Offering a wide variety of foods and textures to your weaning baby is essential so gluten is no exception. Aim to introduce gluten between 4m and 12m but preferably before 12 months for the most successful weaning journey. When introducing gluten start in small amounts initially, increasing gluten foods gradually. The Starter Weaning Set of portioned pots is ideal to store any dips or sauces to serve with gluten foods for a handy baby led weaning meal any day of the week.
What is Gluten?
Gluten is the protein found in crops such as wheat, rye and barley. Oats are also contaminated with this protein. As such, any foods from flour and cereals, to breads, crackers, pasta and some sauces (Pasta sauces, BBQ etc.) contain gluten.
How to Introduce Gluten
Start introducing gluten slowly between the ages of 4-12 months. Delaying beyond this can increase your weaning baby's risk of developing celiac disease and diabetes in later childhood. Introduce gluten foods slowly giving a few days between feeds to monitor any possible reactions. Be extra vigilant if you have a history of celiac disease in your family.
When to Introduce Gluten
While it's important to introduce gluten between 4-12 months old, it's also important to consider the portions of gluten you're offering your child. For the first 1-2 weeks, I recommend feeding them one portion of gluten-containing foods every 3 days. The perfect time is the morning feed. Weetabix is great here for your baby's morning meal.
After about 2 weeks, you can feed one portion of glutinous foods every 2 days. You can change it up and try this Biscotti with Babyccino for a tasty baby led weaning treat containing gluten.
After this, you can progress to introducing one portion of gluten foods every day. It's a good idea to include gluten foods at dinner around 5pm too. Alternatively stick to the breakfast and avoid gluten through-out the rest of the day.
Try our Chicken Parmigiana, perfect served with pasta for a baby led weaning meal your whole family will love. Freeze the sauce in 8-9 Month Pots from the Starter Weaning Set for a handy dipping sauce any night of the week. From here on, your baby can enjoy more than one portion of gluten foods every day.
Gluten Food Examples for the First Year
The best first gluten foods are those low in salt and sugar which are easily enjoyed by your weaning baby. Half a Weetabix with warm full fat cows milk to soften is perfect. Serve plain at first, mixing it up with banana or grated fruit after this.
Our healthier Pancakes are great when introducing gluten too as they are salt and sugar free. Serve with some smashed mixed berries or banana for a tasty baby led weaning treat your whole family can enjoy. Alternatively, slice into fingers and store in a 9-12 Month Pot from the Starter Weaning Set for a tasty baby led weaning snack on the go!
If you have any concerns about introducing gluten talk to your baby's Doctor.