Welcome to the Fortified Family! I’m Katie Ferraro, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and mom of 7 and I specialize in baby-led weaning. I’m passionate about feeding strong families and making food fun.

Reading Right Now: The Baby-Led Feeding Cookbook

Reading Right Now: The Baby-Led Feeding Cookbook

Aileen Cox Blundell is my big-time mom crush right now. She's the author of the absolutely gorgeous new book The Baby-Led Feeding Cookbook: A new healthy way of eating for your baby that the whole family will love.

Through the miracle of the modern internet (...and the best part of it: Instagram :) I had the good fortune to meet and become friends with Aileen. She is from Ireland, a mom to 3, and a blogger who shares healthy recipes for babies and toddlers. You can check out Aileen's Facebook page here, her beautiful blog here and get the book here.

Just like many of us, when Aileen's first child was born, she was anxious and worried about whether her daughter was getting enough food as well as the nutrition she needed to grow healthy and strong.

Aileen's pediatrician gave her a great piece of advice when it came to handling stress about starting solids, "Trust your instincts as a mother" she was told...and Aileen used that inspiration to fully embrace a baby-led approach to feeding each of her 3 children (...sweet son Oscar and his mama pictured below!)

Through her experience with baby-led feeding, Aileen was blown away by how capable her kids were at consuming almost all of the food they were offered. She came to realize that nothing was off the menu!

In her book The Baby-Led Feeding Cookbook, Aileen shares over 150 salt free and refined sugar free recipes. She was gracious enough to send me a copy of her book, and I've been working my way through each and every recipe for our family and 5 kids!

The Baby-Led Feeding Cookbook is an absolute must-have for any parent seeking to raise a self-feeding baby! In it, Aileen offers practical tips for getting started with baby-led feeding, info about how to minimize salt and sugar in your cooking (but still make food that tastes good), and let me tell you that while all of the recipes I have tried are insanely delicious, the food photography in this book alone will make your mouth water!

One of our favorite recipes so far has been Aileen's Sausage Patties with Apple and Pork. These are a healthier spin on the traditional high-salt, high saturated fat sausage foods. Aileen recommends shaping them into small patties so they are safe for little mouths and the perfect size for small hands.


Sausage Patties with Apple and Pork

Yield: 24 patties


  • 320 g lean pork mince
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, picked and finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 egg
  • 4 tablespoons breadcrumbs
  • 50 g grated apple
  • Canola oil, for frying



  1. Add all of the ingredients except the oil to a bowl and mix well.
  2. Using your hands, shape tablespoons of the mixture into small patties and flatten down slightly.
  3. Heat some canola oil in a pan over medium heat and gently fry the patties on each side until golden. You can also grill them until golden and cooked through.

Here are a few pics of our squad preparing and enjoying Aileen's Sausage Patties with Apple and Pork!


Aileen on the Live Show

Now that I'm at about the midway point making the recipes in The Baby-Led Feeding Cookbook, I realized I needed a little more Aileen in my life! I'm always struggling with how to stay on top of meal prep for my family and am constantly looking for new recipes that our whole family will enjoy.

I'm so excited that Aileen recently joined me as a guest on my weekly Facebook Liveshow The Fortified Family Food Show. She talked us through the key steps for food prep when doing baby-led feeding or baby-led weaning. And, Aileen was gracious enough to go through some of our questions about what foods babies can (and should!) be eating...as well as what's wise to steer clear of in the beginning. Click here to check out Aileen rockin' the show or the video below.

Transitioning Your Self-Feeding Baby to Utensils

Transitioning Your Self-Feeding Baby to Utensils

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