When to feed baby oranges

When Can Babies Eat Oranges?

Written by WebMD Editorial Contributors

In this Article

  • Introducing Your Baby to Oranges
  • Nutritional Benefits of Oranges for Your Baby
  • How to Prepare Oranges for Your Baby
  • Tips for Introducing New Foods to Your Baby

Introducing new foods to your baby is an exciting and fun time. You can watch them explore new tastes and textures as they learn about eating. 

Oranges may seem like a healthy choice since they are full of vitamin C, but the acidity of the fruit might not be good for your baby's digestion and might cause an allergic reaction. To avoid a bad reaction, you should wait until after one year of age to allow your baby's digestive system to mature.  

Introducing Your Baby to Oranges

By the time your baby is one year old, they might seem like an old pro at trying new foods. Or maybe they've learned to be cautious of new foods that taste different than what they're used to. Either way, have fun introducing a new category of foods to your baby’s diet — citrus! 

Oranges have to be peeled before eating, and the membrane left around individual slices may still be tough after the skin has been removed. You can start out by offering canned mandarin oranges first since the outer membrane is softer and more palatable. Just make sure the canned fruit doesn't have added sugar. 

If your baby doesn’t like oranges at first, continue offering them on a regular basis. You might have to offer a new food a few times before your baby begins liking it. Citrus fruits have a distinct flavor that may take time to get used to.

Nutritional Benefits of Oranges for Your Baby

Oranges are well known for having a high dose of vitamin C, which helps your immune system stay strong. But oranges also have other nutrients like potassium, folate, and thiamin. Additionally, oranges have high water content, so they help your baby stay hydrated. 

How to Prepare Oranges for Your Baby

The first time your baby eats orange, cut the pieces up to be about the size of your baby's fingertip to prevent choking. Gradually cut the pieces bigger as your baby grows. If the orange is too acidic at first, try mixing it with other foods like yogurt. This helps cut the acidity as your baby adjusts to a very new taste. 

You may be tempted to offer your baby orange juice, but be sure to check nutrition labels for added sugar. You shouldn't give juice to babies under one year old, and even if your baby is old enough, make sure to only give them 100% fruit juice.

Tips for Introducing New Foods to Your Baby

Before offering solid food for the first time, ask these questions:

  • Can my baby hold their head up independently? This is an important developmental milestone for eating solid food.
  • Is my baby interested in eating? Your baby may watch you eat with interest, or even try to grab your food and taste it. When you offer your baby a spoon, they should open their mouth to eat.
  • Can my baby move food to their throat? If you offer food with a spoon, your baby may push it out with their tongue first. This is called the tongue-thrust reflex. With time they will learn to use their tongue to push the food to the back of their mouth and swallow.

Offer a variety. As your baby starts to eat solid foods, they need variety in their diet. This helps ensure your baby is receiving all of the nutrients they need and also helps expand their palate for new tastes. 

Normalize new foods. Once you introduce a new food to your baby and you've confirmed they aren't allergic to it, try to offer it to them again at least twice a week. Not only does this familiarize your baby with new foods, but it can also prevent food allergies from developing. Additionally, when your baby is learning to eat, they watch you. Make sure you offer them the same foods the rest of the family is eating for encouragement.

Consider Allergens. By the time your baby is 12 months old, they should be introduced to each of the common allergenic foods:

  • Cooked egg
  • Creamy peanut butter
  • Cow’s milk (dairy)
  • Tree nuts (such as cashew or almond paste)
  • Soy
  • Sesame
  • Wheat
  • Fish and other seafood

‌By introducing these foods early in life, you can reduce your baby’s chance of developing food allergies. Only introduce one new food at a time, and wait at least three days before introducing another so you can monitor your baby’s response to the food in case of an allergic reaction. 

If you notice your baby having an allergic reaction, stop feeding them that food immediately. If the reaction is characterized by swollen lips, eyes, or face; hives; or vomiting, call their pediatrician. If you suspect anaphylaxis, characterized by swelling of the tongue or difficulty breathing, call an ambulance immediately. 

What Parents Need to Know

At first glance, this might seem like an odd question. Why are we talking about oranges in particular? What makes them different from any other fruit you might feed your baby?

Well, when you think about it, they’re different in quite a lot of ways. Oranges, unlike bananas, pears, or melons, are a pulpy, stringy, citrus fruit. Those factors make a difference in when and how you should feed it your baby for the first time.

The most common age recommended for the introduction of citrus fruits is around 12 months. You want to be sure that your baby is older and successfully chewing foods before introducing oranges. Though pediatricians no longer recommend delaying a child’s exposure to foods to prevent allergies — in fact, it seems that eating some foods earlier may help prevent some reactions — the issue with oranges and other citrus fruit is not just possible allergies, but also the reaction that babies can have to the acidity and the risk of choking.

Here are some points to keep in mind.

Citrus fruits are acidic, which means when the fruit is metabolized it produces acid. Though adults’ stomachs can handle the acidity of an orange, babies’ stomach are much more sensitive and may not react well to the level of acidity.

If babies are given oranges too early, the acidity may, in some cases, cause diaper rash and redness around the mouth. This doesn’t necessarily mean that your baby has an allergy to the fruit. It’s simply a skin reaction to the acidity.

The acidity may also cause an upset stomach or increase acid reflux symptoms if your child has problems with acid reflux.

As with most parenting decisions, it’s best to use your common sense here. Do you or other members of your immediate family have food allergies? Has your child routinely suffered from acid reflux? Are you considering giving a large scoop of pulpy orange to a 2-month-old? In those cases, it would be wise to wait a little longer to give your child acidic fruits.

If, on the other hand, your child is around 12 months old and you have no reason to suspect they have allergies, then go ahead and dish it up.

One of the tricky parts of feeding babies oranges is the clear membrane that holds the sections together. Those can be hard for even adults to gnaw through.

You can try either cutting up each section into small pieces or peeling off the membrane yourself. For those of you who aren’t interested in an afternoon of membrane peeling, canned mandarin oranges are both small and have thin membranes.

You don’t have to worry that your baby isn’t going to get enough vitamin C just because they aren’t eating oranges. Babies only need around 35 mg of vitamin C per day. You can get that from a bunch of other baby-friendly fruits and vegetables, including:

  • sweet potatoes
  • watermelon
  • strawberries
  • peas
  • papaya
  • kale

Introduce oranges slowly and in small amounts. A few small spoonfuls a day might be a good place to start.

Watch for any reaction during the next two to three days. Look for reddening skin around the mouth and keep track of whether or not they develop a diaper rash. Diaper rashes may, of course, be unrelated to citrus fruits, but it’s important to pay attention just in case the two are related. If your child has hives, swelling, vomiting, wheezing, or trouble breathing, seek medical attention right away.

Make sure the pieces of orange are cut into very small pieces (e.g., smaller than the size of a dime.) And, always stay with your baby when they are eating.

Watch out for and remove the membrane and any seeds that might be difficult for your child to get down.

When you’re ready to move beyond slices, here are a few other ways to incorporate oranges into your baby’s meals:

  • orange ice pops (this can be frozen orange juice or a mixture of pureed oranges and yogurt)
  • orange juice and carrots (it sounds gross, but for some reason oranges bring out a special something in carrots)
  • orange smoothies
  • orange chicken

Introducing new foods to your child is one of the pleasures of that first year of parenting. Sometimes a few extra precautions are needed to make sure that your little one can enjoy them safely.

The introduction of complementary foods. At what age can you give your child orange and citrus fruits

Currently, the child must be at least 11-12 months old before introducing orange and citrus fruits into the baby's diet. Why so late? The fact is that orange and other citrus fruits have a high acidity and because of this they can greatly irritate the baby's gastrointestinal tract, which is still very weak for taking such food.

Are oranges and citrus fruits good for babies? nine0005

Unfortunately, oranges, like all other citrus fruits, are an acidic fruit and most often cause skin rashes in babies under 12 months of age. Acid can cause a severe rash on the baby's field and even rashes appear around the baby's mouth due to the high level of acidity in the fruit.

Many parents neglect the above and give their babies oranges or orange juices, as well as other juices made from citrus fruits, while the babies do not have any allergic reactions. nine0003

If you want to introduce an orange or other citrus fruit to your baby before the recommended age, just watch for any reactions. As with other acidic foods, if your child is sensitive to such foods, you may want to wait and only introduce oranges after their first birthday.

We all know that oranges contain vitamin C; Did you know that one orange contains approximately 12% crude fiber? Oranges are not just a great source of vitamin C, but they contain a huge amount of other vitamins and nutrients. nine0003

Orange (peeled)


  • Vitamin A - 346 IU
  • Vitamin C - 82 mg
  • Vitamin B1 (thiamine) - .09 mg
  • Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) - .07 mg
  • Folic acid - 0.59 mg
  • Iodine - 48 mcg

Contains some other vitamins in small amounts.


  • Potassium - 232 mg
  • Phosphorus - 32 mg
  • Magnesium -15 mg
  • Calcium - 60 mg
  • Sodium - 2 mg
  • Iron - .18 mg

Also contains small amounts of manganese, copper and zinc.

Which fruits are considered citrus fruits?

Oranges, lemons, limes, grapefruits, tangerines, pomegranates, kiwis are considered citrus fruits Many people think that pineapple is also a citrus fruit, but this is a big mistake.

Pineapple is not considered a citrus fruit - can my child eat pineapple? nine0005

Pineapple is not a citrus fruit (it is actually a bromeliad). However, it can be sour. Processed pineapple tends to be less acidic due to its sterile processing with sugar syrup to be packaged in jars for sale in stores.

If your baby does not have any food intolerances and does not show a tendency to rash from food, then you can try giving pineapple to your baby at 10 months. Many parents feed their babies pineapples from 8 months. nine0067 Trample pineapple in puree and add it to yogurt and even chicken. Pineapple has a fibrous composition, if it is too fibrous and the fibers are harder, steam the pineapple pieces. Thus, it will soften, become soft, and then you can give it to your baby.

Baby recipes with orange

Orange puree?

No, you don't have to make orange puree. It is better to peel the orange, and then cut into slices or if the fibers are too hard, just make freshly squeezed juice. The child will drink it with pleasure. This juice is much healthier than store-bought. nine0003

Orange yogurt


  • 1 orange, peeled and juiced
  • 1 cup plain whole milk yogurt


  1. Pour the squeezed juice into the yoghurt and mix thoroughly.
  2. Take ice cream or ice cube trays and freeze.

The resulting frozen pieces of orange yogurt will not only be delicious for the baby, but will also relieve gum pain when the baby is teething. nine0003

Orange Juicy Carrots

If you feel like your child might eat oranges, try Orange Juicy Carrots.

  • 400 g carrots - peeled and diced
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1 glass of water


  1. Add 1 cup water and 1/4 cup orange juice to peeled and diced carrots in a medium saucepan. nine0024
  2. Boil carrots until soft, then add a pinch of cinnamon.

Foods that mix well with oranges:

  • Avocado
  • blueberry
  • cranberry
  • peaches
  • Chicken - Make Orange Glaze
  • Yogurt - Make frozen orange yogurt.

Remember, always consult your pediatrician regarding the introduction of solid foods to your child and, in particular, discuss any foods that may pose an allergy risk to your child. nine0003

If you found this article helpful, please share it. Thank you!

Useful articles on the site


At what age can children drink oranges? Benefits of orange juice

Orange is a tasty and healthy fruit. However, not everyone can eat it, because it very often causes allergies. At what age can children eat oranges to avoid such problems?


  • 1 When to give your baby an orange? nine0024
  • 2 Benefits
  • 3 Orange juice
  • 4 Oranges while breastfeeding
  • 5 Tips for choosing oranges

When to give your baby an orange?

If the child did not suffer from diathesis, he does not have diabetes, and you have never observed an allergy in him, then orange can be administered from 10 months. This must be done very carefully, in small portions. After each dose, carefully monitor the reaction of the crumbs. If everything is fine, the fruit can be introduced into the children's diet, but in small quantities. Ask your doctor if a 10-month-old baby can have an orange if he suffers from any diseases. nine0003


Fresh orange fruits are high in vitamin C, glucose, magnesium and potassium. In addition, there is a lot of fiber in citrus fruits, which the body needs for high-quality digestion of food. Freshly squeezed juice enriches the body with pectin, a substance necessary to ensure the normal functioning of the stomach. If you use an orange regularly, you can strengthen the immune system and forget about colds. However, many children are forced to refuse oranges. This is especially true for those who suffer from diathesis. If, after introducing an orange into the diet, you notice allergic rashes on the body, then for now the fruit should be excluded. nine0003

Orange juice

You can give your baby not a whole fruit, but squeeze the juice out of it. In this case, it should be diluted by half with pure water to avoid irritation of the stomach walls. For a change, orange juice can be mixed with carrot or apple juice. This is a great option for breakfast.

But what to say about juices Dr. Komarovsky

Oranges while breastfeeding

When can I give an orange to a baby? Up to 5-6 months, the baby's diet should consist only of breast milk. At this age, his digestive system is still imperfect, so when digesting other foods, problems may arise. A nursing mother should definitely monitor her diet, because allergies can occur in crumbs after she has consumed certain foods. In particular, this applies to fruits and berries. nine0003

  1. Do not rush to introduce oranges into your diet if one of your family members is allergic to this fruit.
  2. If the baby suffers from diathesis, then oranges will have to be abandoned for the entire period of breastfeeding.
  3. Is the baby already 3 months old? You can try to eat an orange, but in limited quantities. Select one piece of fruit, freeing it from white films. Allergies can appear after 5-10 hours after breastfeeding. If there are no rashes on the skin, pay attention to the baby's tummy. In case of discomfort, it will swell a little. Over the next two days, observe the baby's stool. If it is normal, it may include oranges on the menu, but remember that a nursing mother can only eat half a fruit 1-2 times a week per day. nine0024

What else can, cannot and must be eaten by a nursing mother can be found in this article.

Tips for choosing oranges

When can a child eat an orange? The fruits ripen in January-February, so during this period they are the sweetest and most useful. During this period, they are not processed during delivery, as they perfectly retain their attractive appearance. It is at this time that they should be bought for children. Taste depends largely on the variety.

Learn more