Baby first solid food chart

Baby formula feeding chart: How much formula by weight and age

Is your baby getting too much or too little formula? It's an important question that worries many new parents, especially those with newborns. When deciding how much formula to give your baby, it's important to watch their hunger cues as well as looking at guidelines based on age and weight. In general, before they're eating solids, babies need 2.5 ounces of formula per pound of body weight each day.

These guidelines are for babies who are exclusively formula-fed for the first 4 to 6 months, and then fed a combination of formula and solids up to age 1. If your baby is getting a combination of breast milk and formula, talk to their doctor for separate advice.

Your pediatrician can tell you where your baby falls on the growth charts, make sure they're growing steadily on their own growth curve, and help you ensure that they're getting a healthy amount of formula. If you're ever worried about your baby's growth, behavior, or development, talk with their doctor.

How much formula for a newborn

For the first few days, offer your newborn 1 to 2 ounces of formula every 2 or 3 hours. (At first, newborns may only take a half ounce of formula at a time.)

After the first few days, give your newborn 2 to 3 ounces of formula every 3 to 4 hours.

Initially it's best to feed your formula-fed newborn on demand, whenever they show signs that they're hungry. Because your little one can't tell you when they want a bottle, you'll need to learn to read their hunger cues. Crying is often a late sign of hunger, so if you can, try to catch the earlier signs that it's time for a feeding.

Here are some hunger cues to watch for:

  • Smacking or licking their lips
  • Rooting (moving their jaw, mouth, or head in search of food)
  • Putting their hands to their mouth
  • Opening their mouth
  • Fussiness
  • Sucking on things
  • Becoming more alert
  • Crying

As time passes, your newborn will begin to develop a fairly regular feeding schedule. You'll become familiar with their cues and needs, and knowing when and how much to feed them will be much easier.

Formula feeding chart by weight

During the first 4 to 6 months, when your baby isn't eating solid foods, here's a simple rule of thumb: Offer 2.5 ounces of formula per pound of body weight every 24 hours, with a maximum of about 32 ounces.

Weight Ounces of formula
6 pounds 15 fl oz every 24 hours
7 pounds 17.5 fl oz every 24 hours
8 pounds 20 fl oz every 24 hours
9 pounds 22.5 fl oz every 24 hours
10 pounds 25 fl oz every 24 hours
11 pounds 27.5 fl oz every 24 hours
12 pounds 30 fl oz every 24 hours

These numbers aren't rigid rules. They offer a rough estimate for what your baby may need. Some babies will grow well while taking less than the recommended amount, while others consistently need more. Your baby's daily feedings will also vary according to their individual needs – in other words, they may want a bit more on some days and a bit less on others.

Formula feeding chart by age

Here are typical amounts per day based on age:

Age Ounces of formula
Full-term newborn 2 ounces per bottle every 3 to 4 hours
1 month old 3 to 4 ounces per bottle every 3 to 4 hours
2 month old 4 to 5 ounces per bottle every 3 to 4 hours
3 month old 4 to 6 ounces per bottle every 3 to 4 hours
4 month old 4 to 6 ounces per bottle, 4 to 6 times a day
5 month old 4 to 6 ounces per bottle, 4 to 6 times a day
6 month old 6 to 8 ounces per bottle, 4 to 5 times a day
7 month old 6 to 8 ounces per bottle, 3 to 5 times a day

From 8 months old until their first birthday, you can expect your baby to have 7 to 8 ounces per bottle, 3 to 4 times a day.

As your baby gets older – and their tummy gets bigger – they'll drink fewer bottles a day with more formula in each. It's important not to overfeed your baby so they'll stay at a healthy weight. Your baby shouldn't have more than 32 ounces of formula in 24 hours.

When they reach their first birthday, they can stop drinking formula and transition to cow's milk in a bottle, sippy cup, straw cup, or open cup. Limit your toddler to 16 to 24 ounces (2 to 2.5 cups) a day of whole milk, so they have room for other healthy foods.

Signs that your baby's getting enough formula

Here are signs that your baby's getting all the formula they need:

  • Steady weight gain. They continue to gain weight after their first 10 days and follow a healthy growth curve during their first year. (Most babies lose up to 7 to 10 percent of their birth weight in the first few days and then regain it by the time they're about 2 weeks old.)
  • Happy baby. They seem relaxed and satisfied after a feeding.
  • Wet diapers. They wet two to three diapers a day in the first few days after birth. Over the next few days, the amount should increase to at least five to six wet diapers a day.

Signs your baby's getting too much formula

Babies are usually good at eating the amount they need, but bottle-fed babies can drink too much at times. Here are the signs that they're getting too much formula:

  • Vomiting after a feeding may be a sign that your baby had too much. (Spitting up is normal, vomiting isn't.)
  • Tummy pain after a feeding can also be a sign of overfeeding. If your baby draws up their legs or their tummy seems tense, they may be in pain. (See other possible reasons for stomach pain in babies.)

If your baby seems to want to eat all the time, even after finishing a bottle, talk to your pediatrician. Using a pacifier may help soothe their need to suck.

Formula-feeding tips

  • In general, babies eat when they're hungry and stop when they're full, so resist the temptation to encourage your baby to finish each bottle. Overfeeding during infancy can contribute to obesity later in life.
  • Don't respond to your baby's every cry with a bottle. They may be crying because their diaper is wet, they're cold or hot, they need to be burped, or they want to be close to you. (Learn more about why babies cry, and how to soothe them.)
  • Your baby may be hungrier than usual during growth spurts. These typically occur 10 to 14 days after birth and around 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 3 months, and 6 months of age.

Read more:

  • Formula Feeding Problem Solver
  • How to safely store and use formula

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How much should my baby eat? A guide to baby food portions

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Wondering how much to feed your baby? This can be hard to figure out, especially when you're starting solids and most of your baby's food ends up on your little one or the floor. It's also difficult to determine how much an 8-month-old (or older baby) should eat – babies this age are more interested in solid foods but still get most of their nutrition from breast milk or formula. This visual guide to baby food portions can help you figure out how much your baby should eat at every stage.

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

How much should my baby eat?

Do you worry that your baby is eating too little or too much? Your baby will self-regulate her food intake based on what their body needs, so let their appetite be your guide.

It's helpful to have a reference point, however. Here are photos of how much solid food a baby typically eats in a day. You can also ask your baby's doctor for feeding advice.

This visual guide shows:

  • Portions for infants who are new to solids (typically 4 to 6 months)
  • Two sample meals for a younger baby (6 to 8 months)
  • Three sample meals and two snacks for an older baby (8 to 12 months) from a menu developed by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)

Your little one may eat less or more than what's shown here. Your job is to provide a variety of healthy foods at regular intervals without pressure, and their job is to decide what and how much to eat.

Photo credit: / UntitledImages

Watch for signs your baby is full

Lots of factors – including activity level, growth spurts or plateaus, illness, and teething – will affect your baby's appetite, which can vary daily.

End feeding when they signal that they're done. Signs of being full include:

  • Turning their head away
  • Refusing to open their mouth for another bite after they've swallowed (resist the urge to encourage your baby to have one last spoonful)
  • Leaning back in their chair
  • Playing with the spoon or food rather than eating

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

How much a 4- to 6-month-old should eat

When your baby is developmentally ready for solids, typically around 4 to 6 months, talk to their doctor about introducing solid foods. The first bites are mostly about them getting used to the idea of having something different in their mouth.

  • Start with a very small amount, 1 to 2 teaspoons, of a single-ingredient puree.
  • Gradually increase to 1 to 2 tablespoons of food once a day.
  • Follow your baby's fullness cues.

Popular first foods include pureed mango, banana, chicken, turkey, beef, peas, sweet potatoes, and infant cereal. It's up to you what food to start with, but wait 3 to 5 days between introducing each new food to make sure your baby doesn't have an allergic reaction or food intolerance. (And remember, no cow's milk or honey until age 1.)

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

How much a 6- to 8-month-old should eat

As your little one gets more comfortable with solids, you can increase the frequency of meals and variety of food.

  • Transition from one to two meals a day, typically by 8 months.
  • Over time, add a second food to each meal. The photo above is an example of a meal with two foods.
  • Once you've worked up to two meals with two foods each, aim for a balance of proteins, vegetables, fruits, and grains in their daily diet.
  • Whenever you introduce a new food, start with a very small amount, a teaspoon or two, to allow your baby to get used to its flavor and texture.
  • Start with a soupy consistency. Gradually add more texture as their eating skills improve.

Expect their intake of breast milk or formula to go down. They'll start drinking less of it as they eat more solid foods. Provide healthy options at mealtimes, and let them choose how much to eat.

Note: The jars in all photos are standard 4-ounce baby food jars.

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

Breakfast for a younger baby (6 to 8 months)

Cereal and fruit make an easy combination for a morning meal.

Grain: Iron-fortified, whole-grain infant cereal is a popular first grain. At 6 months, a typical daily portion of infant cereal mixed with breast milk or formula might be 2 to 3 tablespoons, increasing to 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) by 8 months. (It's best to avoid rice cereal, though.)

Fruit: Babies love the natural sweetness of fruits like pears, apples, berries, prunes, and stone fruits. Between 6 and 8 months, a baby will typically transition from about 2 to 3 tablespoons of fruit puree a day to 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) of mashed or minced fruit.

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

Dinner for a younger baby (6 to 8 months)

If you serve a grain and fruit in the morning, consider offering a protein-rich food and vegetable later in the day. Your child may eat more or less than the amounts shown.

Protein: A baby might transition from eating 1 to 2 tablespoons of meat puree at 6 months to 2 to 4 tablespoons at 8 months, for example. Other good protein sources include cheese, unsweetened plain whole-milk yogurt, tofu, beans, and lentils.

Vegetables: Between 6 and 8 months, a baby will typically transition from about 2 to 3 tablespoons of vegetable puree a day to 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup). Try classic favorites like carrots, spinach, or butternut squash, as well as less traditional first foods such as parsnips, beets, or asparagus.

As your child's eating skills improve, gradually add more texture by dicing or mincing foods.

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

How much an 8- to 12-month-old should eat

By 8 months or so, your baby is likely getting the hang of eating and needs to eat more calories to support their growing body. But since their little belly can't hold a lot of food, they'll need to eat more often. Every baby is different, but this may be a good time to try offering a third solid food meal.

During this period:

  • Continue to give your baby breast milk or formula.
  • Add morning and afternoon snacks. (Some babies this age are happy with breast milk or formula as their snack, while others gravitate toward solid foods. ) Once you've added a third meal and snacks, your baby will be eating or drinking something about every two to three hours.
  • Continue to aim for a mix of proteins, vegetables, fruits, and grains.
  • Introduce coarser and chunkier textures, for example, by dicing or mincing food instead of pureeing it, and graduate to soft finger foods as your baby's eating skills improve.
  • Avoid foods with added sugars. Check the Nutrition Facts label on packaged foods, and try to steer clear of foods that list 1 gram or more of "Added Sugars."
  • Provide healthy options, and let your baby choose how much to eat.

To visualize daily portions for an 8- to 12-month-old, check out the following photos of a typical day's menu for a baby this age, developed by the AAP.

Your child may eat more or less than these amounts. If you're concerned about how much your baby is eating, talk to their doctor for advice.

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

Breakfast for an older baby (8 to 12 months)

The AAP sample menu for a baby 8 to 12 months features a breakfast consisting of:

  • 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) whole-grain infant cereal mixed with formula or breast milk
  • 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) diced fruit

Note: This is an example. Your baby may eat different foods and amounts.

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

Morning snack for an older baby (8 to 12 months)

The AAP sample menu for a baby 8 to 12 months features a morning snack consisting of:

  • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) diced cheese or cooked vegetables

Note: This is an example of a morning snack, which babies typically add sometime between 8 and 12 months. Your baby may eat different foods and amounts.

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

Lunch for an older baby (8 to 12 months)

The AAP sample menu for a baby 8 to 12 months features a lunch consisting of:

  • 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) unsweetened plain whole-milk yogurt or cottage cheese, or minced meat
  • 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) diced or mashed yellow or orange vegetable

Note: This is an example. Your baby may eat different foods and amounts.

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

Afternoon snack for an older baby (8 to 12 months)

The AAP sample menu for a baby 8 to 12 months features an afternoon snack consisting of:

  • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) diced fruit or unsweetened plain whole-milk yogurt
  • 1 whole-grain teething biscuit or cracker

Note: This is an example of an afternoon snack, which babies typically add sometime between 8 and 12 months. Your baby may eat different foods and amounts.

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

Dinner for older baby (8 to 12 months)

The AAP sample menu for a baby 8 to 12 months features a dinner consisting of:

  • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) minced or ground poultry or meat, or diced tofu
  • 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2) cup diced, cooked green vegetable
  • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) noodles, pasta, rice, or potato
  • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) diced fruit

Note: This is an example. Your baby may eat different foods and amounts.

Photo credit: Karla Martin for BabyCenter

How much should my baby drink once they start eating solids?

Breast milk or formula will fully meet your child's hydration needs until they're about 6 months old. They may start drinking less as solid foods become a bigger part of their diet. Here are typical daily amounts by age – your baby's intake may be different, however.

6 to 8 months: 24 to 32 ounces of formula, or continued breastfeeding on demand

8 to 12 months: 24 ounces of formula, or continued breastfeeding on demand

Water: You can offer your baby water once they start eating solids, but let them self-regulate how much they drink. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends giving babies who are 6 to 12 months old 4 to 6 ounces of water a day, but what your baby decides to drink may vary. They may drink more on a hot day, for example.

Avoid juice: Juice isn't recommended for babies younger than 12 months.

Photo credit: / SDI Productions

Your baby has the final say

Keep in mind that these portions are an estimate. The truth is, every baby is different, and there's no set amount of food that's appropriate for every baby at every stage.

If you're worried about whether your baby is eating enough – or too much – the best advice is to look for and respond to signs that your baby is full.

Your baby's doctor will chart their weight gain at regular intervals. If the doctor sees a consistent growth curve and doesn't have other concerns, your baby is most likely eating the right amount of food.

Hungry for more?

Age-by-age guide to feeding your baby

The 10 best foods for babies

The worst foods for babies

Using spices and seasoning in baby food

Elizabeth Dougherty

Elizabeth Dougherty is a veteran parenting writer and editor who's been contributing to BabyCenter since 2015. She's an intrepid traveler, devoted yogi, and longtime resident of Silicon Valley, where she lives with her husband and son.

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WHO recommendations for the introduction of complementary foods


Readiness of the child to complementary foods According to the WHO recommendation, existing for 2018, it is optimal to introduce complementary foods to an infant at 6-8 months. Until six months, the baby's gastrointestinal tract is still not sufficiently formed, all the necessary enzymes are not produced for the assimilation of food other than mother's milk or formula. And by 9-10 months, the child can already form stable stereotypes of eating only liquid food, and overcoming them will be painful and difficult for the baby.

Thus, WHO defines the following signs of a child's readiness for the introduction of complementary foods: the maturity of the digestive system; extinction of the solid food ejection reflex; the appearance of the first teeth, making it possible to chew; the readiness of the baby to be stable in an upright position; emotional readiness for new tastes and sensations.

Complementary feeding system WHO has developed recommendations for three complementary feeding options: cereals, vegetables, and meat.

Fruit complementary foods are not recommended for cereals and vegetables. This is due to the fact that up to 8-9 months the gastrointestinal tract of the baby is not ready for the absorption of raw fruits and fruit juices. It is vegetables and cereals that will populate the intestines with the necessary bacteria for the absorption of fruits.

Kefir, according to the WHO, is not considered complementary foods because it is not a solid food. The WHO complementary feeding scheme includes kefir only as an additional food from 8 months. The introduction of cow's milk is recommended by WHO only from 12 months.

Any complementary feeding scheme assumes that portions of complementary foods will systematically increase from half a teaspoon to 100-200 g. The first dishes for complementary foods are prepared exclusively with one-component. Each next component is introduced only after complete addiction to the previous one (6-7 days).

Product sequence

The following sequence of introduction of complementary foods is proposed.

  • Vegetables at 6 months.
  • Porridges on the water (oatmeal, buckwheat, corn) at 6.5 - 7 months.
  • Fruit puree, yolk at 8 months.
  • Milk porridge at 8-9 months.
  • Meat puree at 9 months.
  • Meat by-products at 9-10 months.
  • Kefir, cottage cheese, yogurt at 9-10 months.
  • Fish at 10 months.
  • Juice at 10-12 months.
  • Berry puree at 12 months.
  • Meat broths at 12 months.

The introduction of vegetable oil (olive, sunflower) in puree and porridge is allowed from 6 months: a scheme with 1 drop with a gradual increase to a volume of 1 teaspoon. The introduction of butter begins at 7 months: the scheme is from 1 g to 10 g in porridge.

For formula-fed babies, the first feeding schedule is similar, with a few exceptions. For these babies, it is better to introduce complementary foods from 5 months, because the milk mixture does not give the small body all the “building material”. The introduction of complementary foods differs only in terms: vegetable purees and cereals are introduced a month earlier.

First cereals

If the child's weight is significantly less than normal, WHO recommends starting complementary foods with non-dairy cereals. For babies, cereals are prepared only with non-dairy, unsalted, semi-liquid, absolutely homogeneous in consistency. The first cereals are prepared from cereal flour (the sorted and washed cereals are carefully ground and crushed).

The following sequence of introduction of cereals is proposed: buckwheat, rice, corn, oatmeal, semolina. It is recommended to cook semolina porridge only once a week, because it contains practically no nutrients, but it is rich in gluten, which can cause problems in the intestines. Proportion for the preparation of the first porridge: 5 g of cereal flour per 100 ml of water. After slightly cooling the finished porridge, chop again. In the finished porridge, you can add 1-2 drops of vegetable oil or a little expressed breast milk.

From 9 months, the baby's nutrition system involves multicomponent cereals, from products already well known to the child. You can already add vegetables and fruits familiar to the baby to cereals. At 9 months, it is allowed to cook barley and millet porridge for babies. And by 10-11 months, cereals on the water will be a great addition to meat and fish meatballs and steam cutlets.

Vegetable food

The first purees are made from one vegetable.

The sequence of introducing vegetables into complementary foods for babies suggests the following order: zucchini, cauliflower, pumpkin, potatoes, carrots, green peas, beets. These vegetables are introduced within 6-9baby months. After 1 year, you can give your child cucumbers, eggplants, tomatoes, sweet peppers, white cabbage. After preparing the puree, make sure that the mass is completely homogeneous, there are no fibers and small particles, the consistency is semi-liquid. Don't salt. Add 1-2 drops of vegetable oil or expressed milk.

If the child refuses vegetable complementary foods, cancel this product for 1-2 weeks. Try to temporarily replace it with another and return to it after a while.

Meat supplements

From 9 months old, the first meat purees are recommended for babies. The first courses are recommended to be prepared from lean meats: rabbit; quail; turkey; chicken.

Complementary foods for a 6-month-old baby are recommended to be introduced in the morning. This will allow you to track the child's reaction to an unfamiliar product before a night's sleep: is there a rash, intestinal disorders, anxiety in the baby, profuse regurgitation. It is better to give vegetables or porridge first, and then saturate with breast milk or formula. Gradually, porridge and a vegetable dish will replace one full meal. The dish must be warm and freshly cooked. Gradually, by the age of 1, your baby will develop taste preferences. You will know what dishes he eats with pleasure. In the meantime, try to fully expand the child's diet with products necessary for growth and development.

Be healthy!!!

Tables and schemes for introducing complementary foods to a child, rules for introducing products for the first 6 weeks - Alena Ponedelko

This article is a generalized analysis of two approaches to introducing complementary foods and feeding infants up to a year: the Russian Research Institute of Nutrition of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences and the World Health Organization ( WHO). Also, the analysis took into account the opinions of some respected pediatricians of our country (Y. Yakovlev and others)

FEEDING INTRODUCTION TABLES is just a tool, and in order for them not to become a "grenade", you first need to learn the instructions for handling them.

This page contains: PDF file with a table (calendar) for introducing complementary foods for the first 6 weeks

Table for introducing complementary foods for the first 6 weeks - download PDF file .

Before using tables, I strongly recommend that you read this entire article.

Two main principles for introducing complementary foods

The main thing to keep in mind before rolling up your sleeves

  • Complementary foods are introduced to prepare for the common table (that is, the baby must learn to eat on his own)
  • Complementary foods are necessary for the formation of proper eating behavior

This is the most important of all the variety of reasons to start introducing complementary foods. Of course, there are exceptions in terms of health, but we are talking about a standard situation.

Since the first stage of introducing complementary foods is precisely preparation, no breastfeeding during this period (up to 1 year according to WHO) should be removed or replaced with complementary foods.

And the second conclusion must always be put at the forefront of eating behavior. No cartoons, running after a child with a spoon, and even more so violence and blackmail.

Yes, at the first stage you will stuff the spoon, it is not difficult. It will be much more difficult to retrain a 1.5-year-old child to eat on his own or, even worse, form a food interest from scratch if the child does not start eating properly or refuses to eat (this is an extreme case).

I'll say with the doctor's words “A hungry child eats, but a tired one sleeps”. This reflects the essence of a well-formed eating behavior: I want to eat - I eat. Of course, this is more typical for an older child, when all stages of complementary feeding have been completed. And the right tactics at the very beginning is the key to the successful implementation of this rule in the future.

So, we remove all the rubbish from the head (including those imposed by pediatricians working according to Soviet manuals) and move on to the tactics of the first complementary foods.

When to start introducing complementary foods for a child

When to introduce complementary foods? I have already written about this in part in a general article. Here I will be guided by the WHO methodology stated above. It's written in black and white.

“The start of introducing complementary foods should be considered the age of 6 months, and not the beginning, but the end of 6 months or 26 weeks »
It is important to know the main indicators of complementary feeding readiness other than age .

Not the beginning of 6 months, but the child reaching the age of 6 completed months. Therefore, if your pediatrician once again prescribes complementary foods for you from 4 months without serious medical reasons, you can smile and keep a printout from this manual in your pocket. Non-critical weight loss does not apply here. This is a very complex topic, it should be discussed separately. At least 125 grams per week, babies should gain on GW, and not 700-800-800 ... per month as in their Soviet-era tables.

Dear mothers, breathe out. You have a whole month from 6 to 7 to start introducing complementary foods. It is absolutely not necessary to do this at the 21-22nd week (page 220 of the WHO recommendations, chapter 8).

It is better not to delay 8 months later, as this will already concern the development of certain chewing skills, the development of taste perception, and not just the inability of milk to provide all the needs of a rapidly growing organism in micro and macro elements.

In addition to 7 months, in general, the development of the nervous system allows the child to master the following skills:

  • biting and chewing
  • cleaning the spoon with the lips
  • lateral movement of the tongue
  • moving food to the teeth

taste food in pieces, and not just in the form of puree. You need to start with microdoses, more about this in the general article

For some reason, nutritional consultants, at least those who met me, do not focus on this for a period of weeks. It seems to me that this is very in vain, since such a backlash will allow mom to calmly determine the degree of readiness of the baby to introduce complementary foods. And this is also very important for the formation of proper eating behavior.

Feeding food too early can have a negative effect on the formation of the correct nutritional interest . The unpreparedness of the child, in turn, can lead to nervousness of the mother, as the child will refuse complementary foods, or the gastrointestinal tract will fail, then persuasion, dancing with tambourines, and so on. All this alone will not solve the problem. This is already a consequence.

It is important to determine how ready your child is for complementary foods . Not ready - move the start to 6.5 - 6.7 months. It's not critical.

2 clear signs of readiness for the introduction of complementary foods

  • Readiness of the gastrointestinal tract
  • Readiness of the nervous system (food interest)
An example of the manifestation of food interest. The child did not just take a spoon - but "stretches" for food.

Serving size of the first solid food

Your pediatrician will very likely tell you to increase the serving size to 200 grams. At the preparatory stage, this is completely optional! You remember, not a single breastfeeding (mixture) is replaced. This statement also takes its roots from pediatric tables, where a child at 6 months should consume 1 liter of food per day. We divide this into 5 doses - we get 200 milliliters

But we are talking about breast milk (formula). You breastfeed your baby on demand (if formula, then by grams, but also without changing the schedule before complementary foods). Accordingly, this recommendation has no weight until you start replacing one feeding with complementary foods, and this is definitely not the first stage. Unless, of course, you decide to quit breastfeeding early. I am talking about those mothers who plan to breastfeed for at least a year (not even up to 2, as WHO consultants now recommend, although the manual is not so strict and according to the mutual desire of mother and baby).

Myth - Start with canned puree

This myth is actively instilled by the same pediatricians (not all, we have met), scaring mothers with pesticides in purchased zucchini. WHO guidelines clearly state:

“Ideally, infants should eat the same diet as the whole family”

burgers. Therefore, if the mother prepares a common table, all seasonings are introduced after the portion of the baby is postponed. Next, a portion of the baby is brought to the desired consistency.

“Carers of the child should choose appropriate foods and prepare them in such a way as to maximize their nutritional value.”

For example, if they are vegetables, “steaming” is preferable to boiling. Therefore, if you have the time and desire, and even more so if you have access to subsistence farming, a blender and a double boiler are in your hands.

Most importantly, read the basic cooking tips if you cook yourself. And if you decide to stop at canned food, analyze the product lines in your stores, choose the best quality without starch, flour and other surprisingly unnecessary components, and buy according to the complementary food scheme.

However, the same WHO recommendations say that if you choose industrial cans, you still need to give food from the common table, "to accustom the child to a greater variety of taste sensations and textures." Again, food in pieces should be introduced from 7 months, and in one-component vegetable puree, food will be in the form of puree without pieces. Therefore, you still have to cook at least vegetables for microdoses.

Basic rules for the first phase of introducing complementary foods for the first six weeks

Complementary foods of a new product are introduced in the morning , usually for breakfast. Gradually! Serving size increases from 1/2 tsp. up to 150 - 200 gr. maximum within 7 days. Some modern pediatricians recommend extending this period at the first stage to 10-14 days. There are no strict requirements, so watch the child's well-being after introducing new food, his mood and appetite in general.

If you need more than 7 days to adapt to a new food, simply extend the proposed complementary feeding schedule over a longer period, adjusting the amount of food introduced.

Remember! At the input stage, the maximum is how much the child wants to eat (even 2-3 tablespoons), but not more than 150 - 200 gr.

And here it should be noted that a child should consume 200 grams of porridge or vegetables at 9-12 months. according to the methodological recommendations of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences (namely, the "Scientific Center for Children's Health of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences" of the State Institution "Research Institute of Nutrition of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, 2010)

In 6 months. Serving size - 150 gr.

At 7 months — 170 gr.

Therefore, your maximum is the one from which month you introduce complementary foods, and not 200 grams

New food is introduced only after the old food has been fully assimilated . If a product was rejected, we remove it completely, and introduce a new one also according to the scheme. We return to the rejected product no earlier than 14 days. It may take several approaches to try. This is absolutely normal. The child grows, there are more enzymes, tastes change. It is also possible to completely refuse to eat, for example, broccoli. Don't worry, there are many more flavors. Remove the broccoli completely before moving to the common table. Then you will use the method of interest and curiosity to attract the attention of an already grown up baby, with rapture eating the same broccoli from your plate and smacking your lips. It will be much later. And now it doesn't matter.

Digested products are gradually shifted to lunch, then to dinner.

The time of meals in the scheme is taken conditionally ! You can shift the total time by 1-2 hours to fit your sleep and wake schedule. It is desirable that the meal regimen be maintained at the time you have chosen. If breakfast is at 10:00, then it is always at 10:00 +/-10 min. From the very beginning, the regimen will help you form an understanding of the time of meals. And in the future, it will be easier for the child to control his appetite. That is, the appetite will come around for lunch, dinner, and not "when I want."

Remember! Biting during the day is a bad habit and your path to the term "little one".

Do not chase volumes at the first stage of introducing complementary foods! Verbatim from the WHO manual: “The goal in the initial stage is to teach the child to eat from a spoon ... Learn the habits of eating and enjoying new tastes”

grams!) the number of products selected from a wide variety of products, 1-2 times a day”

This means that there is no need to frantically increase the volume of new food to a full serving of 150-200 grams!! Provided that you continue to feed on demand, and breast milk remains a priority for up to a year (that is, the completion of all stages of the introduction of complementary foods and the transition to a regular common table). If you are formula feeding, you are also feeding normally at this stage. Not replacing any feeding with complementary food.

Traditional introduction of complementary foods begins with cereals or vegetables

Verbatim from WHO recommendations:
“Positive examples include cereals other than wheat, such as home-cooked and mashed rice, a soft, thick porridge made from traditional cereal products, and mashed vegetables and fruits.”

Note, WHO does not prohibit the introduction of fruits immediately, as recommended by modern complementary foods. It is enough to open any chat, where “fruit after meat” will flash here and there. This opinion exists in view of the fact that a child can get used to sweet apples and refuse to eat broccoli. It is not devoid of common sense.

Therefore, in order to minimize the possible risk of refusing vegetables, I will be guided by their recommendation in the scheme. Moreover, fruits are not the main meal, but serve for a variety of tastes and as a treat.

If you want to introduce fruits earlier, such as moderately sweet seasonal apples. Below is the serving size in grams also by month from RAMS. However, remember that apples and pears also need to be baked the first time, because. in their raw form, they carry a fairly large load on the digestive tract. Also, we introduce seasonal fruits, no mangoes, bananas or passion fruit, etc., and cooked correctly.

6 months — 60 g / 7 months — 70 gr.

All products are introduced without the addition of salt, sugar and spices. Note that in the WHO recommendations for the first complementary foods, both cereals and vegetables are good.

In Russian pediatric practice, there is such an experience: The child is "low weight" - start with cereals; problems with stool - with vegetables.

On the one hand, this statement is not without meaning, since the calorie content of cereals is indeed higher than breast milk and vegetables. However, we have already found out that there is no approved serving size at the first stage of the introduction of complementary foods

If the child eats his 150 grams of porridge, then yes. And if he eats 30-50 grams for 3-5 weeks and no more, these recommendations make no logical sense.

However, like the concept of "lightweight" is now so vague. A perfectly normal developing child of small-sized mothers and fathers will never enter the norms of pediatrician tables, which were written back in Soviet times for children on mixtures, and are completely outdated. But even there, and what can we say about the outback, these terrible 600-800-800 grams of the set are in front of mothers' eyes.

By the way, our child is also the first 4 months. I was gaining about 550-600 grams per month along the lower border, and at 4 and 5 I fulfilled the double norm and only on breast milk. Our pediatrician, although she works in a private clinic and is in good standing in the reviews, also insisted on complementary foods from 4 months. I refused. And, on the contrary, she moved complementary foods by 6.5 months, when the baby began to actively show food interest.

Therefore, think for yourself - decide for yourself. This is only your responsibility. In a year or two, your visits to the pediatrician will become much less frequent, and, by and large, she will not care what you eat there, she has a queue outside the door and 17 minutes for an appointment.

You can discuss for a long time why most pediatricians still work this way, this question has long been very well answered by the doctor himself in his book “The Health of the Child and the Common Sense of His Relatives”, the chapter “Relationships with the District Pediatrician”. Very sobering and clearly shows whose child it is.

Therefore, let's get behind pediatricians, not everyone is lucky enough to find their even paid good doctor, so we will educate ourselves and go to the pediatrician on medical issues, narrower and with specific questions, writing them out in advance on a piece of paper. And with food, we will somehow figure it out ourselves.

And finally. If your child eats with appetite, learns new tastes well, is ready to eat more, you will pass the first stage in 6 to 8 weeks. Or it may happen that the child does not want to eat first one, then another. Then the preparatory stage of the introduction of complementary foods may be delayed and this is not critical.

The main thing is to keep calm and self-control, look with the child for tastes that he will like in order to form the basis of dishes by the second stage ☝️ with which you will experiment further. The second stage begins with the introduction of meat and fruits (I indicated why above). And by the end of it, you will already get mixes: meat - vegetables, porridge - fruits. We will consider this in another article.

When it is impossible to start complementary foods for an infant

  • The child is unwell, teething
  • Vaccination is due
  • A stressful situation is coming for the child, which you know about (a trip, a large number of people at home or going to visit, going to a clinic, etc. )

In these cases, it is better to keep the child as comfortable as possible and minimize stress. Since we remember that the main food at the stage of introducing complementary foods is breast milk, it is more important to maintain interest in it.

Scheme and table of the first stage of introducing complementary foods for a child for 6 weeks - based on WHO and RAMS recommendations

Scheme for two options for starting complementary foods: vegetables and cereals

Scheme for introducing complementary foods with vegetables (we introduce vegetables first)

  • First the most hypoallergenic vegetables are introduced: zucchini - cauliflower - broccoli
  • Gluten-free cereals: buckwheat, rice, corn
  • Grams are conditional, proportional to the days of introduction and the maximum serving size (the first day is always 0.5 teaspoon)
First week

Introducing the most hypoallergenic vegetable - zucchini

Second week

Since porridge is traditionally served for breakfast, vegetables are gradually transferred to lunch. At the first stage of entering vegetables, see how it is more convenient for you. Or give two kinds of vegetables for breakfast. Or immediately share for breakfast - lunch. I would divide it up to better control the gastrointestinal response and allergies

Third week

Similar to the second week, for breakfast instead of cauliflower - broccoli, for lunch zucchini or cauliflower (alternate if both were digested, if not, the product that mastered)

Fourth week

We introduce cereals in the sequence buckwheat - rice - corn grits for breakfast. For lunch, we eat any vegetables already entered in the amount of your maximum (zucchini, cabbage or their mixes). After assimilation of cereals, we add vegetable oil to them. By the end of this period, the child is offered complementary foods 2 times a day in its maximum volume (150 grams per 1 serving)

Fifth week

Taking into account the fact that in the recommendations of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, cereals are always offered in the morning, we cook 2 types of cereals in the morning. Vegetables are left for lunch in the amount of your "full portion" (150 - 170 grams)

Sixth week

Further, by analogy, corn porridge is introduced for breakfast. And for breakfast, rice and buckwheat are left in turn. Also decreasing in volume as the corn porridge increases. Lunch no change - vegetables in the amount of your "full serving" (150 - 170 grams per serving)

Not sure? I also decided that everything is somehow complicated, and therefore I brought everything into one table. Below is a link to download it.

Complementary feeding table for the first 6 weeks

Here is an image with a table below, if you click on it, you can download a PDF file with a complementary feeding table for the first 6 weeks. It also contains grammar and more and more clearly Ska download PDF file - Scheme and table for introducing complementary foods to a child for the first 6 weeks - based on WHO recommendations.
This table can be your sample plan for introducing complementary foods . It also has free cells in which you can put dates and get complementary feeding calendar .

After you have completed these 6 weeks, the first stage of complementary feeding can be considered complete. You can either replace the remaining vegetables at the first stage, for example, if something from the first three does not work, or introduce gradually at the second stage already with meat and fruits. This will be even better since they are more allergenic.

A little breast milk (or formula) can be added to ready-made porridge and puree for taste, as I wrote earlier. ☝️ Do not cook! Don't forget to add vegetable oil. By the end of the first stage, the volume of vegetable oil will be about 3 grams. More detailed information on the steps for entering products and quantities in the table below. It will also come in handy for 2-4 stages.

Next comes the second stage of the introduction of complementary foods. I will talk about its features in a separate article, also based on the recommendations of WHO and RAMS.

Gluten-free and milk-free cereals are introduced first. This is important in order to minimize the risk of developing an allergy to gluten and cow's milk protein. There is a detailed article about gluten and “what it is eaten with” on the website. Gluten-free is buckwheat, rice, corn (like cereals). At the first stage, these tastes are enough for the child.

To get a scheme for introducing complementary foods from cereals, you just need to swap all cereals with vegetables in the "scheme for introducing complementary foods from vegetables" (above in this material). That is, first we put buckwheat instead of zucchini, then rice instead of cauliflower - corn porridge instead of broccoli. Then come vegetables zucchini - cauliflower - broccoli. Grams remain unchanged.

Important points during the introduction of complementary foods

  • Be sure to monitor the child's condition and his reactions to the introduction of new products. A food diary can help you with this. So you can understand what and when you gave, if you see an allergy or problems with the stool, or a change in the general condition. When most of the products have already been introduced, you can refuse it.
  • When weaning begins, start offering water if the baby is breastfed without supplementation. At this stage, there is no mandatory rule. How much he drinks, how much he drinks. Water is better to offer raw purified or baby water, not boiled. As Dr. Komarovsky says: "boiled water does not exist in nature."

What to breastfeed or complementary foods first?

On page 229 of chapter 8 of the WHO recommendations it is clearly stated:

“Food should be offered after breastfeeding to avoid replacing breast milk with complementary foods”

At the same time, counselors say, on the contrary, “drink complementary foods with breast milk”. Again a mismatch.

It is logical that it would be more convenient for the baby to drink complementary foods that are not very tasty. Pediatrician Yakov Yakovlev writes about the same thing and believes that not everyone wants some kind of complementary foods after milk, and this issue needs to be approached individually. After 6 months the risk of reduced lactation is not great.

Breastfeeding remains the main source of nutrition for a baby up to a year. Unless, of course, you decide for some reason to complete it earlier. Then you switch not to complementary foods, but to a mixture and give it on schedule and in volumes already according to age.

It will be possible to replace feeding after all stages of introduction of products are completed, namely after a year. The child goes to the common table, and breast milk remains a pleasant bonus as long as it brings mutual pleasure to mother and child. In general, the WHO recommends that breastfeeding be stopped until 2 years of age. Russian science is not so categorical.

The main and most important rule for introducing complementary foods!

  • Complementary foods are not forced! If you see, the child categorically does not eat what is offered, spits, hysteria (not just pushes out with his tongue, but does not even try to taste it), no matter how the grandmothers, the pediatrician, the husband and even the neighbor who has a child at 6 months old insist. already ate a baked apple, ☝️ leave this venture for at least a week - or even two. No violence, no shoving, worse than being held at the table. This is an indicator that the time has not yet come for your baby.
  • Create your first food interest! Sit on your knees when you eat, show food, spoons, plates. Let everything touch. Just remove anything dangerous, sharp, hot or valuable and expensive from the access area. Babies learn so quickly that you won't even notice how the baby himself or herself takes a spoon. Even if you do not remember anything written above, this point is the most important. Understanding that everything has its time will save your nerves. And for a baby, a calm and affectionate mother is more important than a belly stuffed according to outdated rules.


After re-reading a bunch of literature, having reached the very essence of this seemingly most mundane topic, only one question remained in my head. Why do our scientific minds from the Academy of Sciences and representatives of pediatrics for the most part (here I give a purely personal experience, whom I met and read myself) so actively insist on the early introduction of complementary foods.

If now there is an opportunity for mom to eat right, take high-quality vitamins and minerals, baby formulas are adapted, why this rush? Why injure an unprepared gastrointestinal tract, which will become a possible cause of upset not only for the baby’s tummy, but also for mother’s nerves.

The only answer that came to my mind was whether it was lobbying interests of baby food manufacturers at the government level. Or maybe this is a way to quickly adapt the child to kindergarten, where you have to eat everything on your plate and there is no time to experiment with tastes? Before she eats, before mommy goes to work and begins to work for the good of the state, pay taxes to the treasury. First, buy jars of food manufacturers, then earn on new ones. And the child is in kindergarten, the state provides him with a place in society, if you're lucky. If not, mom and dad will have an incentive to earn money for a private kindergarten. Of course, this is not a declared topic at all, but my analytical thoughts have gone so far.

Perhaps you will also have interesting thoughts on this matter. Share, let's discuss here. And let's leave our children behind. You and I will have time to prepare pancakes and cutlets in another year. Let's be literate now, let's read the instructions and manuals of various respected organizations, collect the opinions of various respected pediatricians, and not blindly believe the one who was given to us by the state in our area. As the well-known doctor says, our medicine is free, and, accordingly, the approach to care and treatment costs the same amount.

Love children - breastfeed!

This material was created based on the recommendations of the WHO "Feeding and nutrition of infants and young children"

If you have read the article in full and watched all the videos on this page - this is a real reason to be proud of yourself! Below is my set of tutorials!


Complementary feeding tables for introducing the main categories of products: cereals, vegetables, meat, fruits, dairy products

All complementary foods, including water, teas, juices, milk and milk equivalents

Toolkit: How to select vegetables, prepare and serve safely.

Learn more