According to my pediatrician, the average 6- to 10-month old should be eating at least 4 tablespoons of grains or cereals each day. Admittedly, upon entering his 8 month birthday, I had only been feeding my son a tablespoon of his Earth’s Best Organic Oatmeal Cereal each morning and the occasional Happy Baby Teether when we are on the go. Although I am aware of how important whole grains are for an adult, I naively prepared my child’s meals without taking into consideration just how important the absent food group was; whole grains and cereals are critical for sustaining your infant’s energy levels. They contain important B complex vitamins, zinc, magnesium and fiber – important not only to maintain a healthy digestive system and prevent constipation, but also a necessary component to build a healthy immune system.
I knew I needed to begin incorporating more whole grains into Kaden’s diet, and while rice and breads are a common go-to, I wanted to find a more nutritional all-inclusive option. While doing my bi-weekly Whole Foods run for Kaden’s baby food, I decided to do some product research down the organic pasta aisle and came across this Andean Dream Quinoa Pasta. It contains two simple ingredients: Organic white rice flour and organic Royal quinoa flour. That’s it. And being made of quinoa flour, it is a natural super food chock-full of protein, vitamins, minerals and essential amino acids. It’s also gluten free, non-GMO, allergen friendly, corn free (not a big deal, since we put organic corn into this recipe anyway) and vegan. The downside is that it is a bit pricey one 8 oz. box, but it is a bit cheaper buying it in a 3-pack on Amazon. In any case, you don’t have to go this route, but there are other quinoa-based pastas… and if you want to go even simpler, choosing an organic pasta is still a great choice – your baby will still get those necessary whole grains.
The use of sweet potato and mixed veggies adds even more nutritional benefits, while also adding some sweetness in an otherwise bland pasta puree. This recipe is a vitamin powerhouse, and that is something, as a mommy, I think we all can get on board with.
This puree is a bit chunky, as the pasta bits never get fully pureed. The texture is very easily swallowed, though. The first time I fed this to Kaden, I gave him smaller-than-usual spoonfuls, and he seemed to take them down quite easily. It’s definitely a great transitional puree to help your baby get used to chunkier foods, but I do recommend feeding this to your baby once they are over 8 months old and have already begun eating baby rice cakes or other solid teething snacks.
Here’s What You’ll Need:
- 1 cup of organic pasta (I use fusilli – easier to measure)
- 1 cup frozen organic mixed vegetables
- 1 small-medium organic sweet potato – cleaned, peeled and chopped
- Salt to taste
- Bring a small saucepan with 4 cups of water to a boil. Add pasta, and cook until very tender.
- In the meantime, place sweet potato chunks in your steamer and steam until just tender.
- Once your sweet potato has begun getting soft, add your frozen vegetables to the steamer to quickly thaw and soften.
- Drain your pasta once it is very soft and add to food processor. Add your sweet potato and mixed vegtables to the food processor, also, once very tender. Reserve steamer liquid.
- Pulse until puree is smooth, yet still a bit chunky from the pasta pieces, adding in your reserved water from the vegetables until desired textured is achieved.
- Salt to taste.
This recipe makes roughly about 16 oz. of baby food. We freeze all our baby food, and simply thaw and reheat upon mealtime!
Enjoy all the benefits of this yummy and nutritional puree!