Green beans also known as French beans, snap beans or simply snaps, are harvested young and unripe with pods. You can buy them fresh, canned or frozen depending on your preference. While they are cooked and eaten with their enclosing pods, they may be cut into segments or cooked as they are depending on the recipe.
To prepare green beans, you may choose to steam, saute or bake depending on whether you want to use them in soup, stew, or casserole dishes.
In this article, we talk about introducing green beans to your baby’s diet and give you 3 tasty recipes for homemade baby food.
The recipes in this article:
Recipe 1 – Green bean puree
Recipe 2 – Green beans and Carrots
Recipe 3 – Green beans and Rice
When can a baby eat green beans?
Green beans are some of the best foods to start feeding your baby early for two main reasons. First, many babies aren’t allergic to them. And second, they can be cooked and pureed into a smooth and tender consistency so your baby will eat and digest them easily. Besides, babies love green beans and you may be surprised at how fast your baby grows fond of them.
So your baby can start eating green beans anywhere between 6-8 months. If you want, you can wait until the baby is able to eat them as finger foods. The key is in talking to your pediatrician first to be sure that your baby is ready to start eating the beans. While most babies respond well to green beans, every baby is special and that’s why is important to get a go-ahead from a qualified practitioner.
How to prepare green beans for baby food?
The best way to prepare green beans for your baby is to steam them. After washing the beans, cook them in a steamer for up to 5 minutes or until they are tender. To prevent overcooking, rinse the beans with cold water.
Alternatively, you may choose to boil the green beans. To do this, first heat a little water (the water should be just enough to cook the green beans and no more) till it boils, then put the beans into the boiling water, and let them cook for 15 minutes. Letting them cook for longer can give them a mushy texture. Instead, let them cook until they are tender and no more.
Preserving fresh green beans for baby food isn’t complicated. You only need to wrap them in a plastic bag and you can store them in the fridge for up to 5 days. But what if you have more green beans than you need for a week? You should first blanch them, then freeze them till the next time you need them.
Recipe 1: Green bean puree (age 6-8 months+)
This is the simplest green bean baby recipe and the easiest to make for that matter. It’s a quick and delicious treat for a baby.
1 cup of fresh or frozen green beans.
Step 1 – Clean the green beans (skip this step if you are using frozen beans).
Step 2 – Put the green beans in a steamer and cook until tender.
Step 3 – Puree the cooked green beans in a blender. Add water to the blender till you achieve a smooth and thin puree.
Recipe 2: Green beans and carrots (age 6-8 months+)
Both green beans and carrots are excellent sources of vitamin A, so this recipe is good for your baby’s vision, immunity from diseases, and bone development.
- 2 carrots.
- 1 cup chopped green beans.
- 4-5 cups of water
Step 1 – Peel the carrots and dice them up.
Step 2 – Boil carrots over medium heat for 20-25 minutes.
Step 3 – In a separate pot, bring 1 cup of water to a boil, put the green peas into the pot, cook for 3-5 minutes, then let them cool for 5 minutes.
Step 4 – Put the cooked carrots and green beans into a blender, add a little water, and blend till the puree is smooth and consistent.
Recipe 3: Green beans and rice (age 6-8 months+)
This is a nutritious and delicious meal for your baby, and super easy to make!
- 2 cups of white rice. (or brown if you prefer)
- 1 cup of chopped green beans.
- 4-5 cups of water.
Step 1 – Put brown rice and water together in a pot with a lid. Use the ratio of 1.5 cups water to 1 cup rice.
Step 2 – Bring to a boil and once boiling, lower heat to a simmer, and cover. Cook for about 15-25 minutes.
Step 3 – In a separate pot, boil the green beans till tender.
Step 4 – Transfer the rice and the beans into a blender and blend them to smooth puree.
Feeding guide for green beans
No. of tbs per portion
No. of feedings
Please keep in mind that this guide applies to green beans. If you add other ingredients to your meal, like meats, this guide might not be applicable.
We recommend that you consult with your baby’s pediatrician on introducing solid foods as generalities may not apply to your infant.
Are these baby food recipes freezable?
You should store your batch of green bean baby meals in a refrigerator using an airtight container for up to a period of 72 hours.
You can freeze this baby food into different portions by employing pouring the mixture into ice cubes or in small food storage containers.
Which kitchen tools to use
In order to prepare these baby food recipes, you will need the following kitchen tools:
Blender or food processor
Food storage containers or an ice cube form
Green beans are rich with a full range of nutrients.
1. Proteins: A cup of green beans contains 2 g of proteins. That’s a good amount to complement the proteins your baby gets from other foods. Proteins have numerous roles in the body. They strengthen muscles, promote the growth of healthy hair and repair worn-out tissues.
2. Vitamins: A cup of green beans contains about 33 mg of folate (vitamin B9). Folate supports the growth and development of the brain. There’s also plenty of vitamin C. A cup contains 2.2 mg of vitamin C, an amount that is about 25% what the body needs daily. Vitamin C strengthens the immune system and promotes healthy-looking skin among other benefits. Apart from folate and vitamin C, green beans also contain vitamin A that promotes good vision, vitamin K that promotes wound healing and vitamin B complex that aids in cognitive function.
3. Minerals: Green beans contain calcium to strengthen bones, iron to prevent anemia and zinc to speed up wound healing. Apart from these, eating green beans can also give your baby a generous dose of magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium.
Baby food can be a challenge for any mother. Most mothers aren’t sure of the right time to introduce food or even what food to introduce first. But the good thing is that now you at least have a way to get started. You now know of green beans. They are among the most nutritious and delicious solid foods you can introduce to your baby. And the best part is: they rarely cause allergies to babies. So as long as your pediatrician, don’t hesitate to make green beans recipes part of your baby’s diet regime. Your baby will grow stronger, they will be happier and you will be a proud mum.