My son has been a light eater ever since he was a 4-pound premie in the NICU and we were trying to force bottles of milk down his little throat. It’s not so much that he’s picky, he just doesn’t seem to eat much. And, just like those weeks in the NICU, we are still trying to get him to gain a little weight and, hopefully, eventually, grown out of those 12 month clothes he’s been wearing for the past year! One of the only foods that he truly seems to love is yogurt. He requests yogurt for every meal, every day and, in our quest for weight gain, I pretty much let him eat it to his heart’s content.
Our pediatrician recommended that we feed him full-fat yogurt and I had never realized how hard that is to find! It seems that everyone wants a low-fat or 0% fat yogurt these days and the only full-fat I can find is incredibly expensive little packages of baby yogurt or big containers of plain yogurt. I could make my own yogurt, but I’m not quite sure about taking that step just yet. Instead, I decided to buy a large container of whole-milk yogurt and make my own fruit puree to stir in.
Most of the recipes I found online used blueberries or strawberries. However, our family loves blackberries and we usually have a bag of them in the freezer, so I decided to make a blackberry version. Blackberries require a little more sweetener than some other berries since they can be quite tart and I chose to strain the puree after cooking it because my son doesn’t like all the little seeds in his yogurt. However, you could completely skip the straining step if you don’t mind having some seeds in there, and it would also provide a little more fiber. You could try using another type of berries in this recipe, but keep in mind that you may need to adjust the amount of honey and/or liquid depending on the type of berry used. (Blueberries are quite sweet but less juicy than blackberries, for example.) My son loved this yogurt and I liked that it has no artificial flavors or colors and I can control the amount of sugar it contains. Definitely a winner!
- 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blackberries
- 3 Tablespoons honey, divided
- 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 cups plain Greek yogurt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1. Place the berries and 2 Tablespoons of honey in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium low-heat.
- 2. Stir the cornstarch into 1 Tablespoon water until a thin paste forms. Stir the cornstarch paste into the simmering berries on the stove and cook until slightly thickened, stirring frequently; this will take a few minutes. Mash up the blackberries with the back of wooden spoon as they cook so that the mixture is the texture of a thick puree. If desired, press the blackberry puree through a fine mesh sieve to create a perfectly smooth puree.
- 3. Stir the remaining 1 Tablespoon of honey and the vanilla extract into the greek yogurt until well mixed. Spoon 2 Tablespoons of the blackberry puree into the bottom of a jar and top with 1/2 cup greek yogurt. Repeat with remaining blackberry and yogurt to fill 4 jars. Will keep in fridge up to 1 week.