Stage 2 Baby Food Recipes (7-8 Months after Birth)

After the child is successfully weaned during stage 2, we progress to another stage where the child requires a little more food. As much as possible, feed the child with soft food which is a little coarse. This is also a period where iron intake should be adequate. So give the child iron-rich food during baby feeding.

When should Stage 2 Start? How much Food should be given?

If stage 1 has been smooth, proceed to stage 2

When stage 1 ends, this means the 6 months old baby can proceed to eating 50c.c. (a quarter cup) of baby food twice daily. If this amount of food is easily eaten and digested, you may increase the amount of baby food a little to eating three times daily. By then, we would have proceeded to stage 2 . One-third of a kid's bowl is the right capacity. Up till the end of the stage 2, increase the amount of food to 120c.c. daily.

Start eating the same type of food as its parents

stage 2

During stage 2, feed the child three times of baby food daily. Try arranging the child to dine with its parents as much as possible. Eating with parents is a very valuable learning experience for the child and a good opportunity to build up the right eating habits.

When the child is hungry

To coordinate the timing for three meals a day, it's not beneficial for the child if it's forced to eat even when it isn't hungry. It's not good either if you ignore its cries when it's hungry because you need to coordinate its mealtimes. Though it's good to coordinate the child's mealtimes, do make some accommodations if it's hungry before that. If suckling time can be coordinated with the time it's fed baby food, then the child's mealtimes will be about the time it's hungry.

Feed milk after eating baby food

​During this period, the child still needs to suckle. After eating baby food, let it suckle immediately. Doing this will increase the child's strength and the intervals between each meal can be regular. If the child only gets to suckle two hours after eating baby food, it'll seem as if the child is eating all day long. From the beginning of stage 1 till the end of stage 2, let the child drink 120-180c.c. of breast milk or formula milk after eating baby food.

What should the Child Eat?

Iron-rich Baby food

Be prepared to use more ingredients during stage 2. Though the child's main source of nutrition is still from breast milk or formula milk, baby food should also supplement some nutrients.

Six months after birth, the iron which the child gets from its mother is nearly used up. However, the child's body now needs even more iron, so it should be eating iron-rich food. Don't only drink meat soup; feed it meat which has been finely chopped as well. As chicken meat is more easily digestible than beef, start the child off with chicken meat first. The meat of white fish also makes for excellent baby food. However, allergy-inducing seafood such as fish, shellfish and prawns should only be eaten after the child turns one year old.

Completely avoid the rice which adults eat

Some mothers may think that their children are eating very well, so they feed them with the rice which adults eat before they're even seven months old. If you wish to feed the child rice now, though it may know how to wiggle its mouth, don't feed it with more than two spoonfuls to prevent it from rejecting porridge later on. It's also not advisable to feed the child rice which has been soaked in soup or water. That's because if it's used to rice which has been soaked in soup, it'll get used to stronger flavors. If fed with rice soaked in water, the child's digestive juices will be diluted, leading to weaker digestive ability. So up to this period in time, don't feed the child with the rice which adults eat.

Start with fruits which are not too sour

The child can be eating fruits at six months old. Start with fruits which are not too sour. It's good to avoid fruits which would trigger allergies, such as strawberries and tomatoes. Those fruits are best eaten after one year old. However, overeating fruits will adversely affect the child's growth – its height wouldn't increase and it couldn't absorb nutrition from food properly. This will in turn impede brain development as well. Moreover, eating too much fruits will cause infantile obesity, leading to an increased possibility of obesity in adulthood.

Too much fruits are bad for digestion as well. The child will have increased frequency of flatulence and will also suffer from chronic diarrhea. Fiber-rich fruits such as apples and pears will make the stools too watery. If watery stools turn into diarrhea, then the child should abstain from fruits for several weeks.

Fruit juices must be sterilized first

When choosing off-the shelf fruit juices, you must choose those that are made of 100% fruit juice and they must have been pasteurized. Juices which have not been pasteurized and packed into plastic containers or other types of packaging will breed bacteria within the container. The child will be in danger of being exposed to infection then.

How should the Child be Fed?

Start from slightly coarse food which has been cooked until very soft

During stage 2, when the child who has been eating fluid-like food all along encounters slightly coarser food, it may be a little tiring for it to eat in the beginning. Its eating amount will decrease, reject eating food and may even spit out whatever food is in its mouth. Therefore, coarse food must be cooked till very soft and mashed with a spoon. The grain size may increase slowly over time. It's best for the mother to mash up soft and fluffy rice grains. In the beginning, the child's swallowing will be slower than during stage 2. Make sure the child has fully swallowed the food in its mouth before giving it the second spoonful.

In the second stage of stage 2, the child can start eating toasted bread or melt-in-your-mouth baby cake. These types of food can let the child practice chewing and stimulate its itchy gums. To let it learn how to feed itself, let it grab food and feed itself as much as possible.

Teach the child to use a spoon

By this time, the child would have known how to use its hands and grab food. Therefore, it desires to learn how to eat on its own. You may give it cooked or softened food, melt-in-its-mouth apples, pears or potatoes. As the child now knows how to hold a spoon, you may give it toy or plastic cutleries. As it'll make a mess of the food, many mothers will still have to feed their kids. However, if you keep feeding your child, it wouldn't have the opportunity to learn how to feed itself. Even though it'll make a mess with food, as long as you teach and guide patiently, the child will eventually know how to eat neatly by the age of two.

Introduce a cup slowly

At six months old, you may put water or fruit juices in a cup. However, the child will only truly know how to hold a cup and drink on its own by eight months old. In the beginning, it wouldn't know how to hold the cup steadily or will spill often as it still doesn't know how to aim the cup at its mouth accurately. Whatever it is, you must let your child learn to hold its cup properly. This way, it'll not grow distant from its cup. Pouring a little breast milk or formula milk into the child's cup is also a good way to encourage it to learn.

A variety of cooking methods

From this period onwards, as you may use half a teaspoon of butter or oil, you may experiment with a variety of cooking methods. Previously, the child is just fed with watery porridge. Now, you may mash, stew or stir-fry its food.

Complementary flavors may be cooked or stir-fried together. However, the food mustn't be too salty or strong regardless of your cooking method. If you put seasoning into baby food, though the child may be able to accept it initially, it'll gradually develop a taste for heavily-seasoned food. This food will dull its taste buds and the child wouldn't want to eat mild-flavored food anymore. Hence, before the child is one year old, it's best to avoid using condiments such as salt and soya sauce.

Knowledge in a Box: How to use Cooked and Uncooked Rice to make Porridge

Foaming rice

Wash the rice thoroughly and soak in cold water for between 30 minutes and an hour. After that, use the grinder to pulverize it. During stage 1, the rice should be grounded into about one millimeter in size. During stage 2, the rice can be about the size of sesame seeds.

Making porridge

Children who have just started baby food must eat 10-part porridge. It's made by cooking one big tablespoon (15c.c.) of rice in 150 or 200c.c. of water. As time passes, the porridge can gradually become six-part, five-part or four-part porridge.

Cooking rice

Using cooked rice to make porridge uses a little less water than using uncooked rice to make porridge. If you're making five-part porridge, using one part rice and three parts water is more appropriate. Steamed rice uses one part rice and one part water. In the beginning, use low heat to boil the rice a little longer to make the grains softer or mash the rice a little so that it's suitable for the child during stage 2. During stage 1, rice grains should be finely mashed. By the time it's stage 2, it's all right to just mash the grains a little. During late weaning, the child can eat steamed rice directly.

Eight Dishes Best for Stage 2

Make baby food that's a little coarse. Using meat and white fish meat can replenish iron in the child's body. Different baby food may be combined and eaten together.

White Fish Meat and Spinach Porridge

Ingredients: 20g foaming rice, 10g spinach, 10g white fish meat, 150c.c. water and one big spoonful of breast milk or formula milk
Cooking method:

1. Pulverize foaming rice. Blanch and then finely chop spinach.
2. Wash white fish meat and cook in boiling water, then shred.
3. Put an appropriate amount of water into pot and cook spinach and fish meat on medium heat and bring to a boil.
4. Add pulverized rice to #3 and cook on high heat.
5. Switch to low heat as soon as porridge boils. Put in breast milk or formula milk and cook for another two minutes.

Broccoli Porridge

Ingredients: 20g foaming rice, 3g dried fish, 10g broccoli, 10g carrot and 150c.c. kelp soup
Cooking method:

1. Pulverize rice. Soak dried fish in cold water for 30 minutes and finely chop.
2. Cut out soft part of broccoli, blanch and finely chop after cooling it.
3. Remove carrot skin and finely chop carrot.
4. Put #1 and kelp soup in pot, cook on high heat and bring to a boil.
5. Switch to medium heat and put carrot, dried fish and broccoli into porridge in this order.
6. Bring porridge to a boil and cook it under low heat for another five minutes.

Soft Tofu Soup

Ingredients: 40g soft tofu, 10g spinach, 5g onion, 10g carrot, 150c.c. beef stock
Cooking method:
1. Cut soft tofu into square cubes of 0.5cm and blanch quickly before scooping up.
2. Blanch spinach and finely chop. Finely chop carrot and onion after washing them.

3. Pour adequate beef stock into pot and add spinach, carrot and onion and cook on high heat and bring to a boil.
4. After #3 boils, skim away bubbles on top and switch to medium heat.
5. Put soft tofu into the soup and cook until vegetables become very soft.

Vegetables and Meat Porridge

Ingredients: 20g foaming rice, 50g beef, 30g carrot, 20g spinach, 20g onion and 200c.c. beef stock
Cooking method:
1. Put beef in boiling water for a moment, remove meat, add more water and cook beef at low heat. Then finely chop.
2. Dice carrot and onion.
3. Blanch spinach and finely chop.
4. Pulverize rice, put into pot before adding beef stock. Cook at high heat and bring to a boil.
5. Switch to low heat when porridge is cooked. Add chopped beef and vegetables and bring to a boil.

Chicken and Cream Soup

Ingredients: 30g chicken meat, 10g potato, 5g carrot, 5g small cucumber, 150c.c. chicken stock and a little cream
Cooking method:
1. Cut chicken meat into square cubes of about 1cm. Wash potato, carrot and cucumber and cut into cubes of 0.5cm.
2. Put an adequate amount of chicken stock into pot and boil for one minute.
3. Switch to low heat as soon as stock boils and cook vegetables until very soft.
4. Put cream into #3 and cook for another minute.

Steamed French Beans and Sweet Pumpkin

Ingredients: 30g French beans, 20g pumpkin, 150c.c. water and one small spoonful of soybean powder
Cooking method:
1. Cook French beans until soft and peel away outer layers.
2. Remove pumpkin skin and fibrous part and clean pumpkin under running water.
3. Steam pumpkin in a steamer until soft and mash.

4. Put French beans and mashed pumpkin into bowl and mash again. Add a little soybean powder before serving.

Bean Sprouts and Tofu Soup

Ingredients: 20g bean sprouts, 20g tofu, 10g small cucumber, 10g carrot and 150c.c. beef stock

Cooking method:
1. Remove roots of bean sprouts, chop and blanch.
2. Blanch tofu, remove from water and mash gently.
3. Wash carrot and small cucumber under running water.
4. Put bean sprouts, carrot, small cucumber and sufficient beef stock into pot and cook on high heat and bring to a boil.
4. Switch to low heat once #4 has boiled, add mash tofu and boil again.

Steamed Tofu, Vegetables and Egg Yolk

Ingredients: 20g tofu, 5g broccoli, 5g carrot, one egg yolk and one big spoonful of breast milk or formula milk
Cooking method:
1. Blanch tofu and remove from water. Cook carrot until soft and mash.
2. Retain soft part of broccoli, blanch and remove from water.
3. Combine egg yolk with an adequate amount of breast milk or formula milk.
4. Put 1, 2, and 3 in a heat-resistant container.
5. When steam is coming out from the steamer, put in 4. Switch to low heat and steam for between 10 and 15 minutes.

Those are the information and some recipes that you can use for baby food, particularly 7 to 8 months after birth.

Sandra Henderson

Editor-in-chief at Babiology and a proud mother of four passionate about sharing pregnancy and baby growth knowledges

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