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A Solid Foods Feeding Schedule: Types and Amounts of Solid Foods By Age


When it comes to starting your baby on solids, the list of “dos” and “don’ts” seems long, doesn’t it?  Enter a simple question like, “How much should I feed my baby at each meal?” or “When should I start feeding my baby dairy?” into a search engine, and you’ll find pages and pages answers (many of which contradict each other!)

We know that when it comes to baby schedules, moms like to have the basics presented to them in a clear, easy-to-understand way.  We’ve attempted to do just that in this article.  Below, you’ll find two simple charts:   one outlines the types of solid foods you can feed your baby, by age; the other highlights amounts and serving sizes, by age.  Use both as a guide as you shop for and prepare your baby’s foods.

Remember, these charts are a general guide — they’re not set in stone!  If your baby eats more servings of vegetables in a day than we’ve recommended here, good for him!  We’ve simply grouped the foods based on their digestability, texture, and allergy risk.  What’s more, the serving sizes we recommend are general ranges, but all babies are unique.

You’ll also notice that this chart shows solid food beginning between 4-6 months. You can start small amounts of solid food as early as 4 months; however, based on the most recent health information, we recommend waiting until closer to 6 months to start solids.

As you look over the recommended amounts of solid food, keep one thing in mind: you should always prioritize your baby’s breastmilk or formula intake over your baby’s solid food intake. In other words, if your baby isn’t drinking the recommended amounts of breastmilk or formula, but is eating plenty of solid food, be sure to decrease their solid food intake and really focus on making sure they’re drinking the recommended amounts of breastmilk or formula.

Finally, keep in mind that the information offered here should never replace the advice or guidance of your baby’s doctor.

TYPES OF SOLID FOODS BY AGE

Age Grains Fruits Vegetables Meat and Dairy Feeding Tip
Birth-4 Months None None None None At this age, breastmilk or formula is all a baby needs to be properly nourished.
4-6 Months Rice cereal (traditionally a baby’s very first food), followed by oatmeal and barley. Apple, Avocado, Banana, Pear Green Beans, Sweet Potato, Squash None Not sure if your baby’s ready for solids? Review the tips for when to start.
7-8 Months Same as above. Same as above, plus cherries, mango, papaya, nectarines and peaches, and plums. Same as above, plus carrots, cauliflower, peas, potatoes, pumpkin, and zucchini. Poultry (chicken and turkey), beans, and legumes.  Doctors used to recommend waiting to offer egg whites until after 12 months; that recommendation has changed. Now, egg yolks and whites can be introduced around 8 months. In the beginning, it’s best to offer baby single-ingredient meals. Around 8 months, however, you can start mixing foods for more interesting tastes.
9-10 Months Same as above, plus quinoa, wheat, pasta, crackers, bread, bulgar, kasha, and millet. Same as above, plus blueberries, coconut, figs, grapes (mashed), kiwi, and melon. Same as above, plus asparagus, beans, beets, broccoli, cucumber, eggplant, mushrooms, onion, peppers, and spinach. Same as above, including yogurt, cheese (including cottage cheese and cream cheese), beef, pork, tofu. Begin offering your baby tiny bits of food; you can feed these to her on a spoon or spread them on a tray and encourage her to feed herself.
11-12 Months Same as above. Same as above, plus tomatoes, citrus fruits, and strawberries. Same as above, plus corn. Same as above, plus fish. Whole milk, shellfish, nuts, and nut butters can be introduced any time after 12 months. By this point, your baby should be feeding himself more and more. Whenever possible, offer your baby finger food at meals.

 

AMOUNTS OF SOLID FOODS BY AGE

Age Liquid

(per day)

Grains

(per day)

Fruit

(per day)

Vegetables

(per day)

Meat and Dairy

(per day)

Birth-4 months 25-35 oz of breastmilk (~6 breastfeeding sessions) or 20-30 oz. formula (or combination). No water or juice. None None None None
4-6 months (1-2 solid feedings per day) 25-35 oz of breastmilk (~5-8 breastfeeding sessions) or 20-30 oz. formula (or combination). No water or juice. 1-2 tablespoons dry infant cereal, mixed with breastmilk or formula 1-2 tablespoons pureed fruit 1-2 tablespoons pureed vegetables None
7-8 months (2-3 solid feedings per day) 25-35 oz of breastmilk (~5 breastfeeding sessions) or 20-30 oz. formula (or combination). 2-3 oz. of  water.** 1-6 tablespoons dry infant cereal, mixed with breastmilk or formula 1-6 tablespoons pureed/mashed fruit 1-6 tablespoons pureed/mashed vegetables Meat: 1-2 tablespoons pureed/mashed protein (offer at 8 months)
Dairy: 1/4-1/2 cup yogurt or cottage cheese; 1 oz. shredded cheese
9-10 months (3 solid feedings per day) 25-35 oz of breastmilk (~4-5 breastfeeding sessions) or 20-30 oz. formula (or combination). 4-6 oz. of  water.** 2-4 tablespoons dry infant cereal, mixed with breastmilk or formula.
1-2 servings other grains*
4-8 tablespoons mashed/chopped fruit 4-12 tablespoons mashed/chopped vegetables Meat: 2-6 tablespoons mashed/chopped protein
Dairy: Same as 7-8 month recommendations.
11-12 months (3 solid feedings per day) 25-35 oz of breastmilk (~3-4 breastfeeding sessions) or 20-30 oz. formula (or combination). 6-8 oz. of water.** Same as above, except increase “other grains” to 2 servings 6-8 tablespoons mashed/chopped fruit, or 1/2 cup diced 6-12 tablespoons mashed/chopped vegetables, or 1/2 – 3/4 cup diced Meat: 2-6 tablespoons mashed/chopped protein, or 1/4 cup diced
Dairy: Same as 7-8 month recommendations.

*1 serving of “other grains” = 1/2 slice of bread, 2 crackers, 1/2 cup Cheerios, or 1/2 cup whole wheat pasta

**You can offer small amounts of juice at this age, too, but based on pediatric dental recommendations, we don’t advise offering much juice at all (if any).  We also advise that parents offer breastmilk or formula first.  Only offer juice or water if your baby is getting the breastmilk and/or formula he needs each day.

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Have anything you’d like to add to our chart? Share your input below!

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34 Responses to A Solid Foods Feeding Schedule: Types and Amounts of Solid Foods By Age

  1. Veronica George says:

    I’m concerned about baby choking on food. When do I know its okay to give baby finger foods?

    • EmilyDeJeu says:

      @ Veronica George – this is a matter of personal preference, really. Some proponents of Baby Led Weaning give their babies finger food at a pretty early age (6 months or so, to start). Other parents are nervous about this and prefer to wait until a bit later. Most babies are able to (and eager to!) self-feed at around 7 or 8 months, so that may be a good age to start with small pieces of soft foods, or perhaps with those dissolvable ‘puffs’. Just be sure to supervise carefully 🙂

  2. josiebohling says:

    Hi,

    I wanted to clarify the quantity recommended on the chart. For instance in the 4-6 month portions is it recommended that they have 1-2 tablespoons from each category each day? Or is recommended only 1-2 tablespoons from one category a day?
    Thus are we feeding them potentially 6 tablespoons of food over the course of a day for a 4-6 month baby and 20 tablespoons for a 7-8 monther?

    Thanks, Josie

    • EmilyDeJeu says:

      @Josiebohling – great question! The recommendations reflect a baby eating food from each category each day. However, a baby who eats some cereal, some fruit, and some veggies each day would likely fall in the middle of those ranges. So, for example, a 7 or 8 month old would not likely eat 6 T of cereal, 6 T of fruit, 6 T of veggies, etc. If you are offering your 7 or 8 month old foods from each category, including meats and dairy, then you would want to offer smaller amounts (maybe 2-3 T of each). However, if you are sticking with just cereal at 7 or 8 months, then you would want to offer a larger amount. Or, let’s say that your baby is not a big veggie fan – if he eats just 1T of a veggie puree, for example, then you could compensate by offering a bigger quantity of fruit.

      Does this help? Thanks for commenting, @josiebohling!

  3. natalie hight says:

    Super helpful. Thanks so much for compiling & printing this information!

  4. Sarah says:

    This is the best list I have found so far and I went though many hours of looking at charts! I refer back to this chart constantly! Thank you!

  5. Tiffany says:

    I see that for a six month old the chart says 1-2 solid food feedings per day and lists three categories of food per day. One grain, one fruit, one veggie. I have been introducing a new food every week and only feeding that food because I thought I had to watch out for allergies that way. When can I stop that? Also, it seems like I should be feeding her more than one type of food in a day. So should I just offer things that have already been introduced? Thank you for the site, so helpful!

    • EmilyDeJeu says:

      @ Tiffany – you don’t have to worry too much about offering just one food for an entire week – while it’s not advised to introduce multiple new foods each day, you can introduce a new food, wait about 48 hours, and then introduce a new one. That’ll allow you to add some variety 🙂

  6. DH says:

    Curious about the logic of when to add some foods. Why green beans but not peas, why apple but not peach? Please explain.

    • EmilyDeJeu says:

      @ DH – the recommendations in this chart come for a dietitan’s recommendations on the progression of foods that tends to be easiest on baby’s tummy, and that tends to minimize the chances for complications for adverse reactions like constipation, diarrhea, acid reflux, sensitivities, etc. However, this is very much a rough guide – you don’t have to follow it to the letter, particularly if you have no family history of food sensitivities or digestive issues. Hope this helps!

  7. NatesMommy says:

    My 13 month old is getting 3 solid meals a day plus bottles of 50/50 breastmilk and whole milk. He was 7wks early and is on the thin side because he’s tall, about 30″ and 19.6lb. Our problem is although we offer him solids 3 times a day, he doesn’t usually eat all or even most of it. He really enjoys fruit and will eat that up, but otherwise the actual amount he’s eating varies day to day. Obviously we can’t force him to eat, but his doctor wants him to be getting more solids than milk at this point. Any ideas?

    • EmilyDeJeu says:

      @ NatesMommy – he doesn’t snack, does he? And I’m assuming you’re offering the solid food before you give him any milk? If you can ensure that your son is coming to the table with an appetite, that’ll help. Additionally, it can be helpful to split up the meal – offer the things he’s usually reluctant to eat (like protein or veggies) first, and then, once he’s eaten enough of those, offer the things he chooses to eat, like fruit.

      Hope this helps! 🙂

  8. jane says:

    What research is your amount of breastfeeding based on? I am very surprised by it.

    • EmilyDeJeu says:

      @ jane – can I ask what surprises you? We had a lactation consultant and a registered dietitian help us create this chart. Hope this info helps.

  9. Diana says:

    Is there any recommendation/schedule how to give the recommended amount of breast milk and solids?. For example should I start with breast feeding, wait for an hour and then give solids?. My 6 months old has considerably decreased her breast milk intake as she is not empting my breasts and is only eatting 1 spoon/ occ. 2 spoons of solids morning and midmorning. Any recommendations how to address this issue?. Thanks

    • EmilyDeJeu says:

      @ Diana – definitely start with breastfeeding. At this age, breastfeeding is much more important than solid food feeding. Hope this helps – good luck!

  10. Rita says:

    Hi, when can we start to introduce some herbs & spices into baby’s foods such as cinnamon, cumin, parsley? And what about rice?

    • EmilyDeJeu says:

      @ Rita – honestly, you can introduce spices and seasonings whenever you feel ready 🙂 In fact, it may be good to start with herbs and spices earlier rather than later, as you can get your baby’s palate accustomed to a wider range of flavors. As for rice – that makes a great early food! Just be sure it’s soft and easy to chew; if it is, then you should be able to feed it to your baby starting at about 6 months.

      Thanks for commenting!

  11. Carolyn says:

    This is a great chart but I’m still unsure where my baby lands and if I’m doing the right thing. My daughter is almost 7 months and has been having 3 solid meals a day for at least a month. She loves food! She can easily take down 4-5 ounces in a meal, which I’m sure is close to 6tablespoons or more. Typically she’ll have a cereal with pear for breakfast, sweet potatoes for lunch and peas with spinach/kale for dinner. Often dinner will also include some prunes with apples or banana. This seems to be too much according to your chart, am I right? She is also still nursing every 2 or 3 hours during the day, but sleeps through 9-11 hours a night.
    She’s also only in the 25% for weight.
    Am I over feeding her solids or can I keep giving her as much as I am (she’s never ‘done’ when I stop, she’d always eat more if offered)?

    • EmilyDeJeu says:

      @ Carolyn – you can use the chart as a guide, but don’t get too hung up on amounts of they don’t seem helpful. If your daughter seems to be thriving with the amount she is eating, and is still taking plenty of breast milk (sounds like that is the case), then don’t worry about it. If you are truly concerned, I’d suggest going to your healthcare provider, but to me, it sounds like you are doing a great job!!

      Thanks for commenting! 🙂

  12. Danielle says:

    I just introduced solids this week to my 5 1/2 month old. I’m unclear on when to give my baby solids. Should I bottle feed first, then give solids, or bottle feed after? Or should solids be given at a separate time than bottle feeding (ie: bottle feed at 9am, solids at 10am)? Thanks!

    • EmilyDeJeu says:

      @ Danielle – great question! At this age, the usual recommendation is to offer breastmilk and/or formula first, then offer solids. This advice follows the principle that, for the first year, breastmilk and/or formula is the best source of nutrition and nourishment for your baby. Doing it this way can also help a reluctant solid food-eater, since you are “taking the edge off” your baby’s hunger before you introduce new foods. That can help a baby accept solid food more easily than trying to offer solid foods during a time when baby is hungry.

      You could also offer solids separately from breastmilk or formula, but you’d just want to watch the amounts you offer so as not to interfere with your usual bottle feeding amounts.

      As your baby grows, you will gradually offer more solid food and slightly less breastmilk and/or formula. But for now, I’d say one of the two approaches above should work well! Best of luck to you, Danielle, and thanks for commenting!

  13. mohamed zaki says:

    hey
    I was poking around google today and came your article about baby feeding and it make my happy find someone else speak about it because i have made a very Inclusive article about baby feeding charts
    http://www.baby-feeding-chart.com/2016/06/the-full-guide-for-baby-feeding-chart.html

    i’d be tickled pink if you consider adding it to your page

    yours

  14. Jo says:

    Hi. I feel like We are over feeding our 8 1/2 month old baby. She never pulls away to tell me she’s full. We buy those organic purées in the pouches and she will eat those at breakfast, lunch and dinner, but still wants more. They are about 4 ounces. Is it ok to give her a little bit more than that, or is that already too much?

    • Rebekah says:

      We had the same issue with our first daughter – she seemed to want to just eat and eat. For a while we tried to restrict her to the “recommended” amounts but it became obvious that she was still hungry, turns out that she was just a hungry baby and needed that little bit extra for growth, as long as it’s the good stuff the. We figured her little body knew what was best, she ate a whole lot more than others her age but she wasn’t over weight and was much happier when we just let her eat u til she was fully satisfied. Hope this helps

      • yvonne kosdan says:

        Does this apply when trying baby food? My 4 1/2 month old still wants more of the pouch and I give her about half now. Do I let her keep eating it?

  15. Nicole says:

    This is the most helpful chart I have found after scouring the internet for info and getting info from my doctor’s office! Thank you! We waited until our LO was just about 6 months old to start solids, but everything online is geared toward 4 month olds, so thank you for giving us a chart that is consistent with the advice to wait until 6 months! Just to clarify, for a 6 month old, when you say 1-2 T of food from each category, that means he should be getting 3-6 T of food a day, approximately, even if the food is not from all three categories, but from two categories for example? (Heads up – you spelled avocado incorrectly on your chart – I hate to point that out and sound like a snob, but your chart is so good!)

  16. Liz G says:

    Dear all,
    Happy to come across your site and sister site on sleep.
    – My 8month old seems to have a reaction to banana. She vomited after 1st time. We waited several wks, then same thing. Any experience of this with banana? (She has ezcema too which we believe could be allergy-related.
    – Also you mention in a different article that you believe breastfeeding should be the primary source of nutrition. But the link doesn’t work. I’ve recently dropped to 3-4 breastfeeds per day.
    Many thanks

  17. Beth P. says:

    My son had really bad gas and excessive spit up when he was a couple months old so it was suggested removing dairy from my diet (I exclusively bf) and everything improved. I have had a tiny bit of dairy here and there recently because he’s 6 months now and the pediatrician said their stomachs mature around then. Does that mean I should avoid dairy from his solids diet too? So far he has just had cereal, fruits and veggies. Just thinking ahead!

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