Baby Food Recipes for Your 6 Month Old

One of the most common questions of  first time moms is “What should my baby eat first?”.  When your baby is about to turn 6 months, a whole new world of care opens up.  You know that they are going to eat solids soon,  and need to start prepping and buying new food.  So, what are baby food recipes 6 months old babies love?

After going through this transition with 3 babies now, I have compiled some of the easiest baby food recipes to start with.  My whole month prep of baby food is a popular post, but maybe you just want to grab a couple things to start off with.  That is where this post comes in- a few tried and true, healthy, easy and yummy recipes to start off with. You don’t have to jump into making baby food and prep a whole month of food. 

The first foods you give your baby can be the same, regardless if you go with baby led weaning or making your own homemade baby food purees.  I have 3 boys and have tried both methods.  I enjoyed making baby food puree recipes, but each one of my babies felt differently about them.  My first wanted all things pureed, well into his first birthday.  While my second son got over them pretty quickly and wanted baby finger foods around 9 months. 

My third son was started with a combination of some purees and some baby led weaning finger foods.  I realize that there are strict blw (baby led weaning) advocates who avoid purees all together.  I’m obviously not in that boat, and felt that transitioning between the two was a seamless venture.  As with most things parenting, decide what works best for your family. It doesn’t have to line up with anyone else’s ideals. 

Related Post: All posts and meal preps for making baby food!

When do you start baby food?

First things first.  Let’s go over the guidelines of feeding your baby  before we jump into our favorite baby food recipes. Per the American Academy of Pediatrics, babies still get the majority of their nutrition from breast milk or formula until 1 year of age (24-32 ounces daily).  Most babies start eating solids at 6 months, but your doctor may tell you that your baby is ready at 4 months.

*I’ve never started at 4 months, and there is new evidence that there aren’t nutritional benefits to starting that early.  Many parents have thought it helps with sleep, but working on sleep schedules is the most beneficial way to get your baby on a better sleeping routine. But again- this is one of those decisions you can make with your pediatrician and personal research.

How much baby food should a 6 month old baby eat?

Since the majority of nutrients still come from breast milk or formula, babies do not eat a lot of food initially. They’ll eat about 3 times a day. At 6 months it may only be about an ounce, which is two tablespoons. Conveniently, the size of one ice cube if you are freezing your baby food. As they get older, it’ll increase to 2 ounces and then 3-4 ounces around 10 months.  

If you are following baby led weaning, initially they might chew on one slice of avocado or banana- but not actually consume the majority of it.  They are mostly practicing the act of picking up food and how to eat it. 

Food is just a supplement at 6 months, and a great age to experiment with different baby food recipes.  It becomes more substantive those last two months of their first year (10-12) when they eat lots of finger foods and more of what the family eats. When your baby turns one, they start getting the majority of their nutrients from table food.   

Related Posts: Master List of Food Ideas for 1 Year Old Babies, 10 Simple Finger Foods Meals for a One Year Old

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What You Need to Make Baby Food

You can find a complete and comprehensive list of what you need to make baby food here.  These are a few must haves to get started:

  • Something to cook the food in– lots of steaming and roasting fruits and veggies: Steamer or Aroma Rice Cooker with steamer, pots and pans and/or Instant Pot.
  • Pureeing tools: Immersion hand blender like this  Cuisinart is one of my favorite pureeing tools as I can put it right into a pot or large bowl. Regular blender like this Ninja blender or any other kind you have work perfectly as well. 
  •  Storage Containers and Freezing: Ice cube trays with lids– 4 pack.  Made specifically for baby food:  Mumi&Bubi – 2 stackable trays with 42 total 1 ounce compartments.  Sage Spoonfuls container set has 12 plastic containers that can be taken in a diaper bag for a meal on the go- excellent quality and price.
  • Reusable Pouches: Infantino squeeze pouches– You can get packs of 50 or 100! Infantino squeeze station– To help fill baby food pouches with no mess.   

Stage 1 Baby Food Recipes

avocado baby food recipes 6 month old babiesAvocado

This has been my first food every time.  I always have some around for myself, they are healthy and don’t have to be cooked, making avocados a great first food. Make sure it’s ripe and ready to be eaten.  You can smush a slice with a fork for baby food puree, or give the slice directly to your baby for baby led weaning. Start with just avocado, but then expand to more advanced recipes. Perfect combinations: avocado with banana, avocado and apple (with cinnamon if you want), avocado, sweet potato and garlic, avocado and butternut squash

Avocado and Banana– No cooking! Just cut off a slice of avocado and a few pieces of banana and smush together with a fork. Easy peasy. 

Avocado and Apple- Steam apples in Instant Pot for 5 minutes or boil on stovetop for 10 minutes. Blend into puree. (full instructions below)  Mix 3 tablespoons with a smushed slice of avocado. Sprinkle cinnamon on top for some variation. 

Avocado and Sweet Potato (or Butternut Squash)– Avocado mixes well with either of these vegetables and they both are cooked similarly. After your baby has eaten all 3 in a few different combinations, you can mix all 3 together with a little garlic or other seasoning to add variety. Broil sweet potato or butternut squash for 45 minutes or cook in Instant Pot for 8 minutes. (Full instructions below). Combine a few tablespoons with a smushed slice of avocado. 

Banana

Same as avocado, all you need to do is have a ripe banana and a fork to smush it with. Recipes/perfect combinations are similar to avocado. Banana can be replaced in lieu of avocado in any of the recipes above. 

Banana and Blueberries– Another easy but tasty recipe. No cooking necessary. Just cut off a few pieces of banana and smush with a fork. Since blueberries have a skin, I blend them in a food processor, blender or with an immersion blender in a bowl. Combine a few tablespoons with your smushed slices of banana.  Eventually add cinammon or other baking spices for variety and texture. 

Blueberries

6 month old baby food recipes blueberries

Blueberries are a great antioxidant and first food for baby.  Or any berry for that matter. I always start with blueberries and integrate the others when I transition to finger foods. You can choose whichever you like.  None of them need to be cooked. Just pick a ripe batch. Blend in a food processor, blender or with an immersion blender in a bowl.  Voila.

Blueberries and Apple (or Pear)- Steam apples in Instant Pot for 5 minutes or boil on stovetop for 10 minutes. (full instructions below)  For one serving: mix 3 tablespoons with 3 tablespoons of blended blueberries. Or mix equal batches together for lots of meals. Sprinkle cinnamon on top for some variation. 

Sweet Potato

Sweet potato is always in my baby food and toddler meal rotation. It’s a perfect base for many recipes. All of my babies have loved the sweet and hearty flavor of sweet potatoes, and the consistency is smooth so no texture aversions if your baby is picky. (Butternut Squash cooks the same amount of time, so if you have both- cook them together.)

It also can be mixed with most fruits and vegetables, but here are some favorites. If you are doing baby led weaning or transitioning to finger foods- you must check out this recipe for sweet potato fries.

Sweet Potato and Apple- Roast or pressure cook sweet potato and blend. Steam apples in Instant Pot for 5 minutes or boil on stovetop for 10 minutes. Blend into puree. (full instructions below)  Mix 3 tablespoons of each together for one serving or entire batches for an easy go to recipe. Sprinkle cinnamon on top of a single serving for some variation. 

Sweet Potato and Banana (or Avocado)– Cook sweet potato as instructed and combine with smushed banana or avocado. It may sound weird, but they also taste great all together. 

Sweet Potato and Butternut Squash– Cook them together as instructed below.  Perfect combination. You can add garlic powder and ground thyme for more savory or cinnamon for spice. These are obviously my go to spices, but you can play with any others you’d like.  

OVEN:

  • Preheat Oven to 400 degrees.
  • Wash sweet potato and poke it with a fork all the way around.
  • Put on cookie sheet.
  • Cook in the oven for 40-45 minutes.

INSTANT POT:

  • Wash sweet potato and poke it with a fork all the way around.
  • Put one cup of water in the bottom of your Instant Pot. 
  • Place trivet on the bottom (you don’t have to, but will be helpful so that you can scoop the sweet potato out and decide how much water you want to mix in when blending)
  • Turn on manual high pressure for 8 minutes. 
  • Let pressure naturally release for 5 minutes, then switch to quick release

Butternut Squash

Butternut squash is another perfect base for so many recipes. Easily mixed with fruits and vegetables alike.  I use it as a staple in my house, just like sweet potato. They also are cooked the same amount of time so I often  buy both and cook together.  Any of the recipes made with sweet potato can be substituted with butternut squash. It’s not as thick and a bit sweeter, loved by all of my babies!

OVEN:

  • Preheat Oven to 400 degrees.
  • Cut butternut squash in half lengthwise.
  • Scoop out seeds and lay flat on the cookie sheet.
  • Cook in the oven for 40-45 minutes.

INSTANT POT:

  • Cut butternut squash in half lengthwise.
  • Scoop out seeds and cut halves into quarters.
  • Put one cup of water in the bottom of your Instant Pot. 
  • Place trivet on the bottom (you don’t have to, but will be helpful so that you can scoop the butternut squash out and decide how much water you want to mix in when blending)
  • Turn on manual high pressure for 8 minutes. 
  • Let pressure naturally release for 5 minutes, then switch to quick release

Apples

apple sauce pouches for babies or toddlers

One of the best parts of cooking apples is trying different varieties- either separately or together. I love mixing tart granny smith apples with a more sweet red delicious apple.  It makes a perfect applesauce blend that all my babies- and now older kids love.  I always make extra- assemble some pouches and freeze the rest to use later. 

Favorite apple recipes listed in other sections, but apple is a staple fruit.  It’s perfectly combined with any other fruit or vegetable. 

STOVETOP

  • Peel and cut apples into slices.
  • When you are almost done, put two cups of water into the pot on high.
  • When water is boiling, place apples inside.
  • Boil for 8-10 minutes.

INSTANT POT

  • Put a cup of water at the bottom, insert trivet and add apples. 
  • Turn on manual high pressure for 4 minutes.  Natural release for 5 minutes, then switch to quick release. 

Pear

Cooking preparation and times are exactly like apples, so a harmonious cooking partner. Pears are similar to apples, but introduce a slightly different flavor and nutrients.

STOVETOP

  • Peel and cut pears into slices.
  • When you are almost done, put two cups of water into the pot on high.
  • When water is boiling, place pears inside.
  • Boil for 8-10 minutes.

INSTANT POT

  • Put a cup of water at the bottom, insert trivet and add pears. 
  • Turn on manual high pressure for 4 minutes.  Natural release for 5 minutes, then switch to quick release.

Peas

Stage 1 baby food recipes

Peas are naturally sweet so I love making them our first green vegetable.  Mix well with apple or pear (pictured above). Also a nice complement to the other vegetables in this list, particularly carrots, sweet potato or butternut squash. 

STEAMER:

  • Use a rice cooker or  steamer.  
  • Pour bag of frozen peas into the basket.
  • Arrange in steamer basket with 3 cups of water on the bottom.
  • Cook for 10 minutes.

INSTANT POT:

  • Put a cup of water into Instant Pot. 
  • Use steamer basket and pour bag of frozen peas inside.
  • Turn on manual high pressure for 4 minutes.  Quick release. 

Carrots

carrot apple baby food recipe

Carrots are so versatile! Naturally the round out this list as an essential vegetable to always have on hand. Love that I can chop some up for the rest of the family, and cook the rest for some baby food purees or finger foods for older babies.  Goes well with all the fruits and vegetables listed on this first foods list. 

STEAMER:

  • Use a rice cooker or  steamer.  
  • Cut carrots into pieces if bought full carrots. Baby carrots can just be thrown in. 
  • Arrange in steamer basket with 3 cups of water on the bottom.
  • Cook for 10 minutes.

INSTANT POT:

  • Put a cup of water into Instant Pot. 
  • Turn on manual high pressure for 6 minutes.  Quick release. 

Storing and Preparing Baby Food

Store your baby food recipes in airtight containers. In the refrigerator for 3-5 days or the freezer for 3-6 months.  You can check out the one month meal prep for freezing techniques. I use ice cube trays and take out a cube or two to defrost for each meal.  Microwave for 30 seconds to serve. 

Download Your Free Baby Food Resource Guide!

Use this resource guide for all 6 months of baby food! Includes shopping lists and recipes for all 3 stages, a first foods log and a meal planning tracker.

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