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Rainbow Couscous Salad Recipe


8 toddler portions or 4 adult portions

Paula says: “I love couscous as it is so versatile and easy to prepare. It also adds a grainy texture to foods to help babies progress with learning about different textures. The vegetables in this salad have been roasted, so they are super soft and easy to offer to the youngest members of your family.”


For the dressing


1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Slice the peppers into long strips and chop the red onion into chunks. Spread them out in a large roasting tin and drizzle over the olive oil, then roast for 30 minutes until soft and beginning to blister.

2. After 15–20 minutes, add the asparagus to the tin and roast for the last 10–15 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, put the couscous in a heatproof bowl and cover with boiling water, then leave it to stand for 10 minutes to soften and absorb all the liquid. Fluff with a fork once done.

4. Mix the chickpeas with the couscous in a large serving dish and top with the roasted vegetables.

5. Measure the ingredients for the dressing into a jug and whisk to combine, then pour over the couscous salad to serve.

Paula adds: “For babies, you can offer the couscous from a spoon and serve the roasted vegetables separately as a finger food. Serve with hummus instead of whole chickpeas. For toddlers, you can offer the salad deconstructed with the roasted vegetables as finger food. Ensure that the chickpeas are squashed or flattened as whole chickpeas are a choking hazard. Feta is a very salty cheese, so I wouldn’t recommend offering it to babies under 12 months of age. Only offer small amounts of feta to toddlers.”

Extracted from Plant Powered Little People: A Practical Guide to Plant-Based Nutrition for Under-Fives by Paula Hallam RD (£20, Meze Publishing)

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