Babies need an increasing amount of iron from 6 months, as their stores start to run out (read more about that here). Second to chicken liver, lentils are one of the highest sources of iron. In fact, they’re one of the healthiest plant foods a baby can eat. They’re also packed with:
Red and yellow lentils cook really quickly, so you can have this meal on the table in next to no time. Unless you want to, there’s really no need to make a separate meal for your little one as the whole family can enjoy this. Just make up a big batch by multiplying the ingredients by how many people are in your family. Then, cook up a side of your favourite rice, dollop on some natural yoghurt, and sprinkle on some coriander.
Dhal is tasty, filling, and nutritious. This dish is so simple to make and super delicious. For older children, it’s great served with warm roti bread, which is readily available from supermarkets.
Age: 6 months plus
Suitable for freezing
Makes: 2 cups
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
½ butternut pumpkin, peeled and diced into 2 cm pieces*
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons butter
½ small onion, finely diced
1 garlic clove, minced
¼ teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
½ cup red lentils
1 ½ cups salt-reduced chicken or veggie stock
Plain full-fat yoghurt
1 tablespoon chopped fresh coriander leaves
* You don’t need all of this but leftovers can be used as finger food or in a risotto
Tip: This dish will take you a long way – just adjust the spice levels as your baby grows.
This recipe was kindly contributed by Emily Dupuche, mum and author of ‘Food Babies Love: A Guide to Introducing Solids’, which contains practical baby food ideas that the whole family can enjoy. In it you’ll find 100 simple, nutritious baby first food recipes and anecdotes, designed to expose your precious little one to a wide variety of flavours, colours, and textures – the beginning of a lifelong love of good food. All the recipes are recommended by nutritionists, paediatricians, and child health professionals.
To order ‘Food Babies Love: A Guide to Introducing Solids’ head to the link here.