Can Babies Eat Fruit?
Great question! Like many other baby foods, safety comes down to age. While fruit may be very healthy for us adults, giving your baby fruit can be healthy depending on his/her age. Typically, you can give your baby fruit when your baby is around 5-months-old.
Let’s investigate a bit further.
How to Feed a Baby Fruit
Babies are typically spoon trained. At first, they will push the food out with their tongue. But keep trying – they will get the hang of it.
Try giving your baby fruit in between small bottles or breastfeeding sessions. For instance, if your baby usually eats six ounces at a feeding, try giving them half of that and some pureed fruits. This will help your baby to learn to eat different foods but they will not be starving as you try to introduce new foods.
If they only eat a little bit of the pureed fruits and they still seem hungry, try topping off their meal with more of the formula or breastmilk. This helps to make sure they are receiving enough nutrients while they are food trained.
Continue Breastfeeding Even if Baby Loves Fruit!
As you begin giving your baby fruit, it is important to continue giving your baby formula or breast milk.
At this point, they will still need anywhere from 24 to 40 ounces of milk along with their pureed fruit. The amount of milk that they will need to drink is determined by how much-pureed fruit they eat as well as their size.
You will have to make a judgment call to determine the amount because you know your baby better than anyone else. Check out our article about how much milk babies should drink.
What if my baby does not like pureed fruits?
Do not get discouraged if your baby spits out all of their pureed fruits or if they seem to dislike them. The trick that we need to remember as parents is to be patient.
Try the same fruits at least fifteen to twenty times before giving up. Even after that, it does not hurt to try again at a later point in time. Just like us adults, it may take a while for your baby to get used to the taste of different types of foods. Do not give up and keep testing different flavors when giving your baby fruit.
Can I Give My Baby Frozen Fruit?
Another thing to keep in mind when giving your baby fruit is that it is safe and even helpful to give your baby frozen fruit at this age. Frozen fruits such as bananas, strawberries, melons, and watermelons are great soothers when your baby is teething…. especially if your teething baby won’t sleep.
Feeding Baby Fruits at 4 Months to 6 Months
At this young age, you can begin experimenting by giving your baby fruit that is pureed.
It is important to also continue feeding your baby formula or breast milk while introducing new foods. It is best to begin giving your baby fruits slowly such as introducing a new flavor every three days. This will help you to distinguish whether your baby has any food allergies.
Signs of allergies or intolerance, temporary or permanent, can be discovered if your baby develops a rash, diarrhea or any other signs of a stomach ache. Make sure you start introducing new food individually.
Banana’s, peaches, pears, these are all good options for when you begin giving your baby pureed fruit to start out.
Feeding Fruits at Ages 6 Months to 9 Months
When your baby is between the ages of six months and nine months it is the perfect time to start feeding them finger food.
This includes soft fruits, vegetables, and soft baby biscuits. As far as finger foods, when you are giving your baby fruit it is best to start out with soft mushy fruits such as bananas, avocados, soft peaches as well as others. Anything that is easily dissolved in their mouths will be a great starter food for your baby. Finger foods and breast or formula still needs to be given at this stage of life.
Alternating their meals at this age is a good idea. Another important item to remember when giving your baby fruit is that all fruits must be cooked until your baby is eight months old.
After that soft, raw fruits are acceptable. When cooking fruits, steaming them is the best way to go. If that is not possible, the next best way to cook your baby’s fruits is to boil or bake them in a small amount of water.
More Fruits at Ages 9 Months to 12 Months
As your baby starts to get older, you will notice that they begin refusing pureed foods.
However, at this age, it is still fine for them to have pureed baby food if they will eat it. They will start steering away from pureed foods once they realize that the real, whole thing tastes better and is more fun to eat.
When you begin giving your baby fruit that is whole sized, it is recommended to give then two or three servings a day of fruit, two or three servings of vegetables, two servings of meat, two or three servings of grains and two to three six-ounce bottles of breast milk or formula. This will help you to ensure that your baby has a balanced diet.
Feeding a 12-Month-Old (and over) Baby Fruit
Once your baby has passed their first birthday they should have at least a few teeth that have grown in. If this is the case, it is now safe for your baby to consume steamed fruits that are a bit tougher to eat. These fruits include apples, cantaloupe, honeydew, and any other fruits that are tougher.