My second daughter, baby Alex, turned 6 months a few weeks ago. I help many families on their journey to starting solids and I wanted to chronicle how it is going in our house. I hope you find this post helpful. All babies are different, and this journey will look different for everyone.
We decided to mainly use a baby led weaning approach when starting solids, as well as some purees. I am going with the flow and not labeling anything we do. We call it baby led feeding: Baby Alex leads the way!
My goal is to help Alex learn to eat, explore and have fun with food- and also make it work for our family!
Day 1: Sweet potato! I wanted to involve my older daughter as much as possible in the feeding journey with Alex. I let her choose Alex's first food (choices were either sweet potato or avocado). And good thing she choose sweet potato because we did not have any ripe avocados when it came time to feed Alex! I baked a sweet potato in the oven, then removed the skin and cut into stick pieces. I gave this to Alex around our usual dinner time, 5:00pm. The rest of the family had THIS sweet potato and black bean chili.
Day 2: Banana. We actually skipped a day in between (because, life happens). So our second feeding day I gave Alex banana during breakfast time. Sydney was having banana with french toast, so I decided, why not? Alex had fun with this one. I tried a few different ways. I gave her some match stick slices and also a whole banana with part of the skin on (to make it easier to hold). She loved both ways.
Day 3: Steak. Iron is one of the most important nutrients a baby needs starting around 6 months. I have seen many BLW fans provide children with a chunk of steak (mainly to suck). Alex loved this one. The rest of the family had steak, broccoli and quinoa.
Day 4: Amaranth porridge. Have you had amaranth? Check out this post dedicated to this wonderful grain. I made a porridge in my Instant Pot with amaranth, apple sauce and cinnamon. This was a hit for both girls. For Alex, I provided her with a loaded spoon (and then gave her the bowl, which she proceeded to eat!). This one was messy but a great nutritional breakfast!
Day 5: Avocado. We had a Hanukkah celebration with some of my family and avocado was on the menu, so this was what Alex had too. The rest of the family had white chicken chili topped with avocado, cheese and sour cream. It was a bit difficult for Alex to pick up, so next time I might roll the avocado in breadcrumbs or almond meal.
Day 6: No food. Opps! We were traveling to visit my inlaws and because of naps, travel, etc, we didn't feed Alex any solids. And you know what? We all survived.
Day 7: Eggs! This was the first higher allergen risk food I provided to Alex. I mashed some cooked egg with yogurt. An instant hit. Check out my post about introducing the top 8 food allergens to infants.
Day 8: More avocado. Staying at my in-laws, choices were limited, but ripe avocado for the win! Alex is great at smashing this. It looked like she was eating a lot but when I took her out of her highchair she was covered in avocado.
Day 9: Carrots! We made a carrot cake for dessert and had some leftover shredded carrots. I steamed these in the microwave for a dinner treat.
Day 10: Amaranth oat balls and carrot soup. We were back at home and I had frozen some cooked amaranth before we left for our trip. I thawed this, made some quick cook oats and added a bit of peanut butter. These were a great BLW food (easy to pick up) and super soft.
I also made a curry carrot instant pot soup and gave this to Alex on a loaded spoon. The soup contained carrot, cumin, curry powder (salt free), full fat coconut milk and vegetable broth. Lots of new flavors here!
Day 11: Scrambled eggs with salmon for breakfast and roasted cauliflower for dinner. The roasted cauliflower was the first food Alex gagged on and although I KNEW she was gagging (not choking), it was still nerve racking. The roasted cauliflower was soft but a new texture. In all of my Introduction to Solids classes, I recommend parents and caregivers complete a CPR class - just so you know what to do in case of a choking incident.
Day 12: Scrambled eggs again (I need to add more variety into breakfast!)
Day 13: Pancakes! I love pancakes for babies. They are soft but easy to grasp. For these pancakes I blended 1/2 a banana, 1 egg, 1/4 cup teff flour, a small handful of spinach and 1/4 tsp baking powder. Baby loves her greens!
Day 14: Smoothie. I tried providing this on a preloaded spoon. The meal ended by wearing her smoothie. All. Over. Her. Body. I only took the "before" picture.
There you have it! Our first two weeks starting solids. We tried to include a variety of foods, flavors and textures. What have I learned? Baby girl doesn't have much interest in getting spoon fed and she is LOVING to eat!