Looking to try something different for your baby? How about feeding her some super food? Yes, we are talking about Quinoa.
For Native Americans and other tribes in North America, Quinoa was a staple food for years. But then the Europeans brought maize and wheat with them. Quinoa then became an exotic food. But slowly, the world is waking up to the goodness of this nutritious food.
Often mistaken for a grain, Quinoa is essentially the seed of a green vegetable that resembles spinach! But what makes it a super food? Well, take a look at the nutrient content of this amazing seed, and you’ll know what makes quinoa so popular.
|Nutrition||Value per 100 g||Nutrition||Value per 100 g|
|Water||13.28 g||Energy||368 kcal|
|Protein||14.12 g||Total Lipid||6.07 g|
|Carbohydrates||64.16 g||Fiber||7 g|
|Calcium||47 mg||Iron||4.57 mg|
|Magnesium||197 mg||Phosphorous||457 mg|
|Potassium||563 mg||Sodium||5 mg|
|Zinc||3.1 mg||Copper||059 mg|
|Magnesium||2.03 mg||Selenium||8.5 ug|
|Thiamin||0.36 mg||Riboflavin||0.31 mg|
|Niacin||1.52 mg||Pantothenic acid||0.72 mg|
|Vitamin B-6||0.487 mg||Folate||184 ug|
|Vitamin A||14 IU||Vitamin E||2.44 mg|
As you can see, quinoa is classified as a super food for a good reason!
Is Quinoa Safe For Babies?
Yes, quinoa is safer than a lot of other foods out there. But you should wait till your baby is 8-10 months of age before introducing some quinoa in baby food. Not because there is a danger of allergic reactions. It is wise to wait because this particular food might be a little difficult to digest for a 6-7-month-old baby.
Benefits of Quinoa For Babies:
Here are a few benefits of adding quinoa to your baby’s diet:
1. Contains Essential Amino Acids:
Quinoa contains a good amount of essential amino acids. In fact, the content of these nutrients is higher in quinoa compared to other common cereals. Your baby needs these amino acids for her growth (1).
2. Full Of Vitamins:
Quinoa is chock a full of vitamins. Your baby requires these vitamins for her development – both physical and mental.
3. Great Source Of Minerals:
Quinoa also contains a great deal of minerals. It is a good source of calcium, iron, potassium, sodium, zinc, etc. Your baby needs all these minerals to grow.
4. Provides Antioxidants:
Babies eat more than us if we compare food portions and body sizes. They need to eat more because they need to grow faster. But this requires a high metabolism, which can lead to free radical production in their little bodies. Quinoa comes loaded with antioxidants, which can scavenge these free radicals and prevent DNA damage (2).
5. Keeps Digestion Healthy:
Quinoa contains a good amount of fiber. This fiber content makes quinoa a good laxative. Adding it to your baby’s diet can aid in keeping her digestion healthy (3).
Super food, indeed! So, how can you serve quinoa to your baby? If you thought quinoa was too exotic to be turned into baby food, you thought wrong!
Amazing Quinoa Recipes For Babies:
Take a look at these amazing recipes. Both are perfect for babies who ready for something different. Give them a try!
1. Mini Pizza Quinoa Bites:
This quinoa recipe for babies is considered perfect for toddlers, you too will enjoy this tiny portion of health.
- 1 Cup cooked quinoa
- Four handfuls fresh, chopped spinach
- 6oz tomato puree
- 3-4 minced garlic cloves
- ½ small, finely chopped onion
- 2 Tbsp water
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- One Tsp oregano
- ½ tsp fennel seed
- One tsp marjoram
- One tsp basil
- 1 Tbsp dried parsley
- ¼ tsp sugar
- ½ tsp salt
- A little black pepper
How To Make:
- Add the spinach to the cooked quinoa and cover with a lid.
- Remove the pan from heat but leave the lid on for five more minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two mini muffin trays and keep aside.
- Mix tomato paste, garlic onion, water and olive oil together in a bowl.
- Now add the seasoning along with pepper and salt.
- Mix all the ingredients well.
- Next, divide the mixture into 48 mini muffins.
- Place the muffin tray in the oven.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes.
- Garnish with the topping of your choice.
- Sprinkle some cheese and bake for five more minutes.
- Serve warm.
2. Apple Cinnamon Quinoa Bites:
Bake them into bite size for your toddler or make porridge using the same ingredients for your little baby – this recipe will be a hit with both age groups.
- 1 cup cooked quinoa
- 1 cup quick oats
- 1/2 Tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 Tsp nutmeg
- 3 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1 cup chopped apples
- 2 eggs
How To Make:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Add cooked quinoa and oats in a large bowl.
- Combine cinnamon, nutmeg and sugars in a separate bowl.
- Add the spice mixture to the quinoa and oats.
- Next add maple syrup, apples as well as eggs and mix well.
- Grease a mini muffin pan.
- Now fill the muffin slots and bake for about 15-20 minutes.
- Serve warm.
Hope this article helped you know is quinoa safe for babies or not. There are a number of quinoa recipes you can try for your baby. These two were just to give you a taste of this super food. Go on – cook up a storm. Your baby will appreciate all your hard work!
Have you ever tried cooking quinoa? Do you have a recipe to share? Go ahead; type it out in the comments section below!
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