Food Type: Vegetable
Age Suggestion: 6 months +
Common Allergen: No
When can babies have kale ?
Kale may be introduced as soon as your baby is ready to start solids, which is typically around 6 months of age.
Yes. Kale is a type of leaf cabbage, and it’s one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the market. The leafy green is packed with vitamins A, C, and K, as well as calcium, which helps your baby build strong bones. Fun fact: one cup of kale has more vitamin C than an orange!
To reduce the risk of exposure to pesticides and nitrates, buy organic frozen kale or very fresh organic kale.
★Tip: If baby is rejecting leafy greens, try serving kale chips. Kids love the crunch! Most pre-made kale chips are too high in sodium for babies so make your own by chopping washed kale, coating it with olive oil, and then baking it in the oven until crispy. Kale chips are notorious for clinging to the back of the throat, so be sure to have some milk or water in a cup nearby.
How to prepare kale for your baby!
Every baby develops on their own timeline. The preparation suggestions below are for informational purposes only and are not a substitute for professional, one-on-one advice from your pediatric medical or health professional, nutritionist or dietitian, or expert in pediatric feeding and eating. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read or seen here.
6 to 9 months old: For babies who are just starting solids, try pureeing or mincing sautéed kale and folding into an omelet or into a lentil or meat patty. While you can also serve the minced cooked kale on its own, leafy greens can cling to the back of the throat, so folding it into other foods will minimize coughing and gagging. If you’d like to expose baby to the whole kale leaf, go ahead and do so. Just keep the the leaves on the ribs for structure and resistance.
9 to 12 months old: This is a great age to try serving kale on its own or continue to puree to acclimate baby to the taste of leafy greens. For self led weaning try shredding cooked or raw kale and encourage baby to pick up the thin strands with their fingers as a finger food.
12 to 24 months old: Salad time! By this time many toddlers will be ready to work with chopped, raw greens with dressing. If your toddler seems to struggle with chopped kale, simply shred the kale into thiner strands. Alternatively you can offer kale chips or serve cooked kale almost any way you like. Have a drink nearby for any pieces that cling to the tongue, roof of the mouth or back of the throat.