When Can I Give My Baby Green Peppers?
When to introduce bell peppers into your baby's diet depends less on their ability to digest the vegetable and more on how you prepare it. Chunks of raw bell pepper may pose a choking hazard to children younger than 4 years old. Prepared properly, however, bell peppers are a good source of fiber, vitamin A, iron and vitamin C for your child starting at about 6 months of age.
Serving Safely Raw
You can serve older babies, who have some teeth and are chewing well, thin strips of raw bell pepper. In fact, they make for a fine finger food especially if you serve them with a dip. If the peel is particularly thick, you can remove it with a vegetable peeler or paring knife. Keep the strips long and avoid large squarish chunks of pepper, as these are more likely to pose a choking hazard. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends keeping raw vegetable pieces to less than 1/2 inch in size. Another way to serve raw green pepper to babies is to chop it finely, then mix it with cream cheese and use it as a sandwich spread or dip.
Other Safe Preparations
Green peppers can also be served to baby in cooked form. Prepare baked whole peppers stuffed with brown rice, perhaps mixed with a little ground turkey or ground beef. Finely chop green peppers and add to casseroles and stews; the heat will soften them as the dish cooks. The French dish ratatouille, which consists of a melange of vegetables including zucchini, tomatoes, eggplant and bell peppers cooked slowly on the stove top or in the oven until soft, makes suitable baby food.