The foods your baby consumes are essential to ensure they gain weight healthily. Finding the right foods to help your baby gain a healthy weight can be challenging. To help parents, we have compiled a list of the top 20 healthy weight-gain foods for babies.
These foods are high in essential nutrients and can help promote healthy weight gain while providing your baby with essential vitamins and minerals. From fruits and veggies to lean proteins and whole grains, these are the best foods to help your baby reach a healthy weight.
If you want to ensure your baby gets all the nutrition he needs, consider trying my recipes to add an extra kick of flavor. These food recipes are easy to prepare, digest and full of essential nutrients to help him grow and develop into a healthy child.
Healthy Weight Gain Foods
1. Breast milk
Breast milk is an ideal source of nutrition for babies, and it should always be the first choice when nourishing your little one. You should regularly feed your baby with breast milk for at least the first 6 months after birth. Then you can start adding other liquid and semi-solid foods gradually. This perfectly balanced milk contains all the vitamins and minerals your baby needs to grow strong and healthy. It also helps to protect against infection and reduce the risk of allergies.
2. Whole milk
Whole milk is an excellent choice for toddlers and young children, providing them with essential nutrients such as protein, fat, and calcium. Whole milk can help support their growing bones and muscles as they become more active. It’s also a good vitamin D source, which helps strengthen the immune system and aids in calcium absorption. You can serve plain or flavored milk or make kheer, custard, or smoothies as per your kid’s liking.
Cheese is another nutritious option for weight gain but should be introduced after your kid turns one. It’s a great source of protein and calcium, both essential for healthy development. Cheese can also provide a range of other vital nutrients, including magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, and vitamin B12. Eating cheese regularly can help support the growth of teeth & bones and aid digestion. Try these homemade cheese recipes to add healthy fats to your kid’s diet.
Yogurt is an excellent source of calcium and fats for babies' healthy growth. It's also high in probiotics, which help with digestion and gastric troubles. Choose full-fat varieties that contain live cultures to benefit from yogurt the most. You can mix yogurt into smoothies or cereal or serve it as is for babies.
Eggs are a nutritional powerhouse for babies and can provide saturated fats, proteins, and many essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamin D, selenium, iron, zinc, and vitamin A. You can feed your baby eggs cooked in any way, from scrambled to boiled to poached. Make sure to start with cooked eggs and avoid raw eggs due to the risk of salmonella. You can make Dosas, podimas, curries, sandwiches, or omelets as your kid demands.
Meats like beef, chicken, and turkey are excellent sources of protein and iron. Protein helps with tissue growth and repair, while iron helps babies produce hemoglobin, essential for energy production. When preparing meats for your baby, cook them thoroughly and cut them into small pieces to reduce the risk of choking. You can serve different meats in curries, nuggets, kebabs, kurma, or salads.
7. Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are a great source of healthy calories for babies. They are packed with essential fats, proteins, vitamins, and minerals that support healthy growth and development. Peanuts, almonds, cashews, pistachios, walnuts, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, and flaxseeds are all excellent options for your baby’s diet. Grind them to form a powder, or serve your kids a handful of nuts or seeds. You can add them to dishes like Dosa, Ladoo, Smoothies, etc.
Lentils are an excellent source of protein and iron. They are a great addition to any baby meal as they are easy to digest and provide lots of nutrition. You can add lentils to soups, stews, and purees or even add them as a topping on oatmeal or other cereal.
9. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are another excellent option for weight gain in babies. They are full of vitamins (A, B6, and C) and minerals (like manganese, potassium, and phosphorus) and are packed with fiber to keep your baby full for longer. Sweet potatoes can be mashed, steamed, roasted, or made into puree. You can even add them to baked goods or smoothies to increase the calorie count.
Avocados contain essential vitamins (E, K, C, B9, B5, and B6) and minerals necessary for a baby’s growth. They are also high in healthy fats, providing energy and promoting weight gain. You can make spreads, dips, sandwiches, pasta, soups, salads, or puddings.
Oats are rich in dietary fiber, B vitamins, and minerals. They are a great source of slow-burning carbohydrates, providing sustained energy throughout the day. You can use different fruits to make oats, porridge or cookies, and smoothies.
Dates are packed with essential minerals like calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and zinc, which can help to build strong bones and teeth. Dates can be mashed up, served as a puree, chopped up, and added to oatmeal or other cereals.
Bananas are a great source of carbohydrates, potassium, and other essential nutrients that can help promote healthy weight gain for babies. They are an excellent snack for in-between meals and can be blended into smoothies or mashed for a baby’s first taste of solid food. Bananas are naturally sweet and provide the energy boost babies need to grow and develop.
Ghee is a type of clarified butter made from cow's milk and has a high-fat content, making it perfect for babies who need to gain weight. Ghee can be melted and added to oatmeal or other cereals as a healthy way to increase calories. You can use commercial and Homemade Ghee to get its maximum benefit.
Use Ghee to make Dosas
Use it in Rice Recipes
Use to make meat/vegetable curries
15. Whole grains
Whole grains are an excellent source of carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber. Whole grain bread and cereals give babies a healthy dose of B vitamins and other essential nutrients. You can try making cookies, cakes, dosas, and uttapam to please your kids.
Ragi, or finger millet, is one of the most nutrient-dense grains available. It is rich in calcium, iron, and other essential nutrients that help to promote healthy weight gain in babies. Try these yummy Ragi recipes!
Rice is an excellent source of carbohydrates and calories, which can help babies to gain weight. It can be cooked in various ways, such as steamed, boiled, fried, or cooked with vegetables to make a nutritious meal for babies.
Potatoes are a significant weight gain food for babies, as they are a rich source of carbohydrates and fiber. They can be mashed and added to other foods or served as a side dish. Additionally, potatoes are easy to digest so they can be introduced to babies as early as 8 months old.
Pumpkins are also an excellent source of weight gain for babies. They are packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber that can help promote healthy growth in babies. Pumpkins can be steamed, boiled, or roasted and then pureed to make them easier for babies to eat. Mixing pumpkins with other soft foods like mashed potatoes, yogurt, or oatmeal is the best way to incorporate pumpkins into your baby's diet.
20. Kerala Banana
Kerala Banana is an excellent snack option for babies due to their high fiber content and naturally sweet taste. Kerala bananas are rich in vitamin C, potassium, and dietary fiber. Kerala bananas can be mashed up, served as a puree, cut into slices, and added to oatmeal or other cereals.
Sooji / Rava / Suji Recipes:
All these foods are packed with lots of nutrition to give your baby the energy they need to grow and develop. Babies need to gain a healthy amount of weight during their early years. Wear your apron, grab your knife, and be ready to try making delicious and healthy food dishes from my recipes to help your kids reach their optimal weight.