When to Start Weaning
So baby was drinking as much milk as he could possibly have in a day, yet it still wasn’t enough! By 5 months this was my hungry horse! I couldn’t give him any more milk and what he did get wasn’t satisfying him enough.
So I began the weaning journey a month early (a month earlier than health visitors etc recommend but i think its definitely a personal choice and dependent on baby and their needs so trust your instincts!)
How to Start the Weaning Process
Looking back now it was pretty simple but at the time I thought it was the most confusing stage so far! Where do I start? What can he have? What can’t he have? How do I prepare food? What’s safe? What’s best?
After doing my own research and asking friends for advice on how they did it I had it all figured out and was ready to go! Here is my step by step guide to fuss free weaning:
Spoon Fed or Baby Led?
How-To Puree Vegetables
I began preparing batches of puréed veggies. Simple, basic veggies.
They say that the best way to get them to eat veggies is to start with them first, not fruit so that they get used to veggie tastes before adding in sweet flavours which are typically favoured (this is great in theory and worked OK for a while but he soon developed his mummys sweet tooth and by 2 pretty much refuses veggies so i have to find ways to disguise them in his food!!!!).
Choosing veggies such as broccoli, cauliflower, carrot, sweet potato, butternut squash, potatoes and peas (remember fresh, frozen or tinned are a just as good and full of nutrients so don’t be scared of frozen veggies which can be mush more cost effective!)
The next part isn’t essential, but I bought a fantastic little baby food maker
It’s called the VonShef Baby Food Maker which is a 2 in 1 Steamer and blender. Of course any steamer and blender can be used but I loved the idea of having one machine making perfect sized amounts and all in one. I even ditched my own bulky steamer and use this for myself!
I also bought ice cube trays with lids. These ones are fantastic and very cheap. Buy here
How to Make Your Own Baby Food When Weaning
It literally is as simple as steaming each veg (I started with frozen broccoli) then adding a little baby formula milk (whichever you use for bottles) and blending to a very smooth and lump free consistency – NO lumps to begin with!
Then spooning the puréed mix into lidded ice cube trays, let cool and put in the freezer.
Once frozen I then popped them out of the tray and placed the cubes in a labelled freezer bag with the name of the veggie and date and put back in the freezer.
After a day of doing this in between feeds, naps and play times with Aiden I had the first month of puréed meals ready to go!! They can be stored safely in the freezer for months although they didn’t last that long as he ate them up very quickly!
Side note: I found making and freezing single veggies individually better than mixing 2 or more different kinds together. This way I could see which ones he liked and didn’t like and I then had the choice to mix them when serving them up.
How to Prepare Cubes For Mealtimes
To prepare I simply took out the number of ice cubes needed the night before at bed time (starting with 1 and gradually upping the amount to 2, then 3, then 4 etc as he gets used to eating – in a month he was up to about 4 cubes per meal) and placed them in a sealed container in the fridge over night to defrost.
At meal times I’d then take them out of the fridge and heat in a saucepan. And voilà, home-made meals for baby!
To begin with, I only gave purées for lunch as that’s when we had more time and Aiden was typically the most awake after his morning nap. So for example: Day 1 – one cube of broccoli before his milk.
After a few weeks we added them his evening meal I began mixing different veggies so for example: 1 cube of broccoli and 2 cubes of cauliflower to introduce new tastes.
By month 2 (he was 6 months old) I introduced fruits – banana, pears, strawberries etc all puréed and more veggies which he hadn’t tried like tomatoes, spinach and courgette.
The possibilities are endless and it’s such a fun time to share together! Get the camera ready to capture their expressions (spinach face is a winner and quite possibly the photo to bring out on his 18th!) and you’ll have memories that will last forever and a healthy growing baby!
For more how-to’s have a look here
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