How to serve mango for baby led weaning

By Penelope Henderson, MSc, RNutr/ 03/21/2024
a baby sitting in a high chair enjoying baby led weaning mango

Mangoes are not only delicious and refreshing, but they also offer a wide range of health benefits for babies. When it comes to introducing mango to your little one during baby-led weaning, there are simple ways to prepare this tasty fruit at different stages of their development. From mango spears at 6 months to diced pieces for more advanced eaters, incorporating mango into your child’s diet can be easy and enjoyable.

I will share with you the health benefits of mangoes, how to easily prepare mango for baby led weaning at different stages with some top tips. 

Is mango good for babies?

Mangoes are really juicy and refreshing, but they also pack a powerful punch when it comes to health benefits. This tropical fruit is not just tasty, but has over 20 vitamins and minerals that are essential for overall health. 

Mangoes are very nutritious for babies and all ages. There are a few ways that they can support babies’ growth and development. 

a whole mango, half a mango and half in a hedgehog sitting on a wooden board

Mango for babies benefits

  • Support immune health

mangoes are a rich source of vitamin C, which can help support their immune system. 

The deep yellow-orange colour of mangoes is the beta carotene which converts to vitamin A, important for maintaining healthy vision and skin.

  • Support brain development

Mangoes are rich in folate which is important for brain development. One cup of mango contains over 70 ug of folate. Whereas, the reference nutrient intake for babies between 0- 6 months is around 50ug of folate. 

  • Digestive health

Let’s not forget about the fibre content of mangoes. Fibre is important for digestive health and can help prevent constipation, promoting regular bowel movements.

When can babies eat mango?

Mangoes that are ripe and soft, but not overly soft can be typically eaten from 6 months or when they are ready to start eating solids. If you are unsure if they are developmentally ready to start solids then you might like to check out: How to start weaning

Can I give mango to my 4 month old baby?

If your baby is ready to start eating solids then this should be fine but most babies are not ready to start weaning until 6 months. 

How to cut mango

Firstly ensure you have a ripe mango that smells fragrant and feels soft when squeezed. 

images of four parts of th mango cut up including the mango pit, top of stalk, 1 scooped mango cheek and 1 cheek scored into small cubes

Step 1 – Firstly wash and dry the mango then cut the top off where the stalk is so you have a flat base to cut the mango up. Take a slice off each side of the pit (In the centre) so you end up with 3 pieces (two cheeks and the pit).

Step 2 – You can then scoop out the flesh from the cheeks with a tablespoon. This is ready to puree or cut into spears or strips. 

Step 3 – For small cubes, score the flesh across vertically and horizontally right up to the skin, but don’t cut through the skin. Then turn the mango inside out so it looks like a hedgehog and the pieces will be easy to break off with your hands or a knife.

How to serve mango to baby

Mangoes make a great finger food or puree for babies and kids. They are deliciously sweet and this makes it more easily accepted than a vegetable. 

Served in the right way that is age appropriate they are perfect for a snack or as a pudding. 

how to serve mango for baby led weaning in different ways including spears, spears coated, small cubes and a hedgehog

How to give mango to a 6 month baby (6 – 9 months)

Mango for a 6 month baby can be given in various ways depending on your preference and whether you are baby led weaning or spoon feeding. 

Mango spear – with partial skin

Cut the mango into strips or spears the length of your finger so they are easy for your baby to hold. Those babies with no teeth can have some skin left on the bottom half of the spear to make it easier to grip. However you may prefer to coat the mango if you are worried about the skin.

Mango spear coated

Mango can be quite slippery for little hands to grasp so add some coatings to make it less slippery. Simply roll the spears in a finely ground coating as you don’t want them to be a choking hazard. Here are some suggestions:

  • Ground hemp, flax or chia seeds
  • Finely ground wheat germ
  • Finely blended oats
  • Coconut
  • Finely ground nuts such as almonds, walnuts, cashews, peanuts. If you haven’t introduced allergens yet then this can be a good way to introduce them. Link to guide

Mango pit for teething

The mango pit in the large flat stone in the middle of the mango, also known as a mango spit. If you keep hold of this with some flesh around it and place it in the fridge for a few hours it works well for teething babies to chew on. This will help with developing their oral motor skills too!

Mango puree

If the mango is very soft you can mash it to a puree and add to other foods like yoghurt, cereals etc. 

9 + months

Bite sized pieces

Once your baby develops the pincer grip then they will be able to pick up smaller pieces with their thumb and finger. Cut into small cubes for them to feed themself with or they could try a fork to pick them up with. 

18 months +

At 18 months they should be able to manage bite sized pieces well with their fingers and starting to pick up pieces with utensils and developing their independence to feed themselves more confidently. 

Hedgehog 

A hedgehog is a fun way to serve mango to toddlers and older kids. Having it served in this fun way can make it more attractive to eat too. 

FAQ

Does mango make you poop?

Mango can help constipation and keep your baby regular so if your baby suffers with constipation give mangoes a try.

Is mango a choking hazard?

As long as mango is served in the right way for their age it shouldn’t be a choking hazard. For young babies 6 months old, they start with really soft mango so they can easily mash it with their gums. As they get older a slightly firmer slice of mango will be easier to hold and chew on. 

Is mango a common allergen?

Mango is not a common allergen. In fact it’s pretty rare.

Is dried mango ok?

Avoid giving dried mango to babies as it could be a choking hazard. Over 2 years is fine. 

How to store cut mango

Once it has been cut you can place it into an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 4 days. It will also freeze really well. Spread the pieces out onto a tray and freeze. Once frozen you can place it into a bag. It will keep in the freezer for up to 3 months. 

Baby led weaning mango ideas

Toast or sandwich toppings- 

  • pureed mango on toast with cream cheese
  • Slices of mango with a nut butter
  • Sliced mango with slices of strawberry
  • Cottage cheese and mango slices
  • Sliced chicken with mango slices

Fruit kebabs

  • Mango chunks with strawberry, orange and kiwi pieces (suitable from 9 mths)

Smoothies

a glass of kiwi mango smoothie with a green straw and a whole kiwi next to it

Mango ice lollies

Yoghurt with mango and cereal

Have you tried any of these recipes? I would love to hear your thoughts. Please leave a comment below.

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MEET THE AUTHOR
Author Penelope Henderson

Hi I’m Penelope Henderson RNutr Registered Nutritionist specialising in children’s nutrition and responsive feeding therapy.

I am a mum of 2, with over 15 years of experience in nutrition. I support parents to feel confident in how and what to feed their child. I hope you find my recipes and nutrition posts useful, so you can enjoy stress free cooking and mealtimes.

More about me

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