Blackberries are a great source of fiber, vitamin C, and antioxidants, all in a perfect little bite-sized berry package. They’re a versatile fruit that can be served plain, mixed in with yogurt, oatmeal, or smoothies, making them an easy and healthy fruit to serve to babies and toddlers. Great for 6+ months.
Medically reviewed and cowritten by Jamie Johnson, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), and Lauren Braaten, Pediatric Occupational Therapist (OT).
Blackberry Baby Food
Blackberries are one of the sweetest, juiciest little fruits to serve your baby. They taste wonderful on their own, added to oatmeal, or blended into smooth ricotta cheese for a creamy treat.
And don’t forget about health benefits! That gorgeous dark purple hue of blackberries contains plentiful antioxidants, as well as a good amount of fiber and vitamin C to support developing immune systems.
If you’re wondering how to serve blackberries for baby-led weaning, we’ve got you covered. In this guide, we’ll cover all the information you need in order to safely serve blackberries to your baby. Learn about the benefits of blackberry, FAQs, helpful tools, recipes, and expert feeding tips.
First time making homemade baby food? Then, I would suggest that you start by reading my very in-depth Guide on how to Make Homemade Baby Food – which goes over all the important information such as the best cooking tools to have on hand, safe storage, how to know when baby is ready for solids, how to introduce purees, the best first foods for baby, and more! If you are doing Baby-Led Weaning, then be sure to check out my Complete Guide to Baby-Led Weaning – which covers what exactly is baby-led weaning, to every parent’s concern of baby-led weaning and choking, this guide goes over it all. I will also share how to know when baby is ready for BLW, the top 10 best first foods, a helpful sample blw feeding schedule, helpful tools to have on hand, and much much more!
Want more information? Then make sure to check out my best-selling cookbook for even more information and recipes!
Reasons to Love Blackberries for Babies
- delicious baby food purees – 6+ months
- great for baby-led weaning – 6+ months
- also great for the finger food stage – 9+ months
- full of essential nutrients for baby
- easy stage one and combination puree
- different ways for baby to eat – spoon-fed or self-feed
- easy to make
Benefits of Blackberries
Blackberries pack a serious punch when it comes to nutrition benefits. They are one of nature’s superfoods, and for good reason:
- They are high in fiber which helps keep the digestive system regular. One cup contains close to a third of the daily value.
- They are packed with vitamin C, which supports the immune system and helps with iron absorption.
- An excellent source of vitamin K which helps with healthy bone development and blood clotting.
- They contain numerous other vitamins and minerals, including copper, manganese, folate, vitamin E, and antioxidants.
How to Pick Blackberries
These little beauties are packed with goodness, but you’ll want to make sure that you’re picking blackberries at peak ripeness. Here’s what to look for:
- Color: Look for shiny, brightly colored blackberries that are uniform in color.
- Check the bottom: This is where any crushed or moldy berries can be hiding. Make sure to turn the plastic container upside down – if any berries stick to the bottom, choose another box.
Frequently Asked Questions
Blackberries can be introduced to your baby as soon as they are ready to start solids, usually around 6 months of age.
Yes. Blackberries are round and often firm, which increases their risk of choking. To minimize this, make sure to smash the blackberries with the back of a fork. You can also slice them lengthwise and cut into quarters before serving.
No. Blackberry allergies are rare, but similar to introducing any new food, start by offering a small amount and monitor your baby as they eat to look for any adverse reactions.
No, in fact, due to their high fiber content, blackberries can actually help relieve constipation in babies and toddlers.
These tools will make it a lot easier for you to serve blackberries to your baby. For more of my favorite kitchen tools, make sure to check out my shop.
Step-by-Step Instructions for Blackberry Puree
To make blackberry puree for your baby, place blackberries and a few chopped apples in a saucepan and heat for 10 minutes until tender before adding them to a food processor or blender and blending on high speed. If you still have seeds, strain through a fine sieve to remove the seeds. I have tried making blackberry puree several ways, and this is by far my favorite way – the apple gives the berries some needed body while simmering the two together makes this puree naturally sweet and mild. Our personal favorite blackberry puree recipe – add in an apple and a pinch of cinnamon to show off the flavors of the blackberry – it’s a match made in heaven.
Blackberries for Baby-Led Weaning
Blackberry is a great food for your baby to self-feed, whether for baby-led weaning, which happens around 6 months of age, or during the finger foods stage at 9 months.
Flattened or smashed (6-9 months): Use the back of a fork or your fingers to flatten blackberries for babies this age. It helps to minimize choking risks and will still keep the berries a manageable size for your baby to pick up while still developing their pincer grasp.
Halved or Quartered, lengthwise (9-18 months): Serving in small pieces helps your baby work on their pincer grasp. You can also continue to smash and mix them into other foods, like yogurt or oatmeal.
Whole or Halved (18+ months): Depending on your toddler’s skill level, they may be ready to practice eating ripe, soft blackberries whole. It’s actually a good idea to err on the side of serving a larger, riper blackberry versus a smaller one, as the larger ones are often easier to take a bite off of and manage in your toddler’s mouth.
You can store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
This puree can be frozen for up to 4 months.
- Spoon puree into a freezer storage container – do not overfill.
- Place the lid on the storage container or cover it with a piece of saran wrap and label it with the date and recipe name.
- Place the tray into the freezer and let freeze completely – preferably overnight.
- Pop out the baby food cubes and place them in a zip-lock baggie or stasher bag – don’t forget to re-label the baggie or stasher bag for future reference.
You can store cut blackberries in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 2 days.
While Blackberry Baby Food is great by itself, it’s also super easy to mix and match with other nutrient-dense baby food purees. Give these fun flavor combos a try!
More Blackberry Recipes
Expert Feeding Tips
- A ripe blackberry is one that will flatten easily between your thumb and two fingers or using the back of a fork.
- If your toddler tends to eat quickly and shovel too many blackberries in their mouth at once, limit the amount served at one time and place halved blackberries directly on their tray or table (no bowl or plate), to encourage slowing down and using a pincer grasp.
- Pureed and mashed blackberries are also great for adding to yogurt, oatmeal, and other pureed fruits and veggies.
- If available and within your budget, organically grown blackberries can be a good choice. However, even conventional blackberries (and other produce) is better than no produce at all. Rinsing the blackberries gently just before serving can help reduce any pesticide exposure.
- 2 cups blackberries
- 2 medium apples, peeled and roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp water
- pinch cinnamon
Blackberry for Baby-Led Weaning
Blackberries for Baby-Led Weaning
Serve to your baby in an age-appropriate way – either whole and slightly smashed with the back of a fork, cut in half, or chopped into smaller pieces. You can also puree or mash the blackberry and serve it to your baby on a self-feeding spoon.
Storage: you can store the blackberry puree in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 4 months. You can store the blackberry pieces in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 2 days.