree until you reach desired consistency.  Cool in ice cube trays or cupcake tins. Freeze, remove from tray, and store in freezer bags or reusable plastic containers.


Baby Food Recipes : Blueberry Dill PureeBlueberry Dill Puree

This puree is simple to make, and easy to spruce up with cottage or ricotta cheese, couscous, rice, or orzo pasta for more fun textures.

4 oz or ¼ pint blueberries
1-2 pinches dill

Place berries and dill in a food processor and purée.


Baby Food Recipes : Carrots and Parsnips PureeCarrot and Parsnip Puree

Another fun puree to serve by itself, or alongside cheese, yogurt, or pasta.  Delicious and nutritious!

1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 parsnip, peeled and chopped
1 tbsp. room-temperature water
Small pinch of salt

Place all ingredients in a small saucepan.  Cover and cook over low-medium heat for around 5-6 minutes, or until vegetables are easily pierced with a fork.  Purée, and let cool slightly before serving to baby.


Baby Food Recipes : Macaroni and CheeseMacaroni and Cheese

It’s finally time for many kids’ favorite lunch to make an appearance!  Adding a pureed vegetable gives it an extra nutritious punch to help baby get everything they need, and you can even add broccoli, peas or other vegetables once it’s all mixed.

1 box (8 oz.) whole wheat macaroni pasta
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups milk, warmed
½ cup canned pumpkin, or pureed sweet potato or squash
1 cup grated mild cheddar cheese
Pinch freshly grated nutmeg (optional)

Cook pasta in large pot of boiling water according to package instructions, about 8-9 minutes. Drain and set aside in large bowl.
For the cheese sauce, melt butter over medium-low heat in a saucepan. Once completely melted, add the flour little by little, mixing with a whisk to prevent lumps. Cook flour and butter mixture for about 3 minutes, but do not brown. Remove from heat and slowly add milk; mix with whisk until well combined. Cook for about 5 minutes, until the sauce is thick and coats the back of a spoon. Add nutmeg and pumpkin. Remove from heat and add grated cheese; stir until cheese is completely melted and sauce is smooth.
Pour cheese sauce over cooked pasta. Mix sauce and pasta until well combined. The mixture may appear a bit soupy, but the pasta will absorb more of the cheese sauce as it sits. Once cooled, chop slightly in food processor for small babies or keep whole for toddlers. Serve immediately or freeze in ice cube trays or cupcake tins.

Baby Food Recipes : Pork and Vegetables Pork and Vegetables

Your little one will love this delicious, nutritious meal that’s edging closer to what their parents are having for dinner.

200g (about ¾ cup) minced pork
2 tsp. olive oil
300ml unsalted stock
1 can chopped tomatoes
50g (about ¼ cup) onion, quartered and chopped
100g (about ½ cup) celery, chopped
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 bay leaf
1 small zucchini, sliced
1 tbsp. corn flour
1 tbsp. water

Fry the pork in olive oil until well browned. Add the stock, then stir in tomatoes, onion, celery, oregano, garlic and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer for 40 minutes. Stir in the zucchini and return to boil, then simmer on reduced heat for 5 minutes. Mix the corn flour with the water and stir into the pork mixture. Continue to cook until the gravy thickens. Allow to cool and purée to desired consistency. Serve with mashed potatoes or pasta.

Baby Food Recipes : Potato PancakesPotato Pancakes

Cut these up when you’re done and start baby on finger food right!

350g (about 1 ½ cups) potato, peeled and grated
50g (about ¼ cup) onion, quartered and chopped
pinch freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp. butter

Mix together potato, onion and pepper in a bowl. Melt the butter in a small pan. Place the potato mixture into the pan and spread evenly, flattening with the back of a large spoon. Cover the pan and cook over low heat for 15 minutes, until the underside is golden. Remove from heat; flip pancake using two spatulas or similar utensils. Return pan to heat but do not cover. Cook for another 15 minutes, until both sides of the pancake are golden brown.


Not only is soup still on the menu, but this is a good time to start making your little one some more complex soups.  As long as they’ve already tried all the ingredients without problems, you can move on from one-ingredient broth!

Baby Food Recipes : Asparagus SoupAsparagus Soup:

2 tbsp. olive oil
1 medium potato, peeled and diced
500ml vegetable stock
50g (about ¼ cup) onion, quartered and chopped
450g (about 2 cups) asparagus

Cut the asparagus into chunks, discarding any stringy parts and the tough ends of the stalks. Next, soften the onions in olive oil in a pan over a medium heat, then add the potatoes, asparagus and stock. Cover and simmer for 20 mins. Finally, blend the soup until smooth and serve with pieces of toast.

Baby Food Recipes : Chicken SoupChicken Soup:

1 tbsp. olive oil
1 stalk celery
1 medium onion
2 medium carrots, peeled
1 clove garlic, minced
4-5 boneless skinless chicken thighs
4 cups chicken stock
1 cup whole grain ditalini or other small pasta
1 cup frozen green peas

Dice celery, onion and carrots into ¼ inch cubes and set aside. Heat olive oil in large stock pot on medium-high heat. Dice chicken in ¼ inch pieces and add to pot. Sauté until thoroughly cooked, for about 8 minutes. Remove chicken from pot and set aside.
In same pot, sauté onions, carrots, celery and garlic for 6-7 minutes on medium heat, or until vegetables are tender. Add chicken stock, pasta, and frozen green peas and simmer until pasta is thoroughly cooked, for about 10-12 minutes.
Once mixture has cooled, add to blender and puree to desired consistency.  Distribute mixture evenly into ice cube trays or cupcake tins for storage, based on desired portion size.

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July 19, 2016