There is nothing like a nice bowl of chili. It’s one of those foods that can be eaten at any time during the year. Chili is one of those foods that provide comfort during cold, windy, or rainy days and just fun during summer. It’s a meal that is exciting to share with your loved ones; it’s no surprise you might want to share it with your baby.
Chili is best introduced to your baby after 24 months. This is because chili is made with many ingredients, some like honey, which is not good for your baby under 12 months. Chili also contains spices that might not be suitable for your baby’s developing digestive system.
Your baby cannot have the standard chili bowl, but you can certainly make them a custom version that is tasty and agrees with their digestive system.
1. Custom baby chili recipe
Standard chili recipes call for a wide array of ingredients, some of which your baby might not have tried out before, so it would be difficult to tell how well your baby will take to them.
It is important to create baby-friendly recipes of complex recipes, which allow you to create a recipe into one that agrees with your baby.
The standard chili recipe does contain some ingredients that are good for your baby. The standard or base recipe contains solid ingredients such as beef, beans, chili powder, cumin, sugar, tomato paste, garlic powder, salt, pepper combined with beef broth. You can serve it with cheddar cheese and sour cream. It’s best to add seasonings in moderate amounts so that your baby can enjoy the balanced and complex flavors without risk of digestive upset.
It is important to serve your baby chili when they have enough teeth to chew the beef and kidney beans. This will allow your baby to enjoy the meal and not become frustrated. It also ensures that the solid parts of the chili don’t become a choking hazard to your baby.
2. Serve chili after your baby’s teeth come in
Chili has ingredients that need to be chewed, and that’s what makes it enjoyable. If your baby has teeth by the time they are 9 – 10 months old, you can serve them a bowl of baby-friendly chili. One that comes with mild seasonings to allow your baby to enjoy the bowl.
Your baby’s teeth start coming in when you introduce solid food. The more solid meals on your baby’s daily menu, the faster the teeth will come in. Children who eat at least three solid meals a day from the time they are seven months usually have a mouth full of teeth by the time they are ten months old.
If your baby can chew food, then you can serve them chili. It is important always to supervise your baby during meals. Chili and other solid food can choke your baby if they accidentally swallow the piece without chewing it. It is very important always to supervise your baby.
3. Serve chili if your baby can chew
A good indicator of when to serve your baby, a chili bowl is their ability to chew food. If your baby can feed themselves and take time to chew the food in their mouth before they swallow the food, then you can give them chili.
This is because you can trust that your baby will chew their food rather than suck on it, which they have been doing—sucking only works if the food easily dissolves in your baby’s mouth. But beef and beans are not easily soluble and need to be chewed. You can say that chili is chewing food, which means its best served for anyone who can chew their food.
If your baby isn’t chewing their food, it’s best to wait until they can do so before serving them chili.
4. Season the chili in moderation
Seasonings enhance the flavor of food. They are great and tasty additions to any meal. They make any meal memorable. Fortunately, seasonings are great for your baby too. You can add seasonings like cumin, a dash of chili powder, paprika, garlic, onion, pepper, and salt to chili.
These spices blend to make a very tasty bowl of chili, but it is very important not to overdo the chili, especially when serving it to your baby. If you are feeding your baby chili from a meal shared with the whole family, you can add yogurt or sour cream to your baby’s chili to help mute or tame the spiciness of the chili. It is important to give your baby very little if the chili is hot so as not to disrupt their digestive system.
Suppose you are making chili specifically for your baby’s palate. Add the spices in moderation. Make the chili sweet and spicy, with small diced tomatoes and smaller beans that can be mashed up a little for your baby to enjoy.
5. Chili is nutritious
Because it contains beef and beans, chili is elevated to a nutritiously rich and filling food. The spices used also add to the rich nutritional profile of chili.
It is a great food to include to your baby’s weekly menu because it provides your baby with protein, that their growing body needs to build and repair tissues. Protein is very important for the body, including your baby’s body; they are the building blocks for enzymes, hormones, muscles, skin, blood, and bones.
Beans are high in protein, fiber, folate, manganese, copper, thiamin, which are essential to the healthy growth of your baby.
It is important to introduce your baby to food that they can manage without much help when they are ready. Chili is a wonderful meal to share with your baby, but it should be done when your baby can properly chew their food before they swallow. This will stop the food from becoming a choking hazard for your baby. It will also allow your baby to enjoy the food.