Falling Asleep 24/11/17

Foods to Help Baby Sleep By Annabel Karmel

By leading children’s food expert Annabel Karmel

Dreaming of more than a few hours of uninterrupted shut eye? Did you know that your baby’s diet could have something to do with their night time wake-up calls?

Different foods affect the body in different ways. What, when and how much your baby or toddler eats has an effect on how well they sleep.

If they have a big meal just before going to bed, their metabolic rate and body temperature will increase instead of decreasing which will make it harder for them to get to sleep. I would suggest that you aim to give them their evening meal 1 ½ – 2 hours prior to bedtime.

If your baby is still taking bottles, round off dinner with a small warm bottle of milk right before bed. This can have a soothing effect and will help them (and you) catch a few extra winks!

Ultimately, a good night’s sleep for baby begins with a good, balanced diet. So for all of those sleep deprived parents out there, here are a few of my favourite recipes to help fuel that all-important shut-eye.

SWEET POTATO, PEAR AND BROCCOLI

Slow-burning carbs such as sweet potato are good to serve before bed as the nutrients are absorbed at a slower rate, avoiding a spike in sugar levels.

Sweet Potato Pear and Broccoli Annabel Karmel Recipe

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 35 minutes
Makes: 4 portions

Ingredients

15g butter

150g leek, chopped

250g sweet potato, diced

150g butternut squash, diced

200g pear, peeled and diced

500g water

80g broccoli, chopped

100g milk

50g parmesan, grated

Method

1.      Melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the leek, sweet potato, squash and pear. Gently sauté over the heat for 4 – 5 minutes. Add the water.

2.      Cover with a lid, then bring up to the boil and let it simmer for about 20 minutes until tender.

3.      Add the broccoli, cover and simmer for another 10 minutes until soft.

4.      Add the milk, then blend until smooth using a hand blender. Stir in the cheese.

LOVELY LENTILS PUREE

These really are lovely lentils! Pulses are a great source of B vitamins, which are key in the production of serotonin and magnesium, both of which help relax muscles and calm the body.

Lentil, Tomato and Cheese baby food. Annabel Karmel

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 35 minutes
Makes: 5 portions

Ingredients

1 tbsp vegetable oil

50g chopped onion or leek

100g carrots, peeled and chopped

15g celery, chopped

50g split red lentils

250g sweet potato, peeled and chopped

200ml passata

50g grated mature Cheddar cheese

Method

1.      Heat the vegetable oil and sauté the onion, carrots and celery for 5 minutes.

2.      Rinse the lentils and add to the pan.

3.      Add the sweet potato and sauté for 1 minute.

4.      Pour in the passata and 1 tablespoon of water.

5.      Cover and cook for about 30 minutes.

6.      Remove from the heat and stir in the cheese until melted. Puree in a blender.

MINI TURKEY BURGERS

This tasty homemade burger recipe contains turkey, which has high levels of tryptophan, an amino acid that helps the body make sleep-inducing serotonin.

Mini Turkey Burgers annabel Karmel

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Makes: 15 mini burgers

Ingredients

½ onion, peeled and chopped

½ desert apple, peeled and grated

1tbp chopped fresh thyme

250g minced turkey

75g white breadcrumbs

40g Cheddar cheese, grated

2tbsp tomato ketchup

A few drops of Worcestershire sauce

Olive oil, for drizzling

Method

1.      Pre heat the oven to 200C/400F/ Gas 6.

2.      Put the onion, apple and thyme into a food processor and whiz until everything is finely chopped. Add the remaining ingredients and whiz again until they are all combined.

3.      With damp hands, shape the mixture into 15 mini burgers. Place the burgers on a baking sheet lined with non-stick paper and drizzle over a little oil.

4.      Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes, then turn over and cook for another 8-10 minutes until golden and cooked through.

Remember – there is no magic food that will get your baby to sleep all night long. Making sure your baby gets plenty of satisfying and nutritious food to eat is perhaps the single most important thing you can do to get your baby to sleep through the night.

Good luck!

Annabel

For lots more recipe inspiration visit www.annabelkarmel.com

Top Stories

  • Christmas tree made out of dried oranges,cinnamon sticks and anise star

    Top 5 Christmas activities to do before bedtime on Christmas Eve!

  • The Gro Company Groegg_2

    What is the safest room temperature for babies?

  • join our sleep club

    Sign up to join our expert parent panel, be the first to hear about new products and get exclusive offers

    email address...

    Subscribe to our Newsletter

    We'll keep in touch with all the very latest information from The Gro Company including:

    • Fabulous competitions - to win gorgeous goodies
    • Regular offers and special promotions on our award-winning range
    • Exclusive previews of exciting new products

    Join us on Facebook and Twitter too, for all the latest chat, news and competitions.

    Our FREE Grobag prize draw is drawn monthly and we will be in touch if you are the lucky winner!*

    *Please be aware we are unable to ship prizes outside of the EU.

  • Baby in The Gro Company animal Grobag

    What sleep essentials do I need for my baby?

  • Baby sleeping in the dark

    Don’t be afraid of the dark

Shop now

The Gro Company’s entire range is available to buy online at ‘The Gro Store’. Buy any 2 items save 10% and receive FREE delivery on orders over £10.

Gro Store
Gro - Ipad

Find A Local Stockist