5 Recipes To Induce Labor Naturally

June 26, 2023

Has your expected due date of your pregnancy come and gone? Is your baby refusing to be welcomed into the world? Then you may be wondering how to induce labor naturally. Luckily, there are a few ways you can begin to encourage your little one to come out!

Induce Labor At Home

While there are medical means to induce labor, many women want to try a few natural ways first. There are safe ways to induce labor, including exercise, getting intimate with your partner, and spicy foods.


Gentle exercise can help with cervical effacement and dilation, which allows the baby to drop in the pelvis. Two good ways to do this are walking and sitting on an exercise ball. “…sitting on an exercise or birthing ball in neutral wide-legged positions prepares the body for labor by increasing blood flow…You can also try birth ball exercises such as circular hip rotations, rocking, and gentle bouncing,” advises Parents


There is some research that suggests that getting intimate with your partner when you’re past your due date can speed up labor. This is because an orgasm stimulates the uterus and releases oxytocin, which may help trigger contractions. 

“And if you have a male partner, sperm may also have something to do with it. It contains prostaglandins, or fatty acids that act like hormones, which are also produced by your uterus to thin and dilate the cervix and jump-start contractions in preparation for delivery,” adds What To Expect

Spicy Food

While there is no concrete scientific proof that spicy food jump-starts labor, there are two possible reasons why spice may have an effect on pregnant women past their due date. 

Firstly, peppers and chili can irritate the digestive system which can have a stimulating effect on the uterus. Secondly, “Hot meals might also stimulate the production of prostaglandin, a hormone that helps contract the smooth muscles of the body that is known to play a role in inducing labor,” says Pregnancy Magazine

Tip: Get our free list of labor-inducing foods here

Foods That Induce Labor

A list of not-just-spicy-foods that induce labor

Get the Guide

If you’re ready to pop your baby out, sink your teeth into this list of labor-inducing foods. Warning: side effects include giving birth!

A peek inside:

  • Vinegar
  • Herbs 
  • Fruits 
  • Vegetables 
  • Tea

When To Induce Labor After Due Date 

Consult your physician before trying any at-home labor-inducing methods at home. It’s important not to try anything unless both you and your baby are 100% healthy. The topic of inducing comes up after you’ve reached 39 weeks. 

If you’re past your due date and you’re cleared for a few at-home remedies, here are some recipes for you (don’t worry if you don’t like too much heat, they’re not all spicy!):

I Can’t See My Toes Smoothie

This is a great healthy pregnancy smoothie for soon-to-be mamas. Along with banana, almond butter, and cacao nibs, this recipe calls for Medjool dates. Full of fiber and potassium, dates are also thought to help induce labor. A study found that women who ate dates in the last four weeks before labor were less likely to need to be medically induced.

Get the full recipe here.

Red plate of date balls

Mama’s Not-So-Secret Sweet Stash

Dates are also a fantastic ingredient to use in desserts. These date balls include Medjool dates, hazelnuts, Brazil nuts, and cacao nibs, and are a delicious, healthy dessert for pregnancy. Brazil nuts are an incredible source of selenium, which works as a mild anticoagulant that can increase blood flow to the uterus.

Get the full recipe here

Bowl of quinoa salad with bowl of baby tomatoes

Summer Lovin’ Quinoa Salad

If you’re looking for a refreshing yet filling summer salad, this is the recipe for you! Both quinoa and corn are high in magnesium, a mineral that can help with muscle cramps and may support the progression of labor. 

Get the full recipe here

Dish of eggplant parm with plate of herb next to it

Get! This! Baby! Out! Of! Me! Spicy Eggplant Parm

Red pepper flakes are added to the breading and the tomato sauce in this recipe, making this a perfect spicy labor-inducing recipe.

This filling dish is packed with nutrients such as fiber, potassium, calcium, and vitamins A, C, and B12. According to the American Pregnancy Association, vitamin B12 “…helps improve your energy, mood and stress levels by aiding the metabolization of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins.” It’s important to be in a calm state as much as possible during the last trimester, as reduced anxiety and tension can help labor progress more smoothly.

Tip: This eggplant parm is great for freezing, so make a big batch to have on hand.

Get the full recipe here

Bowl of chili with slices of avo

Hot and Chili

Another spicy recipe to add to your 39-week pregnancy meal plan is this easy-to-make chili. You’ll get the kick from the chili powder, and the magnesium from the corn, carrots, and beans. Plus, this recipe includes tomatoes and avocado; both ingredients are full of potassium which is important for muscle contractions.

Get the full recipe here

Pregnancy isn’t always easy, especially when your due date comes and goes. If you’re seeking natural methods to encourage labor, give the above recipes a try!

Click to rate this post!
[Total: 0 Average: 0]
Kendra Aronson

Hi Mama, I’m Kendra!

Founder of Pregnant and Hungry, and a mama on a mission to provide other mamas with delicious, nutritious, and easy recipes for pregnancy and motherhood. If that’s what you’re craving, make sure to dig into the blog or learn more about the Pregnant and Hungry subscription.
See Subscription Details

Hungry for more?
Take a bite of these guides:

Our recipes are developed under the caring guidance of an RDN (Registered Dietitian Nutritionist) in addition to a Licensed Midwife in good standing with the California Medical Board who’s also a Certified Professional Midwife as granted by the North American Registry of Midwives and a professional Lactation Consultant as certified by the IBCLC (International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners). While we refer to trusted sources from peer-reviewed medical journals to information from highly regarded worldwide health institutions, this website is not intended to replace medical advice. Consult your personal midwife, doctor, or nutritionist with health questions related to your pregnancy and postpartum journey.

I'm so happy you're here, Mama!


Before getting pregnant with my daughter, I spent a ton of time scouring the internet for easy, pregnancy-safe recipes and nutrition advice tailored to my taste preferences, unique dietary needs, and anticipated ailments—only to realize that no such resource existed. I knew I wasn’t the only one who could benefit from this information, so I set out to create this site from scratch for all of us mamas-to-be!

Today, Pregnant and Hungry is not only the sole searchable collection of pregnancy-friendly recipes on the internet, but our website is packed full of helpful resources and free information for any mama who finds herself asking the same questions I was: what do I need to know about nutrition and pregnancy, and where can I find the answers and recipes?

If you’re looking for free resources, dig into the blog, and if you want unlimited access to hundreds of recipes, check out the Pregnant and Hungry subscription. 

Subscribe Today

Pregnancy Eating Resources

Whether you’re looking for answers about what to eat when you’re pregnant, the best cures for pregnancy ailments (we’re talking about you, constipation, heartburn, and morning sickness!), or ways to handle trickier topics like asking for help with meals or handling gestational diabetes, we’ve put all of our best (and free!) resources in one place so you can find exactly what you’re searching for. You’ve got this, Mama!

Resource Library

Track your baby's size and growth week-by-week!

Download the full collection of illustrations!

Subscribe to Pregnant and Hungry

Access unlimited pregnancy-safe recipes, save favorites to your personal dashboard, create custom weekly meal plans, and get complete grocery lists. Our easy RDN-approved recipes ensure you are getting optimal prenatal nutrition for you and your baby.

Pregnant and Hungry

Monthly Subscription

$9 / Month Charged Monthly
Subscribe Monthly Cancel anytime.

Hungry for Savings?

You and your baby are worth it!
Unlock savings now.

Pregnant and Hungry

3-Month Subscription

$27 $24 one-time fee Save $3
Buy 3-Month Access Perfect for one trimester: first, second, third, or fourth (postpartum!)
Most Popular

Pregnant and Hungry

6-Month Subscription

$54 $45 one-time fee Save $9
Buy 6-Month Access Support for 2 trimesters

Pregnant and Hungry

9-Month Subscription

$81 $63 one-time fee Save $18
Buy 9-Month Access For the mama who wants to be nourished through her whole pregnancy
Best Value

Pregnant and Hungry

12-Month Subscription

$108 $78 one-time fee Save $30
Buy 12-Month Access For the mama who values her postpartum healing journey as much as her pregnancy

Looking to give Pregnant and Hungry as a gift?

Site Design by Shoppe Theory
Site Development by Alchemy+Aim

This is a subscription feature. Please subscribe or log in to your account.