Soups are a terrific way to introduce your toddler to vegetables and fruits. There are many types of soups, but the best place to start with your toddler is with pureed soups. They have a pleasing, smooth texture. If your child’s “spoon” skills are not refined enough for soup, pour it in a cup and let them sip away.
Pureed soups, such as Butternut Squash and Roasted Garlic and Creamy Cauliflower may sound exotic, but they are quite simple to make. Even a novice in the kitchen can be successful. A handheld immersion blender is a good appliance to invest in for making pureed soups hassle-free. This appliance is placed right into the soup pot, move it around, and viola – pureed soup!
Don’t overlook fruit soups. They are sweet, healthy and refreshing. Most fruit soups require no cooking. You simply put ingredients in a blender and whirl away. Fruits soups are a huge hit with toddlers.
Butternut Squash and Roasted Garlic Soup
Even some of the pickiest of toddlers will eat their veggies when they are in soup. This soup is a creamy puree, so it is easy to sip. Always check the temperature of soup before serving it to small children.
The bright orange color and sweet flavor of butternut squash appeal to young children. For families with babies over 8 months old, this soup can be easily made into baby food by thickening it with mashed rice, potato or baby cereal.
- 1 large or 2 small butternut squash (4 lb)
- 20 garlic cloves ,peeled
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- ¼ cup water
- 1 tsp. tarragon
- 4 cups (32oz.) chicken broth
- 1 can (12oz.) coconut milk or 1 cup half & half
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- Zest of 1 lemon, finely grated
Preheat oven to 350°F. Cut the squash in half lengthwise and remove seeds and fibers. Using a vegetable peeler or a paring knife, remove the skin from the squash and cut the flesh into 1-inch thick slices.
In a roasting pan, combine the squash and garlic cloves. Sprinkle with tarragon, salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and toss with a spoon until well coated. Pour in the water. Roast, stirring occasionally, until the squash and garlic are soft and golden, about 50-60 minutes. Add a bit more water if the squash begins to look dry or scorched. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool slightly.
Working in batches, add the squash and garlic with 2 cups of the stock to a blender or food processor. Puree until very smooth. Transfer the puree to a large soup pot. Stir in the remaining soup stock, coconut milk (or Half & Half) and lemon zest. Over medium-low heat, warm the soup.
Always check the temperature of soup before serving it to small children.
Makes 8 servings and leftovers can be frozen for up to 2 months.
Creamy Cauliflower Soup
- 1 head of cauliflower, cored, and chopped into florets
- 1 medium potato, peeled and diced
- 4 cups vegetable broth or chicken broth
- ½ teaspoon herbs de Provence (or a pinch of each rosemary, parsley, oregano, and thyme)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Place all ingredients in a large soup pot. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Pour in batches into a blender, being careful not overfill the blender. Puree until smooth. You can also use a hand blender to puree the soup right in the pot. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Serve Warm.
Taste of the Tropics Soup
- 1 papaya peeled, seeded, and cut into chunks
- ½ cup pineapple, cut into chunks
- 1 1/2 cups of vanilla yogurt (soy or dairy)
- 1/2 cup of milk (soy of dairy)
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 teaspoons lime juice
- Sprinkle of nutmeg and cinnamon
Puree all ingredients in a blender. Chill and serve.
Makes 3-4 servings.