More Plant-Based Food Options are Available for Babies

Pass the pureed hummus!

Cute baby eating cooked vegetables.

(Onjira Leibe /

Babies are cute. Who can resist their gummy smiles and their happy gurgles? People have a natural tendency to want to cuddle, care for, and nurture infants. 

And that’s a good thing, because when they are born their brains and bodies are still developing and they need that love and attention.

Peekaboo, reading books, and sharing toys with babies grow their young minds and help them make connections that are key to their social and communication abilities throughout life. 

Just as crucial to early brain and body development is good nutrition. From the time an infant gums his or her first spoonful of mashed peas, what the baby eats can determine lifelong health. 

Many parents are taking this into account when choosing what baby food to give their little ones. According to the Gerber Newsroom, research shows that 81% of households with children use plant-based proteins and 40% want to feed their children more plant-based foods. 

Gerber’s new Plant-tastic baby food line, chock full of plant protein, aims to help these families find options that are both nutritious and delicious for their little ones.

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Plant-based diets are healthful

VegNews explains the logic behind the growing interest in plant proteins. Eating a plant-based diet may help in staving off certain cancers, diabetes, and heart disease. 

In fact, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics released a publication endorsing plant-based lifestyles in 2016.

In the publication, the Academy states that “appropriately planned vegetarian, including vegan, diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits for the prevention and treatment of certain diseases.”

VegNews also shares research indicating that plant based diets may be able to help children’s mental health, as young children are inclined to see farm animals as companions and friends.

A rainbow salad showcasing plant-based food.

(Wild As Light /

Gerber’s new line

Gerber’s newsroom explains that its new line of baby food can fill the niche for families who want healthful, but also plant-based, vegan, or vegetarian options for their babies and toddlers. 

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Gerber Pediatric Consultant, Dr. Whitney Casere explains, “Many parents of my patients incorporate plant-based options in their own diet and are looking to feed their baby in line with their own food values. For parents looking to incorporate plant-based choices, I advise ‘feeding baby the rainbow’ from a variety of foods (whole grains, fruits, veggies, meats, fish, legumes, etc.). Gerber Plant-tastic foods are made with beans, whole grains and veggies – which are packed with nutrients such as protein and fiber to support baby’s healthy development.”

In order to incorporate the necessary amounts of protein into their Plant-tastic line, chickpeas, black beans, lentils and other beans are included alongside whole grain millet, quinoa, oats, spinach and other nutritionally dense foods. 

Good for babies, and good for the planet

Gerber’s Plant-astic line isn’t just healthful and tasty, it’s environmentally friendly as well. According to CEO, Tarum Malkani, “We are proud the full range of Plant-tastic products is certified carbon neutral furthering our commitment to climate forward nutrition.”

Gerber’s been committed to providing carbon neutral baby food options ever since 2021. Their aim is to have all their offerings be certified as carbon neutral by the Carbon Trust by 2035. 

Actually it isn’t just Gerber who is exploring environmentally friendly and plant-based options. Parent company, Nestlé, announced just last year that they hope to “replace every animal protein out there.” 

True to this goal, Nestlé’s acquired and invested in a number of vegetarian brands. That means that it won’t only be babies who can derive the nutritional and environmental benefits of a plant-based lifestyle. 

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After all, as VegNews reports, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics stated, “These [plant-based] diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, adolescence, older adulthood, and for athletes.” 

There are opportunities to eat more wholesome and healthy foods at any age. Why not stock up on hummus and edamame?