The Goodness of Strawberries for Baby:
Strawberries are an amazing source of Vitamin C. With their bright red color, strawberries contain a high amount of plant phenols. Plant phenols have been shown to contain strong anti-oxidant properties. High in anti-oxidants, the strawberry is though to have a protective factor against cancer. Learn more about strawberry nutrients below.
What Is the Age for Introducing Strawberries to Baby- (10) 12 months
All parents wonder about when is the right time to add strawberries to their baby’s diet. Strawberries are a potential high allergen food and as such, they really should be avoided until 12 months of age; avoid them longer if your family has a history of allergies. WIth that being said, many parents do introduce fresh strawberries to their little ones prior to 12 months of age, some as young as 6 months of age. Ask your pediatrician about introducing strawberries just to be sure!
Please note that the recommendations for introducing allergenic foods to baby are changing! A 2008 study, and many studies done after, indicated that waiting to introduce certain foods to your baby may not prevent any atopic (i.e. eczema) disease(s). Many are now suggesting that babies may be introduced to potential allergenic foods from the start (for those with no known history of food allergies).
“Although solid foods should not be introduced before 4 to 6 months of age, there is no current convincing evidence that delaying their introduction beyond this period has a significant protective effect on the development of atopic disease regardless of whether infants are fed cow milk protein formula or human milk. This includes delaying the introduction of foods that are considered to be highly allergic, such as fish, eggs, and foods containing peanut protein.” Click to view report
Commercial Baby Food Contains Strawberries
So why do many commercial baby foods marketed as “Stage 2” contain strawberries? Beech Nut commercial baby food states:
“Fresh strawberries can sometimes cause food reactions in babies. Cooked strawberries, on the other hand, usually do not. That’s because heat pasteurization destroys the substance responsible for reactions. So Beech-Nut includes strawberries – pasteurized for safety and good tolerance”
Pediatricians and allergists will say that it is possible that the strawberry protein <allergen> may be destroyed in commercial baby food processing. Whether or not home cooking of strawberries would reach temperatures high enough to destroy any protein is uncertain.
STRAWBERRIES (1 cup pureed raw)
Vitamin A – 12230IU’
Vitamin C – 136 mg
Thiamin – .05 mg
Riboflavin – .05 mg
Vitamin K – 5.0 mcg
Folate – 56 mcg
Niacin – 1.01 mg
Potassium – 355 mg
Phosphorus – 56 mg
Magnesium – 22 mg
Calcium – 37 mg
Sodium – 2 mg
Iron – .9 mg
Also contains trace amounts of zinc,
manganese and copper.
How to select and store Strawberries for yummy baby food recipes
According to the EWG, strawberries are one of the “dirty dozen” foods that are most highly contaminated with pesticides – purchasing organic is a smart choice.
Strawberries are very delicate. You should purchase them for use within a few days as the longer they are stored, the more they become bruised and softened. Choose strawberries without bruising, soft spots or cuts. Look for leaves that are a nice green color.
Tasty Strawberry Baby Food Recipes
Yummy Au Naturale Strawberry Puree
2 cups fresh strawberries
Step 1: Wash strawberries and remove leaves and stems
Step 2: Slice strawberries in half
Step 3: Mash or puree as needed for your baby.
Canary and Strawberry Melon Puree
• 1 cup cubed canary melon (rind and seeds removed)
• fresh strawberries (tops removed and cut in half)
Put both melon and strawberry in to the food processor or blender until no choking hazards are present. Avoid over pureeing as this will result in a watery puree. Freezes well
- 1 ripe mango
- 1 cup fresh strawberries
- 1 large banana
- 1 container plain whole milk yogurt
Step 1: Wash, peel, de-seed and remove leaves and stems from fruits as required
Step 2: Slice fruits into dices
Step 3: Puree all fruits and tofu in a blender or food processor
Step 4: In a clear bowl, add a layer of yogurt, a layer of fruit puree, another layer of yogurt and so on until all foods have been used up. Sprinkle with wheat germ for extra nutrition and serve to baby with her own spoon.
Alternatively, cut and dice all fruits then slightly mash for a tasty finger food salad, with or without yogurt.
- 1 cups fresh strawberries
- 1 cup plain whole milk yogurt
- drip of vanilla
Step 1: Wash strawberries and remove leaves and stems then slice strawberries in half
Step 2: Puree strawberries, adding the vanilla, then fold in the yogurt
Step 3: Serve – may be frozen to make a tasty ice pop!
Strawberry Maple Muffins strawberry muffins for fingers
- 1 1/2 cups white wheat flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- pinch of salt
- pinch of cinnamon
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup chunky strawberry puree
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 2/3 cup maple syrup
Step 1: Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and either grease muffin cups or line with muffin liners. (I use liners for easier cleaning!)
Step 2: Combine 1 1/2 cups flour, salt, cinnamon and the baking powder. Mix well
Step 3: Add the eggs, milk, vanilla, maple syrup, oil and strawberries to the dry ingredients and mix well.
Step 4: Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
Creamy Dreamy Strawberries
- 1/2 cup pureed strawberries
- 1 cup mascarpone cheese
- drip of vanilla
- pinch of sugar if desired
Step 1:Combine strawberry puree and vanilla with mascarpone cheese and blend
Step 2: Refrigerate before serving – use as a dip, as a spread over pancakes or bagels. You can also whip up some heavy cream and make this a special treat- strawberry mousse!
Foods Good to Mix With Strawberries
Feeding Baby – Quick Links of Interest
- Baby Led Weaning – is Baby Led Weaning Right for Your Baby?
- Feeding Your 6-8 Month Old Baby
- Is Baby Ready for Solid Foods?
- How Much Food Should My Baby Eat?
- Constipation and Solid Foods
Remember, always consult with your pediatrician regarding introducing solid foods to your baby and specifically discuss any foods that may pose allergy risks for your baby.