Ready-made, shop-bought baby foods can sometimes be useful when travelling or eating away from home.
Shop-bought food is baby foods sold in jars and pouches. Try not to rely on these foods every day. Learning to like and enjoy family foods is a key aim of introducing solid food.
Shop-bought baby food is more expensive and less nutritious than preparing food at home.
Offer your baby family foods suitable for their stage without added gravies, sauces, sugar or salt. By doing this, you know exactly what your baby is eating.
Food flavour and texture
Many ready-made baby foods have a similar flavour base. This means they all taste the same to your baby.
If you are using these foods, it is a good idea to add in some of your homemade food. This will make the taste, texture and appearance more interesting. Your baby will also get used to different flavours and textures.
Corn snack or vegetable puff finger foods for babies are widely available in shops. These melt in your baby's mouth so they do not have to chew. It's important to offer textures from the list of finger foods so that your baby learns how to chew.
Food from pouches
Shop-bought baby foods often come in pouches. Sucking food from a pouch does not teach the same eating skills as eating from a spoon or with your fingers. If your baby sucks food from a pouch they will not get the aroma or know the colour or shape of the food.
If you are offering a food pouch, it is important to put the food into a bowl and feed it from a spoon to your baby. Allow your baby to get used to having food on their hands and around their mouth.