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Advancing Solid Foods

Advancing Solid Foods

Advancing Solid Foods

6-8 Months

Some infants may have already begun to add some solid foods into their diet. Other infants may be just starting. As time goes on you will expand the texture and consistency of food from pureed food to table foods. Mealtimes should be fun, the atmosphere relaxed and most of all social. This is a great learning experience that the whole family can be a part of.

Examples of first foods:

  • Vegetables: Squash (acorn and butternut), carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, spinach, peas, avocado, parsnips, summer squash/zucchini, green beans
  • Fruits: Pears, applesauce, apricots, peaches, bananas, mango, papaya, plantain, plums and prunes, nectarine, pumpkin
  • Cereals:  Rice, oatmeal and barley
  • Protein:  Chicken, turkey, cooked eggs and tofu

Once you have finished with the first foods you can continue to expand the food choices which may include beef, cheese, yogurt, and cooked beans (i.e. kidney, pinto, lentils).You may also add foods such as rice noodles, teething crackers, and cottage cheese.

At about 6-7 months of age when your infant is sitting better and interested it is time to learn how to drink from a cup. You will know your baby is ready for a cup when he/she begins to mouth the nipple without actually sucking.   Water may be the first beverage to practice with in a cup and should be limited to < 4 ounces.  The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children do NOT have any type of juice under the age of 1 year.

8-12 Months

You may notice that your baby will begin to try to pick foods and feed themselves.  Offer them finger foods such as dry cereal, crackers, teething biscuits, and toast.  Do not give your baby foods like nuts, hot dogs, cheese cubes, whole grapes, or chips as these foods require a great deal of chewing and may cause your baby to choke.

You should continue adding table foods such as mashed potatoes, noodles, soft fruits, soft meats and cheese, and soft cooked vegetables.  By a year of age your baby is able to eat almost all your table foods.  Depending on your child’s medical history, this advice can vary slightly, so please ask if you have any questions.

Additional food suggestions

  • Grains: Flax, graham crackers, kamut, quinoa, gnocchi, wheat and wheat germ
  • Fruits: Strawberries, blueberries, cantaloupe and melon, cherries, dates, figs, and kiwi
  • Vegetables: Asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, eggplant, white potatoes, onions, peppers, leeks, mushrooms
  • Proteins: Fish, meatballs

Sample meals: Late Infancy

Breakfast

  • 2-4 tablespoons of iron fortified cereal
  • 2-4 tablespoons of fruit
  • Breastfeed or 4-6 ounces of formula or breast milk

Snack

Fruit or teething biscuit, ¼ cup cottage cheese

Lunch

  • 2-4 tablespoons vegetable
  • 1 tablespoon of soft meat
  • Fruit (i.e. ½ of a banana)
  • Breastfeed or 4-6 ounces of formula or breast milk

Snack

  • ½ cup of water or diluted juice in a cup
  • 1 cracker
  • ¼ slice of cheese

Dinner

  • 2-4 tablespoons vegetable
  • 2-4 tablespoons meat
  • 2-4 tablespoons fruit
  • 4-6 ounces of formula or breast milk

Before bedtime

Breastfeed or 6-8 ounces of formula or breast milk

Brush teeth


References

Shelov, S.V. (ed. In chief), American Academy of Pediatrics (2000) Caring for your baby and young child Birth – Age 5.  Bantam books:  New York, Chapter 9; pp 215-246

Helpful Websites

American Academy of Pediatrics

Ask Dr. Sears

Wholesome Baby Food

 


Updated 9.26.17 JH