Cookbook for Toddler

Updated on October 07, 2008
S.V. asks from Anaheim, CA
19 answers

Hi ladies!

I have a wonderful 14 month old that is a picky eater-does anyone know of a good cookbook that I can buy with yummy recepies? I also found out that he is allergic to peanuts and eggs so if there are any books that have allergy recommendations that would be great as well.

Can anyone give me advice on the peanut allergies? He had a blood test done last week that said he was HIGHLY allergic to peanuts-has anyone heard that you can give the baby the allergy while pregnant if you ate peanutbutter? One doctor said yes, while 2 others said no. I feel so guilty as it is. We have an appt. with an allergist on Monday to see what to do. The blood also said he is allergic to eggs and wheat. We have no allergies in the family-I have hay-fever only. Any advice would be appreciated!

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So What Happened?

Thanks to everyone for your responses and kind words. We went to the allergist on Monday and she was not much help. We have Kaiser(unfortunately) and she basically said its not my fault, there is not a whole lot of research on the subject, but that there is a slight possibility from the foods that I ate. The egg and peanut results from his test were high, the rest were very low. She basically said we need to find out what is making his excema flare up and avoid that food, as well as eggs and peanuts. I was not given an epi-pen, and was not told how severe his peanut allergy is, except that I should avoid them for now and we couldnt do any further testing because of his age. I asked to be referred to a nutritionist becuase of his eating habits, and am going to get some cook books based on everyones suggestions. Thanks so much for your help!

Featured Answers



answers from Los Angeles on

This is a great cookbook, The Petit Appetit Cookbook By Lisa Barnes. Great easy recipes and she lists by the side of each recipe "egg free" or "wheat free" ect... Enjoy



answers from Los Angeles on

"They" say that a pregnant mama should not eat things that are highly allergenic such as shellfish, peanut-anything, strawberries, etc. Well I ate probably more than my fair share of (organic) peanut butter and strawberries and my daughter has ZERO allergies. I don't really have much knowledge of food allergies, so take that for what it's worth :)

As far as great cook books, we like "The Petit Appetit" - bought it from

More Answers



answers from San Diego on

I love, love, love

good luck



answers from Los Angeles on

Hi S. - our little one tested positive for the same allergies- and according to one study I read-yes in the last trimester and through breastmilk -babies can become sensitizied to peanuts. :( But how would we know - its not common knowledge I had to hunt for this information. I don't get the impression that many pediatricians follow or share the recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics with their patients. (see below)

After taking our family history and receiving the positive blood test for allergies-I was never told to avoid eggs and nuts when in my last trimester or while breastfeeding.

One reason -may be because - there are false positives- and false negatives- so perhaps doctors don't give these tests much weight???

-God bless you and your little one!!

Recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics
regarding formula, breast milk and allergens:

a) Mothers should eliminate peanuts and tree nuts (eg, almonds, walnuts, etc) and should consider eliminating eggs, cow's milk, fish, and perhaps other foods from their diets while nursing infant / toddler at risk (a child who has developed a food allergy symptom or has a family member with a history of an allergy [including but not limited to food allergies, dermatitis, eczema, hay fever or asthma]).

b) Solid foods should not be introduced into the diet of high-risk infants (an infant who has developed a food allergy symptom or has a family member with a history of any type of allergy) until 6 months of age, should consider waiting until
• 1 year to offer dairy products
• 2 years to introduce eggs
• 3 years to expose to peanuts, nuts, and fish

c) Breastfeeding mothers should continue breastfeeding for the first year of life or longer. During this time, for children at risk (a child who has developed a food allergy symptom or has a family member with a history of allergies), hypoallergenic formulas or possibly a partial hydrolysate formula can be used to supplement breastfeeding.

d) Breastfeeding mothers on a restricted diet should consider the use of supplemental minerals (calcium) and vitamins.

Nuts & Other Food Allergies

Food allergies occur most often in young children and in individuals with a personal or family history of other atopic diseases (such as dermatitis, hay fever, or asthma) The majority of children outgrow food allergies Except for tree nuts and peanuts., and foods can be reintroduced when they are older.

Peanuts and tree nuts are responsible for the majority of severe food-related allergic reactions, it tends to present early in life, it does not usually resolve, and in highly sensitized people, trace amounts (like peanut dust) can induce allergic reactions including anaphylactic reactions & shock. Immediate emergency treatment is required.

The first allergic reaction to peanuts develops in most children between 14 and 24 months of age, and the first reaction most commonly occurs at home. About 20% to 30% of food-induced anaphylactic events are characterized by a biphasic response (2 separate allergic symptoms- one recurs 1 to 8 hours after the initial symptoms have resolved) So if your little one has an severe reaction you may want to take him/her to the emergency room and ask for 4-8 hour observation and ask your pediatrician about whether or not you should have an additional epi pen.

In an attempt to determine the severity of subsequent accidental peanut ingestion, Vander Leek and Bock conducted a study where the parents of 83 children with peanut allergy were contacted annually and asked about accidental exposure to peanuts and the details of the ensuing reaction. Sixty children (72%) experienced allergic reactions during the study. The majority experienced potentially life-threatening reactions after accidental exposure, regardless of the nature of their initial reaction.

In 1998, Hourrihane and colleagues described the resolution of peanut allergy in 18% of people who had participated in peanut challenges. 15 children in whom peanut allergy had resolved were compared with 15 children in whom peanut allergy persisted. There were no differences between the groups with respect to age at the time of initial reaction, severity of initial reaction or peanut-specific IgE levels. However, those whose allergies had resolved had smaller wheals on skin prick test at the time of reassessment and had fewer allergies to other foods.

Detection of Peanut Allergens in Breast Milk of Lactating Women
JAMA - Journal of the American Medical Association
Most individuals who react to peanuts do so on their first known exposure. The study concluded that peanut protein is secreted into breast milk after eating peanuts. Exposure to peanut protein during breast feeding can resulting in sensitization. (putting a child at risk to an allergic reaction to peanuts the first time he/she eats them or are exposed to peanut particles).



answers from Los Angeles on

Books I recommend are: "the sneaky chef" and "deceptively delicious". You can find both on They are similar so you just need one or the other. They are about hiding veggies in meals. Also the "cooking for kids bible" which is more about presentation of foods in fun ways.
Good luck



answers from Los Angeles on

There are alot of foods that are already labeled for allergens. Egg substitutes are easy- there are usually found in the refrigerator section near the eggs. (Some are made with soy). Wheat can be subtituted with rice flour, barley, oatmeal, and potato starch. Good luck!



answers from Los Angeles on

I am a vegetarian so Peanut Butter was absolutely a staple for my protein while pregnant. My doctor said it was an old wives tale and has nothing to do with the allergies. Look in to some Vegan cookbooks for some recipes, then introduce the meats you are going to feed with them. ( I am assuming you are) You know that it will be egg free and many have wheat free recipes too. Whole foods has a huge selection to of wheat free and nut free foods....
That is very difficult for you- those foods are in everything...
Best of luck and do not feel guilty!



answers from Las Vegas on

Hi S.,

I've never heard of a mother passing on a peanut allergy by eating peanut butter while pregnant. Sounds like an old wives tell to me. If that were the case, then I wonder how my one dear friend ended up being born with an allergy to grass. The next time I talk to her, I'll have to ask her if her mom had ate grass while she was pregnant with her . . .

Anyway, my first advise to you with regard to modifying your diet to accomodate your child's allergies is to keep your menu as simple and unprocessed as possible. For example, if you cook a roasted chicken, baked potatoes and steamed veggies for dinner, you know what is exactly going into your daughter's meal and it doesn't have to be a big fuss.

That being said . . . Living Without is a wonderful magazine that you can purchase at Whole Foods and it's all about living (and cooking) with food allergies. It also has a website and you can access some of it's recipes on-line.

Here are some other websites that will give you more info about peanut, egg and wheat allergies:

There are a lot of great products on the market that are gluten (wheat protein), egg and peanut free. I've also found that there is a Yahoo group for everything including people who need to follow a specific diet. That can be a great resource of information for you.



answers from San Diego on

S. -

Both of my children are allergic to peanuts. My daughter is actually allergic to all nuts. My son developed allergies at the age of 7 after eating a large quantity of peanuts at one sitting. His allergic response was hives. My daughter was accidentally introduced to nuts at age 2 (a grandparent gave her one) and she went into anaphylactic shock. We now carry an Epipen (ephinephrine shot) with us everywhere. I haven't heard anything about not eating peanut butter while pregnant, but I have been told that you shouldn't introduce nuts to children under 4 years of age, because they are more susceptible to developing allergies. My husband is also allergic to peanuts, so this is most likely where my children got it from. However, I know several people who have children with nut allergies without anyone in the family having them.

I would be very cautious about reading ingredients in the foods you give your son. There are many products that contain nuts, nut traces, or even peanut oil. Many are things that you would never even dream would have these ingredients. When he goes to school or is under someone else's care, I would make sure that they only feed him what you prepare and make sure all others know of his allergies. Schools are usually very good about making the teachers/parents aware that there is a child in the classroom with a nut allergy and discouraging them from bringing in food with nuts in them.

My daughter knows to ask the ingredients before she eats anything, even at restaurants or parties. I have shown her how to read the labels and what products in particular to stay away from, like M&Ms (even plain!) which have peanuts in the shells. The good thing is that most labels will show in bold any ingredients that are allergens, which is very helpful. I find most places very accomodating with special preparations or food handling (like using a different scooper for ice cream or a different knife for cutting). A lot of places even have special areas or precautions to prevent cross-contamination from allergens. Southwest Airlines even offers to completely clean their planes and removing all nut traces if you tell them in advance that you have an allergy and they will not serve nuts during the flight.

Try not to stress out too much. This is a very common allergy. I would just make sure you have Benedryl and an Epipen because rarely, especially if your child is sensitive, they can have a reaction even to the smallest exposure. When he gets older show him how to use the Epipen if he needs it (they have trainers). I hope this helps!

S. B.



answers from Los Angeles on


Don't feel bad... it's not your fault, things like this happen.

My 4 year old suffers from weather asthma and its all b/c I have had a fight with allergies all my life. Neither one of us (husband/wife) have asthma or family history of it. So it's finally tied to my allergy problem.

I wish I had advice for you on the peanut allergy but I don't. My recommendation is follow through with the testing and also ask what are the code names for peanut, eggs, and wheat when it comes to ingredients.

Also, ask if there's any medication you can keep on hand when by accident your child does eat one of those items.

I feel for your baby, as my mother has all types of allergies and it seems like the older she gets the more that gets added to the list.

My worst allergy is the one to cats... My eyes become swollen, and the white part of my eye swells to where I can't see and have to wait hours, hours until after the cat leaves my area or I leave its prowling area so that my eyes can become normal again. Once it took a little over 8 hrs to clear.

Kitties, yes cute n all, but I steer clear and ask if homes have cats b4 we go visit.



answers from San Diego on

No!!!!! you can't pass on an allergy while pregnant by eating the food. That is as insane as my mom telling me I got freckles because she craved strawberries. Shame on the doctor. Has he actually shown symptoms or is this just a test? Say it with me.... NO GUILT

Do you give him an organic daily vitamin. I know the world thinks Flinstones are great but I know from experience that Nutrilite kids daily vitamins kept my kids healthy through day care and school. Give him immune system support you can investigate. Try feeding him with as few preservatives as possible. You said he was picky but you can hide a lot of vegetables in a tomato sauce! There is a kids cookbook about that out there. Good luck, oh and here is a website to ivestigate the vitamins.



answers from Reno on

hi we found out that our son has allergy to peanuts you did not give it to son. My little girl is not allergic so it just happens you will carry epi pen and any one who has your son will to. you will know what foods are good you will call ahead to resturants and when they go to school they will be prepaird for him they are used to it he is not be the only one. And some times you and your husband will take a date night and go to dariy oueen and have a peanut buster sunday and go home to that awesome little boy and know this is just how it is going to be your doc will give you info on foods and look for support groups for mom whos kids have allergies.



answers from Los Angeles on

you can pretty much do any recipe with replacing wheat flours with flours made by rice or potato or others you can find them at wholefoods also there is egg relacers for your baking. I think peanuts are easy to get around you can omit them anytime you just have to be cafeful at places you go eat. It hard but if you stick to making your meals you can get around the wheat thing a lot easier. There is some wheat free cereals at whole foods as well to help in the morning with breakfast. God luck!



answers from San Diego on

Hi S.,
It must be hard to find out your son has food allergies. Probably frightening too as you might have seen him react to peanuts with a severe reaction? My son, who's 15 months is also allergic to eggs and peanuts. We have no food allergies in our family so I never paid attention to whether to eat allergenic foods like peanuts/eggs during my pregnancy. I did know there was conflicting datas and opinions out there. Nothing concrete to how and who's going to develop allergies.

Our allergist prescribed us Epi pen and showed us how to use it and when. You just carry it around wherever your tot goes and teach other care provider in its use.

It just takes me a while going thru aisles in the grocery stores as I diligently read ingredients of products. Fortunately, manufacturers have made it easier to scan for the common allergens. Wheat allergy is tough but there are food products that are wheat/gluten free. Whole Foods and Trader Joes , Henrys will most likely carry items that are wheat, egg, peanut free.
Some things I use:
"Sunbutter" is a subsitute for peanut butter, made out of sunflower seeds. Its safe for peanut allergy sufferers and taste delicious too.
When you see the allergist, he/she will give you more info on how to manage his food allergies. He'll probably have to get his flu shots in the allergist office as he is allergic to eggs. They will closely monitor him and slowly challenge him.

In the san diego area, where we live, there is a support group called san diego food allergy network. They have a website and have been very good resource.
You're welcome to email me if you need somebody to listen. Good luck.



answers from San Diego on

Hi! Fortunately, mine is not too bad of an eater and not allergic to anything. However, he still doesn't eat as well as he should sometimes - he is 4years old after all.
Anyway, I found this book that "sneaks" good food into food your child will eat, it's called appropriately enough, "The Sneaky Chef" by Missy Chase Lapine. It shows you how to incoproate purees into various foods. I have also used some baby foods when I didn't have time to make the purees. For example, my son love cheese quesadilla's, so I use a little sweet potato puree (or baby food version) as a layer then add the cheese on either wheat or regular tortillas.

Hope this helps
S. - SAM of one



answers from Los Angeles on

OMG! Shame on that doctor for telling you that YOU passed on that allergy! Of course you didn't silly! I ate peanut butter up the WAZOO when I was pregnant with all of my babies, and none of them had any allergies, that's like saying that my deafness was caused by eating too many bananas. Goodness me. I can't believe that dr would say that. I don't know of any recipes unfortunately, but I wanted to assure you that YOU did nothing wrong. In fact Peanut butter when pregnant is a protein *even not pregnant* So don't let anyone guilt you into it!!! I don't know if you have to give it up while nursing however, so, I'm definitely the wrong person to ask. SORRY I couldn't be more help, but hang in there, there's TONS of moms that know more than me!!!



answers from Los Angeles on

Don't put stress or guilt on yourself. There's still no proof why kids get allergies. I have friends who didn't eat and single nut while pregnant and their little ones still got nut allergies.
At we make a ton of recipes without nuts and especially geared towards picky eaters! Good luck!



answers from San Diego on

Hi S.,

A friend gave me Jessica Seinfeld's "Deceptively Delicious" cookbook that uses hidden fruit and vegetable purees in its recipes. My 4 year-old eats everything I've made from that cookbook--my husband, too! We especially like the chocolate chip cookies (made with chickpeas), the banana pudding pie (cantaloupe and bananas), gingerbread (broccoli and carrot purees), cupcakes and pancakes (pumpkin puree), and the fish sticks (sweet potato and pineapple purees).

I don't think you should beat yourself up about whether or not you "gave" your baby food allergies. My brother has food allergies; I do not--and we have the same mom and dad. Some people just have them. It doesn't have to be a big deal if you don't make it one--you just have to educate your child about what he can't eat and make sure teachers know too.

My brother is 27 and is allergic to blue cheese, walnuts, and fish. He is so sensitive to fish that even eating something off of a plate that had fish on it will send him into anaphalactic (sp?) shock. My family owns a seafood restaurant--my brother worked there for many years. He just had to be careful not to touch his hands to his face while he was working and to wash his hands often and work clothes promptly. He also carries an Epi-Pen. The only serious reactions he has had were when he was a small child and my parents were discovering what he was allergic to. So--this is not a terrible thing for your child. Don't feel bad! It will be okay.

If your child has a wheat allergy, does that mean he has Celiac Disease? This is the gluten allergy disease. My mother-in-law was recently diagnosed with this--and she is doing well just by eating gluten-free. Trader Joe's has been really helpful with this, as are Henry's and Boney's. It will be okay--you just have to be more conscious about stuff--but she says it has not been bad at all to make the transition, and restaurants are really compliant when she needs a recipe altered. The Old Spaghetti Factory has gluten-free pasta and Outback Steakhouse has gluten-free items I believe also.

Good luck!!
:-) D.

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