Avocados are usually the first food I offer babies in feeding therapy. I choose to serve this fruit first because of its soft texture, easy preparation for parents, and unique color (something other than the traditional off-white foods like cereal). Here are a few ways you can introduce avocado to your little one, that are different from the tried and true guacamole.
If you have been wanting to make your own baby food but you’re afraid it’s too much work, then this fruit is going to change your mind! Offer avocado using my Three-tiered Texture Approach for Purees: thin, thick, and lumpy.
- Take an avocado and scoop out the flesh.
- Place it in a blender or food processor.
- Add enough breast milk or formula to make it a thin texture.
Follow the above steps, but this time add less breast milk or formula to keep the texture thick.
For a quicker and chunkier puree just :
- Cut up an avocado and mash it lightly with a fork.
- Offer a spoon to your baby.
- Presto – mealtime is ready!
This texture is perfect for when you are on-the-go or at a restaurant.
This avocado dip is my family recipe, and it came about when we were living overseas and didn’t have access to cilantro, hot peppers, or jalapeños. It became a family favorite in our home because it is so creamy, inexpensive, and easy to make! I use this yummy dip recipe for babies as well as the picky eaters I treat in feeding therapy as their ‘first step’ to eating and enjoying guacamole filled with healthy veggies (onions, garlic), herbs (cilantro) and fruit (avocado, tomatoes). Yum!
- 1 ripe avocado
- 1 lime (juice)
- ¼ cup of sour cream
- Pepper and/or Salt to taste (babies should rarely have added salt)
Scoop out the avocado and place into a bowl. Cut the lime in half and squeeze all the juice in the bowl. Add ¼ cup of sour cream (add more to make it lighter in color or creamier) and sprinkle in some pepper and/or salt to taste. Smash and blend the mixture with a fork or throw it all into a food processor for a quick spin.
If you are implementing the Baby Led Weaning (“BLW”) method for starting solids, you need to learn how to offer avocado in a variety of ways so you can easily adapt once your baby develops more fine motor skills.
Take slices of avocado and roll them gently into a finely crushed cereal textured food (like Cheerios or toasted bread crumbs) so that the avocado slice is easier to grab and hold.
Cut an avocado and use a crinkle cutter to give the slice some texture that can help your baby hold it. One of my favorite sets include a crinkle cutter and slicing helper, which makes BLW prep much faster!
Wash the skin of the avocado thoroughly with water, vinegar or fruit wash. Then cut strips of avocado with some of the skin still attached. Your baby will use the skin to help them manipulate the fruit, but be sure your baby does not eat it.
This isn’t the healthiest way for babies to have avocado, but it’s a tradition in my Mexican culture. Every time I make it, kids and adults alike go crazy over it!
- 2 ripe avocados
- 2 eggs (beaten)
- 1 cup finely crushed breadcrumbs or Panko
- 1/4 cup flour
- Olive oil
Cut an avocado into strips. Crack the eggs and beat them in a bowl. In a separate bowl add the finely crushed breadcrumbs and flour. Dip the avocado slices into the egg mixture and then into the flour + breadcrumb mixture (I use tongs because they are a bit slippery). Place the strips into the frying pan that has been heated with olive oil. Fry until toasted, turning them over once or twice. Serve with a dipping sauce to amp up the yum factor (and help them practice their pincer grasp!)
I hope these ideas help you think outside of the “guacamole box” when introducing avocado to your baby. How does your family enjoy and prepare this yummy fruit?
xo Ms. Dawn
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