Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Ryan's First Food and Thoughts on Baby Led Weaning

Ryan has been showing a lot of interest in our food lately so we had talked about what we would give him to try as his first food. I had a friend send me an amazing list of websites about introducing solids, and she also shared her own personal food journal on what she gave her son and the order in which she introduced new foods. Her resources were SO helpful!

Also, a few weeks ago, I gave Ryan a cold raw carrot to gnaw on to help his teething gums. He seemed to really like chewing on it and even ate some of the shavings he sawed off with his two little bottom teeth!

I had posted this picture on Instagram and jokingly said that we were skipping rice cereal and going straight for raw carrots. But then the more I thought about it and saw how much he was eyeing the foods that we were eating, I thought he really might like feeding himself whole foods rather than a mashed up version of the same thing.

That's when I learned about a philosophy called Baby Led Weaning (weaning referring to the introduction of foods, not the end of nursing), that basically follows that exact idea. Babies start solids when they are showing interest in eating and learn to feed themselves whole foods with their hands.

As with most parenting decisions, I feel like introducing food is such a personal choice with a million different "right" ways to do it. We just went with what felt right for us. We're not necessarily "following" BLW or any particular feeding philosophy, we're just having fun with the process and not worrying too much about the "hows"- how much, how often, how long... We just want to enjoy this new stage with him and hope to help him love a variety of different foods in the process.

We decided to give him an apple first because we were cutting one up for ourselves and thought he might like to try it. (I had also read to begin with light-colored foods- specifically yellows and oranges- and then move to darker colors.) It was so fun to watch him explore the apple and figure out how to get it to stay in his mouth. He liked biting on it and naturally spit out the pieces that were too big for him, so I never really had a moment of feeling nervous about him choking on any part of it. He also figured out that he could get juice out of it and starting sucking on it for a while! It was a pretty sweet and fun moment for us as his parents watching him figure out how to eat food for the first time.

I'll be honest and say a big reason for not pushing a specific routine with solids is the convenience of breastfeeding. Our routines are pretty simple right now! He ate a chunk of an apple on Sunday and didn't eat anything aside from milk yesterday. Tomorrow we may try apple again or test out a sweet potato or banana. We're looking forward to introducing him to lots of different foods and hope they all go over as well as the apple did!

Did your kiddos have any foods they loved?! And did you find that a certain style of introducing solids worked better than another? I'd be interested to hear what worked for your kids since we're just now jumping in, so any thoughts and/or ideas are much appreciated!

Also, if you're not entirely comfortable with trying the BLW method, here is a great resource for various homemade, pureed foods your little one is sure to love! Click here to check it out. 



  1. He's so cute! Can't wait to try some of this together.
    And this has nothing to do with Ryan eating solids, but I love that you panned down and got Tally in the video too.

  2. I did BLW with both of mine, Euan wouldn't touch puree and at 8 months I gave up, handed him a ripe, peeled pear and he ate the lot! Pear, banana and steamed butternut squash were his favs at first!

  3. we are going to be starting rice cereal and purees in a few weeks here...amelia is totally ready for solids already based on her cues (and the fact that she started getting up twice to eat at night out of nowhere), but she isn't even 5 months yet so we are holding off a bit. knowing my daughter, she will be ready for more "solid" solids very soon, she won't like not eating what we're eating. i have a feeling we will start to get her tummy ready the traditional way and see where that leads us. i cannot wait though!

  4. Such sweet pics!! Finn started out with pureed veggies/fruit around 5 months. I don't think he tasted rice cereal until at least 8 months when I broke down and got him some brown rice cereal. For the first few months of solids, he'd have his 4PM bottle, 5PM "dinner" and then 7PM bottle before bed. Worked like a charm! Enjoy this phase because once they have to really eat after turning one, there's so much pressure I feel to make sure he's getting enough of the right foods and not throwing everything on the floor :)

  5. His eyes are so beautiful! And I don't have kids, but a bunch of moms I know who have tried BLW have introduced more veggies first.

  6. Oh I love that him and Caleb are so close in age because you are getting to things right before us and answer so many of my questions before anyone else does! :) We have Caleb's 4 month appointment tomorrow and I keep waiting to ask his Ped about food and when/what we can start with. I love the idea of BLW and hopefully Caleb takes to it as well.

  7. We tried rice cereal, and George HATED it. Like worse tantrum ever kind of hate. We are wanting to do BLW here soon but he is just starting to seem interested in what is going on at the dinner table. I think we are going to start with sweet potatoes.