Healthy BLW Meal Ideas, Part 4

Here is our newest edition of BLW meals! Even though we hit 100 different foods, I am still trying to give her as much variety as possible, keep things healthy, and not drive myself crazy with food preparation. As always, I recommend the Solid Starts app to help with how to serve food safely based on your baby's age. Sloane one as I write this and a lot of the time I leave some food whole for the picture and then cut or smash; so double-check that you are serving it safely for your baby! Solid Starts is a great resource (the free app or their website). Follow us on Instagram for daily meal or snack ideas in our stories.

1. Baked Garlic Chicken, Steamed Artichoke, Lemon Greek Yogurt

  • Chicken - I used organic chicken breast, but you can use whatever you prefer. I seasoned the raw breast with chopped garlic, black pepper, garlic powder, and a sprinkle of lemon juice. I then baked the breast in a covered dish for about 25 minutes at 350 degrees. This will vary depending on the thickness and size of your chicken, so just cut it with a knife to make sure it is cooked through. I sliced this into bite-sized pieces (Sloane has her pincer grasp) but you can do strips like the picture for younger babies (6-9 months).
  • Artichoke - I'll be honest, I've never cooked an artichoke before and I don't think this went amazingly. After researching how to cook it, I realized a "baby artichoke" has more "meat" on it and would be better for this purpose. But I already had the regular artichoke! You could bake this in the oven, but I steamed this over a pot of boiling water for about 30 minutes. I then cut off the tip of the leaves and tried to pull off the "meat" of the artichoke itself; essentially if you were to dip the leaves in something and scrape your teeth along it, whatever comes off is the edible part. I tried to do this myself for Sloane using a knife. It wasn't as pretty as the picture, but she got a few bites in. Here's some info on perhaps a better process.
  • Greek yogurt - We are big fans of the Stonyfield Organic Plain Greek Yogurt, as it is low in sugar, organic, and full fat. I spooned this into a bowl and then sliced up the inside of a lemon, removing the skin and membrane. I also grated some "zest" (very thoroughly washed an an organic lemon) on the yogurt as well. She got introduced to the lemon flavor without the very harsh acidity and tartness!

2. Filet Mignon, Roasted Golden Potatoes, Grilled Asparagus

  • Filet mignon - This was actually Sloane's 100th food (because I'm crazy like that) and was another Misfit's Market find. I ordered a 5oz organic grass-fed steak and kept it in the freezer until she had reached 99 foods. I let the steak thaw in the fridge the day before and then brought it to room temperature to cook. I used a cast-iron skillet coated with EVOO and heated up on the stove. The steak was pretty bloody, so I patted it with a paper towel and then seasoned it with some black pepper, setting it onto the hot oil. A few minutes on each side got the "sear", and then I added a little butter on top and let it continue to cook until well done in the middle.
  • Golden potatoes - These were small, organic, golden potatoes (another Misfits Market item) that I washed and diced into bite-sized pieces. I tossed them in EVOO, black pepper, garlic powder, and dried parsley. I roasted them in the oven at 375 for about 30 minutes.
  • Asparagus - No matter how you choose to cook the asparagus, make sure to cut off the ends and wash it first. I tossed the stalks in EVOO and sprinkled with black pepper and garlic powder. I personally started with these in the same pan as the steak, and then finished them off in the oven to make sure they were fully cooked (they were particularly thick stems). However, you can just sauté them for 4-5 minutes and that would be sufficient, or cook them for 12-15 minutes at 425 in the oven.

3. Salmon Meatballs, Quinoa Bars, and Strawberries

  • Salmon meatballs - I used ground salmon, diced onion, chopped kale, and a few spices (lemon juice, garlic powder, black pepper, and onion powder) mixed them together, and molded them into balls. I cooked them in the oven at 425 for about 20 minutes. I was really worried about these being underdone so they were a littttle dry but Sloane didn't mind.
  • Quinoa bars - Quinoa and rice are a BLW nightmare when it comes to mess, so this was my attempt to limit that, and it worked for the most part! I cooked the quinoa according to the package directions but added just a bit more water than necessary. This made the quinoa a little "sticky" so it easily clumped together into balls (which I made another meal out of). I added some chopped spinach to the damp quinoa and spread it flat on a baking sheet. I then baked it in the oven at 425 for about 10-15 minutes. This made a solidified "bar" that Sloane held on to and bit into rather than grabbing handfuls of.
  • Strawberries - An easy side after a lot of work for the other parts of the meal; I washed some strawberries and cut them into bite-sized pieces based on Sloane's age and pincer grasp. I like to sprinkle with some flax seed or nutritional yeast since these can be quite slippery, and has a bonus of added calories and nutrition.

4. Baked Pork Chops, Steamed Broccoli, and Cocoa Banana Greek Yogurt

  • Pork chops - This was her first time having pork, and with most meats, I'm always hyper-worried about them being underdone, so I tend to overcook...regardless, I seasoned a thawed pork chop with black pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder. I put a little olive oil on a pan and cooked the pork at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes, flipping halfway through. I ended up shredding after this picture, to make sure there were no fatty pieces and make it easier for her to eat!
  • Broccoli - Rinse and cut off the stem, then put in a steamer over boiling water. Cook until soft, approximately six minutes. Then lightly sprinkle with your choice of seasonings. I used black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and nutritional yeast.
  • "Chocolate" banana Greek yogurt - I always use Stonyfield Organic Plain Greek Yogurt but like to add a variety of ingredients to change up the flavor. In this case, I added some oatmeal powder, organic baking cocoa powder, and diced banana.

5. Ricotta and Black Bean Rice Cake, Garlic Green Beans, Red Beets

  • Rice cake - Using your choice of rice cake (make sure the sodium is as low as possible), spread with ricotta cheese and cooked black beans that I mashed into a paste. It's that simple!
  • Green beans - Fresh green beans are an easy, nutritious side. Simply cut off the ends of fresh green beans and cook in boiling water for 3-5 minutes. I then wrapped the beans in foil and cooked them in the oven with butter and garlic for another ten minutes or so. 
  • Red Beets - These organic red beets were a part of my Misfit's Market order, and I cooked all of them at once. I washed the beets (you can remove the skin but it's a lot of work and it was easier just to cut off after cooking) and wrapped them in foil. I sprinkled with EVOO and black pepper and then cooked it at 350 for about an hour. They were soft on the inside and I cut off any skin that was too hard to eat and sprinkled them with a little nutritional yeast. (FYI these stain everything so be careful!)

6. Hard Boiled Eggs, Lime Greek Yogurt, Blackberries

  • Hard boiled eggs - As someone who doesn't eat very many hard-boiled eggs, I still managed to cook the 'perfect' egg! I covered the eggs in a pot with cold water and brought them to a boil. I then turned off the flame but left the eggs covered for 14 minutes. I then immediately transferred to an ice bath for another 14 minutes. I peeled, sliced, and served!
  • Lime Greek yogurt - As always, we love the Stonyfield Organic Plain Greek Yogurt. This time, I thoroughly washed a lime and zested the skin. I also cut the fruit and squeezed in some juice and even cut up a few very small pieces to sprinkle in. I made a larger batch so all of that wasn't too tart in this little side and she liked it!
  • Blackberries - I love berries for an easy, healthy side that Sloane enjoys. Buy organic when you can, wash thoroughly, and either mash for under 9 months or half/quarter for 9-12!

7. Portobello "Chicken Parm", Sauteed Spinach, Cantaloupe

  • Portobello - I washed and scooped out the insides of the mushroom, drizzled with EVOO, and sprinkled with garlic powder and Italian seasoning. I cooked at 350 for 15 minutes and then placed a spoonful of pasta sauce and a slice of fresh mozzarella on top. I cooked for another 5-10 minutes, and sprinkled with parsley after removing from the oven.
  • Spinach - More complicated main dishes mean easy sides for us; I drizzled a pan with EVOO and diced garlic and added some sliced spinach, sautéing for just a minute.
  • Cantaloupe - I washed the outside of the cantaloupe, cut in half, scooped out the seeds, and sliced. Although I did strips here, she actually preferred holding the slices with the skin on. It makes it easier for baby to hold!

That's our current round up of healthy BLW meals! We hope they helped give you some ideas for your family. Leave a comment if there's anything you tried, changed, or babe particularly loved! For more recipes, make sure to check out our other posts:

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