Discover easy and nutritious ways to introduce eggs to your baby when first starting solids and beyond! You’ll find answers to some of the most common questions that parents have as well as easy, baby-friendly recipes.
This post was created in partnership with Egg Nutrition Center. Thank you for supporting brands that I believe in and keeps this space running. As always, all opinions are my own!
- When can babies eat eggs?
- What are the benefits of eggs for babies?
- How many eggs can babies eat per day?
- What if my child is high-risk for allergies?
- Easy Ways to Serve Eggs to Babies
- Other Resources
When can babies eat eggs?
There’s a lot of confusion surrounding this question, and I can understand why given guidance has changed in recent years. The current recommendation is to introduce them as soon as your baby is ready for solids (4-6 months).
Research shows that early AND sustained exposure to potentially allergenic foods, like eggs, may actually reduce the risk of developing an allergy to that food.
In fact, for the very first time, the 2020 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) included recommendations for the birth to 24 month and pregnancy and lactation life stages, and recommended eggs as an important first food for babies and toddlers, as well as pregnant and breastfeeding women.
What are the benefits of eggs for babies?
- Eggs are a naturally nutrient-rich food with essential nutrients that help build a healthy foundation for life, including varying amounts of zinc, iron, choline, folate, iodine, vitamins: A,D, B6, B12, and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs).
- Eggs are a good source of high-quality protein and have all 9 essential amino acids.
- Eggs are one of the most concentrated sources of choline, which is an essential nutrient critical for brain development. It’s important to consume enough of this nutrient especially during the first 1000 days.
Let’s dive deeper into this under-consumed, lesser-known nutrient.
The DGAC Scientific Report has pointed to choline as a nutrient important for babies and toddlers, and pregnant and breastfeeding women, as it is associated with reduced risk of birth defects and can help support overall cognitive development!
Unfortunately, this population isn’t getting enough of this critical nutrient. One of the challenges in meeting the intake recommendation is because choline is not found in high quantities in many foods.
Two large eggs provide over half of the recommended daily amount needed for pregnant women!
- Eggs can help enhance the absorption of nutrients found in vegetables, such as vitamin E and carotenoids
- Eggs are versatile, affordable, delicious, and so easy to prepare!
How many eggs can babies eat per day?
Since eggs are a nutrient-rich food with essential nutrients for growth and development, the DGAC has made recommendations for a minimum weekly intake of eggs for infants and toddlers.
A one-ounce equivalent is recommended for babies 6-9 months and at least one egg per week is recommended for those who are 9-12 months of age.
Once babies move past the first year of life, recommendations are increased to at least 2 to 3.5 eggs per week depending on whether the child is still breastfeeding and if they are following a vegetarian diet
Rather than getting too caught up on the exact serving/portion sizes per day, what I always encourage is to aim for balance and variety in the foods you serve. Too much of any food, and yes even the so-called “super foods” can be bad if consumed in excess.
Variety is the name of the game here. Not only will doing so ensure that your child’s nutritional needs are being met but you’re also helping to shape their food preferences.
The main concern surrounding consumption of eggs is cholesterol. However, research shows that the daily consumption of eggs has no effect on blood cholesterol.
What if my child is high-risk for allergies?
The risk factors to look for are:
- Immediate family member with a food allergy
- Presence of atopic dermatitis (e.g. eczema), allergic rhinitis or asthma
Discuss with your healthcare provide to come up with the best plan of action. For very high-risk babies, it might be recommended to introduce the allergens before 6 months.
Easy Ways to Serve Eggs to Babies
Be sure to include both the white and the yolk! Also, thoroughly cook the eggs with no raw or runny white or yolk.
Crack an egg in a bowl and scramble with formula/breastmilk or full-fat milk. You can also add pureed or diced soft cooked vegetables. Cook in a pan over medium heat, scrambling constantly, until fully cooked.
- If doing spoon-feeding, puree with a little breastmilk/formula or milk. You can also add some avocado, banana, yogurt, soft-cooked fruits and vegetables to the mixture. Keep in mind, it’s important not to stay in the puree stage for too long. Here are some tips and ideas on how to move forward with texture.
- For baby led weaning: keep them on the clumpier side for younger babies who haven’t mastered their pincer grasp yet.
- Spoon-feeding: Same as above.
- Baby led weaning: Cut into quarters. Try sprinkling a little bit of spice to introduce flavor. You can also mash with some avocado or other soft foods like sweet potatoes, oatmeal, and preload onto a spoon or spread onto toast.
Here’s a recipe for curried avocado egg salad using hard-boiled eggs:
- 3 hardboiled eggs, peeled and chopped
- 1 medium avocado, peeled and finely diced
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- 1 tablespoon plain whole fat Greek yogurt
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4-1/2 teaspoon curry powder
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped cucumber
- 3 tablespoons finely grated carrots
Add all the ingredients to a medium bowl and stir to combine.
Cook in a skillet until yolk is cooked through. Cut into strips. You can also do this with omelettes. At around 8-9 months, start cutting them into smaller pieces to help practice the pincer grasp.
Porridge or oatmeal
Cook oatmeal until liquid is almost fully absorbed. Add a beaten egg and stir vigorously. Turn off the heat, cover the pot and let it sit for about 5 minutes. Want to prepare in the microwave? Try these egg oatmeals and Peanut Butter Oatmeal recipe to try!
Mash one ripe banana (or 1/3 cup mashed sweet potatoes or other vegetable) and combine with a beaten egg. Add spice(s) for more flavor! Fry in a pan! So easy!!
Egg Veggie Pancakes
Nutritious and easy to make, these baby-friendly egg veggie pancakes made with whatever veggies you have on hand are the perfect breakfast/snack for babies!
Whisk 6 eggs. Add finely chopped, cooked vegetables and meat and seasonings. Divide mixture evenly between the prepared muffin cups. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20-25 minutes, or until set.
Packed with essential nutrients for babies, these savory muffin pan salmon quiche are great for breakfast, snack, and lunchboxes.
Beat 1-2 eggs with seasoning(s) in a small bowl. Grease a small skillet with oil or butter and heat over medium-high heat. Pour egg into pan and tilt to spread evenly. Cook for 30-45 seconds until bottom is set. Flip and cook for an additional 30 seconds. Remove from pan, let it cool before adding the filling. Roll, slice, and enjoy!
Flatten a slice of bread (crusts removed) as thinly as you can using a glass (or rolling pin if you have one). Spread the filling evenly on top (don’t overstuff), and roll as tightly as you can.
Soak it in the whisked egg on each side for about 1-2 minutes and cook in a pan (w/ a little bit of oil or butter) over medium heat on all sides until golden.
By soaking it in egg, the bread gets nice and soft for the baby. Let it cool before slicing. As pictured, slice in bigger pieces to make them easier for your baby to grab.
Hope this post gives you plenty of ideas to serve eggs to your baby in a safe and delicious way.
What are some of your favorite ways to serve eggs to your baby?