5 Ways to Serve Pumpkin to Babies

5 Ways to Serve Pumpkin to Babies

This season you’re probably doing some tasty cooking with pumpkin. Its rich nutty flavor and creamy texture make it a delicious gourd that is also nutritious. Pumpkin is naturally low in fat, cholesterol, sodium and calories. It contains a host of vitamins including Vitamin A, B6, C, E and K as well as other nutrients including folate, calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium and phosphorous. Pumpkin is also packed with lots of fiber, which helps manage blood sugar levels, regulates bowels and helps satiate the body for longer.

Depending on the age of your baby and where you are on offering solid foods, there are a variety of ways to serve pumpkin to babies. Starchy foods like pumpkin, squash and sweet potatoes are excellent first solids because they have mild flavors, are easy to prepare into purees and are gentle on a baby’s digestive system.

Here are five suggestions to serve pumpkin to babies:

Steamed or Roasted Puree

Steaming or roasting pumpkin in steamer, microwave or oven is very easy. Remove the seeds and slice your pumpkin into strips. Then place it in your steamer, a microwave safe dish with a little water or baking sheet. Once the pumpkin is steamed or roasted until very tender, peel off the rind and mash or blend it into a puree. For a sweeter puree, add cinnamon or nutmeg. For a savory flavor, go with turmeric, rosemary, basil, garlic or cumin.  Remember, adding sugar or salt to your baby’s food is not necessary and avoid honey for babies under one year old.

Pumpkin Niblets

Chunked pumpkin niblets can be made the same way as steamed or roasted purees with one small difference. Cook the pumpkin for slightly less time to maintain some firmness. It should still be easy to mash with your fingers but maintain its structure so your baby can pick it up with his fingers. Dice it into small niblets for your baby to enjoy.

Pumpkin Oatmeal or Yogurt

Blend pumpkin puree into your baby’s bowl of oatmeal or yogurt for a delicious and healthy snack. This is a great time to use sweeter spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger or throw in some fruit purees such as apples, pears, peaches, bananas or berries too.

Pumpkin Smoothie

If your baby prefers drinking his nutrients over eating, try a pumpkin flavored smoothie. Pumpkin mixes beautifully with a variety of fruits. Blend it with a spoonful of yogurt and a few ice cubes for a creamy and nutritious pumpkin drink.

Pumpkin Soup

Add cooked pumpkin and your baby’s favored cooked vegetables, vegetable stock and breast milk to a food processor. Include yogurt or brown rice or whole wheat cereal to thicken as desired. Blend until creamy smooth. Season with savory spices as desired.

For older babies, try pumpkin risotto or pumpkin ravioli once your baby has tried each of the ingredients individually. We hope your little love devours these ways to serve pumpkin to babies as you include him in the delightful flavors of the season.

Sources: Momtastic Wholesome Baby Food and Live Science