Week 6: Oatmeal and Egg Yolk

Oatmeal

Oatmeal For Your Baby

Warm oatmeal can be so good on a cold morning - yum. It is a good thing to introduce oats early because they are the basis for a popular first finger food, Cheerios. Whole oats have numerous health benefits for you and baby. Whole grain means that the nutritious part of the grain has not been removed, so with baby you want to try to give a "whole grain" whenever possible. If you never have time for breakfast in the morning, this may be a good one to introduce on a Saturday or Sunday. Making whole oats can take about 10-15 minutes. Here is a good chance to model eating for your child because you can make the oats and sit down and eat with her.

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When is baby ready?

7 Months Old

How to buy

There are 2 main choices for oatmeal for your baby:

  1. Box of baby food oatmeal - already ground up (like rice cereal) you just add liquid
  2. Buy regular oatmeal - cook it and puree to baby's consistency

DO NOT buy the flavored, sugared, processed oatmeal packets for baby (for you - no problem).

Homemade Baby Food Recipe

There are three basic types of oatmeal found in a regular grocery store. All of these types have good instructions on how to cook them on the side of the package. Obviously, a store such as Whole Foods has many more choices for oatmeal.

  1. Instant Oatmeal - it has been cut up so it only takes one minute to cook
  2. Rolled Oats Oatmeal - after bringing water to a boil it takes 5-6 minutes to cook at a simmer (see below)
  3. Steel cut Oatmeal - probably the most delicious and hard to find - but try it if you see it

Why would you cook the rolled oats version? The taste and consistency is so much better than instant (and those little packets are expensive and not very filling).

How to store

Keep rolled oats in the refrigerator. Instant can be kept in the cupboard.

Are there baby food jars?

No, but can be mixed in with other things (such as prunes).

Should I buy organic?

It can be VERY difficult to find organic oatmeal so don't make it a priority. If you see it, buy it because it can taste much better than conventional oatmeal

Adult Recipe

Whole Oat Oatmeal

2 1/4 cup water
1 cup rolled oats
butter to taste (optional)
and any additions you enjoy such as: maple syrup, brown sugar, raisins, salt, milk, cream, cut up apples, berries, etc.
Mix the water and oats in small saucepan and boil. Then turn heat to low and cook stirring until the water is just absorbed (about 5 minutes). Cover pan and turn off the heat. 5 minutes later uncover the pan and add other ingredients and serve.

Egg Yolk

Egg Yolk For Your Baby

Here is a great source of nutrients for your baby that is really easy to make. Do not feed your baby the egg white until he/she is at least 12 months old because of a high percentage of allergies to a protein found in egg white. The good news is that you can use those egg whites for yourself!

Eggs are one of the most nutrient-rich foods available to us. A chicken egg's purpose is to bring new life into the world and to nourish that life until it reaches the point where it can survive on its own. Also, don't be afraid of the cholesterol in eggs. The jury is still out on whether the cholesterol in eggs actually contributes to heart disease. Just eat them in moderation (like with all foods).

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When is baby ready?

7 Months Old

How to buy

Make sure your eggs are free of cracks and check the sell by date. There are so many different types of eggs to purchase. Here is a short primer of your choices and what they mean.

  1. White vs. Brown - This color difference makes no difference nutritionally. The inside is the same whether the egg is brown or white.
  2. Cage Free - Animal rights activists believe that keeping chickens in cages is cruel. If you feel strongly about supporting cage free environments, buy these eggs.
  3. Organic - The chickens are fed only organic feed. This will mean less pesticide residue in the egg itself.
  4. Omega-3 Eggs - The chickens are fed flax seeds to get a greater amount of Omega-3 fatty acids in the egg itself. Keep in mind that there are many ways to increase your Omega-3 fatty acid levels other than these expensive eggs.

Homemade Baby Food Recipe

This is for all of you who have never boiled an egg. You will be excited to see how easy it is! Place eggs in sauce pan and add water until covered. Turn heat to high and bring to a boil. Put cover on pan and let sit for 10 minutes, drain eggs and cool. To prepare for your baby, remove the yolk, and mash it. Mix it with rice cereal or yogurt to make it easy for baby to eat.

How to store

In refrigerator.

Are there baby food jars?

No.

Should I buy organic?

This is where it gets hard - the price difference can be astronomical ($1.30 for non-organic - $3.49 for organic) for a dozen eggs. Your baby isn't going to be eating many eggs so concern about pesticide residue is probably unwarranted.

Adult Recipe

Here is a way to use up the egg whites your baby can't eat yet. Everyone has their own "favorite" egg salad recipe so this one is just a basic one that you can alter to taste.

Egg Salad

3 hard boiled eggs chopped
1/2 onion or three scallions chopped
4 tablespoons mayonnaise (more or less to taste)
1 teaspoon mustard (preferably Dijon)
salt and pepper
Mix together ingredients and eat on whole grain bread. Also, you can add lots of different things to dress it up for example: curry powder, diced celery, slivered almonds, diced pickles, ground chile, and ground cumin.

Eating tip of the week

Keep in mind that your baby will tell you when he/she is full. Try not to get her to eat one more bite just because you want her to finish the serving you decided was right for her. She knows when she is full and it is important to respect this internal knowledge. Just save it for next time!

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