Easy Baby Led Weaning Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner Ideas
6 months +
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I decided to try baby led weaning with my daughter. As a new mom, I didn’t know where to start. The basic concept is that your baby is in control of their eating and is encouraged to self-feed. Baby led weaning is the perfect way to introduce starter foods.
From about 6 mos. and up, you offer your baby softened finger foods. You can also offer larger things that are not softened, such as corn on the cob, meat on the bone, whole apples, etc. The general idea is that your baby feeds his or her self. Your baby experiences food in its natural form and learns about different flavors, textures, colors, shapes, and sizes. Every meal is an opportunity to learn something new.
I’m a teacher, so I loved the idea of my baby learning through her experiences with food, so I just had to try it out! Here are some of the food I’ve found that worked well at her various stages of development.
**Always make sure to wash your fruits and vegetables well before serving them to your baby. I liked to serve fruits in the morning and vegetables in the evening. This is just what I felt worked well for us, feel free to do what best suits you. There is no system or specific way to introduce food, so just remember to have fun and don’t get stressed out. Food is meant to be a fun experience, so enjoy the mess 😉
7 Easy Breakfast Ideas: 6 months and up+
- Banana *Cut in half with or without the peel. (You can leave some of the peel on to make it easy for your baby to grasp it, like a “handle”)
- Pears cut in quarters or whole *use a fairly ripe pear
- Peaches but into halves or whole with or without the peel *I usually took off the peel because it seemed to be a gagging issue
- Watermelon cut into sticks, in large chunks, or on the rind *wash it well if you leave it on the rind
- Berries Blueberries, raspberries, boysenberries *I liked to smash the blueberries in the beginning, basically just hold it between your thumb and pointer finger and squeeze. That what they wouldn’t accidentally go down whole and there would be more to grab on to
- Frozen breast milk Popsicle (or anything other kinds of Popsicle you want to make) *the Nuby Garden Fresh Fruitsicle Frozen Pop Tray is a great way to freeze breast milk and is easy for your baby to grasp on to. *These are great for teething babies too!
7 Easy Lunch/Dinner Ideas: 6 mos. and up+
**All vegetables can either be steamed or sauteed in unsalted butter
- Broccoli (Know that it can make your baby gassy. Although, it isn’t that big of a deal when you are just starting because very little of it ends up in their mouth 😉
- Carrots *Cut into finger sized sticks
- Yams, Sweet Potatoes & Acorn Squash
- Squash *My daughter loved squash!
- Cucumber *Cut in finger-sized sticks (remove the peel) or in thirds. If cutting in thirds, peel the top half, leaving some at the bottom for a handle.
- Zucchini *Cut in finger-sized sticks
- Soft/Stewed Meats *I served my daughter a lot of chicken from my instant pot
7 Easy Breakfast Ideas: 7-8 months and up+
Everything from the above list plus:
- Toast w/ peanut butter cut into strips *If you have allergies in your family consult your pediatrician before introducing possible allergens. We don’t have any allergies so I gave peanut butter to my daughter starting at the end of 5 months.
- Greek yogurt or Greek yogurt dots (plain or try 3-Ingredient Greek Yogurt Dots)
- Cooked Apples
- Oatmeal cereal *I liked to mix the oatmeal with the yogurt.
- Eggs scrambled (cooked very well) *Sometimes eggs can cause an allergic reaction. Again, consult your pediatrician if allergies run in your family. Always make sure to pay attention when giving your baby new foods. We tried eggs around 7 months and my daughter was fine. She didn’t particularly like them the first time and decided to drop them over the side of her tray to the dog. I think the texture threw her off a bit.
- Fresh Fruit blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, mangoes, papaya *Can use frozen fruit too- if you do, thaw your blueberries a little bit in the microwave, check for hot spots and always test the temp before giving it to your baby. Frozen fruit is also great for teething babies. If you are worried about chocking you can always use one of these fresh food feeders.
- Pancakes *See the easy recipe here
7 Easy Lunch/Dinner Ideas: 7-8 months and up+
- Whole Wheat Noodles *Noodles are fun because there are all sorts of sizes and shapes
- Black Beans & Lentils
- Red, Green, Yellow, Orange Bell Peppers *Sauteed or cut into finger-sized strips left uncooked
- Peas *Frozen or cooked
- Corn *On the cob or off, my daughter loved it on the cob!
- Cheeses *String cheese is soft and easy
- Little bits and pieces of your dinner *It’s fun to let your baby experience some different tastes and combined flavors. Your baby will always want to eat your dinner from now on, so beware. My little one loves food and if she’s sitting in my lap as I eat, she leans her head back as I put in each bite.
6 Easy Breakfast Ideas 9-10 months and up+
- French Toast *just use egg, don’t add any milk (can also use unsalted butter)
- Greek Yogurt w/ Fruit
- Sweet Potato Pancakes *find the recipe here
- Waffles *If you have a waffle iron it’s fun to test out different ingredient substitutes. I’ve exchanged oil or butter for applesauce or yogurt. They still turn out fluffy!
- Mangoes (peeled and cut into slices or whole. I prefer slices because they are easier to hold on to)
- Scrambled eggs w/ mix-ins *Saute some onions, bell peppers, broccoli, mushrooms, etc. and add them into your scrambled eggs. Find the recipe here. Egg cups are also great!
7 Easy Lunch/Dinner Ideas 9-10 months and up+
- Roasted/Steamed Veggies *cauliflower, broccoli, zucchini, eggplant, bell peppers
- Cooked Root Vegetables *potatoes, yams, squash, turnips, beets, parsnips, rutabagas, carrots, jicama, artichoke, etc.
- Stewed Meats & or Tofu
- Whole Wheat Pasta
- Meatballs *I like to make my own meatballs with turkey and no added salt, I also add in zucchini and other vegetables
- Quesadillas *add in avocado, chicken, tomatoes, bell peppers
- Fish *salmon, tuna, cod, bass, etc.
I hope you found these ideas to be easy and helpful for getting started. If all else fails, just remember to keep it fun, and don’t get stressed out!
What is your favorite baby led weaning meal?