Starting your little one’s journey into the world of solid foods is one of the most exciting moments, but you may find it confusing knowing what you can and cannot serve at certain ages.
We all know the best time to begin weaning is around 6 months of age, but you may be wondering when can your baby eat raw apples. In this article, we will be covering everything you need to know about how to serve apples to your baby from 6 months up to 2 years of age.
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When Can My Baby Eat Raw Apples?
Apple is a great option as one of your baby’s first foods and can be served to them in many varieties and textures to help them become familiar with the way their food feels.
They are one of the most popular fruits and for a very good reason too. They are rich in a range of vitamins and fiber too which is the best way to prevent constipation which can be common when a baby first starts eating solids.
Apples are also known for preventing heart disease, lowering cholesterol levels, and containing plant compounds that lower the risk of cancer.
This means starting your baby on apples and other types of fruit and vegetables from the very beginning of their weaning journey is a fantastic way to give them the best possible start in life.
The most common method used when weaning babies onto solid food is through the use of puree’s and mashed form, making it easier for babies to swallow and digest.
However, baby-led weaning is becoming a very popular choice amongst parents which helps promote good eating behaviors and reduce fussiness in babies.
Allowing your child to be in charge of what they eat and explore the textures and colors of the food is a great learning experience for them as they may not have noticed these aspects if the food was served to them as a puree.
How to Serve Apples To Your Baby
There are a few different ways that you can serve apples to your little one. Here are a few different methods of weaning and show the great variations in which you can serve raw apples to your little one, whilst still making sure they are safe and sound.
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Before 6 months
Some parents may choose to wean their little ones around 4/5 months instead of the recommended 6 month age.
However every baby is different and you know what’s best for your little one, just make sure to check with your pediatrician first and get the all-clear to start solids and do your research.
If you are giving your little one solids at this age, the safest way to serve apples is in a cooked and blended form with no chunks.
This is because they will not have fully developed the absence of their tongue-thrust reflex and may not be able to sit fully supported, which can pose a choking risk.
At this age, raw apple can be served grated to your baby, or cut into paper-thin slices. Large chunks pose a huge choking risk during this age and need to be avoided.
If you wanted to serve them in larger chunks, boiling them until they are easily pierced by a fork or baking them in the oven is a great way to soften them up without removing any of that great nutrition.
You can then serve them in halves, wedges, or even mash them into applesauce. If you want to add a variety of flavors into their diet, try mixing soft apple chunks into yogurt or adding spices such as cinnamon to give a great twist.
During this stage of their development, your little one will become much more active so it is important to always keep them seated and monitor them eating to prevent accidents from occurring.
You can serve apples in all the same methods we mentioned previously, but with the addition of extra teeth, your little one will be able to manage thin slices of raw apple with or without the skin.
Although many children at this age will spit out the skin from the apple, it is a great way to develop use of their oral-motor skills and use of those sprouting molars!
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Every child is different, so when you feel your child is ready you can begin to serve them whole apples, making sure to remove the core and seeds beforehand or when they get close to the middle.
It can be beneficial for this reason to offer apples quartered, but sometimes it can be safer to give a whole apple as this prevents them from biting off large pieces that can cause a choking hazard.
24 months onwards
By this age, most toddlers can consume apples in any form as long as they are always monitored.
Offering apples in a stroller or car seat can pose a danger due to the nature in which they hold your toddler’s body, preventing the ability to move and spit out large chunks they may have accidentally taken.
As you and your little one become more comfortable with the idea of consuming solids, you may want to start mixing up how you serve apples to broaden their tastes.
Consider some of the following ideas and serve them next time you and your little one have apples!
- Baked/ sauteed apples with Cinnamon
- Strawberry applesauce
- Baked Apple Pudding
- Grated apple on oatmeal
- Apple & Banana popsicle (great for teething!)
- Apple & Root vegetable soup
How many apples can a 6-month-old eat?
Babies usually love apples due to their sweet flavor, as well as pears, prunes, and berries. Follow your baby’s lead and if they don’t show interest or seem to want any more then take a break and try again another day.
How do I soften apples for my baby?
The best way to soften apples and make them easier for your child to eat is by baking, frying, or boiling them until you can easily insert a knife into the middle without any resistance.
Do I have to cook apples to make baby food?
If your apple is firm and tough it will be tricky to mash it into a smooth blend to serve your little one. Cook the apple until tender enough to puree and this will prevent any tough chewy bits for your little one.
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The Final Thought
Remember to always monitor your little one when they’re eating and consult your doctor or pediatrician to get the best tips and advice for your child when you want to start your weaning journey.
Have fun and don’t put too much pressure on yourself if they don’t seem to enjoy a taste or flavor straight away. Just try again another day, and before you know it they will be eating a great variety of foods and asking for a second helping.