About the book



Mila’s Meals: The Beginning & The Basics.

Affectionately, and sometimes frustratingly, known as ‘The Book’, Mila’s Meals: The Beginning & The Basics is my first cookbook (or book for that matter). Part cookbook, part nutrition encyclopaedia, part food journal – it is a journey through three and a half years of me and my daughter’s life.

My goal was to have all the information a gluten-free, sugar-free, dairy-free mom or dad would need as they begin feeding their baby solid food – the why, the what and the how of it. To have all of it in one place – a comprehensive resource that tired ‘mushy-brained’ moms could be referred to time and time again, as opposed to bookmarking (and losing) various website pages.

Furthermore, I really wanted to show people that ‘free-from’ food is both delicious and nutritious. That it is do-able and even enjoyable. That food intolerances are a blessing, not a curse – a welcome message from your body. And that life is still sweet without sugar!

The book took me three and a half years to finish – which I am grateful for. Every twist and turn along the way taught me something valuable which was then included in the book. It also made for a book that can be used for a 6 month old baby as much as for school lunch boxes and the mama’s and papa’s too.

Reprinted due to popular demand… pre-orders now open!

The 'Official' Description

Mila’s Meals: The Beginning & The Basics


Mila’s Meals: The Beginning & The Basics is a 500-page collection of over 100 gluten-free, sugar-free, dairy-free nourishing wholefood recipes and food ideas for baby’s first years (and the rest of the family too).

Part cookbook, part nutrition encyclopedia, part journal of my journey into motherhood, Mila’s Meals is a call to action for every parent to be conscious of what they are feeding their little ones, providing a guideline on how to go about this as effectively,  effortlessly and joyfully as possible.

Created, written and published by: Catherine Barnhoorn.

Photography by: Alfred Lor


Gourmand ‘Best In The World’ Award – First Book Category

Next Generation Indie Book Award – Health/Wellness Category

Reader’s Favorite Award – Non-Fiction,  Cooking/Food Category

Living Now Book Award – Cookbooks Natural, Nutrition, Organic, Vegetarian Category

International Rubery Book Award – Shortlist – Non-fiction Category

Gourmand World Cookbook Awards – National Winner – Self-Published Category

London Book Festival – Cookbook Category

Why its not just a cookbook

Inside you’ll find


Colour photos for every single recipe & a wealth of information including:

The Why


The truth behind common infant food fallacies;

The why, what and how to begin your little one’s life-long relationship with food;

An expose of what is really in that convenient, ready-made food and the affect it has on your child physically, mentally and emotionally;

The importance and maintenance of gut health;

Why not gluten, dairy and sugar.

The What


Essential nutrients, the role they play, and where to find them;

A detailed glossary for every ingredient used in the book;

Useful charts like the ‘What to Feed When’ food introduction chart, the Dirty Dozen list, ‘The Worst Offenders’ food additives to avoid and more.

The How


Over 100 (mostly) uncomplicated recipes made with easy-to-find ingredients;

A re-introduction of essential traditional foods & food preparation techniques (like sauerkraut, slow-cooked bone broths as well as how and why to soak grains);

‘Do-able’ meals for working parents – all the food can be made in bulk and frozen.

The Cover

Mila's Meals Second Edition

The Contents


Unlearn: Infant Food Fallacies

Essential Nutrients
What nutrients baby needs and when
Essential nutrients, the role they play, and where to find them
What to eat when

Feeding with Awareness

Convenience vs. Conscience
Whole Foods vs. Refined & Processed Foods
Chemical Cuisine: Food Additives
Raw vs. Cooked… which is better?
Eat from the rainbow
Enzymes, Nutrients and Anti-nutrients
Meat: Organic, Free-Range, Pasture-raised, Grass-fed & GMO.
Fruits and Veggies: Organic, Conventional & GMO.
Why not Gluten, Dairy and Sugar?
What can I eat? Gluten, sugar, & dairy alternatives.
Nutrient Enhancers: my kind of food additives!
Soul Food

Food Preparation & Storage

Recipes (over 100 of them!)

Don’t Just Eat Food!

Glossary of Ingredients


Conversions Charts

Say Who?



Index (a VERY comprehensive one!)

About the Recipes

There are over 100 recipes (NOT including the different puree combinations).

ALL the recipes are gluten-free, sugar-free and dairy-free.

Most of the food is freezer friendly.

All recipes have an introduction age indicated.

Recipes are marked as vegetarian, vegan, grain-free, egg-free, for adults too, and/or great for lunchboxes.

Every recipe is accompanied by a full colour photo.

The Recipe Categories

(click on the chapter titles to see a visual preview of the recipes)

Gluten-free, sugar-free & dairy-free food can be delicious! See for yourself...

Some taste testers

A Sneak Peek Inside

Unlearn: Infant Food Fallacies chapter.
Feeding With Awareness
Recipe page design layout.
Feeding With Awareness chapter detail.

The Second Edition

You can read all about the new 11-page comprehensive index, new nutrition information, revised recipes and all the other revisions and additions in this blog post.

You asked, we delivered!


Many people asked for an eBook version of the book – so they could easily take it on holiday with them 😉


Mila's Meals eBook Cover


How to Purchase

From our online shop:

While we wait for the books to arrive (due mid-December 2019), you can pre-order a signed copy and be sure to receive it before Christmas.

We will restock these retailers once our stock arrives:

(click on the logo to go to the shop)


Faithful To Nature





The first edition is available internationally here:

(click on the logo to go to the shop)




Book Depository


Soft cover

500 pages, full colour

printed on 105gsm cartridge

Dimensions: 280mm x 216mm x 33mm

ISBN Number: 978-0-620-68276-3


Page Count


Word Count


Recipe Count


Mila Counts To