Stage One – Rice Cereal
Recipe from Feeding Little Tummies
I started our daughter on this cereal made from quinoa when she was around 6 months. She loved it mixed with homemade apple sauce (puree).
A baby’s gut is porous, which means that undigested food can pass into the bloodstream, where the immature immune system may mistake it for a harmful substance and produce an allergic reaction. Easily make your own rice cereal with whole rice grains and a spice/coffee grinder (see box). Make fresh porridge daily, discarding any that isn’t eaten.
Cooking time 3 - 5 minutes
- 1 tsp rice cereal
- 1/4 cup water, expressed breast milk or formula
Using a small wooden spoon, combine the rice and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil then gently simmer on a low heat for 3 - 5 minutes until thickened, stirring constantly. Cool a little, then add expressed breast milk, formula or cooled boiled water to create a runny consistency that is a little thicker than milk (thicken this consistency gradually over time as your baby becomes used to eating solids).
Serve the rice cereal at body temperature, as babies are used to milk at this temperature. Double the quantities as your babies appetite increases. Mix with fruit purees such as apple or pear puree for a delicious breakfast.
Note If using commercial baby rice cereal it will take a shorter time to cook. Follow packet instructions for preparation.
You can make your own rice cereal from whole rice grains. The dry-toasting partly cooks the rice so it only requires a short cooking time when made into porridge.
Dry-toast (no oil) 1 cup of long-grain white rice in a heavy-based skillet. (Preferably a cast iron skillet as this will transfer a small amount of iron to the rice, which is otherwise low in iron.) Once the rice is golden remove from the heat and leave to completely cool. In several batches grind the rice into a fine flour in a coffee/spice grinder. Store in an airtight container in a cool pantry and use within a month. Use for making porridge or thickening fruit/ vegetable purees. Note Other grains such as whole millet, quinoa and buckwheat can also be prepared in this way.
*Where possible use organic rice so to avoid agricultural chemicals in your baby’s first foods.