One Pot Chili Con Carne Served With Baked Sweet Potatoes

One pot chili con carne served with baked sweet potatoes and avocado meals in ceramic and silicone suction plate - Starting Solids Australia recipe.

Starting solids is an exciting milestone for your bub, but also comes with new challenges and a lot of learning!

Will you do puree or BLW….or maybe both? What foods should you try to include and what will they like? There is also more time spent on food prep and a lot more mess!

It can be a lot to think about and enough to make anyone feel a little overwhelmed at the start. So, take a deep breath and know the solids journey is just that…a journey! You can go slow and work it out as you go, there isn’t a right and wrong way to do it. You have got this! Being part of the Starting Solids Australia family means you have everything you need on hand to make this easy and even fun.

One of the things you can do to make your life easier is to embrace the one pot wonder! Yes, it is that simple. Making one meal for the family, that you can easily modify for your bub, is one of the easiest ways to approach solids. Bonus points if it is something you can slow cook (nothing better than throwing everything into one pot during a nap and walking away for the day!). Cooking one meal for the whole family has a lot of benefits on top of saving you time. It makes it easier to sit down as a family and eat together, model eating behaviour and reduces food waste.

So here is a favourite one pot dish that is in high rotation in our kitchen at the moment (and how to tweak it to suit your little eaters!).

Rainbow Veg Chilli Con Carne w/ Roasted Sweet Potatoes


  • 500g minced beef
  • 1 carrot
  • 1-2 capsicums
  • 1 cup mushrooms
  • 1 onion
  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 can of corn kernels or 1 cup frozen kernels
  • 1 bag of frozen spinach
  • 1 can of tomatoes
  • 1 small can tomato paste
  • 1 can of kidney bean (or other legumes like lentils or cannellini bean which are nice and soft for little gums)
  • 1-2 tbsp paprika (smoky and Hungarian if you have both), 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp coriander, cracked pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic or 1-2 cloves if fresh
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1.5 cups of water
  • Sweet potatoes (enough for 1 per family member depending on their size)


  • Preheat the oven to 160 degrees.
  • Heat a pan that is also oven friendly on the stove top.
  • Add in olive oil, garlic, onion and carrot.
  • Once softening add in the spices and cook until fragrant. Then add in the beef, other vegetables, tomato paste, canned tomatoes, water and beans.
  • Transfer to the oven and cook for 2-3 hours or until vegetables are nice and soft.
  • Wrap the sweet potatoes in foil and pop them into the oven alongside the pot. They should be ready in about an hour. Cooking them this way makes the skin really soft- so it’s a great way to get fibre in when little gums often struggle with the tough skins of fruit and veg when they start solids.


Hack time- the quicker way if you need to make a meal in a hurry!

  • If you have an older bub that is ready to tackle a firmer texture when it comes to vegetables, you could skip the oven and just cook this dish on the stove top until you’re happy the veg are soft enough.
  • You can also skip putting the sweet potato in the oven and instead wrap them in damp paper towel and microwave them for about 10 mins.

How to modify ingredients based on age and development

For vegetable prep cut to size based on your bub’s ability. If they are still new to solids and working towards more textured foods, you can grate veg or even pop it in the food processor before cooking. Otherwise go low and slow with cooking time to make sure it is nice and soft and opt for bigger sized pieces.

For corn, this is optional based on the age of your bub as kernels on their own are better for 10+ months due to size and choking hazard. You could add them at the end after you have portioned out a plate for bub.

For cannellini or kidney beans, you can gently flatten beans before serving to your little one if they are still new to solids (6-9 months). Beyond that, if soft, you can serve whole.

We love frozen spinach and at $1 per box it is a cheap and an easy way to offer greens, but some brands include the stalk and can be a little tough for little mouths. You can always leave it out if just getting started on solids but if you’re slow cooking they should soften up nicely.

You can also mash some of the roasted sweet potato into the meat, so it sticks more easily to a preloaded spoon for bub to self-feed.

That is it!

This dish is great served with some guacamole and avocado is a great source of healthy fats for babies too! Just add salt to your own meal after you serve it up to keep that salt intake low for your little one.


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