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Moving on to finger foods? Follow our baby-led weaning checklist

Wondering when to start baby food? Most babies are ready to start trying at around six months. Baby-led weaning, where your baby feeds himself fingers foods, is a great way to help her discover new flavors and textures at his own pace. Here are some tips to get your baby started on his solid foods adventure.

9 mins
to read Sep 23, 2020
  • Aim for “finger foods”. A piece your baby can hold in his fist with a bit sticking out.
  • Aim for foods that break up easily in the mouth to reduce the risk of choking.
  • Avoid hard foods such as raw carrots to begin with.
  • Try to offer your baby a variety of baby-led weaning food suitable for their age. This can include fruit (soft or cooked without added sugar), vegetables (soft cooked), boiled eggs, cooked starchy foods such as potatoes, pasta, rice, noodles, legumes like beans and lentils, meat, fish without bones, and sticks of pasteurized, full-fat hard cheese.
  • Babies do occasionally gag when they move on to solid foods. This is different to choking so it’s important to be aware of the difference and what to do in case of either. The risk of choking is no higher with baby-led weaning than traditional spoon-feeding. It’s good to prepare yourself in the event of a choking incident.
  • Never leave your baby to eat on their own.
  • Try to incorporate your baby’s food adventures into family mealtimes so they can feel involved and copy what the rest of the family is doing.
  • Be prepared for the mess. Some parents find placing a non-slip wipeable tablecloth, or floor mat under baby’s highchair can help with the clear-up. Check out what other handy items you might need for moving onto solid foods here.
  • Remember it’s all about exploration and discovery, let your baby lead the way!

Sources:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/solid-foods-weaning/

https://www.babycentre.co.uk/a1007100/baby-led-weaning

https://www.redcross.org.uk/first-aid/learn-first-aid-for-babies-and-children/choking-baby

https://www.nhs.uk/start4life/weaning/safe-weaning/