Baby Food Products & Brands for Vegetables First Weaning
Weaning your baby is an exciting time full of fun and mess but it’s also a crucial time to help your baby develop their food preferences. At the weaning stage, babies are more accepting of trying new foods and they quickly learn to enjoy new flavours. This is the time to get them to love vegetables!
You might have heard of the #VegForVictory campaign that Ella’s Kitchen started (read more about this here) and it’s all about raising awareness of the importance of introducing babies to vegetables during weaning and how this can impact their long-term health and relationship with food.
There’s evidence showing that offering plenty of vegetables of different types and offering these first when weaning can help babies to love vegetables and prevent fussiness. Not many parents choose to wean predominantly with vegetables during the first few weeks though, but it definitely sounds like the best choice.
Vegetables First Weaning Tips
The advice from the campaign is to start with vegetables to help your baby to develop a taste for them and because babies’ palates are receptive to new flavours at this time, they’ll quickly learn to love different tastes and textures.
Offer a variety of vegetables for your baby to explore and discover to help them develop a love for vegetables. Try something new every day in the early days of weaning.
Babies don’t always accept things the first time they try it and it can take many times before they do. Offer things ten times! Moving from just having sweet milk to savoury flavours can be surprising so it might take a few tries before they get used to the new sensation.
When I weaned our first daughter 2.5 years ago, I tried to offer her as many different flavours as possible and she loved everything. Her favourite food when weaning was red pepper! She went through a fussy phase that’s nearly over now but has always eaten a lot of different veg one way or another — when she was being particularly fussy I offered her smoothies with all kinds of veg in that she would happily drink.
I started weaning Baby No. 2 at 4.5 months because she was ready and she loved food from the start! There were never any mini ice-cube sized portions — she went straight to bigger servings and now loves feeding herself. She’s 9 months old and her favourite food is broccoli!
Since starting to wean her, I’ve been conscious of choosing foods that are mainly vegetable based and not fruit based. I’ve given her fruit too as I don’t want her to have an aversion to tart fruit flavours either but I ensure the bulk is veg and always offer them first at a meal. It seems to have worked very well as she seems to love everything and especially vegetables.
Our favourite vegetable based baby food brands and products
Homemade baby food is great but we don’t always have the time so I happily buy good quality baby food too. It’s a great way to introduce many flavours and to vary the meals easily. Shop bought baby food is also very convenient on the go.
There are a few brands that we use a lot and that have great pouches that are full of vegetable goodness. All the brands below are organic too.
- Ella’s Kitchen. The small 80g pouches suitable from 4 months+ are available in three just vegetables flavours: Peas, Parsnips and Sweet Potatoes. They are perfect for starting with and ideal if you only want to introduce one vegetable flavour at a time. Available in most supermarkets and Boots.
- Hipp Organic. We’ve used these loads and still do! The just vegetables ones suitable from 4 months+ come in three flavours: Parsnips, Sweet Potato & Broccoli, Carrots, Cauliflower & Peas, Sweet Squash, Sweetcorn & Peas. These are affordable and the flavour combinations are interesting. Available in most supermarkets and Boots.
- Babease. This is a newer brand and their food for babies is very exciting! You’ll find lots of vegetables and fun things like coconut water and quinoa in the recipes. Great for expanding your baby’s palate! Some of the pouches have a bit of fruit in them (pear) but most are mainly vegetables. Available in Boots and online from Amazon.co.uk. Read my Babease reviews here.
- Piccolo. This is another new and fun brand that makes baby food with a Mediterranean approach — full flavour and goodness! They make lots of lovely flavours and a couple of pouches that are veg only: Carrot, Sweet Potato & Squash and Courgette, Pea & Leak. Available in Asda, Waitrose and online from Amazon.co.uk. Read my Piccolo reviews here.