We received a message over the weekend from Laura in the UK, whose little one is now 7 months old. Laura wanted to know more about including pasta and cheese in his diet… so here’s our reply, which you might find interesting if you’re thinking about using these ingredients in YOUR baby food recipes!
“Pasta is usually suitable for babies from 6 months of age – as long as they are not allergic to (or intolerant of) any of the ingredients, which may include egg or wheat. Please remember, however, that we recommend you seek your doctor’s consent before introducing any new foods to your baby.
Whole grain pasta (if available) is the healthiest choice for your baby. You can cook regular pasta shapes, toss them with a sauce and serve them finely chopped (making them easier for your little one to cope with) – or you may puree pasta together with a sauce. If you choose to use this method, make sure you use more sauce than pasta… this will give you a smoother result! Alternatively, you can buy special packs of tiny pasta shapes – specifically made for babies – or use orzo, which is a nice, manageable size.
Personally, we did not puree pasta dishes for our babies – we simply cut the pasta shapes nice and small! We have always found this to be a great way of helping our little ones make the transition to lumpier textures, as the ‘lumps’ of cooked pasta are soft and easy to gum. We would frequently stir cooked, chopped pasta into our basic veggie purees for a quick and nutritious meal!
Cooked pasta also makes a soft, easy-to-grip finger food for self feeding and can be served with a bowl of veggie puree to use as a dip.
Cheese and cheese-based sauces are a popular accompaniment to pasta and it is usually safe to introduce cheese to babies from 6 months of age (although, again, you should check with your doctor first, as it may be advisable to delay the introduction of dairy products if there is a history of dairy allergy in your family). Cheese is often better tolerated than other dairy products because the maturing process breaks down proteins that may otherwise cause problems.
We have lots of suggestions for yummy pasta/cheese dishes on our site…
Pasta baby food recipes (6-9 months)
Does your baby enjoy eating pasta? Which is his favourite variety? Do you have any tips to share? Please do leave your comments below!