When can babies eat strawberries?
Strawberries may be introduced as soon as your baby is ready for solids, which is generally around 6 months old. Strawberries are on the list of common choking hazards for children so read carefully and make sure you prepare them in an age-appropriate way.
If you have a pot of soil or yard, buy a couple of strawberry plants! They grow like weeds, can take a fair amount of neglect, and come back every year!
Are strawberries healthy for my baby?
Yes! Strawberries offer one of the highest concentrations of vitamin C, which supports immunity and aids iron absorption. They are also packed with antioxidants to keep your baby’s cells healthy. If your budget allows, buy organic strawberries to lower the risk of exposure to pesticides; non-organic strawberries in the U.S. regularly top the lists of foods most likely to be contaminated with pesticide residues according to the Environmental Working Group.
★Tip: Strawberries are high in vitamin C which aids iron absorption from plant foods so serve them with foods like beans, peas, lentils, and dark leafy greens that are high in iron.
Are strawberries a common choking hazard for babies?
Yes. Strawberries are a common choking hazard. You can reduce this risk by slicing or smashing them prior to serving to your baby or toddler. Strawberries vary dramatically in size, so exercise good judgement and, when in doubt, thinly slice or smash the fruit.
Are strawberries a common allergen?
While strawberries are not among the most common food allergens, it is possible. What’s more common is a skin reaction around the mouth from the acidity of the fruit. Strawberries in excess can also cause or worsen diaper rash.
If your child has recently experienced an allergic reaction, hold off on serving strawberries and other histamine-liberating fruit. While more studies need to be done, certain foods (including strawberries, bananas, pineapple, papaya and citrus fruit) can cue the body to release histamine, the chemical in our body that is responsible for allergic reactions.
How do you prepare strawberries for babies with baby-led weaning?
Every baby develops on their own timeline. The preparation suggestions below are for informational purposes only and are not a substitute for professional, one-on-one advice from your pediatric medical or health professional, nutritionist or dietitian, or expert in pediatric feeding and eating. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read or seen here.
6 to 9 months old: If the berries are big, offer them whole. Should a piece break off in your baby’s mouth, give your baby a chance to work it forward independently. If the berries are small, it’s best to mash or slice the strawberries before serving. To help your baby consume more of mashed strawberries, fold them into yogurt or warm cereal.
9 to 12 months old: At this age it’s a good idea to move down in size as your child will be more ambitious as an eater and will also develop a pincer grasp, enabling them to pick up smaller pieces of food. Offer quartered berries, cut vertically from top to bottom. If your berries are really big, cut the quarters in half again vertically.
12 to 24 months old: Offer small, bite-size pieces of strawberry and encourage the use of a fork. When you feel your toddler is ready, move back up in size, to whole strawberries or larger quarter pieces.
For more information on how to cut food for your baby’s age, hop over to our section on Food Sizes & Shapes.
Recipe: Strawberries & Ricotta
- 3-4 Strawberries
- Scoop of Ricotta Cheese
- Slice or mash the strawberries.
- Serve the strawberries alongside a bowl of ricotta cheese, or on top if you smashed the fruit.
A strawberry’s flavor is enhanced by fresh herbs, such as basil and mint, as well as ground spices like cardamom and cinnamon.