Baby food

How I nourished my baby into toddlerhood

Four kids. Four different food preferences. Meredith Rhinas on learning her baby’s tastes, while ensuring the nutrition they need

In partnership with Heinz By Nature 

As the mama of four, I have had lots of opportunities to figure out what works for my kiddos at each different stage of development – and also what doesn’t! There seem to be so many different choices and each child is a little bit different: everything from sleeping patterns to personalities to their dietary preferences! And yes – they have preferences at every stage. It’s amazing how quickly they learn to form opinions and express their likes and dislikes.

Despite the fact that I consider myself a fairly laid-back parent, one area that I must admit I’ve always been more concerned with than others is making sure my babies and toddlers get everything they need nutritionally. I have both breastfed and formula-fed (my belief is that “fed is best”), and I always felt confident that my babies were getting what they needed. However, transitioning babies and toddlers to solid foods—and ensuring they are getting the nutrition they need—can be a challenge, especially when their little personalities show up!

Toddler squeezing a puree pouch into her mouth

Photo courtesy of Meredith Rhinas

I’ll be perfectly honest and admit that I’ve had to get creative when it comes to feeding my babies as they transition into toddlerhood. Thankfully, Heinz has plenty of options for every baby at every age; from babies just transitioning to solids, to older babies who are ready to show some independence in their food selections.

Some of my favourite products, which are super convenient and versatile, are the Heinz By Nature purées. They are available in jar-form for babies who still need a little help with eating, and also in squeezable pouches. I love that my babies have access to baby food that not only tastes great, but has been crafted with ingredients that you can find in your own kitchen.

Additionally, as my babies have gotten older, I also appreciate that I’ve been able to easily and creatively integrate the Heinz By Nature purées into other foods, to ensure that they are getting all of the nutritional value they require for their growing bodies and minds.

One of my favourite treats for Nora, who is an older, more independent baby, are Heinz By Nature  frozen fruit pops! These are the perfect summer snack for a baby transitioning to toddlerhood. The purees can be poured directly into molds of any size or shape on their own, or can include chopped fruit, vegetables, dairy, etc. Nora is a huge fan of the pear, mango, apricot & oat purée treats I made the other day, and I love knowing her treat is also providing her with nutrition.

Toddler sitting down and eating puree from a pouch

Photo courtesy of Meredith Rhinas

Another way that I like to incorporate Heinz By Nature organic purées into Nora’s “big girl” food, is to mix the pureed peas in with other foods, such as pesto sauce for pasta, or mashed avocado for baby-style guacamole, mixed with a range of vegetables and seasonings, all of which help introduce our little ones to more grown-up textures and flavours without sacrificing nutritional value.

I also need to highlight the convenience of the organic pouches for on-the-go families! They are so convenient for tossing into the diaper bag or my purse for a day out with Nora. Not to mention she is finally at an age where she can feed herself directly from the pouch when we are out and about, which means everyone is happy and satisfied.

There are a lot of things we worry about as mamas, and frankly, baby-food shouldn’t be one of them. I love that I’ve been able to trust and rely on Heinz to create delicious and organic food options for each of my babies at every stage of their development.