Banana baby-led weaning and recipes

Introducing your baby to solid foods can be a daunting task, but baby led weaning with banana as a first food is a great idea. Baby Led Weaning (BLW) is a popular way to introduce solids, and bananas are a great food to start with. In this article we will cover how to prepare bananas for BLW, the benefits of eating them, any allergies you should watch out for, choking hazards risk and some recipes your baby will love!

What is baby led weaning?

One of the great things about baby led weaning is that it allows your baby to develop their own skills and learn at their own pace (1). It also helps them to develop a good relationship with food as they are in control of what they eat. Additionally, research has shown that babies who are introduced to solid foods through baby led weaning believe it promotes healthy eating behaviour and weight gain (1)

Banana benefits for babies 

Banana is an excellent first food for baby led weaning as they are easy to hold and gum up. They are also a great source of vitamins and minerals such as potassium, vitamin C, dietary fibre and B vitamins ( thiamine, riboflavin and niacin) (2). All of these nutrients are important for your baby’s growth and development. 

When can I start feeding my baby bananas?

You can start to introduce solids to your baby from around six months old. This is when they will be able to sit up unaided and have lost the tongue-thrust reflex, which pushes food back out of their mouths (3)

Before you start if you are worried or have a family history of allergies, it is important to talk to your health visitor or dietitian about starting solid foods They will be able to give you advice about allergies and answer any questions you may have. 

So lets talk about banana baby led weaning. 

How do you serve bananas for baby led weaning? 

The great thing about bananas is that they are soft and easy to eat, making them perfect food for baby first foods. So how to cut banana for baby finger food? 

Baby led weaning banana in three ways (suitable from 6 months old)
Baby led weaning banana in three ways (suitable from 6 months old)
Baby led weaning banana from 6 months old
Baby led weaning banana from 6 months old

Baby led weaning with bananas at 6 months to 9 months

Bananas for babies firstly, trying to cut a banana in half and leaving the skin on so your baby has something to hold.. Or serve a piece of banana the size of your finger. A neat trick is putting your finger down a banana to divide it into 3 parts. 

Baby led weaning banana suitable from 6 months old
Baby led weaning banana suitable from 6 months old

Baby led weaning with bananas at 9 months to 12 months old 

You can now try serving smaller, bite sized pieces. As this is great for practicing the pincer grasp practice.

Baby led banana from 9 months old
Baby led banana from 9 months old

Can baby choke on banana?

No bananas are not a common choking hazard for babies, but they can cause gagging. To reduce the risk by preparing them safely by removing strings, cut to the right size of for your baby. Make sure you are always watching your baby when they are eating and never leave them alone. For more information on how to stop your child choking from NHS (3). 

Do banana cause constipation? 

Bananas are actually a great way to help with constipation and the evidence for them causing constipation is weak (4) They are high in fiber which helps to bulk up stools and make them easier to pass. But take it slowly on the portion size. 

Do banana help with diarrhoea? 

Yes, bananas can help with diarrhoea! The high potassium content helps to replace electrolytes that are lost when your baby has watery stools. Bananas also have a binding effect which can help to firm up stools. A green banana has been shown in some studies to control diarrhoea activity (5). 

Can babies eat bananas everyday?

Yes, babies can eat bananas every day if they want to. Just like with any food, it is important to offer a variety of foods so that your baby gets all the nutrients they need. Remember during weaning its important to offer your baby lots of flavours and textures so they can learn all about food. 

Banana are they an common allergen? 

Most babies will not have any problems eating bananas. However, some babies may be allergic to them. If you notice your baby is having trouble breathing, swelling of the face or throat, hives, or vomiting after eating bananas, they may be allergic and you should seek medical help immediately. 

Some people have oral allergy syndrome (pollen food allergy syndrome) which can be triggered by eating fresh fruit, raw vegetables and raw nuts. Most of the symptoms are mild and can include itching and swelling of the lips, tongue, inside of the mouth, ears and throat. For more information on pollen food syndrome check out allergy UK (5)

Recipes with bananas 

Smashed avocado and banana recipe – this is quick easy no cook recipe. Suitable for 6 months +

Two Ingredients banana pancakes – gluten, diary and sugar free. Perfect for baby led weaning

Three ingredient banana cookies – egg, flour, dairy and no added sugar. Perfect for breakfast 

As you can see, there are many recipes that you can make with bananas that your baby will love! Not to mention, they are a healthy snack option as well. So if you’re looking for a fruit that is not only delicious but also nutritious, then feeding your baby banana are the way to go! 

We hope you found this article helpful. If you have any questions or would like to share your own experiences with banana weaning, please leave a comment below! Thanks for reading!

Dietitian in kitchen cutting fruit
Emma Shafqat, BSc RD, Dietitian and Nutritionist

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