So you have to turn to pureed food recipes BUT you want to make sure your kiddo is eating ‘real’ foods. It’s important to know they are getting the calories and nutrition they need to grow and develop.
My nephew who has cerebral palsy has chewing challenges so my sister and brother-in-law resorted to pureed food options a lot during the first several years of his life.
One of the BEST pieces of advice they received from my nephew’s occupational therapist was to include him in the meals they were eating too. Breakfast, dinner, lunch, you name it, they fed it to him and just pureed it with a little liquid. VOILA he was getting the same nutrients as he would have been eating that exact meal.
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My intention in writing this post is to provide you a list of helpful ‘real’ pureed food recipes kids love. They are pretty easy peasy and quick to whip up.
These recipes work for kids ready to eat solid foods or thicker consistency foods (usually 6 months and up). 🙂
Peanut Butter and Jelly
PB&J is a food staple among many kiddos and super easy to whip up. This was my sister’s go-to meal for my nephew early on because it was his favorite. 🙂
What You Need:
- 1 banana or 1 cup of torn bread pieces or smashed up crackers
- 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
- 1/2 cup of berries or jelly
- 1/2 cup of milk or almond milk
Directions: Put all ingredients into a great puree blender and whip it up to a consistency that works for your child.
Meal Health Benefits: Protein, Fiber, Healthy Fats
Takeaway tip: You will need a blender that can puree solid foods. Vitamix’s work really well but can be pricey.
According to the UNC Pediatric Feeding Team they say, “Parents often ask us whether they need to buy the more expensive blenders to make effective purees. Our parents have given us great feedback and have found this not to be true. In fact, the primary inpatient intensive feeding program we often work with typically use the Immersion Blender which is the least expensive option.”
Hello taco heaven! I’m a taco fanatic at heart so I may be a little biased when it comes to this recipe. 🙂 Nonetheless, these are foods that are kid friendly approved.
What You Need:
- 1/2 cup corn or grits, pureed
- 1/2 cup refried beans, pureed
- 1 to 2 tablespoons creamy cheese sauce
- 1 to 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 1/4 cup salsa (to thicken, you can use tomato paste), pureed
- Optional: 1/2 cup avocado pureed or other veggies of your choice.
Directions: Prep each ingredient separately and layer.
Meal Health Benefits: Protein, Fiber, Calcium, Healthy Fats
Creamy Vegetable Soup
Soups are a GREAT way to hide pureed veggies for those picky eaters. The sky is the limit with the veggie combination you want to create.
What You Need:
- 1 onion
- 1 bag or 1 pound of baby carrots
- 4 celery sticks
- 3 cooked potatoes (if bigger) or 6 potatoes (if smaller)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil or melted butter
- 3 cups of vegetable stock or chicken stock
- 1/2 cup of cream, half-and-half, or coconut milk
- Dash of salt
- Optional: You can use sweet potatoes instead of regular potatoes, a handful of spinach, and spice it up anyway your kiddo may like (fresh thyme, garlic, oregano).
Directions: Puree all ingredients together and pour into a pot, bring to medium heat for 5 to 10 minutes to warm up.
Meal Health Benefits: Protein, Fiber, Vitamins, Potassium (if using regular potatoes), Antioxidants (if using sweet potatoes)
Takeaway tip: In order to cook the potatoes ahead of time, you will want to peel them first and then boil them for 15-20 minutes or until you can easily poke a fork through them. I usually cut up the potatoes into larger cubes so they cook faster.
Mac and Cheese
And yet, another classic food recipe among many kiddos. Who doesn’t love mac and cheese, am I right?
Well, surprisingly my six year old does not (maybe someday). But hey, the majority of kids I know (including my nephew) love their mac and cheese. 🙂
What You Need:
- 1 box of cooked Annie’s Classic Cheddar and Cheese
- 1 cup warm milk
Directions on how to make Annie’s boxed mac and cheese:
- Boil 6 cups water in a medium saucepan
- Stir in pasta, bring to a boil
- Cook 6-8 minutes, or until done, stirring occasionally
- Drain pasta in a colander
- While pasta is draining add 1/4 cup milk, 2 tablespoons salted butter to the warm saucepan and then sprinkle cheese over the milk and stir to combine ingredients
- Add the cooked pasta back to saucepan and stir well
Pureed meal directions AFTER cooking mac and cheese: After your mac and cheese is cooked, pour it into a blender and add 1 cup of warm milk.
Meal Health Benefits: Calcium, Protein, Fiber
Takeaway tip: I prefer Annie’s Mac and Cheese because it is an option with fewer preservatives and chemicals if you’re looking to go that route, but any box mac and cheese will do the trick!
Did we just say the ‘magical’ word that most kids go nuts over? I think so, PIZZA. 🙂
Yes, you can puree pizza, crazy right?
It’s actually pretty simple to do even though it may not look appetizing after you blend it up BUT it will taste just like pizza. So those family pizza nights your kiddo can enjoy right along with you.
What You Need:
- 1 slice of pizza
- 1 cup of warm milk
Directions: Cut up the pizza into chunks, throw it into the blender, and then add 1 cup of warm milk (or however much liquid for the right consistency).
Meal Health Benefits: Protein, Calcium, Lycopene (a powerful antioxidant ingredient in pizza sauce from the tomatoes which helps the heart, blood vessels, skin, and bones)
Calorie Boosting Pureed Foods
A common question among many parents if their child is on a pureed food diet is ‘How do I get my child to gain weight?”
The GREAT news is there are ways to beef up your purees so your child is consuming more calories per ounce of food.
I saw firsthand when my nephew was on a pureed food diet, his pediatrician informed my sister he needed to eat more calories to gain weight. My sister did some of these options below that I’m going to share with you. It worked too, he was able to gain a steady healthy weight. 🙂
Here are some calorie boosting recommendations made by Sharon Wallace, RD, CSP, LDN that are nutritious and will also add protein to pureed foods:
|TYPE OF FOOD||AMOUNT||CALORIES|
|Liquid fish oil (adds omega-3s)||1 tsp||40|
|Canned tuna/salmon (adds omega-3s)||2 ounces||60|
|Chia seeds||1 Tbsp||60|
|Boiled lentils||1/4 cup||60|
|Ground Beef or Chicken||1 ounce (3 oz is “palm of hand”)||70|
|Cooked oatmeal||1/2 cup||75|
|Greek Yogurt||6 ounces||100-150/ 13 gm protein|
|Cooked Brown Rice or Quinoa||1/2 cup||110|
|Almond/Peanut Butter||1 Tbsp||100|
|Raisins||1/4 cup||55 (also great Iron Source)|
|Sweet potato||1/2 cup||70|
Takeaway tip: It’s best to speak with your pediatrician or feeding therapist (if your child has one) about increasing calories.
I hope this post inspired your research efforts in finding a great pureed recipe option for your kiddo.
If there are other pureed foods you would recommend, questions you may have, or anything you’d like to add that I did not cover in this post, please feel free to comment below.
If you found this information helpful, please share the love to help another parent and their child. 🙂
I really do strive to make the content I create as helpful as possible for you…as a fellow parent looking out for their most precious gift.
Thanks for stopping by today!
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