Sweet Potato – The Perfect “Table Food” for Older Infants and Toddlers

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on February 21, 2011

Tyler loves sweet potatoes.  He would eat them at every meal if I let him. He went through a beans phase, and now it’s sweet potatoes.  I’d prefer to “steam bake” them, but I often don’t remember in time, so I just microwave them for a few minutes after slitting them.  I intentionally choose longer, skinnier ones that will cook faster and feed him for two meals.

I also add a dairy-free and soy-free margarine on them to give him a few extra calories.  (Quick update…he had a weight check on Friday and he only gained 1/2 pound from his 12 month appointment in November, and lost several ounces from his check in January.  Not the 1 lb/month gain we were hoping for, but he did gain some…and is growing in height, so the ped is not terribly concerned. We press on…)

To prep the sweet potato…

Slit. Microwave or steam bake.

Slice crosswise.

Slice lengthwise.

Slather on a little butter or margarine (if you need the extra calories.)


And set in front of the little fingers.

(But be prepared to pick up a few pieces from the floor!)

A simple, frugal, toddler friendly snack or side dish to a finger food meal!

(And please do not feed these to a baby that is not ready for bite size foods.)

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Karen Hiebert February 21, 2011 at 11:25 am

my mom cooks them in the toaster oven and eats them. very healthy! its one of the hot veggies. :)


kristine February 21, 2011 at 12:04 pm

Thank you sooooo much for this idea! My 10 month old refuses to eat baby food and wont eat anythings I feed him. He only wants to feed himself. Other than fruit or chopped up chicken I really have no ideas on what to feed him. We don’t like sweet potatoes but im sure he would. This is something super easy I can fix while im making dinner for the rest of us. Im sure feeding babies is a no brainer for some but im drawing a blank. Thanks again for this idea!


kristine February 21, 2011 at 12:05 pm

One more thing…I really need the basics. About how long would u microwave this?


Crystal's Cozy Kitchen February 21, 2011 at 3:15 pm

You can also cook these in a ‘potato sack’ (just google it and you can find places to buy or instructions on how to make them) which cook potatoes, sweet potatoes in the microwave and makes them fluffy like oven baking them!
My son loves sweet potatoes (as long as there is no other seasonings!)


schroeder February 21, 2011 at 6:08 pm

When do we get an updated pic of Tyler … it has been awhile.



Susan February 21, 2011 at 7:26 pm

my 8 month old LOVES sweet potatoes! and i DO cook them all the time me too! i oven roast them and serve with a little brown sugar/sour cream….YUM


Anne @ Quick and Easy Cheap and Healthy February 21, 2011 at 8:46 pm

If you smash them with a fork, even an infant can eat them. Sweet potatoes were the very first food my son ate at 6 months, and he’s loved them ever since!


Laura February 21, 2011 at 11:07 pm

My 6 month old loves sweet potatoes. When we have them for dinner I bake an extra one for him, then scoop out the insides and mash it with a little water to thin it out. One potatoe feeds him for 2-3 meals. Cheaper then buying sweet potatoes in the baby food jars.


Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom February 22, 2011 at 11:38 pm

Definitely cheaper Laura!!! Way to go!


Brandi M. February 22, 2011 at 12:16 am

How did you figure out when your little one was ready for finger foods? Mine doesn’t like texture very much, but today, she gobbled up a tiny bit of shredded chicken that I gave her for the first time. I’m wondering if that’s a sign that she’s ready for other foods. And sweet potato is really good for us all! :)


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