Noah normally eats whatever David and I are having for lunch and dinner. However, we made some adjustments to our cooking prior to starting solids with him.
We decided to limit salt, sugar and processed foods now that he is eating with us. One tip for limiting salt or other strong spices is to use Mrs. Dash or just add more seasoning after serving your baby. For example, I give Noah plain taco meat and then add the seasoning packet to the rest. Another way to dilute spicy foods (like chili) is to mix plain greek yogurt in your baby’s portion.
If we are eating something that is not very baby friendly (like steak) then I will make sides that Noah can eat like roasted veggies and baked sweet potatoes. David and I prefer some foods a little firmer so I will leave Noah’s portion cooking longer to allow it to soften. David and I also eat dinner after Noah goes to bed twice a week so that is an opportunity for us to eat something spicier or not baby friendly (like hot wings).
Lastly, make sure that you are not giving your baby choking hazards. We dice our food more finely than we did before having Noah. I also remove skins from foods that I feel might be dangerous. With these considerations in mind, I’m going to jump into some wonderful baby friendly lunch/dinner ideas.
Spaghetti Squash: Making spaghetti with a spaghetti squash is very simple and healthy. We usually roast our squash in the oven and then make sauce with meat and other veggies. This is exceptionally messy so I would recommend putting your baby in just a diaper.
2. Salmon and Quinoa: Salmon has such wonderful healthy fats and I feel like Noah always sleeps well after eating this for dinner. David and I would probably eat a salad with our portion.
3. Butternut squash soup with peas: David and I like our soup with a grilled cheese sandwich, but I added peas to Noah's portion for some texture.
4. Chicken pot pie: We make ours from scratch so that we can control how much salt is in the pie. I love how many food groups are included in this one dish.
5. Mexican night: Noah eats beans, avocado, tomato, plain Greek yogurt, and shredded chicken or beef depending on what we are making.
6. Mediterranean chickpea bowl: We love to make a bowl loaded with quinoa, chickpeas, roasted veggies and topped with feta cheese (inspired by a Hello Fresh meal).
7. Vegetable soup: Soups are one of my favorite foods this season and they are so baby friendly. The great thing about making them at home is that you can use low-sodium or no salt added broth.
8. Loaded Baked Potatoes: Some ideas for toppings are shredded chicken, cheese, plain greek yogurt, black beans, and leftover chili.
9. Quesadillas: This is a great way to spruce up leftover roasted veggies or ground beef.
10. Meatloaf: Baked sweet potatoes are an awesome option for a side.
I love sitting down together as a family to eat dinner. One of the wonderful things about baby led weaning is that since I am not spoon feeding Noah I get to eat too. For breakfast ideas you can check out my post here. I’m always excited to try new recipes for dinner and I would love to hear your family favorites!