Fresh herbs like mint may be introduced as soon as baby is ready to start solids, which is generally around 6 months of age.
Mint is an easy herb to grow at home. It’s a perennial, meaning it returns year after year, and the plant flourishes in pots and garden patches alike. In fact, it acts like a weed, quickly taking over whatever space you give it. There are many varieties to try—from chocolate mint to orange mint to pineapple mint. Most recipes call for spearmint, a milder and sweeter variety than peppermint, the kind of mint that gives chewing gum and toothpaste a distinctive menthol flavor.
Malden, 9 months, eats watermelon with minced mint.
Caden, 9 months, tastes mint in yogurt for the first time.
Adie, 20 months, eats watermelon with mint and smells a mint sprig.
Yes. With it’s refreshing smell and bright taste, mint has been used medicinally for thousands of years in tinctures and other therapeutic concoctions. It’s believed to aid digestion, so try adding a little minced mint to fruit and yogurt. As a flavor-forward food, a very little amount of mint goes a long way and baby is not likely to consume enough of the herb to get a ton of nutritional value from it. Nonetheless, mint does contain folate, iron, and vitamins A, C, and K.
★Tip: Treat a bundle of mint like a bouquet of flowers to extend its shelf life. Clip a little off the stem end and place in a cup. Add water until the stem end is submerged in water, and store on the countertop. The mint will last for a week or so, and may even sprout roots in the water.
When chopped, mint should not pose any significant risk, though it’s common for flecks of the leaves to cling to the back of the throat, which can cause a bit of coughing. If this happens, offer your baby a drink from an open cup to help wash it down. Drinking from an open cup (rather than a straw cup) tends to be more helpful in these situations.
No, though mint allergies are not unheard of. If your child is sensitive to oregano or thyme, however, take care when introducing mint as these plants are closely related.
As you would when introducing any new food, start by offering a small quantity of mint for the first couple of servings. If there is no adverse reaction, gradually increase the quantity over future mealtimes.
Every baby develops on their own timeline, and the suggestions on how to cut or prepare particular foods are generalizations for a broad audience. Your child is an individual and may have needs or considerations beyond generally accepted practices. In determining the recommendations for size and shape of foods, we use the best available scientific information regarding gross, fine, and oral motor development to minimize choking risk. The preparation suggestions we offer are for informational purposes only and are not a substitute for child-specific, one-on-one advice from your pediatric medical or health professional or provider. It is impossible to fully eliminate all risk of a baby or child choking on any liquid, puree, or food. We advise you to follow all safety protocols we suggest to create a safe eating environment and to make educated choices for your child regarding their specific needs. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read or seen here.
Incorporate finely minced mint into patties, such as lamb or lentil burgers. Add mint to relishes or sauces to serve alongside fish, grains, or steamed vegetables. Mix into creamy foods like ricotta or yogurt for added flavor.
This is a great age to serve mint with grain salads like quinoa and other whole grains as your toddler becomes more adept at eating these foods. Incorporate mint into pesto and other sauces and dips, such as a garlicky, minty yogurt. Add to smoothies and refreshing drinks like watermelon-mint agua fresca.
Preparing mint for babies.
Preparing mint for babies.
How often should you offer solids? See our sample feeding schedules for babies of every age.
Not sure how to introduce this food? Give this recipe a try. Feel free to substitute ingredients and flavor the food with your favorite seasonings.
2 cups cubed or crushed watermelon
2 ounces crumbled goat cheese
Add the watermelon to a mixing bowl.
Sprinkle the goat cheese on the watermelon.
Finely mince a few leaves of fresh mint and add to the bowl with the watermelon.
Mix gently before serving.
Add mint to any fruit or vegetable dish for bright flavor. The zippy herb tastes particularly delicious with spring vegetables like asparagus, fava beans, and peas, as well as artichokes, avocado, potatoes. It also balances the heartiness of red meats like beef, elk, venison, and of course, lamb—a beloved pairing. Try mixing mint with other herbs like basil and parsley in salads, salsas, and creamy dishes like whipped ricotta, soft goat cheese spread, and yogurt.
Sign up for new guides, recipes and special offers
The content offered on SolidStarts.com is for informational purposes only. Solidstarts is not engaged in rendering professional advice, whether medical or otherwise, to individual users or their children or families. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or your medical or health professional, nutritionist, or expert in pediatric feeding and eating. By accessing the content on SolidStarts.com, you acknowledge and agree that you are accepting the responsibility for your child’s health and well-being. In return for providing you with an array of content “baby-led weaning” information, you waive any claims that you or your child may have as a result of utilizing the content on SolidStarts.com.