LAST CHANCE: Get 50% Off With Code "HELLO50"

Introducing Solids to Baby Guide for Parents

Welcome to the exciting world of introducing solid foods to your baby! Whether you are a first-time parent or have experienced introducing solids to a baby, there are many important considerations to remember when introducing your infant to different foods. From choosing the right food to ensuring that your baby is ready and comfortable during mealtimes, many factors make this an enjoyable and successful experience for you and your little one.

With the proper guidance and knowledge, introducing solids can be an easy milestone for you and your baby to achieve. Some key things to keep in mind are; being attentive to your baby while eating, watching for fullness and food allergies, and offering your baby the right healthy and nutritious foods with the right tools.

Whether introducing pureed fruits, vegetables, or proteins like meat or eggs, it is essential to start slowly and monitor your baby's reactions to different foods. Some babies may be more sensitive than others, so it is vital to watch out for any signs of food allergies.

Is Your Baby Ready for Solid Foods? How to Tell.

An essential step in introducing solid foods to your baby is figuring out if they are ready to eat them. We recommend that your baby is at least six months old and shows most of these signs. Signs that indicate readiness are; sitting up unassisted for the duration of the meal, showing an interest in the foods you are eating(watching you intently while eating), being aware of their hands and fingers, and having an appetite for the foods you introduce. Another sign (not a must) but if your baby has a reduced tongue reflex (accepts the spoon in the mouth without pushing it out), then your baby is ready to go.

Once they have the foundational skills needed to explore solid foods safely, you can begin to feed them according to how old they are. Introducing solids is an exciting time as it marks a significant milestone in their development and allows you to expand the variety of foods your baby can enjoy.

Now just because your baby is ready for solid foods doesn't mean its accuracy with food will be perfect, it will be a bit of a mess at first, but with the proper tools and methods, you won't have to worry about it too much.

 

Related:  Advice for New Parents: 5 Things You Need to Know

How to Introduce Your Baby to Solids:

When introducing solid foods to your baby, there are several things to keep in mind. Some critical guidelines for introducing solids include what feeding method you use, where to place your baby when feeding them, and what tools to use when feeding them.

Three General Methods for Feeding

Baby Led Weaning,

BLW is where you offer the baby thicker pieces of food that can be easily squashed, like avocado slices, banana pieces, or orange slices. Babies are allowed to eat with their own hands and fingers and explore the texture on their own.

SPOON FEEDING APPROACH, 

The spoon-feeding approach is the more traditional method where the parents are completely in control and can feed the baby how they want with a spoon. You'll want to observe when your baby is giving signs of fullness. These signs are moving their head away when you approach them with the spoon and no longer showing interest in the food. 

COMBO FEEDING, 

Combo feeding involves both Baby Led Weaning and spoon feeding.

Now when you first get started on feeding your baby, you need somewhere to put them. The first reaction of new parents is to place them on your lap to feed, but this does not allow you, the parent, to carefully monitor your baby because they are facing away from you. 

We recommend using a highchair when feeding your baby because this allows your baby to eat on their own using the Baby Led Weaning method and helps you monitor their actions for safety and watch for fullness while doing so.

Related Link: Baby Colic: Things Parents Need to Know

Tools Needed to Feed Your Baby.

In addition to a high chair, you will want to purchase

  • Small cup that won't break or shatter
  • Bowls and plates that have a rim work best
    • Make sure they have suction cups to stick to the table to limit throwing objects
  • Spoon made of silicone with smooth edges and a shallow bowl
    • The silicone is safe for the baby, and the shallow bowl makes it easy to clear the spoon.

 

Mother feeding baby in high chair

 

 

Want helpful baby products tailored to your baby’s age? Learn more about the best baby product subscription box.

Baby's First Foods by Age

Six months: 

  • 3 to 8 tablespoons of veggies, cereal, and fruit a day, spread out over two to three meals
  • 2 to 5 tablespoons of meat or other protein (like cottage cheese, yogurt, crumbled egg, or cottage cheese) a day
  • 20 to 40 ounces of breast milk or formula over 24 hours (because your baby is efficient at nursing, breastfeed them four to six times a day)

Parents can also start introducing cooked vegetables like sweet potatoes or carrots, which are high in vitamins and minerals.

6 to 8 months: 

  • 3 to 8 tablespoons each of veggies, fruit, and cereal a day, spread over two to three meals
  • 2 to 5 tablespoons of meat or other protein (like cottage cheese, yogurt, crumbled egg, or cottage cheese) a day
  • 20 to 40 ounces of formula or breast milk over 24 hours 

9 to 12 months: 

  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of fruit, grains, and veggies two times a day
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of dairy foods once a day
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of protein-packed foods once a day 
  • 16 to 30 ounces of formula or milk over 24 hours

These are just standard guidelines; please consult a pediatrician. 

 

 

bread with fruit smile

 

Do you have any questions about caring for your baby? Check out 123BabyBox for more tips on feeding, sleeping, and keeping your little one healthy. We are here to help!

Solid Foods to Avoid

  • High-sugar foods, such as fruit snacks or fruit juice
  • Highly processed foods, such as chips or packaged goods
  • Highly allergenic foods, such as nuts and shellfish

Following these general guidelines and avoiding presenting any high risk foods to your baby early on, should make you feel confident about introducing a variety of healthy and nutritious solid foods that will help support your little one's growing needs. 

If you are looking for some mealtime inspiration or guidance on introducing different types of foods to your little one, there are many resources available online and in print. Whether you want tips on transitioning from pureed foods to soft finger foods or want ideas for introducing more fruits and vegetables into your baby's diet, please make sure you consult your baby's pediatrician before doing anything. Good luck!