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Weaning for Babies - the Festive Food Edition

Article by Busy Bees

For many, Christmas is all about food and family! So, if your little one has begun weaning, or is about to start weaning, these Christmas recipes for babies could be perfect!

Introducing your baby to some of the flavours of Christmas can be an exciting experience for both parents and little ones. In this blog, we’ll explore some festive baby weaning ideas that align with NHS guidance to ensure a safe and enjoyable introduction to delicious festive foods.

Busy Bees have been looking after little ones for more than 40 years. From babies to preschoolers, we’ve supported countless parents on their children’s weaning journeys, making those first bites an exciting and nourishing experience for the whole family.

Cooking at Christmas for Babies

Is your baby six months old? If so, the great news for you is that NHS guidance says it’s the perfect time for most babies to begin weaning onto solid foods. With so many delicious Christmas delights to tuck into, where do you start? We’ve got some mouth-watering Christmas weaning recipes for you to try with your little one!

Christmas Purees

Add a touch of holiday magic to your baby’s purees by incorporating seasonal fruits and vegetables. Depending on the texture required for your baby's development you could consider pureeing softened and lightly roasted sweet potatoes, parsnips, and carrots for a warm and nutritious side dish. Apples and pears can also be cooked and blended for a naturally sweet Christmas treat. Make sure to introduce one ingredient at a time, waiting a few days before introducing another to monitor for any allergies.

Turkey and Homemade Cranberry Sauce

Mix finely shredded, well-cooked turkey with pureed cranberries for a protein-packed festive baby meal. Not only is Turkey a great source of rich iron which is very important for rapid brain growth in children under the age of five, but the cranberries add a festive twist with their tart flavour. Ensure the turkey is cooked thoroughly and has a suitable texture for your baby’s weaning stage.

Cranberry sauce is a perfect accompaniment for your Christmas lunch. Create one at home with our healthy and easy-to-make recipe.

You'll need:

* 250g of fresh cranberries /frozen cranberries
* 1 fresh orange (you will need all the zest and 100ml of the freshly squeezed juice)
* 1 small red apple
* Water (enough to cover)
* 1tsp of butter


  1. Wash, peel and remove the core and seeds of the apple. Roughly chop.
  2. Zest the orange and place in a small bowl. Juice the orange and measure out 100ml.
  3. In a small pan, add the cranberries and just enough cold water to slightly cover the cranberries.
  4. Add the orange zest and the orange juice.
  5. Bring these ingredients to the boil, then lower the heat to simmer.
  6. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small frying pan and pan fry the apple to lightly caramelise and release the natural sugars. Remove from the heat.
  7. Using a slotted spoon, gently remove the apple and add to the pan of the simmering cranberries.
  8. Carry on simmering until the cranberry mixture starts to thicken. Once thickened, turn off the heat and allow to cool. Blend.
  9. Transfer into a serving dish and refrigerate until required.

Festive Finger Foods

If you’re following a baby-led weaning approach, consider offering soft finger foods at Christmas time. Steam and cut sweet potatoes into festive shapes like stars or Christmas trees.

Or why not try making some savoury Christmas trees? A quick, simple recipe packed full of flavour!

You’ll need:

* A roll of puff pastry
* Cream cheese


  1. Roll out the puff pastry so it’s nice and flat.
  2. Spread the cream cheese and add your cold meats if using.
  3. Slice the pastry into 9 or 10 slices lengthways.
  4. Take a strip and fold into an accordion style, widening as you get to the end.
  5. Place a skewer through the centre and pop in the fridge for 30 minutes while pre-heating the oven to 175c.
  6. After 30 minutes, pop in the oven for 15 minutes or until golden.
  7.  Leave it to cool and carefully remove and dispose of the skewer.

Always ensure that foods are cut into baby-friendly shapes and sizes and watch your child closely while they explore the new and exciting foods for their safety.

Christmas Pudding Porridge

Create a baby-friendly version of a Christmas classic by adding a small amount of finely grated cooked apple or pear to naturally sweeten the baby oatmeal. You could even add a sprinkle of cinnamon for a hint of holiday flavour. Avoid using honey for babies under the age of one.

Christmas Weaning Foods to Avoid

Although there are many scrumptious foods for little ones to tuck into, it’s also essential to be mindful of certain foods to ensure your baby’s health and safety.

Some of these Christmas weaning foods to avoid are:

1. High-salt foods and additional salt added to dishes

NHS guidance states that babies should avoid salt where possible, as it’s not good for their kidneys. So, avoid adding additional salt when preparing meals for your little ones, and do not use stock cubes or gravy.

2. Honey

While honey is great for adding a little sweetness to dishes, keep it off the menu for children under one due to the containment of spores of bacteria that can be harmful to children. Instead, try adding ripe fruits or unsweetened applesauce.

3. Whole nuts

A festive favourite that features in many Christmas cakes and puddings, however these can pose a choking hazard for young children. NHS guidance is that whole nuts should be avoided until the age of five.

Weaning during the holiday season provides an excellent opportunity to introduce your baby to the joy of Christmas flavours. Remember to follow NHS guidelines, monitor for allergies, and adapt recipes to suit your baby’s development stage. We hope your little one enjoys some of our Christmas weaning ideas, and you have a very Merry Christmas together!