This ground turkey stir fry recipe is loaded with flavor. It’s made with sweet peppers, onions, a savory turkey stir fry sauce (just like restaurant versions!) and protein-rich ground turkey which not only tastes great, but cooks up quickly. What’s even better is that I’m going to show you exactly how to serve this recipe for turkey stir fry to the WHOLE family. Yes, no matter who you are serving (babies, toddlers, kids, and/or adults), this meal works for everyone at the table.
Move over chicken stir fry, there’s a new protein in town!
I’m thrilled to once-again partner with the National Turkey Federation to bring you this exciting update that brings more foods to the table for babies! I’m a huge fan of giving babies a variety of nutrient-dense foods that go beyond rice cereal and applesauce and it is very inline with one family meal. More on the updated Dietary Guidelines for Americans below.
Turkey is a staple in our grocery cart (or grocery delivery!) because it’s incredibly versatile, it’s loaded with essential vitamins and minerals (selenium, and B vitamins to name a few), and let’s be real…it just tastes good! Whether you choose sliced turkey breast, turkey breast, whole turkeys, or ground turkey like we’re using today, there are so many ways to eat and enjoy turkey!
Estimated reading time: 9 minutes
Table of Contents
- New 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines + Feeding Babies
- Breaking this Down – What does the Recommendation Mean?
- Benefits of Including Babies and Toddlers in One Family Meal
- When to Start One Family Meal?
- How to Feed Ground Turkey Stir Fry Recipe to Babies and Toddlers
- Ingredients for Ground Turkey Stir Fry Recipe
- How to Make Ground Turkey Stir Fry
- Pin this recipe for turkey stir fry to save it for later!
New 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines + Feeding Babies
Up until now, babies and toddlers under two haven’t really been included in the guidelines in a big way, but I’m so excited to see them now because it’s such an important time to establish nutritious eating habits that can last a lifetime. And it’s my opinion that the best way to do this is one family meal!
“At about 6 months old, introduce infants to nutrient-dense complementary foods… Encourage infants and toddlers to consume a variety of foods from all food groups. Include foods rich in iron and zinc, particularly for infants fed human milk.”Excerpt from the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020-2025
The guidelines called out two specific nutrients that should be included for 6 month-olds and those are iron and zinc.
Guess what lean protein has both of them? TURKEY!
Breaking this Down – What does the Recommendation Mean?
The main takeaway is that the year-and-a-half in between six months and two years is an important time to feed babies and toddlers a variety of nutrient-dense foods. Veggies, fruits, grains, and lean proteins like turkey included.
This is really exciting because it fits so well with one family meal! The idea of babies eating what everyone else is eating isn’t new, it’s part of the baby-led-weaning approach, but it is definitely a shift from the standard baby purees and puffs. So bring them to the table and serve them what you’re all eating!
Before you get caught up in a feeding method, don’t feel like you have to decide to go with one method OR the other. It’s totally reasonable to do a blend of purees and baby led weaning, or you can choose one. (There are a lot of strong opinions on these methods, but ultimately, you need to decide what works best for you and your family, and a mix of both is totally fine.)
The method doesn’t really matter, what matters is that you are feeding and exposing babies and toddlers to a variety of nutrient-dense foods (and I would add flavors, as well!).
Benefits of Including Babies and Toddlers in One Family Meal
One family meal is at the core of my messages and it’s something I talk a lot about! It’s basic – it boils down to having everyone in the family eat the same meal. You may need to make some modifications, but the general idea is that everyone is eating the same thing.
One family meal is a great way to expose your family to a variety of foods and flavors, to model balanced and neutral eating, and it’s is a great opportunity to connect as a family.
When to Start One Family Meal?
Whenever I talk about the one family meal method (which is a lot!), I hear this: “When should we start implementing one family meal?” I don’t even really need to know the ages, my answer is always … NOW! The only exception is that your baby needs to be ready for solids. That’s really the only thing you need to wait for.
What’s particularly exciting is that the updated 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans is really inline with the one family meal approach, given that the recommendation is that babies and toddlers should be exposed to and eat a variety of nutrient-dense foods, just like what the entire family should be eating.
Can babies have turkey meat?
Yes, once babies are six-months-old and eating solids, they can eat turkey meat, just make sure it’s appropriate for their eating stage (ie not a choking hazard).
How do you introduce turkey to a baby?
There are a few ways to do this, but really you just need to decide how! If you’re going with a pureed approach, simply cook some of the stir fry below (with or without stir fry sauce) and puree it with some rice and veggies.
When babies have a little more hand control, they can start eating finger foods, you can offer pea-sized pieces of soft foods like ground turkey or cooked veggies.
How to Feed Ground Turkey Stir Fry Recipe to Babies and Toddlers
While this recipe is designed for the whole family, you want to be sure to lightly season (not light on flavor, there is a difference!) foods with minimal salt and sugar (no honey until one) so older eaters may need to add a bit of salt to taste at the table.
For 6-9 month old babies
You have two options for the babies plate. You can puree the turkey stir fry and serve it that way (I know this sounds weird to adults, but the babies will love the flavor and it’s not weird to them!), or you can lightly mash it and load it up on a fork or spoon for the babies. (Use a fork designed for a baby like this one so that they don’t get frustrated.)
For 9+ months and toddlers
At 9+ months, they will develop pincer grasp better and you can serve pea-sized finger foods. Toddlers and young children don’t always do well with food touching, so you can see we’ve served the meal components separate. Same meal, but slightly modified. *Chopped peanuts should be added if babies have teeth, otherwise softer foods are recommended.
For children and adults
Here is the meal for older children and adults. We have the turkey stir fry served over rice with some veggies on the side. While this meal has a lot of flavor, we did keep the salt at a minimum, so children and adults may want to add a touch of salt and or some hot sauce if they like heat!
It’s that easy! Serving one family meal instead of making everyone their own dinner will help you to raise adventurous eaters AND help you simplify that daily task a bit.
Ingredients for Ground Turkey Stir Fry Recipe
No fancy ingredients needed for this recipe, you probably have all of the seasonings in your pantry.
- Chicken broth
- Corn starch
- Rice wine vinegar
- Soy sauce – can use tamari for a gluten-free option
- Brown sugar – or maple syrup or honey as long as you aren’t feeding babies under 1
- Sesame oil
- Red pepper
- Green pepper
- Yellow onion
- Ground turkey – get a mix of dark and light meat, NOT 99% fat-free
- Green onions
- Garnish – peanuts, sriracha
How to Make Ground Turkey Stir Fry
This easy ground turkey stir fry is ready in less than 30 minutes! Here’s how to make it:
- Prep ingredients. Make rice, cut peppers and onion. Mince garlic.
- Make stir fry sauce. In a small bowl, whisk together chicken broth, corn starch, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, sweetener, and garlic.
- Saute veggies. Heat oil in a large skillet or wok. Add onions and peppers to pan and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 3-4 minutes. Add turkey and cook until turkey is cooked through, about 5-7 minutes.
- Season. Pour sauce and white part of green onions into skillet and stir constantly, for about 1-2 minutes, until sauce is thick and glossy.
- Serve. Serve over rice with green beans. See specific serving instructions above for how to serve stir fry for babies and toddlers.
EASY ground turkey stir fry recipe is ready in just 25 min + I’ll show you how to serve this recipe for turkey stir fry to the whole family.
For the stir fry sauce:
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 2 Tbsp. corn starch
- 2 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
- 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp. maple syrup or brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp. sesame oil
- 2 cloves minced garlic
For the stir fry:
- 1/2 red pepper
- 1/2 green pepper
- 1/2 yellow onion
- 4 green onions
- 1 lb. ground turkey
- 6 servings rice
- chopped roasted peanuts
- hot sauce like sriracha (optional)
Make rice according to package instructions.
Cut peppers and onions into 1″ pieces.
In a small bowl, whisk together the chicken broth, corn starch, rice vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil and garlic. Set aside.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and peppers to pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 3-4 minutes. Add turkey and cook until turkey is cooked through, about 5-7 minutes.
Pour sauce into skillet along with green onions (saving some of green tips for garnish) and simmer, stirring constantly, until sauce is thickened and glossy, about 1-2 minutes.
Serve with rice and top with sliced green onions and chopped peanuts.
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