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Baby Led Weaning Meatballs

These easy 4-ingredient baby led weaning meatballs are not only easy to prepare, but are the perfect, nutritious meatball recipe for baby led weaning and toddler feeding. 

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Baby meatballs have been a staple baby led weaning food for both of my girls.

They make for such a great toddler meal idea since they are nutritionally dense, served with some breastmilk (from my favorite breastpump)!

We make meatballs (all kinds) often in our house and have made tons of varieties based on what we have. Plus, you can throw them in this meatball soup with kale to use them up.

Would you guess that baby meatballs are actually quite versatile?

We actually serve them often as a baby led weaning breakfast idea, too! When I make them in bulk, it’s so easy to just serve it to my 9 month old for breakfast or lunch.

Baby biting into turkey meatballs for baby

Well, if you love watching babies eat food, like I do (isn’t it just the cutest thing?), you’ll be surprised at how adorable meatballs for babies are. 

What makes meatballs for babies extra great for baby led weaning are that they are easy to hold (meatballs are the ultimate finger food for babies) and stick together for the baby to bite into. 

Whether you prefer to use turkey or ground chicken for baby (like these ground chicken meatballs), it’s a great vehicle for serving protein, iron, and Vitamin C to baby.

Meatballs are top of the list for my favorite dinner recipes for babies.

4 ingredient baby meatballs recipe in gray serving bowl

And if you’re into these, check out all the other ways you can use sweet potato baby finger foods, like in baby pancakes.

They are also very nutrient-dense and easy to take out for a snack, with our favorite snack spinner.

We also love using a bison meatball recipe to introduce another high iron and protein source to babies (though I’d leave out the bbq sauce for babes!).

Same with lentils. So many options for a lentil recipe for babies.

This baby meatballs recipe is high in B vitamins, protein, zinc and iron. Iron is a crucial nutrient for babies, especially breasfed babies as iron stores begin to decrease in baby’s stores after 6 months).

Another nutrition fact about this baby meatball recipe is that the sweetpotatoes, which are high in Vitamin C, can help with iron absorption.

We love so many sweet potato recipes for kids for this reason. I always rely on several sweet potato recipes for baby led weaning

We’ll usually start around 5-6 months with these breastmilk popsicles and then ease into baby led weaning with these meatballs.

That means you don’t have to worry about having a separate food to increase the iron – it’s all together for you in this handheld meatball for baby. 

I almost always make a double or triple batch to freeze for when future Sarah feels overwhelmed and needs some frozen meals for toddlers!

Ingredients For Baby Led Weaning Meatballs

To make these weaning meatballs, all you need are 4 basic ingredients!

I love beef or turkey meatballs for baby led weaning, but feel free to use ground chicken if you please.

While babies can pick these up on their own, you could also mash smaller pieces with applesauce, yogurt or mashed avocado on some ezpz spoons!

Or, combine everything into a snack spinner and take it for a little picnic with your little bub.

ingredients in bowl for 4 ingredient baby led weaning meatballs

These meatballs make for a great meal idea for a 1 year old and toddler food, too!

These are the basic outline of my sweet potatoes and ground turkey burgers


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Butcher box salmon with sweetpotatoes and salad on blue plate

Can A 6 Month Old Baby Eat Eggs?

I know many of you may be skeptical about introducing eggs to babies since they are an allergenic food. However, these baby meatballs are the perfect way to introduce eggs.

The latest research shows that introducing allergen foods earlier rather than later may reduce the risk of allergies later on.

I talk more about eggs specifically in this post about baby led weaning foods for 6 months.

How to Make Meatballs For Babies

Simply mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl.

I stock up on oat flour and almond flour from Thrive Market, since you save money and have them delivered.

Make sure your sweet potatoes are pre-cooked (I just microwave them for 5-6 minutes) and then remove the skin. 

raw mixture in glass bowl for baby friendly turkey meatballs

Form into meatball shape and place on baking sheet.

You want the meatballs to hold together well, but be soft enough for babies to gum them if they don’t have any teeth.

This is where the mashed sweet potato works really well when combined with ground turkey. 

For food safety reasons, use a food thermometer to check the interior temperature is 165 degrees. Definitely don’t want to serve undercooked meat products to your baby!

baking sheet with turkey meatball batter

These baby friendly turkey meatballs have the best soft texture and ultimate nutrient offering.

So, baby can pick up on his own, or pre-load an ezpz spoon with a small amount.

They make for a great baby led weaning finger food at 7 months, too!

FAQs

  • How to Freeze Meatballs for Babies – These are the easiest meatballs to freeze. Just let them cool to room temperature, and place in a freezer friendly ziplock bag, sealed tightly. When reheating, just put them in the microwave for a few minutes. Don’t overheat them or they will be too tough and hard to chew. 
  • Can I Use A Different Flour? Yes, you do not need to use chickpea flour. You can also use whole wheat flour, oat flour, or almond flour. Coconut flour likely won’t work the same way because it’s much denser and more dry. 
  • What Should You Serve this Toddler Meatball Recipe With? If you’re serving this to toddlers, you’ll probably need some sides. We like to pair with a green veggie (asparagus, peas, broccoli) or even a side of naan bread. For babies, this cantaloupe puree or acorn squash in the air fryer are both great because they have Vitamin C to help absorb iron! 
Turkey meatballs with blackberries and asparagus on toddler friendly plate

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More Baby Led Weaning Recipe Ideas

Yield: 24 meatballs

Baby Led Weaning Turkey Meatballs

4 ingredient baby meatballs recipe in gray serving bowl

These easy 4-ingredient baby led weaning meatballs are not only easy to prepare, but are the perfect, nutritious meatball recipe for baby led weaning and toddler feeding. 

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground turkey, beef or chicken
  • 2/3 cup sweet potato (cooked and mashed)
  • 2/3 cup flour (chickpea flour, oat flour, whole wheat flour)
  • 2 eggs

Instructions

  1. Microwave your sweet potato for 5 minutes and let cool and remove skin.
  2. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.
  3. Form into meatball shape and place on a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes, or until meatballs are fully cooked and reach 165 degrees internally.

Notes

To freeze: Let meatballs cool to room temperature. Stick them in a tightly sealed ziplock bag in an even layer and place in the freezer. To reheat, stick in the microwave for 2-4 minutes, checking periodically to make sure they don't burn.

To add more flavor, consider using hummus, guacamole or ketchup as a dipping sauce.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

24

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 91Total Fat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 42mgSodium: 29mgCarbohydrates: 4gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 8g

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turkey sweet potato meatballs on white serving plate with ketchup as graphic
18 Comments
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  1. I made these and they are still mushy in the middle I can’t tell if they are undercooked. I don’t have a meat thermometer to check. I baked them for an hour and still straight mush in the middle. I added zucchini and really mashed my potatoes until smooth so I wonder if that is why.

  2. These have been such a life saver! Our baby has several food allergies, including egg – he eats baked egg only to build tolerance. Thank you for creating such a simple and easily modifiable recipe for baby protein. The taste and texture have been perfect, and we’ve been able to add ingredients as we’re comfortable challenging new foods. This recipe has remove so much food anxiety for us, thank you!!

  3. Hi, I made these and baked them for about twice as long as the called for time and theyre still gushy in the middle… I’m worried they’re undercooked still? I used turkey

    1. The same thing happened to me too! What did you end up doing? I don’t have a thermometer to check them I baked them for an hour and still mush!

  4. My 10 month old loved these! I mixed them in with just the tiniest bit of no salt tomato sauce for some extra flavor. My husband and I enjoyed them too!
    Your directions say to freeze the meatballs. Is there any reason I can’t store some in the fridge instead for a limited time?

  5. I made this and my 8 month old and my 2.5 year old did not like this at all. It was pretty bland and it needed something.

    1. Sorry to hear they didn’t enjoy them. Did you try a dip, like ketchup or hummus? That usually helps. Babies can’t have a lot of salt, so these aren’t super salty or herby.

  6. Hi Sarah! Can’t wait to make these 🙂 Have you ever used baby oatmeal instead of flour? Trying to boost those nutrients even more!

      1. Thank you for this recipe and this comment! My daughter LOVES these meatballs! I sub baby oatmeal for the flour after seeing this comment. And I sprinkle in some onion powder and garlic powder. I pan fry the ground meat ahead of time and bake for about 10ish mins. I double batch and freeze and these are great for grab and go and to have on those crazy days. Thank you!!

  7. This is a great recipe! I added a little italian seasoning and some finely chopped broccoli as well for a little extra vitamins and they came out really tasty! These freeze well too! Was babysitting for picky eaters and they LOVED these

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