17 October 2008

How to turn a whole banana into a no-mess baby meal (no spoon required)

Tsh (aka Simple Mom) has an awesome hack that reduces the schlep factor for when you must feed the baby on the go:

I have to give total credit to my husband on this one. On more than one occasion, we've found ourselves out and about with no feeding instruments for our 9-month-old son. No spoon, no bib, no pureed food. One time, my hubby devised an emergency solution that we're now using almost any time we leave the house.

Throw a whole banana into your diaper bag before heading out the door. When it's time to eat, mash up the banana before peeling it - just squishing it a bit with your fingers does the trick. Then, peel open a small hole at the end (not the end with the longer stem) and squeeze the mashed banana into the baby's mouth like you're icing a cake. Voila - no spoon necessary, and almost no mess.

I don't advocate doing this at every meal, of course - the kid's eventually gotta learn to eat like a civilized member of society. But every now and then, when keeping a jar of baby food and all its necessary accessories is just too much, a simple banana does the trick.

Squeezable banana snack. It's like a banana Gogurt. WOW.

Related: Cut banana as portable baby food (this one requires a spoon but comes with its own "bowl")

Your comments

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That sounds like a handy idea. Also, I'm thinking that, by the time it's been toted around in the diaper bag all day, the banana is likely to already be pre-squished by the time baby's ready to eat it!

Or you could just... give your baby a banana. Baby-led weaning FTW!

Pre-squished banana! Is that sort of like a pre-owned car?

What a great tip! Thanks for sharing. We have two little boys and travel all the time so this will come in handy.

We did the same thing with baby food...dry cereal in a ziplock-style bag. Add water then DaHubby clipped the corner a la cake-decoration style and VOILA - instant baby food squeeze-style!

I'm laughing at the image of icing a baby face. They can do the main face "by hand" and you can follow up with the banana tip to get the ears other parts they might have missed.

I noticed that banana circles split themselves into thirds and break off pretty easily into tiny bite sized bits that I could feed my sons.

This is sooooo disgusting. Use a spoon! Put a spoon in the diaper bag too.

What are you teaching the child? Is this preparation for a life spent sucking food out of tubes? Go-gurt, peanut butter in a tube, energy "gel" from the sporting goods store. Why chew?

If you can remember to put a banana in the diaper bag, you can remember to put in real food and utensils.

ditto Uly.
Why can't a baby just have the banana? It's not that easy to choke on. My daughter was TERRIBLE about choking and she never had problems with bananas...

@Uly, @Sloan - Oh, we do let our baby eat a banana. All the time, in fact. This just comes in handy when we're in a place where it's inconvenient to have sticky hands and a messy face (airplane, a place with no chair for him, etc.)

@Elaine - Sorry to disgust you; that certainly wasn't my intent. We just do it every now and then - and the far majority of the time, he eats with his fingers or is spoon-fed. This is just during those emergency times. We truly do find ourselves without a bib or spoon sometimes.

I like this idea, BUT I would recommend using an ORGANIC BANANA only because the peel of the banana can have dangerous pesticides and who knows what else and if you're feeding the child straight from the banana you certainly don't want to transfer that to you child.

Organic banana is best!

Tsh: Thanks for your very tactful response.

Elaine: I can't tell you how many times I've forgotten utensils, or some other "crucial" bit of baby gear. This site is called "Parent Hacks" because these tips are often of the "come in handy once in a while" variety. I don't think Tsh was suggesting that we feed our children that way at every meal. And I don't think that slurping up a few mushed bananas will condemn a child to a life of sucking food out of a tube.

This also works very well with certain types of Mango. I dont know anything about kids; but, its a darn easy way for us adults to keep clean!

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