As a parent, seeing your baby develop into new milestones tends to make you walk on eggshells because you’ve realized that every parenting decision you make will significantly impact your baby, whether positively or negatively.
So, it’s only natural for parents to have many questions about what foods are safe and appropriate for their babies to eat as they advance through developmental milestones and begin to explore the world of solid foods.
On that note, one of the most common dilemmas parents face is whether or not to introduce their 9-month-old baby to custard. However, with so many conflicting opinions and advice out there, it’s hard to know what’s best.
And when it comes to introducing custard to your baby’s diet, the stakes feel even higher–the thought of your baby experiencing any form of hurt or illness as a result of your mistake can fill you with fear and uncertainty, and like I always say, no one likes to live in uncertainty.
So, in this guide, we’ll share all you need to know about custards, their nutritional value, benefits, and side effects to help you decide whether or not you can introduce your 9-month-old baby to custard.
What You Should Know About Custard
Custard is a savory meal that babies, toddlers, vegans, and adults enjoy. Custard can be prepared runny or thick and laced with different ingredients to give a piquantly pleasant taste and to meet individual nutritional needs.
Custard is a healthy alternative to breast milk once your little one is 6 months of age, and what’s more, it can be paired with other foods such as beverages, soya beans, and ginger, taken as a full meal, dessert or a light creamy snack in between meals.
Custard can be introduced to your baby once they are 6 months or above; choosing a recipe that is easily digestible and appropriate for their age is imperative.
It is also important to feed your little one in small portions while looking out for allergic reactions or intolerance, as most custards tend to contain allergens like eggs and milk.
The custard should be your top pick if you are searching for a healthy meal to introduce your little one. It has immense nutritional benefits and is a good source of calcium and B vitamins.
Custard provides good fat, so if you hope to increase your baby’s fat pockets, the custard is your best bet. Also, the custard is a very good source of protein as the ingredients it is made of are high in protein content. Custards can also be made in healthy variations to increase their taste and nutritional value.
Homemade custard is a healthier and safer option than store-bought or processed ones as they do not contain any artificial additives, making it tastier and healthier for your little one to consume.
Unsweetened or unflavoured yogurts can also be given to your little bundle of joy instead of custard. Yogurts contain a lot of microorganisms and improve the gut health of babies.
Can A 9-Month-Old Baby Eat Custard?
Certain custard recipes can be fed to your 9-month-old baby. And while it is true that custard is very high in fat, it has other great health benefits. The trick lies in knowing your baby’s tolerance level and reactions to ingredients the custard is made of, as well as recipes, homemade or store-bought, that your little one can easily digest.
To be safer, you can wait until your baby is in their movement phase before incorporating custard into their diet.
Can I Give Readymade Custard To My Baby?
There is no straightforward answer to this question; however, the readymade or processed custard is safe for consumption for your little one so long as they have come of age to be introduced to solids.
You can check in with a healthcare pediatrician about any concerns you may have about introducing a new meal to your baby’s diet.
If your toddler has a sweet tooth, he will greatly enjoy eating custard. They make a fantastic meal for older babies who can easily digest solids and can be made in several healthy variations by giving it flavors like mango, chocolate, cocoa, caramel, apple, and pear.
Can A Baby of 6 Months Take Custard?
Your baby’s dietary needs and preferences are strong determinants or clues to know if they can be fed custard.
Whereas some babies are unaffected after eating it, others are not so lucky and may suffer bloating, gas, diarrhea, or general gastrointestinal discomfort; therefore, it is best you check in with a pediatrician or any healthcare professional if you still have concerns about your baby’s ability to stomach this creamy meal.
When Can Babies Start Eating Custard?
Your little one can start eating custard once they are 6 months of age or older. Custard can be a great way of introducing your baby to solids; however, be sure to feed your baby in small portions infrequently, as overconsumption can lead to an excess calorie count, which might morph into excess weight or heart diseases or reduce your baby’s interest in other well-balanced solids.
Steps To Make Vanilla Custard With Stewed Fruits Or Fruit Mash.
To Make Vanilla Custard with Stewed Fruits or Fruit Mash, You Will Need the following:
One egg yolk 1
Half table teaspoon of cornflour
¼ teaspoon of vanilla essence alcohol-free
2 teaspoons of sugar
¾ cup (190mL) milk
Fruits suitable to stew include apples, peaches, plums, pears, apricots, dates, or rhubarb (ensure rhubarb leaves have been discarded).
Fruits suitable to mash include bananas, figs, honeydew, berries, kiwi fruit, nectarines, paw paw, peaches, mango, rockmelon, and watermelon. Choose fruit that is soft and ripe.
How To Prepare
- Add the first two ingredients to a bowl and mix thoroughly until both ingredients form a smooth paste. Gradually add the other ingredients and mix until a smooth, desired consistency is achieved.
- Place a saucepan on medium-low heat, pour the mixture into the pan, and stir continuously. Keep stirring until the mixture comes to a boil and thickens.
- Allow to sit and cool a bit, then add stewed fruits or fruit mash and serve.
To Make Stewed Fruits, You Will Have To:
- First, wash fruit(s) and chop it into neat pieces.
- Place chopped fruits in a pot and pour in enough water to cover the fruit slightly; cover and bring to a boil on high heat. Once the fruit is getting tender, reduce the heat and simmer until it is cooked.
- Place tender fruits in a blender, use the remaining liquid from the pot if necessary, and blend until the desired consistency is reached, or you can simply blend the fruit. Older babies can have slightly chunky pieces of fruit in their custard.
To make Fruit Mash, You Will Have To:
- First, wash and peel fruits and chop them into small pieces.
- Then, you can either blend the fruit or mash it. A blender or food processor will come in handy for this step.
Tips For Thickening Custard
The following ingredients can be used to achieve a rich, creamy, and spoonable custard: Egg yolk and cornflour. These thickeners can be used in place of one another.
For instance, if you don’t intend to use starch in your recipe, then two egg yolks can be used in place of cornflour, and if eggs are not used, then three tablespoons of cornflour will do the trick.
How To Thicken Custard
- Place milk in a pot over high heat and boil until it is piping hot.
- Next, remove milk from the flame and allow it to sit for a while before adding cornflour or egg yolk. Finally, whisk all ingredients until a smooth paste or mixture is formed without lumps or air bubbles.
- Turn on the flame, place the mixture over low heat, and let it thicken. Please note, do not allow the milk to boil again; otherwise, you will end up with a thin custard.
Amazing Benefits Of Custard For Babies
Besides its rich and creamy taste, the custard is a nutrient-packed meal that offers babies many health benefits. However, different types of custard offer different results.
For instance, if you want your little one to gain good weight, then custards made with egg and milk are your best bet instead of its egg and milk-free powdered variant. The following are a few benefits of custard for babies.
- Custard is a great source of protein. In addition, the milk and eggs or egg yolk provides high body-building content.
- Custard is high in calcium and rich in B vitamins. Its high nutritional value greatly helps in building strong bones.
- Custard is a great energy booster; it helps fight fatigue and is a fantastic weight-gain meal. But, unfortunately, it is high in fat and contains a bit of sugar.
- Interestingly, the custard is a filling and deeply satisfying meal. Babies feel full for a long time after eating custard.
- It has immense vision and mental benefits. Custard improves eyesight and aids brain development.
- It has been proven that custard greatly limits the chances of arthritis, cancer, and anemia.
- It gives glowing skin.
Side Effects Of Custards For Babies
On the flip side, some severe side effects can result from your little one frequently taking this creamy pudding as a full meal. They include the following:
- One of the side effects of custard is that it has an acidic side that may trouble your little one.
- Whereas homemade custard is naturally gluten-free, pre-packaged ones could have gluten ingredients as thickeners and may result in gluten or celiac sensitivity issues.
- Most custards are made with eggs and milk, which may result in lactose malabsorption or egg allergies, leading to mild or severe symptoms.
- Frequent intake of custard tends to spike blood sugar levels and may result in early-onset diabetes.
- Custard is an easy and healthy weight-gain meal; however, excessive and frequent consumption can make your little one obese.
Top 4 Tasty And Healthy Custard Recipes For Babies
There are many silky smooth and piquantly pleasant custard recipes to try; however, once you try these four recipes, you will never return to pre-packaged ones.
These top 4 recipes can be made from scratch and have a preparation technique that is easy to crack and bound to win you a smile from your little one.
Eggless Vanilla Custard
This old-fashioned custard is the perfect sweet treat for your little one; if you’re searching for ways to cut down your baby’s sugar intake, this recipe which isn’t as sweet as other egg custards, should be your top choice.
It can be made with simple ingredients like milk, brown sugar, rice flour, vanilla extract or vanilla beans, banana, or mango puree and served to babies over six months. This recipe calls for thickeners such as potato starch or arrowroot for extra richness.
Banana custard, or bananas in custard, is one of the oldest, baby-friendly custard recipes of all time. It is a traditional pudding made from a blend of banana and custard.
It is advisable to use mashed bananas instead of whole or sliced ones for this recipe so your baby can easily digest them.
Oats custard is known for its rich taste and velvety texture. It is a blend of custard made with milk and eggs and other ingredients such as boiled eggs, jaggery powder, cinnamon powder, dry fruit powder, and nuts (optional).
Homemade Fruits Custard
Any fruit of choice can be used for this recipe. Homemade custard with eggs and milk can be merged with blended fruits. The following recipes are phenomenal when tried with the following fruits as-is:
- Coconut and Apple
- Mango and Passion fruit
- Papaya and Cinnamon
- Baked mixed fruits
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Custard Powder Healthy for Babies?
No. Custard powder is made of cornflour and contains a lot of sweetness, and preservatives aren’t healthy for babies.
What is Custard Powder made of?
Custard powder is made of cornflour and/or cornstarch, which is salted and infused with other flavorings.
Which Is Healthier, Custard Or Yoghurt For Babies?
Yogurts are far healthier options than custard. Once your little one is above six months of age, you can incorporate unsweetened yogurt into their diet instead of custard.
In conclusion, introducing your baby to custard or any new food is something you should consider properly before moving forward with it. One important thing you should consider is their nutritional value in relation to the baby’s developmental phase.
While custard may be a delicious treat for adults and some kids, it might not always be the best for your baby, so it’s important to consult with your pediatrician before introducing any new food to your baby’s diet.
Your pediatrician will be in the best position to assess your baby’s overall health status and then decide if it’s okay to introduce your baby to custard or any new food you might be considering.