Salmon is one of the best foods you can feed your baby. It’s rich in nutrients that growing babies need such as protein & fat. It’s packed with iron and vitamin D, which are two nutrients babies can often be deficient in and need for overall health. Plus, it is packed with DHA, which is good for brain health. Salmon also supplies omega-3 fatty acids and other essential vitamins that support normal eye development and serve as a natural immune booster.
Babies can begin eating solids anytime between 4-6 months. Definitely talk to your pediatrician before feeding your baby salmon, or any solids for that matter. However according to most sources, your baby is ready to eat solid foods in addition to their milk intake around six months old. Adding salmon to their diet can improve their supply of essential nutrients needed for their cognitive development.
What is the Best Way To Cook Salmon For Baby?
Before we get into our favorite way to cook salmon for babies, we can’t stress this enough. Make sure you ask your baby’s pediatrician before introducing salmon to his or her diet. Once you get approval, make sure you always cook the salmon properly to reduce the risk of food-borne illnesses. Salmon is a low-mercury fish and it is good for your baby to eat up two to three times per week according to BabyCenter.
Every baby becomes ready for solids at different stages so talk to your doctor before trying any solid or pureed food. Typically for babies 6-9 months old, you can mash cooked, flaked fish into a puree for easier digestion. Babies 9 months old and above can eat small pieces of breaded or baked salmon.
Our favorite baby salmon recipe: Boil the salmon & make a puree for baby!
There are many ways to cook salmon that make it more palatable for your baby. However our favorite way is to make salmon into a puree after boiling it. It’s basic and a great way to introduce salmon. Plus, when you puree salmon you can eventually add in more flavors.
Over time you can even sprinkle the salmon with a small amount of herbs and spices to season your recipe. Since babies tend to have more sensitive taste buds than adults, don’t overdo it. Skip spicy seasonings like cayenne powder and focus on kid-friendly herbs such as basil, oregano, and rosemary. Also keep salt to a minimum or none at all until baby gets older.
Tips For Cooking Salmon For Baby
Ask your doctor before feeding your baby with salmon
I know we keep saying this, but it is truly so important as salmon is considered an allergenic food for babies. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends feeding your baby allergenic foods before 11 months old. Still though, babies may have different reactions to salmon. Which is why it is important that you first ask your baby’s pediatrician before feeding your baby with salmon.
Start with purees or mashes
Whether you puree salmon with other vegetables or simply mash it, texture and consistency are very important. At first babies should have finely pureed foods before introducing them to large bits of salmon.
Research baby led weaning
Baby led weaning is a popular method of introducing solids to babies. In BLW, parents encourage babies to self feed. It’s not for everyone, but if you’re up for it BLW can bea great way to introduce babies to eating salmon.
Don’t make too much food.
Babies don’t need a ton of food. So don’t overshop or make too much. It’s best to feed your baby fresh food, especially when it comes to salmon. According KidsHealth.org 2 -3 ounce of solid food is enough to make a 6-month old baby full. A fun tip is to make yourself salmon for dinner and just separate a piece with no seasoning to cook for baby.
Combine salmon with breastmilk or formula.
Adding breast milk or formula to your pureed salmon recipe can help thin the mixture and make the food more digestible for babies who just turned 6 months old. As you may know babies are highly sensitive to the texture of solid foods. So you want the food to be more runny for the first few feedings. Just combine at least at least 30ml of breast milk or formula to 65 grams of cooked salmon fillet until it becomes a smooth puree.
Add water or other liquids.
You can also use water, olive oil, coconut oil or a combination of these for purees. Get creative, anything that gets your baby more healthy fats, proteins, and vitamins. For most moms, combining salmon with some sort of liquid is a traditional and effective way to pique their interest. You can also combine shredded salmon with yogurt or vegetable as an alternative to your breast milk or formula milk.
Double inspect for tiny bones.
Carefully inspect the salmon for tiny bones before serving it to your baby. Even when salmon is labeled as boneless, it is possible to have tiny bones in it. If possible you need to use your fingers and have a keen eye for these very little things.
A single bone in a salmon can pose a choking hazard to your baby and as a mother you would want to exercise double precaution before giving salmon to your baby.
Make sure you’re buying high quality salmon.
You should only feed your baby high quality salmon. You want to make sure its packed with nutrients, has no harmful hormones or biproducts in it, and overall is fresh and raised sustainably. If you need a reliable source of high-quality salmon, we obviously would recommend BluGlacier and you can also see our guide on how to shop for nutritious salmon at the grocery store.
Don’t be afraid to add in other ingredients!
As we mentioned above, you can try breast milk, water, and oils, But you can also get creative and try sweet potatoes, other vegetables, and even pastas! Just make sure you puree and mash the food up or study baby led weaning. Combining salmon with other goods is a great way to get your baby more nutrients. Just remember that doctors typically recommend introducing one new food to babies at a time to check for allergies.
How do you feed your baby salmon?
We would love to know what your favorite way to feed your baby salmon is! If you have any salmon recipes for babies you love please share! If you’re pregnant, definitely check out our post on why salmon is so good to eat during pregnancy.