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Making baby meals

Here are some ideas to help you make the most of all the tins and packets lurking in your cupboards…

Here are some easy and cost-efficient recipes you can make for yourself using what’s in your stock cupboards and fridge or freezer. They're planet friendly too, as they will help avoid food waste. 

Tinned fishcakes

Tinned fish like mackerel, tuna or salmon is super tasty and great for making fishcakes.

  • Mash the fish with potatoes and any veg that’s past it’s best. Root vegetables last longer than others so hopefully you have some of these in but if not, tinned are fine.

You can make a great fish pie this way too.

Lentil dahl

  • Sauté an onion then add half a teaspoon of coriander, cinnamon and turmeric, cooking for five minutes.
  • Add water, a sweet potato chopped up (see above re root veg) and lentils.


  • Use low salt stock cubes to cook your rice and add a little turmeric to it as well.
  • When it’s cooked, combine with tinned fish and frozen peas and you’re done.

Tuna and sweetcorn pasta bake

  • Fry off some garlic and combine with chopped tomatoes and a little oregano.
  • Cook your pasta then combine that with the tomato sauce, tinned tuna and sweetcorn.
  • Grate some cheese over the top, add any seeds (e.g. pumpkin, sunflower or pine nuts) and cook in the oven for 20 minutes.

Chickpea Thai curry

  • If you have coconut milk and a jar of Thai green curry paste, this is a good way to turn it into a meal without fresh prawns or meat. It’s a great option for vegetarians too.
  • Check out the recipe on the side of the Thai paste jar and stick to it as closely as you can with what you’ve got.
  • If you’ve got any tinned vegetables, throw them in too.

Chickpea tagine

  • Fry some garlic and add passata then add:
    • chickpeas
    • dried apricots (chopped up small)
    • half a teaspoon of cumin
    • half a teaspoon of cinnamon
    • chopped tomatoes

…and serve with couscous. Voila.


  • Make a classic cheese sauce with plain flour, milk and cheese and stir it into cooked macaroni.
  • Bake in the oven with more cheese on top.
  • Add a few sunflower seeds on top for crunch and protein.

Pasta and tomato sauce

  • Everyone’s favourite. Whizz up garlic and chopped tomatoes with a little oregano or basil and a splash of balsamic vinegar.
  • Stir into pasta.
  • If you have some tinned vegetables, you could even blitz them into your sauce too so toddlers don’t notice they’re hiding in there.

Vegetable pancakes

  • Make normal pancakes with egg, plain flour and milk.
  • And add in any vegetables you have tinned in the cupboard. Tasty and easy for babies to hold so a good win if you’re doing baby-led weaning too.

Happy cooking, everybody.

Further information

Our support line offers practical and emotional support with feeding your baby and general enquiries for parents, members and volunteers: 0300 330 0700.

Interactive, engaging and social, our antenatal course is a great way for you to meet other local parents, and get essential unbiased information and knowledge about pregnancy, birth and early days with your baby.

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