I never thought I would be writing a post on how to add spices in baby food !!! My son was a darling and he ate his baby food without spices as I was not comfortable to add spices in his food.
My daughter had other ideas, I started Dal ka paani first and she was happy with the taste. Then I introduced Carrot Puree, she just took a small pinch, spit out immediately and refused to take more. Maybe she doesn’t like carrot, started with potato puree the next day and it faced the similar fate as carrot 🙁
As I didn’t have the heart to waste all the puree, added a little jeera powder to the puree. As I was about to eat the puree my girl lunged for my spoon and I allowed her to suck upon the spoon. Lo!!! she grabbed the spoon for more.
Since then I am adding spices to almost all her foods as you can see all my Baby Food Recipes have atleast one spice as their ingredient.
Since we do not encourage salt and sugar to babies before 1 year, adding a little of spices can add flavor to baby food.
Breast fed babies are introduced to a variety of spices even before starting solids if especially after the mother had a flavorful Spicy Desi Meal 😉
How & When to Add Spices in Baby Food?
What are the Spices that can be added to Baby Food?
All the spices are to be added only after starting solids and never give raw spices before starting solids as it may do more harm than good. Please follow the 3 day rule before introducing any new spice.
1. When and how to add ASAFOETIDA / HING to baby food?
Asafoetida can be added to khichdi.
How much Asafoetida can be added to baby food ? – Just a pinch can be added.
Health Benefits of Asafoetida for babies – Asafoetida helps relieves gas and helps in easy digestion.
2. When and How can to add TURMERIC/Haldi/Manjal to Baby Food?
How much turmeric can be added to baby food? – Depending on the dish, the amount of turmeric varies. In Khichdi upto 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric can be added. In soups and Dal ka Paani just a pinch can be added.
Health Benefits of Turmeric for babies – It is a natural antiseptic, helps relieve cough and cold in babies, and is a powerful anti inflammatory agent.
3. When and How to add CUMIN/JEERA to baby food?
How much Jeera powder/ Cumin can be added to baby food ? – Depending upon the dish quantity varying from a pinch upto 1/4 teaspoon of Jeera Powder can be added to baby food.
Health Benefits of Cumin/Jeera for Babies – It is an effective anti fungal and antimicrobial agent. It is effective against diarrhea and gas problems of babies and children.
4. When and how to add CINNAMON / Dalchini / Pattai to baby food?
How much Cinnamon /Dalchini Powder can be added to baby food? – Except for the cakes and jam it always advisable to add a Pinch of cinnamon powder to baby food.
Health Benefits of Cinnamon/Dalchini for Babies – It helps in digestion and is an good antioxidant too.
5. When and how to add Fresh CORIANDER leaves / DHANIA patta / Kothamalli thalai to baby food?
Corainder leaves can be added to soups, khichdi. Be sure to grind or mash the leaves well or they will just be passed whole in stools.
How much Coriander leaves can be added to baby food ? – A few individual leaves or one sprig can be added to baby food. Chop them finely before adding to baby food.
Health Benefits of Coriander leaves for Babies – It is an antiseptic, antioxidant and helps treat diarrhea. It is rich in Iron.
6. When and how to add GARAM MASALA to baby food?
Garam Masala powder can be added to Khichdi, pancakes, briyani for enhancing the flavour.
How much Garam Masala Powder can be added to baby food? – A pinch or maximum 1/4 teaspoon can be used for baby food.
7. When and how to add MINT leaves / PUDINA Leaves to baby food?
Mint leaves can be chopped very finely and added to soups and Khichdi.
How many mint leaves can be added to baby food ? A sprig or a 6 to 7 mint leaves can be added to baby food.
Health Benefits of pudina/mint leaves for babies – It helps in digestion, can be used as a home remedy for Diarrhea,helps prevent respiratory disorders.
8. When and how to add FENUGREEK/METHI seeds/ venthaiyam to baby food?
9. When and how to add CURRY Leaves / Karuveppilai to baby food?
Curry leaves can be added to Khichdis.It is to just add flavor to the food and can be removed while feeding the baby.
How much curry leaves can be added to baby food? – Around 2 to 3 leaves can be added and removed while feeding the baby.
Health benefits of curry leaves for Babies – It has anti inflammatory properties and acts as a effective antidiarrheal agent. It aids in easy digestion.
10. When and How to add GARLIC / Lahsun / Poondu to baby food?
How much garlic can be added to baby food ? – Till the baby crosses 1 year one or two pod of garlic (depending on size) can be added to baby food and should be crushed nicely before feeding, for the dal ka paani it can be removed before feeding.
To know how to cook Garlic for babies click Here
Health benefits of Garlic for babies – It helps body fight against microbes, it is a good anti inflammatory agent and is rich in Vitamin C.
11. When and How to give GINGER / ADRAK / Inji to baby food ?
Finely grated Ginger can be added to Apple Puree, Pear, Sweet Potato, Masala Khichdi, Soups,Rice items.
How much ginger can be added to baby food ? – Finely grated ginger of size of an orange seed can be added to baby food.
12. When and how can FENNEL / SAUNF / SOMBU to baby food?
Fennel seeds can be added to Khichdi while tadka and it is not advisable to give fennel tea to babies to relieve colic. If the baby is breastfed then the mother can drink fennel water or tea to cure the colic of baby.
How much fennel seeds can be added to baby food ?– A couple of fennel seeds can be added to tadka for Khichdi baby food and it is advised to remove the seeds before feeding.
13. When and How to add CLOVE / LAUNG / Grambu to baby food ?
Cloves can be added to apple sauce, Masala Khichdi.
How many cloves can be added to baby food ? – A couple of cloves can be added to baby food and should be removed before feeding.
14. When and How to add MUSTARD / SARSON / Kadugu to baby food?
Mustard can be used to season Khichdi , soups.
Please Note – Till the baby is able to chew, the mustard seeds will be excreted as whole in the potty.
How much Mustard can be added to baby food? – 1/4 or less teaspoon can be added to khichdi and other dishes.
Health Benefits of Mustard seeds for Babies – Helps relieve chest congestion, improve immunity, treats constipation.
15. When and How to add CARDAMOM / CHHOTI ELAICHI/ ELAKKAI to baby food?
How much Cardamom or elaichi can be added to baby food ? – 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon of elaichi powder can be added to baby food.
Health Benefits of Cardamom/ elaichi for babies– It helps in easy digestion, helps alleviate respiratory illnesses. It is rich in copper,Iron and vitamins like riboflavin, vitamin C which are useful in preventing against Anaemia.
16. When and How to add SAFFRON / KESAR / KUMKUMAPOOVU to baby food ?
How much saffron or kesar can be added to baby food? One or two strands cane added while cooking, if garnishing then remove strands before feeding.
Health Benefits of saffron for babies – Saffron helps in easy digestion.
17. When and how to add NUTMEG / JAIPHAL / JAATHIKAI to baby food ?
How much Nutmeg / Jaiphal can be added to baby food ? Just a pinch of nutmeg powder can be added to baby food.
Health Benefits of Nutmeg for Babies – Nutmeg helps babies sleep better and aids easy digestion.
18. When and How to add CAROM SEEDS / AJWAIN / OMAM to baby food ?
Ajwain or Omam can be added after 7 months.
How much Ajwain or Omam can be added to baby food ? 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon can be added to baby food.
Health Benefits of Ajwain or Omam for babies – It is an effective home remedy against diarrhea, cough and cold. It aids in easy digestion. It helps prevent intestinal worms in children.
19. When and how to add PEPPER / Kalimirch / Milagu to baby food ?
How much Pepper powder can be added to toddler food ?– 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of pepper powder can be added.
Health Benefits of Pepper for babies – Adding pepper to baby food helps relieve cough and cold, helps in digestion.
20. When and How to add RED CHILLI / LAAL MIRCH / MILAGAI PODI to baby food ?
Red Chilli powder can be added to khichdi, curries.
How much Red Chilli powder can be added to toddler food? – 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of red chilli powder can be added .
21. When and How to add GREEN CHILLY / HARI MIRCH / PACHAMILAGAI to baby food ?
22. When and How to add TAMARIND / IMLI / PULI to baby food?
Tamarind or Imli can be added in sambhar, curries, khichdi for toddlers.
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This article is based on the views of the author, and it is on the sole discretion of the reader to implement the methods, the author does not take any responsibility for it. Always discuss you baby’s feeding methods with your pediatrician before introducing any new food.