Gone are the days when parents used to wait till their kids were grown up to travel. Nowadays, little babies travel everywhere, exploring the great big world with their inquisitive eyes. Of course, modern conveniences have definitely made life easier for Mom and Dad!! But in spite of everything, one point of worry for parents is what to feed their children while travelling.
With all the scare about packaged food and unhygienic food preparation in restaurants, parents would rather carry their own food with them. Needless to say, this requires quite a bit of planning, but we’re here to help!! Here is a list of convenient and healthy travel foods for babies and toddlers.
34 Easy Homemade Travel Food Ideas for Babies and Toddlers
If you are breastfeeding your baby then he won’t need any other milk supplement at least for the duration of your journey. If he has already been weaned, you can try these substitutes for milk:
- Milk powder (commercially available)
All you need to do here is to add hot water, which you can carry in a thermos flask.
Fresh fruits are one of the best travel foods, being convenient and and hygienic. For toddlers, you can just cut up the fruit and feed them. For babies, you can mash and puree fruits like papaya, muskmelon, banana or chikoo. When ripe enough, they can be easily mashed with just a fork.
Here is a list of 15 instant porridge powder recipes, all of which require only hot water to be added.
Main Meals – Lunch
Main meals like lunch and dinner are a little more difficult to handle while travelling as it isn’t easy to prepare a filling rice meal on the go. However, you can still work your way around this problem with a few tips:
1. If you have a rice cooker then all you need to do is plug it in to make a simple khichdi with carrots or potatoes. You can carry carrots and potatoes as they last for more than 2 to 3 days without refrigeration.
2. If you don’t own a rice cooker, dry roast rice and dal well and make grind to a powder. You can carry this powder in an air tight container and cook it with hot water from your flask. You can also add grated carrot, which doesn’t take long to cook.
If you don’t have time to dry roast rice and dal, you can easily order homemade Instant Khichdi mixes here.
3. If you want to give lunch from a restaurant, ask for steamed hot rice with dal. Mash it with sanitized fingers or spoons and feed your baby.
When it comes to snacks, most parents reach out for packaged foods like biscuits. But you can go healthy here too, especially since toddlers snack a lot and you don’t want so much junk going into their bodies! Try these homemade snack recipes that don’t require refrigeration.
- Roasted chickpeas
- Energy bars – Groundnut Bars, Maple Oat Cluster Bars , Chocolate trail Mix
Tips for Feeding your Baby at a Restaurant
Sometimes, you find yourself with no option but to feed your baby from a restaurant. In such cases, there’s no need to panic; just keep these few tips in mind:
1. Never give raw foods like salads to chutneys to babies
2. Along with raw foods, you should also avoid dishes with raw ingredients like mayonnaise, souffle, sushi etc.
3. Always try to go for steamed foods – steamed rice, steamed idlis and cooked vegetables.
4. Use your own cutlery.
5. Ensure there are no choking hazards in baby’s food.
6. Avoid trying new foods as your baby may be allergic to it.
7. Stick to boiled/bottled water and don’t give baby juices or milkshakes.
8. Stay away from anything with artificial coloring or flavoring.
Feeding your baby or toddler during travel needn’t be a huge source of stress! With just a little effort on your part, you can ensure that you and your child enjoy your journey, without any worries about food!!
We have compiled a comprehensive Travel Food packing List for Babies and Toddlers
- Dr Hemapriya
- Fabida Abdullah
- Dhvani Shah