Frequently Asked Questions
- What are some recipes that use infant cereal?
- How do you know if your baby is ready to start solid foods?
- Why is iron-fortified infant cereal often recommended as the first solid food to introduce to your baby?
- How do you start feeding your baby iron-fortified cereal?
- Why shouldn't cereal be put in your baby's bottle?
What are some recipes that use infant cereal?
- 1/4 cup dry infant oatmeal cereal
- 1/2 cup breastmilk OR prepared iron-fortified formula
- 1/3 cup bananas, mashed
- 1/4 cup breastmilk OR prepared iron-fortified formula
Combine infant oatmeal and 1/2 cup breastmilk (or prepared iron-fortified formula).
Bring to a boil and simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
In a separate bowl, mix mashed banana and 1/4 cup breastmilk (or prepared iron-fortified formula).
Combine banana and oatmeal mixtures.
- 1 cup flour
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 cup dry infant oatmeal cereal
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2 Tbsp oil
- 2 eggs, beaten
Mix together in a large bowl flour, sugar, baking powder and infant cereal.
Add milk, oil and eggs and stir until blended.
Spoon batter into 8 greased or paper-lined muffin cups. Bake at 425°F for 20 minutes.
Servings: 8 muffins
- 1 egg
- 1 cup milk
- 2 Tbsp oil
- 3/4 cup dry infant cereal
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
Beat egg in a medium-size bowl.
Add the rest of the ingredients and mix.
Pour 1/2 cup batter onto hot, greased skillet for each pancake. Turn pancakes as soon as they are puffed and full of bubbles. Cook other side until golden brown.
Servings: 6-9 pancakes
- 2 Tbsp shortening
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1 tsp water
- 1 1/2 cup dry infant cereal
Heat oven to 300°F.
Cream shortening and sugar.
Add egg, baking powder, salt, vanilla and water. Mix until well-blended. Gradually stir in infant cereal.
Knead until smooth. Pat into rectangle and cut into 12x1-inch bars. Smooth edges so they won't be sharp.
Place on un-greased sheet. Bake 20-30 minutes or until dry. Store in uncovered container overnight.
How do you know if your baby is ready to start solid foods?
Usually, your baby will start showing physical signs that he is ready to start on "solid" foods around 5-6 months. Some signs to look for are:
NOTE: If your baby's tongue always pushes the food out of his mouth, he isn't ready for solids. This tongue action means that he can't move food around inside his mouth.
- Your baby is able to sit up with support.
- She holds her head up without help.
- He reaches for things and holds them.
- When you feed her, she watches the food, waits with her mouth open and then closes her mouth over the foods.
Why is iron-fortified cereal often recommended as the first solid food to introduce to your baby?
Introducing solids when your baby is ready helps him learn new tastes and textures. The texture of infant cereal can be easily adjusted by mixing different amounts of breastmilk or prepared iron-fortified formula in the bowl with the cereal.
When you baby first starts eating cereal, it should be mixed very thin. (Rice cereal is often introduced first because it is least likely to cause an allergic reaction.) You can increase the thickness of the cereal as your baby becomes used to eating cereal and learns how to move food around in his mouth and eat from a spoon.
How do you start feeding your baby iron-fortified cereal?
Learning how to do anything new takes time and patience!
- Choose a time when your baby isn't too hungry and you are both in a good mood.
- Put your baby in your lap or in an infant seat.
- Mix the cereal in a bowl with breastmilk or prepared iron-fortified formula so that it is very thin.
- Using a small spoon put the cereal up to your baby's lips. When she opens her mouth, gently put the cereal towards the back of her tongue.
- If your baby has trouble swallowing or pushes the food out with her tongue, she may not be ready start cereal yet. Try again in a couple of weeks.
Why shouldn't cereal be put in your baby's bottle?
It is an old wives' tale that putting cereal in the bottle will help your baby sleep better at night. Babies should not go more than 4-6 hours without being fed because their stomachs are so small.
Around 6 months, your baby will be ready to eat cereal from a spoon. This is a very important learning step for your baby. Putting cereal in a bottle may prevent your baby from learning this new skill.
Cereal in the bottle can increase the risk of choking because you have to increase the size of the hole in the nipple to allow the cereal through. If too much comes through the nipple, your baby could choke. Putting cereal in the bottle may also cause you to overfeed your baby.