Sweet potatoes are an excellent first food for babies. They are rich in vitamin content, folic acid, and dietary fiber. And, best of all they’re easy to digest as they contain simple carbohydrates or starch. After Devansh turned 6 months old, I started feeding him sweet potatoes almost daily. I would either steam or boil 5-6 sweet potatoes at a time, mash them, and then freeze the excess for future use. Time is an essential commodity when you have a 6 month old baby, right? :-) After you introduce cow/buffalo milk in your baby’s diet, you can start feeding him/her this sweet potato porridge as per the recipe given below. For babies less than one, you can cook this porridge in water and then add breast milk or formula.
This porridge makes for an ideal sugarless dessert for babies, toddlers, and young kids. Bon appetit li’l one. :-)
Sweet Potato Porridge for Babies, Toddlers
- 2 medium sized sweet potatoes / ratalu
- Approx. 1 tsp grated jaggery
- Approx. 1 cup milk (See note below)
- Approx. 1/5th tsp cinnamon / dalchini powder (See note below)
- Wash sweet potatoes thoroughly.
- Peel the sweet potatoes and cut them into thin slices.
- Steam or boil them till they become tender. You can cook them in a pressure cooker on medium flame for about 15-20 minutes (7-8 whistles). Or, you can boil them in 1-2 cups of water for about 10 minutes.
- Mash the steamed/boiled sweet potatoes finely.
- Sometimes even after mashing properly, sweet potatoes contain a lot of thread-like fiber. Take it out as your baby’s not equipped to deal with it while eating.
- Heat milk in a pan and then add mashed potatoes. You basically need 7-8 tbsp of mashed potatoes.
- Add about 2 pinches—if there’s any such thing :-) —of cinnamon powder.
- Keep stirring continuously till the mixture reaches desired consistency. Ensure that no lumps form in the mixture as you stir.
- Add jaggery and stir to ensure that it dissolves properly in the mixture. (The measurement for jaggery given in the list of ingredients is an approximation. Taste the sweet potato to determine how much jaggery you want to add. You don’t want to make the porridge too sweet.)
- Allow the porridge to cool a bit before serving it to your little one; although, you wouldn’t want to serve it cold. It tastes best when it is slightly warm.
For babies younger than one year, cook the porridge in water, and then add breast milk or formula after it is cooked.
After adding jaggery, don’t cook the porridge for more than half a minute as it’ll cause milk to curdle. It’s best to turn off heat and then add jaggery. You can use powdered jaggery as it dissolves fast.
If you haven’t introduced cinnamon in your baby’s diet, please check with his/her pediatrician before doing the same. You might find this link about introducing spices in your baby’s food useful.