Sometimes a good spaghetti or pasta dinner is just what the doctor ordered. It is tasty, it is wholesome and it sure is filling. And while we are quick to eat it up quickly and ask for seconds, can we share the deliciousness with our babies?
The answer is a resounding yes. Pasta is a very wholesome food that is great for your baby. Most pasta is made from wheat, which is an extremely healthy food to have in your child’s diet. And all pasta is loaded with carbohydrates, which helps give your baby the energy he or she needs to play and explore.
But before you go slapping some spaghetti on your child’s tray, you need to make sure your child is ready to consume pasta. Most babies are ready for finger foods between eight and ten months of age. In order to be ready, your child needs to be able to sit up with support and be able to pick small objects up with his or her fingers. Once he or she has mastered this, you can start giving pasta to your child.
Can I Give My Baby Pasta? Answer: At 8-10 Months
Like any other food, pasta needs to be cut into very small pieces before giving it to your child. Even smaller noodles should be cut in half just to play it safe. Even though pasta is easy for your child to mash in his or her mouth, larger chunks can still get caught in the throat, casuing your child to choke.
It’s is also great for your child because of the sauce. If your child is a picky eater, you can be happy knowing they are consuming vegetables when they consume pasta sauce. If you feel your sauce does not have enough veggies, feel free to puree more in with the sauce. Pureeing vegetables in with pasta sauce is a very clever—and sneaky—way to ensure our children are getting the right vitamins and nutrients.
Pasta is also a recommended food for your baby because it is easy to make and serve. You can make a larger batch of pasta at once and re-heat the already cooked noodles to serve to your child. Keep in mind though, that cooked noodles do not last forever in the refrigerator, so unless someone else in the house will eat it, you may not want to make too much.
How to Serve
When giving pasta to your child, you need to make sure it is fully cooked. When noodles are cooked, they become soft and very easy for your child to mash in their mouth. Feeding your child plain noodles is perfectly fine, but serving them with sauce or even with butter is also good too.
Though it is is not known to cause many allergic reactions, some people do have wheat allergies. When first introducing pasta to your little one, it is always best to either serve pasta alone or with another food your child has already enjoyed. It is always best to wait three days in between feeding your child new foods. This way, if your child does have an allergic reaction, you will know which food caused it.
Be Ready for Clean Up
While pasta is delicious and healthy for your baby, it is also very messy—that is, if you are serving with sauce. Because of this, be sure to either have a bib on your baby, or completely undress him or her at the table. Some pasta sauce stains are hard to get out of clothes, so make sure your baby is not wearing anything “special” when they eat pasta.
Benefits and Concerns
Remember, pasta is a great healthy food for your child to enjoy when he or she is ready to start finger foods, usually around eight to ten months of age. It is easy to make, easy for your child to eat and very tasty. Like with any food, make sure you wait at least three days after introducing pasta to check for an allergic reaction.
Some people are allergic to wheat, and pasta does contain wheat. Pasta is a great form of carbohydrates, which will help give your child energy. Just remember, that while delicious, pasta can be messy, so be cautious as to when and where you feed pasta to your child.
As always, if you have any questions about pasta, when or how to feed it to your child, you should consult your child’s doctor. He or she will be able to better discuss your concerns and answer your questions in more thorough detail.