Maintaining quality grub while catering to little palates can be a tricky task, but Dubai foodie Judy has a host of great kids’ meals that don’t skimp on flavour yet avoid piling on the sugar and salt.

Chicken, carrot & rosemary purée 

(6 months +)

Preparation time 5 minutes
Cooking time 30 minutes
Makes 300g
Storage in fridge up to 3 days
Storage in freezer up to 2 months

Ingredients

  • 1 chicken breast
  • 4 medium carrots
  • ¼ teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • Up to 1 cup of water

Method
1. Preheat oven to 200 C
2. Cut chicken and carrots into small cubes
3. On a tray, lined with parchment paper, place carrots and chicken. Roast for 30 minutes.
4. Once done, place into a food processor (or strong blender).  Add the rosemary, then the water slowly until you get the desired consistency.

Apple banana cinnamon purée 

(6 months +)

Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking Time 15 minutes
Makes 600g
Storage in fridge up to 3 days
Storage in freezer up to 3 months

Ingredients

  • 6 apples, peeled
  • 2 bananas 
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Up to 1 cup of water

Method
1. Cube the apples and chop the bananas into medium pieces.
2. In a pot, place ½ cup of water, apples and cinnamon and let it cook for 15 minutes on medium heat.
3. Once done, place into a food processor (or strong blender).  Add bananas and water if needed to get the desired consistency.

Read more How do you make sure your child is eating healthily?

Green veggies risotto with coriander

(7 months +)

Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking time 20 minutes
Makes 2 cups of risotto
Storage in fridge up to 3 days
Storage in freezer up to 3 months

Ingredients

  • 1 courgette
  • 1 green pepper
  • ½ cup peas
  • 400ml water or vegetable stock + additional up to 1 cup water
  • ½ cup Arborio risotto rice or small pasta
  • 1 tablespoon coriander, chopped finely

Method
1. Cut the courgette and pepper into small pieces and chop the coriander finely.
2. Either steam or boil the veggies in water until tender.  If you choose the latter, in a pot, boil water, place the vegetables inside for 10 minutes until tender.
3. Once done, place separately into a food processor (or strong blender).  Add coriander and water slowly if needed to get the desired consistency (up to 1 cup)
4. Meanwhile, cook the risotto rice using 400ml water or vegetable stock. Combine rice and water in a pan on medium heat. Reduce the heat and cover until rice is cooked. (for 20 minutes)
5. Mix rice and the vegetable purée and serve.

Beetroot & pumpkin quinoa

(7 months +) 

Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking time 50 minutes
Makes 2 cups of quinoa
Storage in fridge up to 3 days
Storage in freezer up to 3 months

Ingredients

  • 150g pumpkin
  • 150g beetroot (around two)
  • ½ cup of quinoa
  • Up to 1 cup water
  • ¼ tsp cumin

Method
1. Preheat oven to 200°C
2. Cut pumpkin and beets into cubes
3. On a tray, lined with parchment paper, place pumpkin and beets and roast for 50 minutes, turning throughout.
4. Once done, place each separately into a food processor (or strong blender).  Add cumin to the pumpkin.
5. Add water slowly to both purees if needed to get the desired consistency.
6. Meanwhile, cook quinoa as per pack instructions. Serve when done with the 2 purees on top.

Read more Should you put your chunky child on a diet?

Potato scoops

(12 months +)

Preparation time 15 minutes
Cooking time 1 hour
Makes 4 servings
Storage in fridge up to 3 days
Storage in freezer up to 3 months

Ingredients

  • 2 medium potatoes, cut in half
  • 100g mushrooms, cut finely
  • 50g onion, cut finely
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped finely
  • 20g shredded cheese (mozzarella or Cheddar)
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp olive oil, optional

Method
1. Preheat the oven to 200C
2. Cut the potato in half and place on a tray, lined with parchment paper. Bake for 1 hour.
3. Meanwhile, cut mushrooms, onion and garlic finely.
4. In a pan, heat some olive oil and fry the onions until golden. Add garlic, mushrooms and paprika until mushrooms are cooked.
5. Once the potatoes are done, cut a thin slice of each bottom so they sit flat (let them cool down first).
6. Scoop the inside of the potatoes out (halfway through) and add the mushroom mix.
7. Add cheese on top and serve.

Veggies chicken curry

(12 months +) 

Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking time 20 minutes
Makes 2 cups of curry
Storage in fridge up to 2 days
Storage in freezer up to 1 month

Ingredients

  • ½ cup peas
  • 1 green onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 4 baby corn
  • 2 carrots
  • ½ chicken
  • 2 tbsp green curry paste
  • 1 ½ cup coconut milk
  • ½ cup veggie stock
  • 10g basil

Method
1. Cut the vegetables & chicken into small pieces.
2. Place the curry paste and ½ cup of the coconut milk in a large frying pan over medium-high heat.
3. Add the chicken, the remaining coconut milk and the vegetable stock, bring to the boil, and then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 8-10 minutes until the chicken is tender.
4. Add the peas, green beans and baby corn and cook for a further 10 minutes. Stir through the basil leaves and serve with steamed rice.

Read more Easy, baby-led weaning recipes from expert child-nutritionist Annabel Karmel

Want more recipes like this?
Judy is a new mum, foodie and a wannabe chef, and she blogs about her recipes and travels at  whenjudyatethekela.com. She designed and styled up these baby- and child-friendly recipes just for us – check out her website, it’s fab!