Can Babies Have Lunch Meat? Guide For Parents


when they are at least 15 to 16 months old? Babies who are 15 to 16 months are allowed to consume deli meat or lunch meat in small pieces. Parents must take extra care while preparing deli meat for babies. Lunch meat for babies is a good source of protein. But is lunch meat safe for a toddler? We will answer all these questions in this guide today. So, keep reading. 

When Babies Can Consume Deli Meat: When And How To Introduce

As a parent, you might think: when can babies have lunch meat? You see, all kids or babies do not have the same body type. Therefore, your baby may consume deli meat or lunch meat when he/she is 8 to 10 months old. But, others may eat lunch meat when they are at least 17 months old. So, what we recommend is to consult a child specialist or a pediatrician.

Undoubtedly, babies must consume finely chopped or diced deli meat with other solid food. According to Healthy Children, an American Academy of Pediatrics, all food, including meat should be cut 1 to 2 inches or smaller for a toddler. While serving lunch meat for your baby, mix it with cheese, crackers, and vegetables.

When the child gets older, you can serve lunch meat with bread or a sandwich. As a parent, you should not give deli meat to your baby every day. Protein in deli meat or lunch meat helps in babies’ development and growth. However, lunch meat contains fat that can be unhealthy if consumed daily.  

What Should Parents Look Out For Buying Lunch Meat For Toddlers?

  • Parents must not buy meat that contains nitrates. That means they should ignore purchasing processed meat that belongs to the category of carcinogen.
  • Parents always should choose whole-cut meat for their kids. Sectioned meat is not perfect for kids because it is prepared using artificial ingredients and multiple animal products. On the other hand, a slice of whole-cut meat is prepared using sugar and salt.
  • You, as a parent, always purchase organic products, even when you are buying meat for your baby. Just ensure no added ingredients are used to prepare the meat.
  •  While buying deli meat or lunch meat, go through the labels carefully. Check the expiry date and buy only those that include a few ingredients like salt and sugar. 


How Will You Be Able To Prepare Ham For Babies With Baby-Led Weaning?

The process of preparing a ham for babies with baby-led weaning is quite time-taking. 

  • First, you should cut the thin skin from the ham. 
  • Now, cut and divide it into smaller pieces so that your toddler can bite them easily. 
  • Now, you will need to carve the ham meat. To do that, use a hot kitchen towel and put the ham bone in your hand. Using the other hand, slice the ham thinly. 
  • At last, prepare the ham with crackers, vegetables, or soup. 

Tips On How To Buy, Cook, And Serve Deli Meat For Toddlers

  •  While buying deli meat or lunch meat, go through the labels carefully. Check the expiry date and buy only those that include a few ingredients like salt and sugar. 
  • Babies must consume finely chopped or diced deli meat with other solid food. Meat should be cut 1 to 2 inches or smaller for a toddler.
  • The moment you serve lunch meat for your baby, mix it with cheese, crackers, and vegetables. 

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