Your Weaning Adventure Starts With Tidy Tot!

Introducing your baby to solid foods for the first time is an exciting milestone, but it can also bring with it lots of questions about the best approach to follow.

When’s the best time to start weaning? The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breast-feeding for the first six months after birth — and breast-feeding in combination with solids foods until at least age 1.

Whether you decide to follow the traditional weaning practice of introducing new foods and flavors in the form of traditional baby food, Baby Led Weaning (allowing baby to simply feed themselves) or a combination of the two, Tidy Tot offers the perfect products to simplify your journey through the weaning process.

What are the top signs that my baby is ready?

Beginning Weaning

Every baby is unique and may be ready for weaning when you start to notice certain signals. You will know your baby better than anyone, but there are three very clear signs which, together, might demonstrate that your baby is ready to try solid foods alongside their usual formula or breast milk.

  1. They can stay in a sitting position, holding their head steady.
  2. They can coordinate their eyes, hands and mouth which means that they are able to see food, pick it up and put it in their mouth.
  3. They are able to swallow food. If they are not yet ready, they will simply push food back out with their tongue.

If you try solid foods, but your baby doesn’t seem quite ready then don’t panic! Just try again when you spot the signs above.

It’s easy to mistake other signs such as chewing fists, waking in the night and wanting extra milk feedings as signs that they are ready for solid foods, but these are normal behaviors and are not necessarily a sign of hunger.

Unfortunately starting solid foods does not make your baby any more likely to sleep through the night!

Which weaning approach is right for me?

There are two main approaches to weaning and most parents will naturally adopt or evolve into the one that feels right for them and their baby. There are ups and downs to both, but the most important thing is that you feel comfortable with the approach that you choose and that your baby is able to explore a wide variety of tastes, flavors and textures to help them develop a healthy and varied palette and a happy relationship with food.

Baby Led Weaning

The Baby Led Weaning (BLW) approach advocates letting your baby feed themselves with soft, solid finger foods from the very beginning of weaning, rather than introducing food using purees and weaning spoons. The idea is that baby explores food at their own pace and learns to manage lumps and chew from the beginning. As with traditional weaning, it is suitable from around six months.

Watermelon is a great food when getting started with Baby-Led weaning.

What is Baby-Led Weaning and when should I start?

If you decide that this is the approach for you, you can begin offering your baby a selection of nutritious finger foods suitable for their age. Check out our blog 5 best finger foods for baby-led weaning.

The best time to do this is when you are eating as a family, so baby can join in too! The easiest foods for babies are those which are easy to grasp such as bread fingers, cooked vegetables, soft fruit sticks and pasta shapes. Ideal first finger foods should be big enough for baby to hold in their fist with some left sticking out of the top.

Your baby may just play with the food at first or grab pieces with his fist and suck them. Don’t worry too much as they will carry on getting the nutrients and energy they need from their usual milk feeds in between mealtimes.

Spoon Fed Weaning

Often described as a more traditional weaning approach, this involves offering your baby pureed foods on a spoon, progressing to mashed/chopped textures over the next couple of months and introducing finger foods at around 7-8 months.

The advantages are that it can be easier to introduce iron-rich foods such as meat and leafy green vegetables as these are often difficult for babies to chew. Making your own purees is really easy to do and you know exactly how much your baby is eating. It can also be convenient to buy pureed baby food in jars and pouches for times when you are out and about.

Whatever your approach to weaning, the Tidy Tot Bib & Tray Kit provides the perfect platform for your baby to enjoy learning about food without all the mess and stress!

Spoon fed weaning

Spoon feeding has certain advantages, including being able to introduce specific foods and regulate portions.