Red split lentils baby food

Lentils for Babies - MJ and Hungryman

Jump to Recipe

Get all your burning questions about serving lentils to your baby answered! Regardless of whether you are doing purees or baby led weaning, these tips and EASY recipes will help boost your baby's iron levels while inviting fun and variety!

When can babies eat lentils?

Lentils can be offered to babies as soon as they’re ready to start solids, usually around 6 months. It's important to remember that your baby is unique and that rather than going by the calendar, you need to make sure your baby is DEVELOPMENTALLY ready to start solids.

If you're unsure, be sure to grab my FREE handout!

Are lentils good for babies?

Lentils are SO amazing for babies as they’re an excellent source of two most essential nutrients, iron and zinc. They are also high in protein and fiber and packed with B vitamins, magnesium, and potassium. 

Iron is particularly important for babies starting at around 6 months as neither breastmilk nor formula alone are sufficient to meet the baby's high nutritional needs.

½ cup of cooked lentils provide about 3 milligrams of iron (varies slightly depending on the variety).

It is important to note that plant-based sources of iron aren't as easily absorbed compared to the animal products. One way you can enhance absorption is by pairing with vitamin C rich foods, like berries, mangoes, broccoli, and bell peppers. I can't emphasize this enough!

Related post: Best iron rich foods for babies and toddlers

What about antinutrients?

It’s true that legumes contain antinutrients, such as phytic acid, lectins, saponins, and tannins, that reduce the absorption of certain nutrients, including iron, zinc, and calcium. 

However, many other healthy foods, like grains, leafy greens, nuts, and seeds all contain antinutrients. So does this mean we should limit or avoid them? Absolutely not.

Instead, always aim for variety and balance! Unless lentils are all you are serving to your baby, the benefits outweigh the risks of consuming antinutrients. Not to mention cooking will decrease the amount of antinutrients significantly.

All this to say, DON'T WORRY!

Which Lentils are the best for babies?

All varieties of lentils are an amazing first food with slight differences in the nutrients. Since introducing your baby to a wide variety of flavors and textures from the start is important in setting a strong foundation for healthy eating, I encourage you to try to introduce them all. They all have a unique flavor, color, and texture.

I will say that for the no-recipe recipes I'm sharing here, red and yellow lentils (moong dal) work best. They are smoother in texture so will be easier to shape into balls.

Note that yellow lentils and yellow split peas are not the same. Here’s a really great guide with pictures to explain the differences!

Do lentils cause constipation?

First, know that constipation is common and to be expected when your baby first starts solids. They’ve only been drinking breastmilk/formula up to this point and their digestive system needs time to adjust to processing real food.

Keep in mind that not having daily bowel movements is NOT a sign of constipation. If stool is soft and your baby doesn’t seem too distressed, there’s no need to worry. I

If your baby is in excessive pain or having hard/pebble-like poops then lentils can definitely help! That’s because it’s a great source of fiber.

There's no official recommended amount of fiber for babies. Fiber is great for the gut and overall health, but you do want to add them into your baby’s diet slowly. Not to mention, their tummies are small! And too much fiber can be too filling, leaving little room for other important nutrients.⁠

Need to Presoak?

Unlike many other legumes, they don’t need to be soaked prior. If you’d like to you can. You do want to rinse before cooking to eliminate any impurities. 

How to Cook Lentils for babies

Stovetop vs. Instant Pot

While you can cook in an Instant Pot, I recommend cooking on the stovetop because you'll have better control over the texture. While stirring, if desired texture has been reached, simply remove from heat and drain any remaining liquid. 

Water to lentils ratio

Generally, the lentils to water ratio for cooking on the stovetop is 1:3. However, for these recipes, I suggest a 1:2 ratio. This will ensure that the lentils don't get too mushy. You want the texture to be slightly firm.

This is very important if you want to shape into balls as I suggest. You'll be adding other ingredients that will add moisture, so if the lentils are already mushy, then you won't be able to shape them into balls that can be picked up easily by tiny hands.

In other words, it's better for the lentils to be on the drier than mushy side.

Cooking time

Add lentils and water to a pot (make sure it's high enough to prevent overflow). Bring to a boil, reduce heat to LOW, cover, and simmer until lentils are tender/firm.

Yellow lentils: 20-25 minutes. I like to stir occasionally to check on the texture.

Red lentils: 5-7 minutes.


I suggest cooking a big batch to enjoy throughout the week. It will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days. You can also freeze for up to 1 month. I recommend freezing in ¼-1/2 cup containers so that you can easily pull out single serving portions, whenever you need!

EASY lentil recipes for babies 6 months and up

What can you mix with lentils for baby food? Here are some fun ways to invite variety into your little one's diet! So EASY!


The world is your oyster when it comes to add-ins, just like overnight oats and chia puddings. I've provided some suggestions to help get you started!

While I give measurements for the ingredients below, these really are no-recipe recipes. You can add more or less depending on your preferences.

How to cook broccoli perfectly for baby, Beets for baby

How to serve to baby

If you're doing purees, add all the ingredients and blend until smooth. I do want to emphasize that it is really important to move forward with texture by 9 months.

If you feel like you're stuck on purees and need extra guidance, I'm here to help!

When you and your baby are ready, skip the extra step of blending and follow the instructions below. For baby led weaning, here are two options:

  • Combine all the ingredients. Thin out with ingredients suggested below, if necessary. Serve in a bowl. Will be easy to scoop with their hands. Can also preload onto a spoon.
  • Shape into balls (just like these oat balls). I recommend refrigerating for at least 30 minutes as doing so helps them to firm up and hold their shape better. These are especially great for babies just starting to self feed as they are easier for them to grab with their palm and bring to mouth.

Another recipe to try - Iron-rich Baby Pasta

Troubleshooting tips

As mentioned, you don't need to measure all the ingredients exactly. Taste as you go. If the mixture is too soft/mushy, simply add more lentils. You can also add ground nuts and/or seeds like flax seeds and hemp seeds.

If too dry then add water, breastmilk/formula, milk (I especially love coconut milk for its flavor. Go for full-fat always), yogurt, unsweetened applesauce, banana...anything that will add moisture.

Baby Led Feeding Journey Program

If you are at the early stage of introducing solid food to your baby or are stuck on purees and needing guidance on moving forward with texture safely, you're in the right place!

Perhaps you've started to realize feeding your baby is becoming a part-time job which requires so much time and energy you don't have.

What if I told you I can totally SIMPLIFY this whole process so all you have to do is follow a no-fuss daily game plan for the next three months! No more guessing or stressing!

Instead of pouring all your precious free time into finding recipes, researching what is safe for baby to eat, and cooking meals that rarely turn out. ...Let me guide you through video and photos of exactly WHAT and HOW to serve your baby so you can have the peace of mind your baby is getting what they need to grow and THRIVE!

Inside this all in one program you get to follow me and my baby along every EVERY SINGLE DAY for three months in REAL time. This is seriously the closest thing to me being in your kitchen, guiding you along the process! ​

Do you want to minimize picky eating and set a solid foundation for a lifetime of healthy eating habits?

Check out this 3 month mastering self-feeding program! It’s the closest thing to me being in your kitchen

Baby-Friendly Recipes with Lentils

Lentils for babies

Get all your burning questions about serving lentils to your baby answered. Here are tips and EASY recipes to boost your baby's iron levels.

5 from 2 votes

Print Pin

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Servings: 4

Author: Min | MJ and Hungryman

  • Freezer Tray

  • ▢ 1 cup red or yellow lentils
  • ▢ 2 cups water
  • Add lentils and water to a pot (make sure it's high enough to prevent overflow). Bring to a boil, reduce heat to LOW, cover, and simmer until lentils are tender but not mushy. Stir occasionally.

  • Cooking time for red lentils: 5-7 minutes / yellow lentils: 20-25 minutes.

  • Combine ¼ to ½ cup cooked lentils with add-ins of choice. Suggestions below to help get you started.

  • If you want to thin it out, add water, breastmilk/formula, or unsweetened full-fat milk of choice (you can use cow's milk in recipes. Just don't offer as a drink). If it's too soft/mushy, add more lentils and/or ground nuts/seeds.

  • Serve in a bowl and allow baby to eat with their hands, preload onto a spoon, or shape into balls (refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. The balls will firm up and hold shape better).

Flavor Combinations - to ½ cup cooked lentils, add:

Peanut butter banana

  • 1 tablespoon smooth peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon mashed banana
  • 1 tablespoon hemp hearts

Carrot cake

  • ⅓ cup finely grated carrots
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 tablespoon ground walnuts

Beef and broccoli

  • 1 tablespoon finely minced beef
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cooked broccoli
  • 2 teaspoons tahini
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder

Beet hummus

  • 2 tablespoons beet hummus or dip

Helpful tips:

  • Cook a large batch of lentils to keep in the fridge for up to 5 days or the freezer for up to 1 month. I recommend freezing in ¼-1/2 cup containers  (I like to use the tray above) so you can easily pull out single-serving portions and add all kinds of fun mix-ins.
  • Once you add in the other ingredients, start by offering a small portion to your baby. You can always offer more as you follow your baby's lead. That way you can store untouched leftovers in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Calories: 159kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 1g | Sodium: 9mg | Fiber: 14g | Iron: 3mg

Course breakfast, lunch, dinner

Cuisine baby led weaning

Tried this Recipe? Tag me Today!Tag me @KidFriendly.Meals today!

Red Lentil Curry - Healthy Little Foodies

All Posts, by Date » Lunch / Dinner » Family Friendly Dinners » Red Lentil Curry

Jump to Recipe Print Recipe

Red lentils, aromatic spices and coconut milk are combined to create this creamy, comforting and flavoursome red lentil curry. Perfect for little ones, meaning the whole family can join in on curry night!

Five Reasons to Love This Red Lentil Curry

  1. Easy – Not too labour intensive and ready in around 30 mins. Great for mid-week dinners. Easy to prep (chop veggies etc) in advance for busy evenings.
  2. Flavoursome – Packed with flavour thanks to the garlic, ginger and spices. Perfect for introducing new and exciting flavours to babies and little ones.
  3. Allergy / Diet Friendly – Naturally vegan, dairy, gluten, nut and egg-free.
  4. Nourishing – Lentils are an excellent source of B vitamins, iron (a critical mineral for growing kids), magnesium, potassium and zinc. They’re also a great source of plant-based protein and fiber.
  5. Economical – Red lentils are an inexpensive way of getting a wide range of nutrients.

Watch How to Make it (Video)

  • RED SPLIT LENTILS – Red lentils break down easily and cook fast. They are very soft and have a somewhat sweet, nutty flavour – perfect for babies/kids. If you wish, you can substitute with brown or green lentils, the cooking time will be longer and you will need extra water for cooking.
  • CURRY POWDER – Check the ingredient list of the curry powder, if making for a baby avoid those that have salt on the ingredient list. Mild curry powder is recommended for kids but if you like your meals with an extra kick, use a hot curry powder (or add a couple of chillies to the mix)
  • COCONUT MILK – Use full-fat canned coconut milk to achieve that delicious creamy texture.
  • GARLIC & GINGER – You can use fresh or, for convenience, the jarred minced garlic/ginger.

Process Shots and Cooking Tips

  1. Saute the Onion, Garlic, Ginger and Carrots for around 10 minutes. Don’t be tempted to skip/rush this step, it produces a sweet flavour base for the curry and complements the spices.
  2. Cook off the Spices to let the flavours develop.
  3. Add coconut milk, tomatoes and water. It will look like a lot of liquid but the lentils will absorb it and it will reduce.
  4. Simmer for 25 mins, uncovered. The lentils will soften, and the sauce should be thickened and creamy. If you find it too thick add 1/2 cup extra of water at a time.

Serving Suggestions

  • Serve this red lentil curry with rice or scoop up the creamy lentils with some naan or roti bread
  • For a vegetable boost, serve with cauliflower rice, some steamed or roasted vegetables or stir through some frozen peas at the end of the cooking (great for cooling down meals for toddlers too!)

Storage Instructions

  • REFRIGERATE: Allow to cool, transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days.
  • FREEZE: Allow to cool, transfer to freezable container/s or bag/s and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw, overnight in the refrigerator, reheat on the stovetop (until piping hot) adding more water (or stock) to thin, if needed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is red lentil curry suitable for babies?

Yes, this curry is perfect for babies (over 6 months). It is important to introduce a variety of flavours early on and this lentil curry is mild, soft and easy to eat. You can blend or mash depending on the age and stage of the baby. Make sure to check the ingredient list of the curry powder used (look for one without added salt)

Do I need to soak/ pre cook the lentils?

There is no need to soak or pre-cook before making the curry. However, the lentils should be rinsed to remove any dirt etc.

Can I use other lentil varieties / canned lentils?

Yes. If using canned lentils, reduce the amount of water added and the cooking time. (Canned lentils can be salty so not recommended for babies). You can use brown and green lentils but you will need to increase the cooking time to around 40 mins (30 mins covered, 10 mins uncovered). You will also need to increase the water by another cup.

Can I add more vegetables to the recipe?

Yes, add your favourite vegetables. Sweet potato is lovely. Grate or dice to the same size as the carrots and add at the same time. You can also stir through some peas at the end.

More Recipes You May Like…

  • Red Lentil Lasagne
  • Curried Lentil Bake
  • Curried Lentil and Coconut Soup

Looking for more healthy kid recipes?Sign up for my free recipe newsletter to get new family friendly recipes in your inbox each week! Find me sharing more kid-friendly inspiration on Pinterest and Instagram.

5 from 18 votes

Red Lentil Curry

Red lentils, aromatic spices and coconut milk are combined to create this creamy, comforting and flavoursome red lentil curry. Suitable for babies (6mth+), meaning the whole family can join in on curry night!

Print Recipe Pin Recipe

  • ▢ 1 tbsp Coconut Oil
  • ▢ 1 Onion finely chopped
  • ▢ 1 Carrot finely chopped
  • ▢ 4 cloves Garlic minced ( equivalent to 3 tsps)
  • ▢ 2 tbsp Minced Ginger
  • ▢ 1 Red Bell Pepper (Capsicum) finely chopped
  • ▢ 1 – 2 tbsp Curry Powder see notes
  • ▢ ½ tsp Smoked Paprika
  • ▢ ½ tsp Turmeric
  • ▢ 1 tsp Salt Do not add if making for baby and reduce for younger children.
  • ▢ 180g /1 cup Red Split Lentils rinsed and drained
  • ▢ 400ml / 14 oz can Coconut Milk
  • ▢ 400g / 14 oz can Chopped Tomatoes
  • ▢ 375ml 1½ cups Water
For Serving (optional)
  • ▢ ½ Lemon juice of
  • ▢ ¼ cup Coriander (cilantro) finely chopped
  • Add coconut oil to a pan, over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot garlic and ginger and cook for around 10 mins, stirring occationally, until the onion is golden.

  • Add the pepper (capsicum) and spices (curry powder, smoked paprika and turmeric) and cook for a further 30-60 seconds, stirring continuously to prevent burning.

  • Add the lentils, coconut milk, tomatoes and water and simmer for around 25 mins, uncovered. (The lentils should be soft, and the sauce should be thickened and creamy. If you find it too thick add 1/2 cup extra of water at a time.)

  • Add the lemon juice and chopped coriander, taste and then season to taste. (do not salt for baby)

  • Add 1-2 tbsp of mild curry powder to taste. For babies, young children and children not used to spice then I recommend 1 tbsp. For older children, used to spiced food add 2 tbsp. (I add 2tbsp and my boys are 6 & 9)
  • Check the ingredient list of the curry powder, if making for a baby avoid those that have salt as an ingredient high up on the ingredient list.
  • Although this is a recipe for red lentil curry, you can substitute with other lentil varieties.
  •  Green or brown lentils can be used but will need a longer cooking time and extra water. Add 750ml (3 cups) of water and simmer for 30 mins (covered) and a further 10 -15 mins uncovered. 
  • If using canned lentils (watch salt content if making for baby/toddler) you can skip the water and reduce the cooking time as the lentils are already cooked. 

Nutritional Information is a ROUGH guide only, calculated using an online nutrition calculator. 

Nutrition Facts

Red Lentil Curry

Amount Per Serving

Calories 454 Calories from Fat 234

% Daily Value*

Fat 26g40%

Saturated Fat 22g110%

Sodium 762mg32%

Potassium 1107mg32%

Carbohydrates 44g15%

Fiber 18g72%

Sugar 7g8%

Protein 16g32%

Vitamin A 3850IU77%

Vitamin C 57mg69%

Calcium 120mg12%

Iron 9mg50%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Course:Main Meal

Cuisine:Indian Inspired

Did you make this recipe?Tag me on Instagram at @healthylittlefoodies or leave me a below.

Meet Amy

Amy Whiteford runs the blog Healthy Little Foodies. She is a mum to two, has a BSc (Hons) Food Science, PGDE Primary Education and a Certificate in Childhood Nutrition. She uses her experience and knowledge to create healthy and delicious recipes for kids. Explore the site for creative ideas, tips, and inspiration! Read more

How to raise a Healthy Little Foodie

Receive family friendly recipes, delivered weekly to your inbox, for FREE! And receive this FREE ebook - "How to Raise a Healthy Little Foodie"

Reader Interactions

Lentils in baby food - Telegraph

Feature : is not suitable as a first food for children. You can give only from two years.

Lentil is a very ancient cultivated plant. It was used by the ancient Egyptians. They prepared various dishes from it, baked bread. They were also used for medicinal purposes. Lentils are absolutely ecological product. It does not accumulate in itself either toxic elements, or radionuclides, or nitrates.

There are 295 calories in 100 grams of lentils.




Vitamin PP - 1.8 mg

Beta-carotene - 0.03 mg

Vitamin A (RE) - 5 mcg

Vitamin B1 (thiamine) - 0.5 mg

Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) - 0.21mg

Vitamin E (TE) - 0.5 mg

Vitamin PP (niacin equivalent) - 5.5mg

Calcium - 83 mg

Magnesium - 80 mg

Sodium - 55 mg

Potassium - 672 mg

Phosphorus - 390 mg

Chlorine - 75 mg

Sulfur - 163 mg

Iron - 11. 8 mg

Zinc - 2.42 mg

Iodine - 3.5 mcg

Copper - 660 mcg

Manganese - 1.19 mg

Selenium - 19.6 mcg

Chromium - 10.8 mcg

Fluorine - 25 mcg

Molybdenum - 77.5 mcg

Boron - 610 mcg

Silicon - 80 mg

Cobalt - 11.6 mcg

Aluminum - 170 mcg

Nickel - 161 mcg

Titanium - 300 mcg

Lentils are a member of the legume family. It is a small flat seed. It contains a lot of vegetable protein. There are many varieties of lentils, but the most commonly used are red, brown, puy, and beluga. Brown is consumed with stews and casseroles. When processed warmly, it gives a nutty flavor. Red is held in high esteem in Asian cuisine. Pies, vegetarian bread are baked from flour. Lentils can also be canned or eaten dry. Soup is made from it.

Composition and nutritional properties of lentils

100 g of lentils contain:

  • Proteins - 24 g
  • Fats - 1. 5 g
  • Carbohydrates - 46.3 g
  • Dietary fiber - 11.5 g
  • Water - 14 g
  • Mono- and disaccharides - 2.9 g
  • Starch - 43.4 g
  • Ash - 2.7 g
  • Saturated fatty acids - 0.5 g

Health benefits of lentils

The use of lentils is useful for nervous disorders, urolithiasis, problems with the cardiovascular system. It also normalizes blood sugar levels in diabetes, eliminates digestive problems.

Lentils contain a large percentage of potassium, so it is useful for blood formation. It is also used to prevent cancer (rectal cancer and breast cancer in women). It is also recommended for pregnant women - lentils have a beneficial effect on the development of the fetus.

Contraindications for use

Lentils are not recommended to be included in the diet for genitourinary diseases, various diseases of the joints. Also, you do not need to use lentils for kidney disease. This is due to the fact that the substances found in lentils can contribute to the formation of kidney stones.

Lentils in children's diet

In the children's diet, lentils should be introduced very carefully and in small doses. So, as in lentils, an excessive content of purine compounds. The children's stomach is difficult to tolerate these substances.

Preparation and consistency

Raw or poorly cooked lentils are not recommended. In the children's diet, lentils can appear after two years. It can be added to soup.

Lentil recipes for children

Lentil puree


  • Lentils - 1 cup
  • Carrot - 1 pc.
  • Onion - 1 pc.
  • Butter or olive oil


Soak the lentils for several hours in cold water. Then you need to boil it in salted water. Drain the water. Onions and carrots need to be sautéed, then mixed with lentils. Beat in a blender and add oil.

Lentil soup


  • Carrot - 1 pc.
  • Potatoes - 1-2 pcs.
  • Lentils - ¼ cup
  • Water - 1 l


Dip the lentils in cold water, bring to a boil. Take potatoes, cut them into cubes, and carrots into circles, and add them to the soup. Then cook the soup for about one hour over low heat. At the end, you can add greens.

Red lentil potato salad


  • Potato - 400g
  • Red lentils - 80g
  • Green onions - 2 bunches
  • Garlic - 1/2 clove
  • Fruit and berry vinegar - 3 tbsp. spoons
  • Mustard - 1/2 teaspoon
  • Oil (from grain germ) - 1 tbsp. spoon
  • Salt, pepper


Boil the potatoes in their skins, peel and cut them, but not too thin slices. Rinse the lentils, boil in boiling water for 5 minutes, then drain the water. Green onions should be cut into thin slices, finely chop the garlic. Put the potato slices and lentils on a plate, add the garlic and green onions as well.

Then you need to make a dressing: mix mustard with vinegar, add pepper and salt and beat. Then add the germ oil. Drizzle this dressing over the salad. Can be consumed both warm and cold.

Bon appetit! For more recipes, read the Baby Food section.0006

90,000 lentils with vegetables for children, step -by -step recipe for 466 kcal, photo, ingredients

Add recipe



Recipes of Julia Vysotskaya 9000

spaghetti in tomato sauce 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 Tomatoes in their own juice for sauce are much better than fresh tomatoes. Eggplants are very fond of tomatoes and are friends with garlic, and they simply adore suluguni! Subscribe to the YouTube channel "Eat at Home",

Yulia Vysotskaya

Recipe from Yulia Vysotskaya

Pasta with eggplant

Guys, if you try this pasta once, you will understand that life is wonderful.

Julia Vysotskaya


Viderait on the topic

Recipe from Julia Vysotskaya

Turen pumpkin with peas and tomatoes

instead of pumpkins is suitable for sweet potatoes.

Julia Vysotskaya

Recipe from Yulia Vysotskaya

Baranina Roulettics with Tsukini

Julia Vysotskaya

9000 9000 9000 902 Julia Vysotskaya Julia Vysotskaya January July, January

January, January



25 minutes

Recipe for:

3 persons


Lentils contain a lot of iron, which is necessary for the proper development of the child's brain. It is difficult for babies to digest and therefore should be paired with plenty of fresh vegetables, as in this recipe. Based on this combination, you can make soup for the whole family, you just need to add more broth (and for kids, you can take water instead of broth).

In the culinary book

with images of images of images

in the chosen

with images of images

Get a food plan from

The food value of the portion

9000 155 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 9,000 Proteins 6 g
Fats 6 g
20 g

% DV




Based on your
age, weight and activity. It is a reference information.

Login or register so we can display your daily intake of proteins, fats and carbohydrates



1 pc.

orange lentils

50 g


½ pc.

vegetable broth

400 ml

olive oil

1 st. l.

Highlight all

Photo reports to the recipe0

Add photo

So far there is not a single photo with the preparation of this recipe

Add photo

Step recipe with photo


onions, carrots, celery and battalion and battal chop.

Heat the olive oil in a heavy bottomed saucepan and simmer the onion until translucent.

Learn more