This post has been sponsored by Gerber. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
We’re now a few months into introducing Ella to solids, and I have to say – it has been so much fun to watch her eat new foods and learn about textures. It’s also fun because unlike her big sister, this kid just loves to eat – she will eat anything and everything. I have yet to find a food she won’t eat. She’ll eat purees, but she definitely prefers to do it all herself. I love watching her eat and taking photos of her eating – it’s so fun to see the mess she makes. (Ella was supervised at all times while I took these photos.)
As a nursing mom, I know that she’s gotten a ton of good nutrition from me, but I also want all the food she’s eating and learning about to give her great nutrition too. She’s constantly trying to grab food off of our plates – everything from green beans to cookies. While I don’t mind anything in moderation, I want what’s going in her mouth to be packed full of nutrients. I know from experience that good eating habits start early, so I want to give her the best start possible… so those desserts she’s trying to grab off our plates are probably not the best choice!
What I needed was a way to make cookies just for her – healthy cookies. I took my crew over to Target for some ideas, because what mom doesn’t love Target? We actually did our grocery shopping there this time as well – I love that I can get everything I need in one place (and then some). As usual, I took a few minutes in the baby section and a few ideas jumped out at me using Gerber® Cereal. There was a 10% off Cartwheel offer for it, sweetening the deal. Couldn’t I use cereal as a base for Ella’s cookies?
I’ve used Gerber cereal in the past – I have three younger sisters, and the first solid food my mom gave all of us as babies was Gerber cereal. Gerber cereals are a great first food since they’re full of the nutrients babies need. They are a great source of iron, which is great because your baby’s natural iron stores start to deplete around 6 months, so it’s important to make sure they’re getting enough! Just two servings of infant cereal meet 90% of your baby’s daily iron.
Calcium supports healthy bones and teeth, Vitamin E and Zinc support the immune system, Vitamin C helps to absorb all that Iron, and B Vitamins help convert food into energy. So many benefits for babies in one product, and I know I can trust Gerber – there are no artificial colors or flavors, and they are non-GMO.
Many kids will happily eat cereal by itself, but my girls are much more independent in their eating habits. No matter what I’m giving them, they are ready to do it themselves, and Ella isn’t quite coordinated enough to use a spoon just yet. I wanted to make sure Ella got all the benefits of Gerber cereal but needed to present it in a form she’d find appetizing – enter Apple Banana cookies.
Apples and Bananas Cookies
½ cup GERBER Oatmeal & Banana Cereal
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 container (3.5 ounces) GERBER 2nd Foods Apples
½ of a ripe banana, mashed
1 large egg
Preheat oven to 375° F.
Combine cereal, flour and baking soda in a small bowl. Beat butter, apples and banana in a medium mixing bowl until well combined. Add egg and beat well. Gradually beat in cereal mixture. Drop dough by the tablespoon onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the bottoms are golden brown. Cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes; remove to wire rack to cool completely.
Test temperature before serving.
Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Tip: boost flavor to these cookies by adding cinnamon, nutmeg or any spice your little one loves!
These cookies are incredibly simple to make and came together from start to finish in about 30 minutes, including preheating the oven.
I’d say they were a hit, wouldn’t you? I’m excited to whip up some other recipes with Gerber cereal and try some with different varieties. Since Gerber offers different grains and flavors, there are tons of opportunities to make different treats for your little ones.