Banana Mash

BANANAS

What better post to post after apples? Bananas! Apples and bananas, I like to eat, eat, eat apples and ok I have children songs constantly stuck in my head now that I’m a mom. The easiest food to puree for your little one because it takes absolutely no cooking, baking, steaming, etc. You just mash it up straight out of the peel and you’re good to go!

HOW TO MAKE BANANA PUREE

What Kind of Bananas Should You Use to Make Banana Puree for Your Baby?

Many may think that the yellow banana is the perfect banana to puree for their little one. Yet, in reality the healthier option for your baby is a banana with more brown spots. Think of these brown spots as little immune system boosters for your baby, providing rich antioxidants for your child. These brown spots may also protect not only your baby but also adults from cancer. They have been linked to Tumor Necrosis Factor, which is known for destroying tumors!

Homemade baby banana puree www.herbnsage.org

In a poll conducted by the Times of India regarding the healthiest banana to eat, the healthiest banana is when the banana is completely brown. When a banana turns completely brown most of us tend to discard them because we think they have gone bad. When in reality, the brown bananas are the powerhouse of antioxidants! However, while brown bananas are extremely high in antioxidants, all the starch in the banana has broken down into sugar so it is high in sugar.

When to Buy Bananas?

The banana flower usually starts appearing in June and July, but unlike other fruits like apples that having a growing season, bananas do not. Bananas are available year round! Making a perfect and inexpensive fruit to puree or add to thicken other vegetable or fruit purees that you make.

How to Prepare Banana Puree

STEP 1

Peel the Banana

Homemade baby banana puree www.herbnsage.org

STEP 2

Cut Up the Banana

Homemade baby banana puree www.herbnsage.org

STEP 3

Mash the Banana

Homemade baby banana puree www.herbnsage.org

STEP 4

Reheat the Bananas

If frozen, warm the frozen banana puree in a microwaveable safe dish (I like to use the OXO Tot baby block glass container for heating up my baby’s food) in the microwave for 30 seconds (pausing half way to stir). At the moment I like to use 8 honeycomb cubes for my baby (about as much as she eats at the moment per feeding). Make sure the banana puree is not too warm/hot before feeding your baby! You can also reheat over the stove as well.

You can also combine other whole foods in your baby’s puree that you have previously frozen, for optimal flavor and nutrients. The following list is a general guide, so feel free to be adventurous and combine and build your own meals for your little one:)

Banana Flavor Compatibility Guide

ApplesApricotsBroccoliCantaloupe
Honeydew MelonAvocadosFigsKale
CarrotsAsparagusCantaloupePapaya
MangoesKiwifruitBlueberriesPeaches
BlackberriesPearsPlumes/PrunesChard
RaspberriesStrawberriesSplit PeasSweet Peas
Green BeansCherriesNectarinesParsnips
Sweet PotatoesSpinachSummer SquashWatermelon
Winter SquashPumpkinWhole GrainsCereal

If you have read my post on the importance of probiotics for your child (linked here); you can sprinkle a little probiotics on top of your homemade baby food for added nutritious value.

If you make something from Herb’n Sage, I would love to hear about it in the comments! Don’t forget to rate this recipe and follow along on Instagram and Youtube for more recipes and inspirations for your creations for your little loved one(s)<3

Bon Appétit!

-xoxo Sage

Banana Puree

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: Very Easy
  • Print

Homemade Baby Banana Puree is so easy to make and tastes so much better than store bought varieties!

Ingredients

  • 1 spotted brown banana

Directions

  1. Peel the banana
  2. Slice up the banana with a knife
  3. Mash the banana up with a spoon or fork
  4. Freeze excess banana puree in the freezer (I like to freeze my purees in these silicone trays)

*Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning, at NO additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Thank you for helping a mama out:)

Apple Puree

APPLES

We are getting into Fall Season now, my favorite! So what better puree to make than apple puree? Apples are such a delicious first solid food to feed to your little one because they’re sweet and so versatile with a lot of other fruits and veggies and even meats!

HOW TO MAKE APPLE PUREE

What Kind of Apples Should You Use to Make Apple Puree for Your Baby?

Fall season is the perfect season to pick up apples at your local food market because of how inexpensive and plentiful they are. Look for firm apples that don’t have blemishes, holes, or bruises. Apples that give when you poke them will be unappetizing and mushy. You want juicy, crisp, flavorful apples that are sweet in flavor. Try to choose Gala, Fuji, or other sweet apples. Stay clear of sour/tart varieties of apples such as Granny Smith.

apples www.herbnsage.org

When buying apples, or any produce for your baby, I always recommend buying organic if it’s available. According to the EPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency), “Children’s internal organs are still developing and maturing and their enzymatic, metabolic, and immune systems may provide less natural protection than those of an adult. There are ‘critical periods’ in human development when exposure to a toxin can permanently alter the way an individual’s biological system operates. Children may be exposed to more certain pesticides because often they eat different foods than adults.” Organic foods are a smart choice for your little one because it protects their health from future illness and disease.

Apples unfortunately are part of the “dirty dozen”, which are foods with the highest pesticide residue. Buying organic helps to avoiding the exposure of pesticides.

Wash and Peel the Apples

I always wash the apples first and then peel them after washing. This is because I don’t want to push any dirt, pesticides (non organic) or other unwanted contaminants that can be living on the outside of the apple with the peeler tool.  After I peel them I do give them a quick little rinse too.

Apples for baby puree www.herbnsage.org

Apples should be peeled for babies that are younger than 8 months. Peeling the apples ensures that your baby’s stomach does not get upset because it is harder for younger babies to digest the peelings.

Peeled apples for applesauce or baby puree www.herbnsage.org

How to Cook the Apples

I love making this apple puree recipe because it doubles as puree for my baby as well as applesauce for mommy and daddy;) I love steaming the apples, but you can also always bake/roast the apples as well. Try avoiding boiling the apples because this can reduce the amount of nutrients that the apples normally provide.

Peeled apples www.herbnsage.org

STEP 1

Steam the Apples

Chop the apples up into once inch cubes; making sure to remove the core and seeds.

Chopped up apples www.herbnsage.org

Next steam the apples by filling up a pot with about one inch water and placing the steamer basket filled with the apples on top. Steam on the stove for about 20 minutes (or until tender) on med/low. Make sure that the water does not reach the bottom of the steamer basket or you will end up boiling it instead of steaming it!

Steaming apples www.herbnsage.org

Other options to consider are steaming your apples in a microwave or pressure cooker.

STEP 2

Blend the Apples

Using my Blendtec (always blends my baby purees perfectly), I blend the apples until they’re a silky smooth puree. When your baby first starts on solids, you want to blend their food to being silky smooth because they are not ready to handle textures quite yet. Once your baby starts to grow you can leave the puree a little chunkier and chunkier as they age. These steamed apples usually soak up the water when they’re steamed, so I do not usually add water to my blender when blending them to a smooth consistency.

I love adding cinnamon to my baby’s apple puree. Cinnamon is so healthy for both babies and adults! Cinnamon is loaded with antioxidants, anti-inflammatory properties, can help fight bacterial and fungal infections, lowers blood sugar levels, may cut the risk of heart disease, and may even protect against certain cancers.

STEP 3

Freeze the Apples

When you make your baby purees; I always recommend making it in a large batch so you can easily heat up the frozen batches on another day. I love using these silicone trays because they are easy to remove the purees from and they freeze in small honeycomb shapes, which are much easier to defrost than the large square cubes that other companies offer and take longer to defrost.

perfect silicone trays for freezing baby food www.herbnsage.org

Once the puree is frozen in the silicone trays, pop out the honeycomb ice cubes and store them in an airtight container or ziplock freezer bag in the freezer.

STEP 4

Reheat the Apples

If frozen, warm the frozen apple puree in a microwaveable safe dish (I like to use the OXO Tot baby block glass container for heating up my baby’s food) in the microwave for 30 seconds (pausing half way to stir). At the moment I like to use 8 honeycomb cubes for my baby (about as much as she eats at the moment per feeding). Make sure the apple puree are not too warm/hot before feeding your baby! You can also reheat over the stove as well.

You can also combine other whole foods in your baby’s puree that you have previously frozen, for optimal flavor and nutrients. The following list is a general guide, so feel free to be adventurous and combine and build your own meals for your little one:)

Apple Flavor Compatibility Guide

BananasBlackberriesBlueberriesBroccoli
FigsBlack BeansCantaloupeCherries
BeetsHoneydew MelonKidney BeansChard
Garbanzo BeansCannellini BeansGreen BeansLentils
NectarinesAvocadosPapayaPeaches
MangoesApricotsNavy BeansParsnips
PearsKaleCarrotsKiwifruit
Northern BeansCauliflowerPinto BeansPlums/Prunes
TurnipsSpinachStrawberriesSweet Potatoes
RaspberriesSummer SquashSplit PeasWhole Grains
Winter SquashSweet PeasCereal

If you have read my post on the importance of probiotics for your child (linked here); you can sprinkle a little probiotics on top of your homemade baby food for added nutritious value.

If you make something from Herb’n Sage, I would love to hear about it in the comments! Don’t forget to rate this recipe and follow along on Instagram and Youtube for more recipes and inspirations for your creations for your little loved one(s)<3

Bon Appétit!

xoxo – Sage

Apple Puree

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Homemade Baby Apple Puree is so easy to make and tastes so much better than store bought varieties!

Ingredients

  • Dozen apples (I used organic Gala apples)
  • optional: dash of cinnamon

Directions

  1. Wash and peel the apples
  2. Chop the apples up into one inch cubes. Make sure to discard the core and seeds
  3. Steam the apples on the stove for 20 minutes (or until tender) on med/low
  4. Add the apples to a blender and blend and cinnamon (optional)
  5. Freeze excess apples puree in the freezer (I like to freeze my purees in these silicone trays)

*Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning, at NO additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Thank you for helping a mama out:)

Purple Sweet Potato Puree

SWEET POTATOES

I love making my own baby food for my little one. She gobbles it right up! I know exactly what goes into her food rather than the unknown of store bought baby food. I go crazy for ROASTED SWEET POTATOES and when I fed my baby the following recipe, she went crazy for roasted sweet potatoes too! Sweet potatoes are considered a superfood in the food world. Superfoods have many amazing benefits that can lead to a long healthy life. Though most foods provide nutrition, superfoods provide more than just nutrition, they come with medical benefits. Superfoods have been known to protect against heart disease and cancers, lower blood pressure and cholesterol, regulate metabolism, protect the body from harmful toxins, and promote digestive health to name a few. When you incorporate the superfood sweet potato into your baby’s puree, you’ll know that every bite counts towards a healthy life for your little one.

Purple Sweet Potato www.herbnsage.org

Sweet potatoes have many nutritional qualities including potassium, vitamin C, fiber, and the antioxidant beta-carotene. They are superior to white potatoes and also contain a slow-release carbohydrate that provides sustained energy for our bodies. Sweet potatoes are also easy for most babies to digest. Follow my easy step-by-step instructions to learn how to make your baby the healthiest way to make sweet potato puree.

HOW TO MAKE (PURPLE?) SWEET POTATO PUREE

What Kind of Sweet Potatoes Should You Use to Make Sweet Potato Puree for Your Baby?

Sweet Potatoes are such a healthy/delicious first food to start feeding your little one. They are often incorrectly called yams and yams maybe mislabeled as sweet potatoes! You can use either one. They both are a good source of needed fiber and B vitamins, Manganese and Potassium. I love buying my daughter organic sweet potatoes.  I happened to stumble upon these purple sweet potatoes, which I thought would be fun and different! You can buy any type of sweet potatoes or yams and follow this recipe and steps to making your baby a healthy puree. I do highly recommend buying organic sweet potatoes for your baby.

I always try to go with the organic option if it’s available for my little one because according to the EPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency), “Children’s internal organs are still developing and maturing and their enzymatic, metabolic, and immune systems may provide less natural protection than those of an adult. There are ‘critical periods’ in human development when exposure to a toxin can permanently alter the way an individual’s biological system operates. Children may be exposed to more certain pesticides because often they eat different foods than adults.” Organic foods are a smart choice for your little one because it protects their health from future illness and disease.

Wash and Peel the Sweet Potatoes

I always wash the sweet potatoes first and then peel them after washing. This is because I don’t want to push any dirt, pesticides or other unwanted contaminants that can be living on the outside of the sweet potato in deeper with the peeler tool. After I peel them I give them a quick little rinse too. Next, I slice the sweet potatoes and then cut those slices into one inch cubes.

How to Cook the Sweet Potatoes

When it comes to cooking sweet potatoes, I recommend roasting the sweet potatoes because it brings out their natural sweetness and keeps their nutrients as well. The same goes for all other root vegetables like regular potatoes or carrots.  Baking/roasting and steaming are the preferred methods to use when cooking homemade food. Boiling food can actually remove some of the nutrients within a vegetable or fruit.

Foods such as carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, parsnips, pears and peaches are especially flavorful when baked.

STEP 1

Roast the Sweet Potatoes

Toss the sweet potatoes lightly with some extra virgin olive oil (Costco’s Kirkland brand is actually a top pick with olive oil experts!) and spread the cubes evenly out on a cooking pan.

Cubed purple sweet potato www.herbnsage.org

Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes and then flip the sweet potatoes over and bake for 20 minutes more until soft when punctured by a fork. So delicious, you will probably want to make plenty for you and your baby!

Baked cubed purple sweet potato www.herbnsage.org

STEP 2

Blend the Sweet Potatoes

Using my Blendtec (always blends my baby purees perfectly with its high horse power motor) blend the sweet potatoes until they’re a silky smooth puree. I add small amounts of water until I get the consistency that is best for my daughter.

blending sweet potato www.herbnsage.org

When your baby first starts on solids, you want to blend their food to silky smooth because they are not ready to handle textures quite yet. Once your baby starts to grow you can leave the puree a little chunkier and then chunkier as they age.

Puree purple sweet potato www.herbnsage.org

STEP 3

Freeze the Sweet Potatoes

When you make your baby purees; I always recommend making it in a large batch so you can easily heat up the frozen batches on another day. I love using these silicone trays because they are easy to remove the purees from and they freeze in small honeycomb shapes, which are much easier to defrost than the large square cubes that other companies offer and take longer to defrost.

Once the puree is frozen in the silicone trays, pop out the honeycomb ice cubes and store them in an airtight container or ziplock freezer bag in the freezer.

I tend to make sweet potatoes a lot for my daughter because keeping plenty of these carotene-rich wonders on hand helps with keeping her full, happy and healthy!

STEP 4

Reheat the Sweet Potatoes

Warm the sweet potatoes in a microwaveable safe dish (I like to use the OXO Tot baby block glass container for heating up my baby’s food) in the microwave for 30 seconds (pausing half way to stir). At the moment I like to use 8 honeycomb cubes for my baby (about as much as she eats at the moment per feeding). Make sure the sweet potatoes are not too warm/hot before feeding your baby! You can also reheat over the stove as well.

sweet potato baby food www.herbnsage.org

You can also combine other whole foods in your baby’s puree that you have previously frozen, for optimal flavor and nutrients. The following list is a general guide, so feel free to be adventurous and combine and build your own meals for your little one:)

Sweet Potato Flavor Compatibility Guide

ApplesBananasBeetsBlack Beans
BroccoliCannellini BeansChardCarrots
LentilsGreen BeansNorthern BeansKidney Beans
ParsnipsCauliflowerEdamameGarbanzo Beans
PearsNavy BeansPinto BeansSplit Peas
Sweet PeasSpinachKaleSummer Squash
TurnipsWhole GrainsCereal

If you have read my post on the importance of probiotics for your child (linked here); you can sprinkle a little probiotics on top of your homemade baby food for added nutritious value.

If you make something from Herb’n Sage, I would love to hear about it in the comments! Don’t forget to rate this recipe and follow along on Instagram and Youtube for more recipes and inspirations for your creations for your little loved one(s)<3

Bon Appétit!

xoxo -Sage

Puree purple sweet potato www.herbnsage.org

Purple? Sweet Potato Puree

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Homemade Baby Sweet Potato Puree is so easy to make and tastes so much better than store bought varieties!

Ingredients

  • 1 pound sweet potatoes (I used one hugeee sweet potato)
  • extra virgin olive oil

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F
  2. Wash/scrub and peel the sweet potatoes
  3. Slice into one inch rounds and then chop those rounds into one inch cubes
  4. Spread the sweet potatoes evenly on a baking pan and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil
  5. Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes; flip and bake for an additional 20 minutes
  6. Add the sweet potatoes to a blender and blend (add water, to get your desired consistency until smooth if needed)
  7. Freeze excess sweet potatoes puree in the freezer (I like to freeze my purees in these silicone trays)

*Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning, at NO additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Thank you for helping a mama out:)

Carrot Puree

CARROTS

Yum carrots! Carrots are rich in so many nutrients like beta-carotene, biotin, vitamin K1, Potassium and vitamin B6 which are a perfect addition to a baby’s diet. Making your own will taste a whole lot better than store bought baby food stored in jars. Follow my easy step-by-step instructions for the healthiest and most delicious way to make homemade baby food. Such an easy and quick baby carrot puree recipe that your baby will love!

raw organic multicolored carrots

HOW TO MAKE CARROT PUREE

What Kind of Carrots Should You Use to Make Carrot Puree for Your Baby?

Carrots are such a versatile veggie.  Once your baby masters single vegetable purees, you can mix carrots with practically everything! I like to look for firm carrots that are rich in color. I love buying my daughter organic multicolored carrots.  You don’t have to buy the multicolored carrots, but I do highly recommend buying organic whole carrots or organic baby carrots for your puree. I always go with the organic option if it’s available for my little one.

Wash and Peel the Carrots

I always wash the carrots first and then peel them after washing. This is because I don’t want to push any dirt, pesticides or other unwanted contaminants that can be living on the outside of the carrot with the peeler tool.  After I peel them I do give them a quick little rinse too.

How to Cook the Carrots

When it comes to cooking carrots, I recommend roasting the carrots because it brings out their natural sweetness and keeps their nutrients as well.  Baking/roasting and steaming are the preferred methods to use when cooking homemade food. Boiling food can actually remove some of the nutrients within a vegetable or fruit.

Foods such as carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, parsnips, pears and peaches are wonderfully flavorful when baked.

STEP 1

Roast the Carrots

Dry the carrots off from the peeling and washing process and then toss them lightly with some extra virgin olive oil (Costco’s Kirkland brand is actually a top pick with olive oil experts!) and spread them evenly out on a cooking pan.

Next I roast them in the oven at 425 degrees until they’re slightly browned and shriveled. Bake for 40 minutes. Do turn them over halfway through. So delicious, save some for the baby! They should look close to the image below. Prick with a fork at the widest end to ensure they are cooked throughout.

roasted slightly browned delicious carrots

STEP 2

Blend the Carrots

Using my Blendtec(always blends my baby purees perfectly), I blend the carrots until they’re a silky smooth puree. I add small amounts of water until I get the consistency that is best for my daughter. When your baby first starts on solids, you want to blend their food to being silky smooth because they are not ready to handle textures quite yet. Once your baby starts to grow you can leave the puree a little chunkier and chunkier as they age.

homemade baby carrot puree in glass  jars

STEP 3

Freeze the Carrots

When you make your baby purees; I always recommend making it in a large batch so you can easily heat up the frozen batches on another day. I love using these silicone trays because they are easy to remove the purees from and they freeze in small honeycomb shapes, which are much easier to defrost than the large square cubes that other companies offer and take longer to defrost.

Once the puree is frozen in the silicone trays, pop out the honeycomb ice cubes and store them in an airtight container or ziplock freezer bag in the freezer.

homemade baby carrot puree in a silicone ice cube tray

STEP 4

Reheat the Carrots

Warm the carrots in a microwaveable safe dish (I like to use the OXO Tot baby block glass container for heating up my baby’s food) in the microwave for 30 seconds (pausing half way to stir). At the moment I like to use 8 honeycomb cubes for my baby (about as much as she eats at the moment per feeding). Make sure the carrots are not too warm/hot before feeding your baby! You can also reheat over the stove as well.

You can also combine other whole foods in your baby’s puree that you have previously frozen, for optimal flavor and nutrients. The following list is a general guide, so feel free to be adventurous and combine and build your own meals for your little one:)

Carrot Flavor Compatibility Guide

ApplesBananasBeetsBlack Beans
BroccoliCannellini BeansChardWinter Squash
LentilsGreen BeansNorthern BeansKidney Beans
ParsnipsCauliflowerEdamameGarbanzo Beans
PearsNavy BeansPinto BeansSplit Peas
Sweet PeasSpinachKaleSummer Squash
TurnipsApricotsAsparagusBlackberries
BlueberriesSweet PotatoesWhole GrainsCereal

If you have read my post on the importance of probiotics for your child (linked here); you can sprinkle a little probiotics on top of your homemade baby food for added nutritious value.

If you make something from Herb’n Sage, I would love to hear about it in the comments! Don’t forget to rate this recipe and follow along on Instagram and Youtube for more recipes and inspirations for your creations for your little loved one(s)<3

Bon Appétit!

xoxo -Sage

Carrot Puree

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Homemade Baby Carrot Puree is so easy to make and tastes so much better than store bought varieties!

Ingredients

  • 1 pound carrots (I used organic multicolored carrots)
  • water
  • extra virgin olive oil

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F
  2. Wash and peel the carrots
  3. Spread the carrots evenly on a baking pan and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil
  4. Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes; flip and bake for an additional 20 minutes
  5. Add the carrots to a blender and blend, while adding water, to get your desired consistency until smooth
  6. Freeze excess carrot puree in the freezer (I like to freeze my purees in these silicone trays)

*Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning, at NO additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Thank you for helping a mama out:)

Homemade Quinoa Baby Cereal

Quinoa Cereal

I love to cook.  It’s one of my passions and I have always cooked for my family and even my pet dog! So once my baby girl was born, I knew I was going to cook for her too.  You see all those jars and pouches of baby food in the stores and it makes you wonder, “What kind of preservatives do they add to get that 2+ year shelf life?” Plus what other ingredients are added that you don’t know about.  Sugar, salt…  I just don’t want to risk it, and I want to know exactly what is going into my baby’s tummy.  So, as I have started on this baby puree-making journey I wanted to also share my recipes and knowledge with you to help your journey go as smoothly as your baby’s first puree!

I have been anxiously waiting to finally introduce solids.

Finally the day that she started licking her lips and chopping down on those little gums I knew it was time to finally start on solids (just one week shy of 6 months). Hurray! 

The first solid I started Alaia on was rice cereal or in my case “quinoa cereal”.

Quinoa is loaded with nutrients such as amino acids, protein, and fiber.

Fiber

Quinoa has almost twice as much fiber than rice and other grains.  Fiber helps in the digestive organs, especially beneficial for sensitive tummies, with helping things get going ‘down there’ in a gentle way.

Protein/Amino Acids

When it comes to comparing it to rice, while rice has four grams of protein per cup, quinoa packs 8 grams per cup.  Quinoa is one of the few plant sources that are a complete protein.  It contains nine essential amino acids, which puts it in the category of a complete protein.  As a complete protein source, quinoa is a great option for vegans, vegetarians, and in our case, babies! Protein helps support the development and growth of our babies.  Neither white nor brown rice is a complete protein, so when it comes to fueling your little one’s body, quinoa is the healthier choice.  

Micronutrients

Quinoa has more micronutrients than rice. It’s high in manganese, phosphorus, magnesium, selenium, B-complex vitamins and the most important of these for your baby is the high contents of iron.  

Iron

For the first 6 months of your baby’s life, breastfed babies will get what they need from their mother’s milk. However, after those first 6 months their iron reserves begin to diminish and parents need to introduce foods into their baby’s diet in order for their baby to not run the risk of being iron deficient. Quinoa is a natural and amazing way to boost their reserves without using iron-fortified ingredients.

Here’s a little chart from the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) based on the amount of iron your child needs based on their age.

Just one cup of quinoa contains 2.8 mg of iron as opposed to rice, which contains only 0.3 mg of iron per cup.  Based on this research my husband and I decided to go with quinoa cereal being her first food to get her prepared to eat other foods.

How to Make Quinoa Cereal

We want the best for our baby and that means providing delicious foods that are packed with nutrients! Are we asking for too much? I don’t think so! Nutrient loaded foods causes any mama to smile, especially when your baby gobbles them up. “Yummmm delicious!”

So, when it comes to introducing a super food like quinoa, I couldn’t smile any bigger to where my cheekbones hurt. Not to mention how easy it is to make.

Double win!

By the way, I make all my baby food purees in a blendtec blender. You can purchase the blender here. It’s honestly the best blender and really makes everything that I have put into it, extra smooth no matter what the ingredient is.

Silicone ice cube trays filled with quinoa cereal

When Freezing My Baby Food

I also love these silicone trays! I made the mistake of first freezing my daughter’s food in a regular ice cube tray and realized that was an epic fail because I couldn’t get her food out! It stuck to the edges of the ice cube tray. However, this silicone tray makes it easy to push the food out and the food looks so pretty after it’s frozen I think! Cute little honeycomb shapes and they melt quicker for the hungry baby than a large sized ice cube.

Frozen quinoa cereal in silicone ice cube trays.

When Reheating My Quinoa Cereal

Warm the quinoa cereal in a microwaveable safe dish (I like to use the OXO Tot baby block glass container for heating up my baby’s food) in the microwave for 30 seconds (pausing half way to stir). Of course always make sure the quinoa cereal or any baby food that you reheat is not too warm/hot before feeding your baby! You can also reheat over the stove as well.

Quinoa Cereal

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Quinoa Cereal is so easy to make and more nutritious than rice cereal

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa (washed) I buy prewashed quinoa from Costco which helps in breaking down the time in making this recipe (cause let’s face it…nobody got time for that…). But if you can’t find prewashed quinoa then I included in the steps how to wash your quinoa.
  • 6 cups water
  • Breast milk or Formula (amount depends on the thickness/consistency you want it at) 

Directions

  1. (You can skip this step if your quinoa is prewashed) Start with soaking one cup of quinoa in 4 cups of water overnight (6 hours at least).  This is an important step because if you don’t soak the quinoa before cooking it, it is difficult for your baby and even you to absorb the nutrients and minerals that quinoa provides. It can also taste bitter if not pre-washed.
  2. After at least 6 hours drain the quinoa in a strainer and transfer drained quinoa to a pot
  3. (Start on this step if you already have prewashed quinoa) Pour 1 cup quinoa and 2 cups water into a pot
  4. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to medium low and simmer until water is absorbed, 15 to 20 minutes
  5. Set aside off the heat for 5 minutes
  6. Uncover and fluff with a fork into a blender
  7. Let cool for an additional 5 or so minutes
  8. Add the desired amount of breast milk or formula, which is familiar to your baby allowing them to enjoy the quinoa cereal more than just adding water to thin it out (I added 6 oz of pumped breast milk for my consistency when first starting out in feeding my baby)
  9. Puree in the blender until it is nice and smooth
  10. Serve straight away, or freeze the cereal into cubes for easy use on another day
  11. If you have read my post on the importance of probiotics for your child (linked here); you can sprinkle a little probiotics on top of your homemade baby food for added nutritious value

I’d love to know how your little one enjoys this recipe . Let me know in the comments or if you have any yummy recipes you’d like to share!

Bon Appétit!

xoxo -Sage

*Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning, at NO additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Thank you for helping a mama out:)

Silent Reflux

Helping My Baby Get Rid of Her Reflux

As a mom we do everything to make sure our children are happy, healthy, and properly cared for. So when our baby is distressed and crying, all we want to do is help them relieve their pain. With my baby it was, “Silent Reflux”.

This evil condition is when stomach acid causes throat discomfort, especially behind the breastbone in the middle of the trunk. This would cause my baby to arch her back so far (future human contortionist in the making) to ease her pain of heartburn she was experiencing. This would also consequently tear my nipple or what I like to call “niplash”, when a nursing baby decides to twist her head or arch her back away while still latched to your breast!

Luckily, my baby both breastfeeds and takes the bottle (pumped breast milk), so I was able to give my torn off nipples a break! But unfortunately, my daughter didn’t get a break, and eventually the arching of back wasn’t the only symptom she had. She began to refuse to drink. She would squirm, gag, cough, and choke on the milk being fed to her. I couldn’t get any milk into her. She was upset, I was upset, the entire house was upset! Even our dog, Piper, was upset because this meant longgg restless nights of her grunting pains…

No one got any sleep!

I ended up buying the book “Baby Wise” and also purchasing the “Taking Cara Babies” courses. Both actually worked after we figured out the underlying cause of silent reflux, to get more sleep in the house. Finally, a trip to the pediatrician where he confirmed my daughter Alaia had silent reflux. The pediatrician prescribed liquid Zantac for her stomach acid, which you can only get from a prescription from a doctor, it’s not the over the counter Zantac for adults (so don’t go giving your child this)!

I was about to go to my pharmacy and pick it up when it got me thinking. Is this really going to cure her silent reflux and tackle the underlying cause of the problem or is it just going to mask the symptoms?

I ended up researching silent reflux and liquid Zantac. After tons of research I found liquid Zantac for babies could lead to other health complications. Liquid Zantac is a conventional medicine that suppresses the symptoms the baby is having. So if a baby is having reflux, the pediatrician will prescribe this drug without investigating into why the baby is having reflux in the first place.

There are so many problems with this approach because:

  1. Drugs do not just have intended effects, they also have unintended effects.  For example, if the drug is suppressing acid production, then what else is it doing that may not be beneficial?  And it makes you think, the acid that it is suppressing, what is the benefits of that?  Our bodies do not just make stomach acid to make us suffer and just produce it for the heck of it.  There are reasons our bodies make stomach acid.
  2. The other issue with this approach is you have this drug that suppresses the symptom, but what is that underlying cause?  The symptom is just going to persist and eventually worsen over time, because the initial cause was never figured out.  This can eventually even lead to other symptoms to worry about.  This can cause you to have to now worry about other symptoms and you end up giving your poor baby more drugs for other reasons.  It’s just a huge snowball effect!  You’re just playing Whack-a-Mole with the drugs for all these symptoms!

I wanted to get to the bottom of this “symptom” my baby was having. So I went on to researching what was exactly “reflux/silent reflux”.

What I found was quite interesting!  Heartburn is rarely caused by excess stomach acid production?  Huh?  I seriously have been taught my WHOLE life that that is what heartburn was… Heartburn is caused by a dysfunction of your lower esophageal sphincter (part of your body that separates the esophagus from the stomach).  In a healthy individual the esophageal sphincter is supposed to stay closed, but for our babies their sphincters are immature and not always working properly.  In a perfect situation the sphincter opens up when food goes down into the stomach and then closes right after the food passes.  My poor baby’s sphincter was opening at inappropriate times and not closing properly, allowing acid reflux up into the esophagus.

So, how could I fix this?  How could I make my baby feel more comfortable and not be in pain?  I knew the obvious of keeping her: 

  • Upright after a feeding for at least 30 minutes (really who has time for that one though… especially at 3 am in the morning)
  • Burping her
  • Doing some bicycle kicks to get the gas out

But how could I really get rid of this problem and what causes the dysfunction of the lower esophageal sphincter?  SIBO. That’s the answer.  SIBO, which is small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. These little bacteria swim around in the stomach and small intestines of our little ones and cause an overproduction of gas.   This can put pressure on the sphincter making it open when it’s not supposed to. We then have the parents, like me, who want our babies to be cured of this painful reflux, so we turn to the drugs that are prescribed.  But as I said before the stomach acid that our bodies make is there for a reason.  

The role that our stomach acid plays is actually really important!

Stomach acid initiates the process of digestion, especially for foods that are high in protein.  Food gets mixed around with our stomach acid and becomes a sludge like substance called chyme, which then passes through our small intestine.  Nutrients are pulled out of our small intestines, but where nutrient absorption really happens is in our stomach.  There have been numerous studies that show acid-blocking drugs, impair the absorption of all kinds of different minerals and vitamins that are essential for our well-being.  So, it’s stomach acid that is required to absorb those nutrients!  These vitamins and minerals include iron, magnesium, vitamin C, folate, B12, and other B vitamins to name a few.  Of course these are all important nutrients for adults, but they are even more crucially important for the developing baby.  

Another main role that stomach acid plays a part of is the prevention of infection. Every day our babies are exposed to fungi, bacteria, and viruses.  These icky things are all around us in our environment! When we are exposed to them through drinking or eating our stomach acid kills them off! Our acidic environment in our stomach is our defense in killing many of these harmful organisms.  So taking acid reducing medicine may actually cause more issues than it does to help!

So what is SIBO and what does it cause?

SIBO is one of the underlying causes of reflux, but not only that, it’s also associated with things like skin issues like eczema, and even behavioral and cognitive issues! Most kids have eczema and when we treat their gut issues, then the eczema miraculously disappears…  It’s true what they say how the “gut is your second brain”.  It can seriously take over your body depending on how you treat it. This brings us to the main question and answer to the question of how to cure my baby’s reflux?

How I Naturally Cured My Baby’s Silent Reflux

Before I begin, I have to say my disclaimer: I am not your baby’s pediatrician!  ALWAYS check with your baby’s doctor before adding any supplements to your infant’s diet. However, you can easily share this article with your doctor before trying it out for yourself for your baby’s health.

The first step I took in curing my baby’s reflux (or if your baby has colic or GERD this may also ease your baby’s pain) was I went on a SIBO diet. Studies have been conducted and proven to what a mom eats can affect a baby’s gut flora if you’re breastfeeding.  I am currently breastfeeding so I did the most I could to optimizing my gut health to help my baby’s with hers.  Obviously, if your formula feeding your baby you can skip this step (but it may be nice to help your gut flora for your own personal health;).

Picture of Ultra-Prevention book cover

I ended up ordering this book called…

Ultra-Prevention by Mark Hyman and Mark Liponis I really like this book because for the longest time I have had stomach issues. I always thought I had IBS or some type of allergy to food like dairy or gluten.  I never really knew the problem and I just eventually ignored my problem altogether and “kept calm and moving on”.  This book and the vitamins I took with it literally cured me?!?!?  I now have no stomach pain whatsoever. 

Picture of The SIBO Solution book cover

If you’re looking for recipes this book…

The SIBO Solution: Your Comprehensive Guide to Eliminating Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth by Sylvie McCracken, has some pretty tasty recipes for SIBO!  I really like making the breakfast bowl!  It’s delicious.

Next is treatment for my little one.  Numerous studies have proven that probiotics can ease reflux, colic, and GERD. One of the studies shows that babies who consumed probiotics in their formula or breast milk during their first three months of life were significantly less likely to have colic, reflux or GERD.  Babies who already had colic, reflux or GERD and began consuming probiotics actually showed results of reduced symptoms and eventually no symptoms if the probiotics were continuously used in their diet.

Picture of Seeking Health ProBiota Infant Powder Bottle

I started my baby on…

Seeking Health ProBiota Infant Powder. It’s dairy free and it tastes really good and my baby loves the taste of it! My baby is currently 3 months so I give her ¼ a scoop a day. Once she reaches 4 months I will increase it to ½ scoop a day, 5 months ¾ scoop, and 6 months 1 scoop a day. The bottle has directions after 6 months on the appropriate incrementsto fed to your little one.

At the moment I pump my breast milk so I add the probiotics into my baby Alai’s bottle.  But if your baby breast-feeds from the boob, you can dust the probiotics onto your breast before they start feeding.  Or you can add it to your baby’s formula if they’re formula fed.

Picture of Galactomune, from Klaire Laboratories

The next thing to consider in helping your baby is…

Galactooligosaccharides! Galactooligosaccharides is in breast milk and is helpful in increasing the beneficial bacteria in a baby’s gut. A good product is called Galactomune, from Klaire Laboratories and it has both galactooligosaccharides and betaglucans, which I love.  I just sprinkle a little in her bottle and she’s good to go:) You can also just lightly dust your nipple, if your baby is breastfeeding or even just put a little in your baby’s mouth.  It tastes neutral and fairly pleasant, almost like a mildly sweet taste that babies actually like.

So recap of freeing your baby from the icky symptoms of reflux, colic or GERD:

Mom’s Diet (if your breastfeeding)

Probiotics

Galactooligosaccharides

That’s it!

This is what has helped my baby and me.  Again, I am not your baby’s pediatrician! ALWAYS check with your baby’s doctor before adding any supplements to your infant’s diet.  I hope this will help your baby on the road to recovery from any digestive issue he/she may be having. 

I would love to hear if this has helped your baby with reflux or colic! Let me know in the comments. Don’t forget to check out my other posts on how to make baby cereal and other purees. Also, make sure to follow along on Instagram and Youtube for more recipes and inspirations to create for your little loved one(s)<3

xoxo – Sage

*Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links. Meaning, at NO additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Thank you for helping a mama out:)

Silent Reflux

As a mom we do everything to make sure our children are happy, healthy, and properly cared for. So when our baby is distressed and crying, all we want to do is help cure them of whatever pain they are experiencing. With my baby it was, “Silent Reflux”. This evil condition is when stomach acid causes throat discomfort, especially behind the breastbone in the middle of the trunk. This would cause my baby to arch her back so far (future human contortionist in the making) to try to ease her pain of the heartburn she was experiencing. This would also consequently tear my nipple off or what I like to call “niplash”-nip•lash [noun]-when a nursing baby decides to twist her head or arch her back away while still latched to your breast! Luckily my baby both breastfeeds and takes the bottle (pumped breast milk), so I was able to give my torn off nipples a break! But unfortunately, my daughter didn’t get a break, and eventually the arching of back wasn’t the only symptom she had. She began to refuse to drink. She would squirm, gag, cough, and choke on the milk being fed to her. I couldn’t get any milk into her. She was upset, I was upset, the whole house was upset even our dog, Piper, was upset because this meant longgg restless nights of grunting pains… No one got any sleep! I ended up buying the book “Baby Wise” and also purchasing the “Taking Cara Babies” courses (both actually worked after we figured out the underlying cause of silent reflux; see my separate blog post about Baby Wise and Taking Cara Babies) to get more sleep in the house. Finally a trip to the pediatrician where he confirmed my daughter Alaia had silent reflux (skip over to the bold title: “How I Naturally Cured My Baby’s Silent Reflux” if you don’t want to read the jib jabberish scientific information I write about, cause trust me I know a lot of us moms do not have much time on our hands!). The pediatrician prescribed liquid Zantac for her stomach acid, which you can only get from a prescription from a doctor, it’s not the over the counter Zantac for adults (so don’t go giving your child this). I was about to go to my pharmacy and pick it up when it got me thinking. Is this really going to cure her silent reflux and tackle the underlying cause of the problem or is it just going to mask the symptoms? I ended up researching silent reflux and liquid Zantac. After tons of research I found liquid Zantac for babies could lead to other health complications. Liquid Zantac is a conventional medicine that suppresses the symptoms the baby is having. So if a baby is having reflux, the pediatrician will prescribe this drug without investigating into why the baby is having reflux in the first place. There are so many problems with this approach because:

  1. Drugs do not just have intended effects, they also have unintended effects.  For example, if the drug is suppressing acid production, then what else is it doing that may not be beneficial towards the body?  And it makes you think, the acid that it is suppressing, what is the benefits of that.  Our bodies do not just make stomach acid to make us suffer and just produce it for the heck of it.  There are reasons our bodies make stomach acid.
  2. The other issue with this approach is you have this drug that suppresses the symptom, but what is that underlying cause?  The symptom is just going to persist and eventually worsen over time, because the initial cause was never figured out.  This can eventually even lead to other symptoms to worry about.  This can cause you to have to now worry about other symptoms and you end up giving your poor baby more drugs for other reasons.  It’s just a huge snowball effect!  You’re just playing Whack-a-Mole with the drugs for all these symptoms!

I wanted to get to the bottom of this “symptom” my baby was having. So I went on to researching what was exactly “reflux/silent reflux”.

What I found was quite interesting!  Heartburn is rarely caused by excess stomach acid production?  Huh?  I seriously have been taught my WHOLE life that that is what heartburn was… When really heartburn is caused by a dysfunction of your lower esophageal sphincter (part of your body that separates the esophagus from the stomach).  In a healthy individual the esophageal sphincter is supposed to stay closed, but for our little babies their sphincters are immature and not always working properly.  In a perfect situation the sphincter opens up when food goes down into the stomach and then closes right after the food passes.  My poor little baby’s sphincter was opening at inappropriate times and not closing properly, allowing acid reflux up into the esophagus.

So, how could I fix this?  How could I make my baby feel more comfortable and not be in so much pain?  I knew the obvious of keeping her: 

  • Upright after a feeding for at least 30 minutes after a feeding (really who has time for that one though… especially at 3 am in the morning)
  • Burping her
  • Doing some bicycle kicks to get the gas out

But how could I really get rid of this problem and what causes the dysfunction of the lower esophageal sphincter?  SIBO. That’s the answer.  SIBO, which is small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. These little bacteria swim around in the stomach and small intestines of our poor little ones and cause an overproduction of gas.   This can put pressure on the sphincter making it open when it’s not supposed to. We then have the parents, like me, who want our babies to be cured of this painful reflux, so we turn to the drugs that are prescribed.  But as I said before the stomach acid that our bodies make is there for a reason.  

The role that our stomach acid plays is actually really important and initiates the process of digestion, especially for foods that are high in protein.  Food gets mixed around with our stomach acid and becomes a sludge like substance called chyme, which then passes through our small intestine.  Nutrients are pulled out of our small intestines, but where nutrient absorption really happens is in our stomach.  There have been numerous studies that show acid-blocking drugs, impair the absorption of all kinds of different minerals and vitamins that are essential for our well-being.  So, it’s stomach acid that is required to absorb those nutrients!  These vitamins and minerals include iron, magnesium, vitamin C, folate, B12, and other B vitamins to name a few.  Of course these are all important nutrients for adults, but they are even more crucially important for the developing baby.  

Another main role that stomach acid plays a part of is the prevention of infection. Every day our babies are exposed to fungi, bacteria, and viruses.  These icky things are all around us in our environment and when we are exposed to them through drinking or eating our stomach acid kills them off.  Our acidic environment in our stomach is our defense in killing off many of these organisms.  So taking acid reducing medicine may actually cause more issues than it does to help!

So, back to SIBO and what it causes.  SIBO is one of the underlying causes of reflux, but not only that, it’s also associated with things like skin issues like eczema, and even behavioral and cognitive issues.  Most kids have eczema and when we treat their gut issues, then the eczema miraculously disappears…  It’s true what they say how the “gut is your second brain”.  It can seriously take over your body depending on how you treat it. This brings us to the main question and answer to the question of how to cure my baby’s reflux?

How I Naturally Cured My Baby’s Silent Reflux

Before I begin, I have to say my disclaimer: I am not your baby’s pediatrician!  ALWAYS check with your baby’s doctor before adding any supplements to your infant’s diet. However, you can easily share this article with your doctor before trying it out for yourself for your baby’s health.

The first step I took in curing my baby’s reflux (or if your baby has colic or GERD this may also ease your baby’s pain) was I went on a SIBO diet. Studies have been conducted and proven to what a mom eats can affect a baby’s gut flora if you’re breastfeeding.  I am currently breastfeeding so I did the most I could to optimizing my gut health to help my baby’s with hers.  Obviously, if your formula feeding your baby you can skip this step (but it may be nice to help your gut flora for your own personal health;).

I ended up ordering this book called Ultra-Prevention by Mark Hyman and Mark Liponis I really like this book because for the longest time I have had stomach issues. I always thought I had IBS or some type of allergy to food like dairy or gluten.  I never really knew the problem and I guessed I just eventually ignored my problem altogether and “kept calm and moving on”.  This book and the vitamins I took with it literally cured me?!?!?  I now have no stomach pain whatsoever. 

If you’re looking for recipes this book, The SIBO Solution: Your Comprehensive Guide to Eliminating Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth by Sylvie McCracken has some pretty tasty recipes for SIBO!  I really like making the breakfast bowl!  It’s delicious.

Next is treatment for my little one.  Numerous studies have proven that probiotics can ease reflux, colic, and GERD. One of the studies shows that babies who consumed probiotics in their formula or breast milk during their first three months of life were significantly less likely to have colic, reflux or GERD.  Babies who already had colic, reflux or GERD and began consuming probiotics actually showed results of reduced symptoms and eventually no symptoms if the probiotics were continuously used in their diet.

I started my baby on Seeking Health ProBiota Infant Powder.  It’s dairy free and it tastes really good and my baby loves the taste of it!  My baby is currently 3 months so I give her ¼ a scoop a day.  Once she reaches 4 months I will increase it to ½ scoop a day, 5 months ¾ scoop, and 6 months 1 scoop a day.  The bottle has directions after 6 months on the appropriate incrementsto fed to your little one.  I reviewed 10 other great probiotics here (link to another blog) if you choose to purchase another type of probiotics for your little one, I just personally like the Seeking Health ProBiota Infant Powder the best!

At the moment I pump my breast milk so I add the probiotics into my baby Alai’s bottle.  But if your baby breast-feeds from the boob, you can dust the probiotics onto your breast before they start feeding.  Or you can add it to your baby’s formula if they’re formula fed.

The next thing to consider in helping your baby is galactooligosaccharides. Galactooligosaccharides is in breast milk and is helpful in increasing the beneficial bacteria in a baby’s gut. A good product is called Galactomune, from Klaire Laboratories and it has both galactooligosaccharides and betaglucans, which I love.  I just sprinkle a little in her bottle and she’s good to go:) You can also just lightly dust your nipple, if your baby is breastfeeding or even just put a little in your baby’s mouth.  It tastes neutral and fairly pleasant, almost like a mildly sweet taste that babies actually like.

So recap of freeing your baby from the icky symptoms of reflux, colic or GERD:

Mom’s Diet (if your breastfeeding)

Probiotics

Galactooligosaccharides

That’s it!

This is what has helped my baby and me.  Again, I am not your baby’s pediatrician! ALWAYS check with your baby’s doctor before adding any supplements to your infant’s diet.  I hope this will help your baby on the road to recovery from any digestive issue he/she may be having.  Let me know in the comments area of any other tips you may have in helping with issues such as reflux and colic.

I would love to hear if this has helped your baby with reflux or colic! Let me know in the comments and don’t forget to follow along on Instagram and Youtube for recipes and inspirations to create for your little loved one(s)<3

xoxo – Sage