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Chicken For Babies: Health Benefits, Nutritional Value And Recipes

5 min read

Choosing the right food for your baby can become a herculean task sometimes. What to give and what not to give can become a constant struggle. Choosing food which fulfills the nutritional requirements of your baby is the prime concern, and we can help you choose the right food!
Fruits and vegetables are excellent first solid food as it is laden with vitamins and minerals. However, eventually, parents, especially, those who love non vegetarian food like to introduce the baby to non vegetarian food as well.  One such magic food is chicken. It is the most admired poultry around the world.  Read on to know everything about giving the chicken to your baby.

Chicken For Babies

Chicken has several nutritional benefits that are advantageous for your growing baby. It is low in fat and high in proteins. Proteins are building blocks of cell. Chicken makes an excellent finger food for your baby as well.  However, parents, especially the new moms may wonder when to  give chicken to your baby.

When Can You Give Chicken To Your Baby?

Doctors usually recommend that you can start giving chicken to babies who are 9-months-old and above. The iron contents in the breastfeed start to diminish around that period, and hence chicken can fill in the requirements. However, these recommendations are slowly changing. Currently, parents are introducing well-cooked, pureed chicken around 6 to 8 months itself. That is, after the baby is used to different fruits, vegetables and cereals.
Also, try to feed chicken during day time as the food taken during the day digest well.

How much chicken can you give your baby?

To begin with, give your baby clear chicken soup. Remember the soup should be watery without any pieces. Once your baby likes its taste, start giving two servings (which is not more than two table spoon) of pureed chicken per day is recommended. Eventually, you can increase the quantity. When coming to chicken finger chips for babies, you can start giving it once he or she starts chewing well and the digestive system is all set, which is after they turn 1 year old.

How To Select And Store Chicken?

Selecting the right kind of chicken can become a tricky task, but here are a few tips for you:

  • Always buy your meat from a hygienic shop.
  • In case of buy pre-packed chicken, always check the expiry/packaging date before your purchase.
  • In case you are going for fresh chicken, choose your turkey that has a pinkish shade of the meat.
  • Avoid buying salted chicken, as it has added preservatives for it to last longer.
  • The best way to store chicken is to buy only as much as you can consume.
  • Storing it in the refrigerator can make it prone to bacterial contamination.

How To Puree Chicken For Your Baby?

As a parent, you must always be on the hunt to find easier methods of feeding food to your baby. Running around the house to feed your baby must be a common sight! But here’s a super easy way to feed chicken to your baby – make a puree!
Here’s how you can do it:

  • Cut the clean and washed chicken into chunks.
  • Put these chunks into a blender or food processor.
  • Once the chicken chunks are in powder form, take them out of the processor.
  • Add water to gain the required consistency for your baby.
  • You’re done, no hassle!

5 Health Benefits Of Chicken For Babies

Chicken is low in fat and high in protein. It can have multiple health benefits for your baby. Here are 5 health benefits of  chicken for babies:

  1. Good For Bones: Chicken is known to contain calcium and phosphorus, both of which contribute to bone development. Did you know that 100 grams of chicken contains 15 mg calcium and approximately 182 mg of phosphorus? Isn’t that wonderful!
  2. Improves And Aids Muscle Growth: Proteins are very essential for muscle growth, and chicken is the best protein agent. 100 grams of chicken has approximately 18.6 grams of protein in it! Protein acquired from non-plant sources is easily digestible. Hence, chicken it the best source for muscle growth. It is also a  weight gain food, in case your baby is under weight .
  3. Improves Circulatory System: As discussed above that chicken is a rich source of iron and phosphorus. Apart from all the essential building blocks it has, it also houses potassium. Potassium is very important for the development and aid of red blood cell. It helps maintain and improve the circulatory system by keeping the red blood cells in check.
  4. Enhance Brain Development: Chicken is a good source of choline and vitamins B6 and B12. These play an important role in cognition. Also, Choline is a critical component of  acetylcholine, a brain chemical that enhance memory.
  5. Improves Immunity: Chicken contains micronutrients such as zinc, phosphorous and magnesium, which are important for maintaining the healthy immunity.

Can A Baby Be Allergic To Chicken?

Chicken allergies are not a very common phenomenon but they have the potential to trigger one. Babies have a relatively weak immune system and are prone to infections and allergies. Serving a well-cooked chicken to your baby can reduce the chances, but not completely eradicate them. Here are a few symptoms to watch out for –

  • Swollen face
  • Fatigue
  • Skin Rashes
  • Pain in the abdomen

Chicken Recipes For Babies

Chicken is quite handy and can be cooked in several ways. However when it come to cooking chicken for your little one, it should be in such a way that it should retain all its goodness and may be enhance a little as well, it should be well cooked, it should be less spicy. Try out these easy to make, rich in nutrition chicken recipes for your little one:

Chicken Stew

  • Take 3-4 cups of chicken and boil them in 7-8 cups of water.
  • Cook for approximately 20-30 minutes.
  • Once cooked, filter all the water through a sieve.
  • The nutritional stew is ready!

Note: If your baby not yet celebrated his first birthday, never add salt to chicken soup. It is only for us the salt is an unavoidable factor in a dish. When it comes to food for baby, try to give him without over seasoning and over flavouring.

Chicken Puree:

  • Take 2 cups of chicken, and cook them in a pressure cooker, preferably.
  • Once done, let it cool, and then transfer it into a blender with some amount of water.
  • Blend to the required consistency. You can also add veggies, or a few dry-fruits if required

Chicken And Apricot Puree:

  • Take 2 cups of chicken, and 2 cups of Apricot and boil them separately.
  • Once done, put them into a blender.
  • Add water as per requirement.

Chicken And Finger Millet Porridge

  • Take 2 cups of finger millet flour (ragi) and boil it in approximately 4 cups of water, on simmer.
  • Stir it continuously to avoid any lumps.
  • Boil 2 cups chicken separately.
  • Once done, add the boiled chicken, and the cooked finger millet into a blender.
  • Add water for the required consistency.

Note: All these recipes can be served for babies of 6 months and above.

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