Since it is already relatively pureed, many parents wonder how early they can feed their baby applesauce. So let’s break down the facts about applesauce and your baby!
Overall, applesauce can be safely fed to your infant when they are four to six months old if it is very smooth. It can be fed at six to nine months of age if it is thicker. In addition, it can help with diarrhea as it provides a source of soluble dietary fiber.
There are many unique varieties of applesauce, from homemade to store-bought to sweetened to unsweetened, and more. But, first, let’s discuss more information regarding feeding applesauce.
Can Babies Have Applesauce? When?
Babies can have applesauce when they are at least six months old. While the recommendation is that you can begin to feed your baby pureed foods at four to six months of age, applesauce is a unique consistency to other pureed fruits.
While pureeing fresh blueberries, for example, would result in a likely smooth and thin consistency liquid, pureed apples like applesauce often create a much thicker texture when it is mashed. Additionally, this applesauce is often not completely smooth.
Therefore, when considering applesauce is a puree of more viscous consistency, which should not be fed to your baby until they are from six to nine months old.
If you are feeding your applesauce to a four to six-month-old, ensure it is completely smooth and pureed instead of mashed.
Let’s summarize if you can feed your baby applesauce in months (source: Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia).
|Age (in months)
|Can My Baby Have Applesauce?
|4 to 6 months
|Yes, however, it must be very smooth
|6 to 9 months
|Yes, it can be thicker consistency, two or four tablespoons at a feeding
|10 to 12 months
|Yes, can feed applesauce with chewable chunks
It is important to note that for babies in the six to nine-month age range, you should feed them store-bought or homemade applesauce with a regular consistency, no added sugar, and without any chunks of apple or other types of fruit.
Can You Give Babies Unsweetened Applesauce?
Unsweetened applesauce is the preferred form to feed your baby as it eliminates the excessive added sugar that regular or flavored applesauce contains. Typically, store-bought unsweetened applesauce only includes the ingredients apples and ascorbic acid.
Ascorbic acid is simply another word for vitamin C, which is added to the applesauce to help preserve it on the grocery store shelf. Avoid any unsweetened applesauce that contains excess ingredients like artificial sweeteners.
Is Homemade Applesauce Safe for Babies?
Making a homemade applesauce recipe is a great and safe way to prepare applesauce for your baby, allowing you to control the sugar content. When making homemade applesauce, purchase a fresh sweet apple variety, such as Red Delicious, rather than something tart like a Granny Smith or Pink Lady apple.
Thoroughly wash the apples under running water and scrub them with a clean vegetable brush to ensure it is clean (source: U.S. Food and Drug Administration [FDA]).
Additionally, ensure the apples are peeled completely to avoid getting any apple skin in the applesauce. Cook the apples well in boiling water until they are soft and tender. Then puree and mash the apple until it is as smooth as possible, especially when feeding to younger babies. The addition of a bit of water can help thin the applesauce.
Can Babies Eat Applesauce With Cinnamon in It?
We all know the beloved pairing of applesauce with cinnamon; luckily, your baby can have it too!
When your baby is at least six months old, they can have cinnamon, so feel free to add some into their homemade applesauce or purchase the store-bought cinnamon-flavored applesauce varieties.
However, avoid feeding large amounts of cinnamon at one time. Additionally, when first introducing cinnamon to your baby, as with a variety of foods, monitor for potential food allergies.
You will likely notice an allergic reaction within minutes, and it may manifest as a rash, hives, diarrhea, vomiting, and more (source: Mayo Clinic). If you notice your baby is having difficulty breathing or wheezing, has swollen lips, vomiting, or hives, seek emergency medical attention immediately.
Can Babies Have Regular Store-Bought Applesauce?
Store-bought applesauce is a good and convenient choice for your baby when they are at least six months old, especially when compared to peeling and pureeing the apples yourself to make homemade. When choosing store-bought applesauce, ensure it does not have any apple chunks and is just the traditionally pureed version.
Additionally, as mentioned above, opt for a sugar-free or unsweetened version free of artificial sweeteners. For example, the famous applesauce brand Mott’s only has 11 grams of natural sugars in their 3.9-ounce serving (111 grams) of no sugar added applesauce.
Let’s compare this to the version with added sugar. A Mott’s 4-ounce cup of regular applesauce contains 22 grams of sugar, with 13 grams of that as added sugar. The sweetener used in this applesauce is high fructose corn syrup.
It is important to avoid feeding your baby foods that are high in added sugar as it can contribute to excessive weight gain.
Can Applesauce Help With Baby’s Constipation?
Unfortunately, applesauce does not do much to help with your baby’s constipation. Let’s talk about why.
Applesauce contains a binding agent called pectin, a form of soluble fiber. Soluble fiber can dissolve in water to form a texture similar to a gel. This type of fiber is found in oats, peas, apples, carrots, and more. On the other hand, insoluble fiber is the type that promotes healthy bowel movements and helps relieve constipation (source: Mayo Clinic).
This type of fiber is found in nuts, beans, cruciferous vegetables, and more. Therefore, the soluble fiber that is found in raw apples and applesauce can help your baby with diarrhea because it firms up the stool. However, applesauce will not be as effective in helping with your baby’s constipation.
I hope you found this article helpful as a guide to feeding applesauce to your baby and when it is safe.