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Moving on to finger foods? Follow our child-led weaning checklist

Wondering when to start children’s food? Most children are ready to start trying at around six months. Child-led weaning, where your child feeds himself fingers foods, is a great way to help her discover new flavours and textures at his own pace. Here are some tips to get your child started on his solid foods adventure.

2 mins
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By Danial Ahmad ,
Jan 27, 2021

Checklist

  • Aim for “finger foods”. A piece your child can hold in his fist with a bit sticking out.
  • Aim for foods that break up easily in the mouth to reduce the risk of choking.
  • Avoid hard foods such as raw carrots to begin with.
  • Try to offer your little one a variety of child-led weaning food suitable for their age. This can include fruit (soft or cooked without added sugar), vegetables (soft cooked), boiled eggs, cooked starchy foods such as potatoes, pasta, rice, noodles, legumes like beans and lentils, meat, fish without bones, and sticks of pasteurised, full-fat hard cheese.
  • Little ones do occasionally gag when they move on to solid foods. This is different to choking so it’s important to be aware of the difference and what to do in case of either. The risk of choking is no higher with child-led weaning than traditional spoon-feeding. It’s good to prepare yourself in the event of a choking incident.
  • Never leave your child to eat on their own.
  • Try to incorporate your child’s food adventures into family mealtimes so they can feel involved and copy what the rest of the family is doing.
  • Be prepared for the mess. Some parents find placing a non-slip wipeable tablecloth, or floor mat under junior’s highchair can help with the clear-up. Check out what other handy items you might need for moving onto solid foods here.
  • Remember it’s all about exploration and discovery, let your child lead the way!
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