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Can I give Baby Cottage Cheese?

The lumpy, yet soft and creamy texture of cottage cheese is wonderfully easy for your baby’s gums to manage – and as a food, cottage cheese is nutritious and versatile.  CottageCheese3

Normal cheeses are made by curdling cow’s milk, then draining the liquid (whey) from the cheese curds before pressing them into a solid piece. Cottage cheese still has the curds and whey mixed together, and is available with large curds, or small ones – some washed for a sweeter, less acidic taste, and some unwashed for a tangier flavour. A type is also available that is lightly pressed – this is known sometimes as paneer, farmer’s cheese, or queso blanco.

Unlike the ‘soft cheeses’ made with unpasteurised milk that must be avoided during pregnancy, and for young babies, cottage cheese is usually made with pasteurised milk (though do check the packaging) – so it is quite safe, unless there is a family history of allergy or intolerance.

Cottage cheese may be made with full-fat or reduced-fat milk, but until your baby reaches around 2 years of age, the full-fat version will supply the best nutritional value:CottageCheese2

  • protein
  • calcium
  • vitamin D
  • phosphorous
  • selenium
  • dietary fats

Take care, though, to buy cottage cheese that does not have a high sodium (salt) content.

Introducing cottage cheese into your baby’s diet…
Cottage cheese has a rather ‘neutral’ taste that makes it ideal for using when you make sweet or savoury dishes for your baby:

  • Make mashed potato extra creamy and nutritious by adding some cottage cheese.
  • Mash some cottage cheese into cooked sweet potato and add a tiny pinch of cinnamon.
  • Blend the juice from a mature carrot with cottage cheese until smooth, and then warm through for a tasty soup.
  • Add a tablespoon of cottage cheese when you cook scrambled eggs.CottageCheese1
  • Puree roasted red pepper with cottage cheese for a nutritious, tasty dip.
  • Add any fruit puree, some finely chopped canned fruit (in juice, not syrup), or a little finely grated apple to cottage cheese.
  • Stir some mashed avocado and banana into cottage cheese for baby to eat as a dip, a sandwich filling, or just as it is.
  • Add mashed berries to cottage cheese and sprinkle on a little ground flax or wheat germ.
  • Use pureed cottage cheese to replace mascarpone, cream cheese or sour cream in any recipe.
  • Stir a little chopped ripe banana and ripe papaya (pawpaw) into some cottage cheese.

Always speak with your baby’s doctor or paediatrician about introducing any new foods – particularly if there is a family history of food allergy.

This information presented to you acts as a guide which contains researched information only and is not intended to replace advice from a qualified health professional.

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