Ultimate Guide to Starting Baby-Led Weaning with Breakfast Ideas

All parents can use some healthy baby breakfast ideas. However, whether you are starting baby-led weaning or not, coming up with baby breakfast ideas can be challenging. So below are some great baby-led weaning breakfast ideas.

Before introducing solid foods to your baby, you need a plan. So, first, I want to share a little about baby-led weaning and my experience of weaning babies to solid foods.

If you say to yourself, “Baby-led weaning, what is it?” Keep reading! You will love this method of introducing solid foods to your baby.

But, if you already know all there is to know about BLW and want some easy baby breakfast ideas, go ahead and skip to the recipes and ideas for finger foods.

>>>>>Click here to see the baby-led weaning breakfast recipes below.

What is Baby-Led Weaning?

Before starting baby-led weaning, I first did a lot of research. I had never heard of BLW before and had no idea how to start. Now I can share all my knowledge and what you need to know before starting BLW.

baby led weaning

First, this is the baby-led weaning definition: a method of introducing solid food into a baby’s diet by allowing them to feed themselves instead of being spoon-fed.

Your baby is still getting breastmilk and/or formula as their main source of nutrition even with finger foods, meaning you are only introducing solids as a way to develop their oral motor control in the beginning. With this method, you are skipping the need for pureed food.

At what age can you start baby-led weaning?

You can start baby-led weaning once you get the okay from your pediatrician. However, it is recommended to start at six months old. I started my kids when they turned six months old, and they both did great.

The rules you want to consider before starting baby-led weaning:

  1. Wait until your baby can sit up on their own.
  2. Only start with soft foods that are easy for babies to grasp.
  3. Introduce foods one at a time.
  4. Wait until they have started using their ‘pincer grasp.’
  5. NEVER leave your baby alone with food.
  6. Always have your baby sit upright when giving them food.
  7. Watch out for any allergic reactions.
  8. Always consult with your pediatrician before you start.

Starting Solids with Baby-Led Weaning

Baby-led weaning guidelines, such as starting at six months old, are recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). At this time in your baby’s life, they no longer have the tongue-thrust reflex, preventing foreign objects from entering their mouths.

Also, by six months, your baby’s digestive system has the required enzymes to absorb and break down solid food.

The best food types for starting solid foods should be soft/raw fruits or soft-cooked vegetables and fruits. The best starter foods are banana, roasted sweet potato, and avocado.

Main Concerns about Starting BLW

You may have some concerns about starting baby-led weaning with your baby. Concerns are good because you are not just starting BLW without first researching and knowing what to expect. The main concerns I had before I started baby-led weaning are below.

starting baby led weaning

How do I know if my baby is ready?

You will know your baby is ready when they show signs that they want food other than milk. There are some baby-led weaning readiness signs you can look out for. These signs include:

  • being able to sit up on their own without support
  • they are very interested in what you are eating and reach for your food
  • your baby seems insatiable with breastfeeding and bottles alone
  • they are using their ‘pincer’ grasp

Does my baby need to have teeth to start BLW?

No, your baby can do baby-led weaning without any teeth. The foods used for weaning babies are very soft, and your baby can gum them. Your baby’s gums are firm and can help break down food before they swallow.

My daughter didn’t start getting any teeth until she was eight months. By the time she did get her teeth, she was already eating things like chicken, cheerios, berries, and broccoli. You can easily start baby-led weaning with no teeth in yet.

Should I worry about portion size?

In the beginning, portion sizes don’t matter. You are only introducing foods to your baby. Babies still get their nutrients from breast milk and/or formula.

Also, portion sizes are regulated automatically once your baby starts eating more food with baby-led weaning. When you start offering more varieties of food, your baby won’t eat more than they need.

Will my baby get constipated from all the solid food?

Constipation is a possibility when you start introducing solid food. This is why it is important to remember to introduce foods slowly. Their digestive system needs to get used to processing solid food.

Be aware that your baby’s bowel movement schedule will change once you introduce solids. Your baby might start going more regularly on a schedule instead of randomly throughout the day.

Starting at six months, you can also start giving your baby small amounts of water; this can help prevent constipation when you start solids.

It is also best to start with fruits and vegetables rather than many dairies, like cheese. Cheese can cause constipation since their digestive systems are still new and can not yet process dairy.

Should I be worried about allergies?

The foods you introduce to your baby have a low risk of causing baby-led weaning allergies. Bananas, sweet potatoes, avocados, applesauce, and cooked carrot are some popular foods to start with, and they have a low chance of causing an allergic reaction.

Before introducing a new food, you should know the top foods that can cause allergies. Foods like eggs, nuts, fish, shellfish, wheat, kiwi, and sesame have caused an immediate allergic reaction.

An immediate allergic reaction means that your baby would develop a rash, swelling, or hives within minutes of eating that food, typically around their mouth area.

Foods like milk and soy can cause delayed allergic reactions. This means your baby will develop bad eczema or reflux at some point after ingesting that food.

This does not mean you should avoid any of these foods, however. Your baby has less chance of developing allergies when introduced to these foods early in life.

This is why it is important to introduce foods slowly and one at a time so you can pay attention to any reaction.

What do I do if my baby gags or chokes?

baby led weaning gagging vs choking

PIN for future reference!

The first thing mothers usually envision when thinking about giving their baby solids is their baby choking. This is why it is imperative to know what types of foods you can give your baby and the sizes the food should be.

You also need to know the difference between gagging and choking. With baby-led weaning, gagging will happen since your baby is learning how to chew and swallow food. Knowing how to tell the difference is crucial.

  • Gagging happens when food travels too far back into the mouth. Gagging is a safety mechanism for your baby so they don’t choke. Your baby will make a noise like they are coughing, and their face may turn red. Your baby is taking care of the problem themselves. The best thing you can do is stay calm and not look freaked out. If you look scared, they will get scared and could end up choking.
  • Choking is when they can’t breathe and can’t make any noise. Your baby will look terrified. Their airway is blocked, and they may turn blue since they can’t get any air. They NEED immediate help. Watch the video below for what to do when an infant is choking.

Check out this video for an example of how to help a choking baby.

What foods are best for weaning babies?

The best thing about baby-led weaning is the endless possibilities of food. You are not limited to things like pureed food. You can take something from any meal you make for the family and give it to your baby.

Baby weaning food ideas can be anything that can be made into finger foods for your baby. The best baby-led weaning foods to start with have little to no seasoning and are soft raw foods or foods that have been roasted or steamed.

What are good first foods to try with my seven-month-old baby as we begin baby-led weaning?

You can start BLW at six or seven months, depending on when your baby is ready. The best foods to start with are finger foods. Below is a list of foods perfect to start your baby on.

Baby-led weaning first foods:

  • Banana
  • Avocado
  • Skinless baked potato or sweet potato
  • Bean slightly mashed
  • Peas slightly mashed
  • Ground meat
  • Hard-boiled egg
  • Lentils
  • Salmon
  • Oatmeal
  • Boiled or steamed carrots
  • Steamed broccoli or other steamed veggies
  • Roasted or steamed cauliflower
  • Plain yogurt

I started both my kids with baby-led weaning at six months. During the baby-led weaning first week, I had them try a banana. You want to leave some peel on to hold onto it and gum at some of the exposed banana.

I also introduced them to avocado a few days later in baby-led weaning week one and used the same method. With baby-led weaning avocado, a little of the peel needs to stay on so they can grab onto it and gum off the soft fruit.

You want to start slow and not rush the introduction of new foods. By seven months, one month in, both my kids finally had their baby-led weaning first meal.

For my daughter, it was black beans with ground meat and avocado. I made enchiladas that night and saved some of each component aside without seasoning to give her.

For my son, it was deconstructed lasagna. I saved some cooked noodles, ground meat, sautéed spinach, and cheese aside for him to eat.

What are some healthy baby-led weaning breakfast recipes?

Once your baby gets the hang of baby-led weaning, the first meal you will make for them regularly will be breakfast. Here are some great healthy and easy BLW breakfast ideas. Once they get a little older, your toddler will love to cook these breakfast ideas beside you.

1. Egg Omelette

You may have heard you need to wait until they are one to give your baby eggs, but that is not true. During baby-led weaning, eggs are a perfect source of protein for your baby and one of the easiest breakfast ideas.

Ingredients:

  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tsp shredded carrot
  • 2 tsp chopped spinach
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 2 tsp shredded cheese

Instructions:

  1. In a small bowl, crack an egg and add cheese; whisk until combined. Set aside.
  2. Add oil to a small non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat.
  3. Add shredded carrot and chopped spinach to the pan and sauté for about 1 min.
  4. Turn heat down to medium and pour egg cheese mix over veggies. Gently stir. Let cook and set up for about 1 min to 1 1/2 min.
  5. Carefully flip and cook the other side for about 30-45 sec.
  6. Remove from heat and let cool. Slice into strips and serve.

Note: You can combine everything in a microwave-safe bowl and then microwave for about 60-90 sec. Let cool, then slice into strips.

2. Oatmeal Fingers

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup quick-cook oats
  • 1/3 cup water or milk of your choice like almond milk (breastmilk can also be used)
  • 2 Tbsp of mashed fruit (berries, banana, applesauce)

Instructions:

  1. Mix all ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl with a flat bottom.
  2. Microwave for about 1 min, then stir. Mash down and flatten out at the bottom of the bowl.
  3. Microwave for 2-3 more min. Until it is firm.
  4. Let cool and then remove and cut into strips.

Note: As your baby gets older, they can dip their baby-led weaning oatmeal fingers in yogurt for a more balanced healthy breakfast. You can spread nut butter on them and a sprinkle of chia seeds.

3. Banana Pancakes

Shortly after I started baby-led weaning, banana pancakes became a fast favorite in my house. My kids (currently 2 and 4) still love this healthy breakfast.

Ingredients:

  • 1 mashed ripe banana
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp almond or coconut flour
  • 1-2 tsp coconut oil (great healthy fats!)
  • dash of cinnamon
  • 1-2 Tbsp of almond milk or regular milk as needed

Instructions:

  1. Whisk up eggs and combine with mashed banana.
  2. Add cinnamon and the flour of your choice. Mix to combine.
  3. Add oil to a nonstick frying pan over medium heat.
  4. Add about 1 1/2 Tbsp of batter to make small silver dollar pancakes.
  5. After 1-2 min, flip and cook the other side 1 min more or until golden brown.
  6. Remove from heat and let cool before serving.

Note: As your baby ages, you can add new additions to the batter. I like to add flaxseed, chia seeds, or oats to the mixture. My daughter now loves to add sprinkles.

4. Crustless Quiche

Ingredients:

  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup greek yogurt or cottage cheese
  • 1/4 cup cheddar cheese
  • 2 Tbsp chopped basil
  • 3 Tbsp chopped roasted red bell pepper

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Prepare a muffin pan. Spray with cooking spray or line with muffin liners.
  3. Whisk eggs and yogurt together.
  4. Add cheese, basil, and red pepper to the egg mix.
  5. Fill muffin cups about 1/2 way full. Bake for about 25-30 min.
  6. Cool and break into pieces for your baby.

Note: There are many variations you can do for baby-led weaning quiche. You can add all different veggies or herbs. You can even do a version with shredded chicken or salmon.

5. Banana Oat Muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 egg
  • Medium ripe banana
  • 1 Tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray mini muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Add oats to a blender and blend till almost flour.
  3. Add remaining ingredients to the blender and blend till smooth.
  4. Fill muffin cups about 1/2 way full.
  5. Bake for 10-12 min until toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Let cool before breaking into pieces and serving.

Note: There are a ton of different recipes for baby-led weaning muffins. This is one of the most versatile baby-led weaning breakfast ideas.

Instead of bananas, you could also use pumpkin or sweet potato for this recipe. You could add in some blueberries and skip the peanut butter for another variation.

Additional Baby-Led Weaning Breakfast Ideas for busy mornings:

6. Avocado toast fingers

7. Scrambled Eggs

8. Mashed berries in greek yogurt

9. Oatmeal or Overnight Oats

10. Banana slices rolled in crushed cheerios

11. French toast strips

12. Frittata

FAQs about BLW

How safe is baby-led weaning?

There are concerns included with any method of introducing food to a baby. Before introducing any new foods, whether using baby-led weaning or not, it is important to know what to look out for.

With baby-led weaning, safety concerns include knowing whether they are developmentally ready, watching out for potential allergies, and knowing what to do if the baby is choking. Watch the above video, so you know exactly what to do.

You may still be wondering, is baby-led weaning dangerous? The answer is no, as long as you know the safety concerns and never leave your baby alone with food.

What are the main benefits of baby-led weaning?

The baby-led weaning pros:

  • Promotes good eating behaviors
  • Reduces fussiness around food
  • It makes feeding your baby easier
  • The baby can be involved with the whole family for meals.
  • Reduces the chance of allergies later in life
  • Reduces the risk of overeating and weight gain later in life
  • Allows a child to regulate when they are full

How do I start baby-led weaning at six months?

Start slowly and introduce foods one at a time. At first, give just one meal with solid food, like a healthy breakfast. It can be before or after their morning bottle. It doesn’t have to be a full meal; first, it is just to get them used to solid food. Banana is always a great option to start with.

Some baby-led weaning tips to remember before beginning:

  • Always monitor for allergic reactions when introducing new foods.
  • Know the difference between gagging and choking.
  • Know what to do if your baby starts choking.
  • Talk to your pediatrician before starting baby-led weaning.
  • Start with soft fruits and vegetables.
  • Cook hard fruits and vegetables until soft.
  • Never leave a baby unattended with food.

Are small round foods okay?

Blueberries are possible when you start baby-led weaning, but you never want to give them whole. Make sure to mash them a little or cut them in fourths.

With the method of baby-led weaning, cutting food is essential for safety. You want to make sure it is small enough and soft enough that if they did swallow it, they wouldn’t choke. Or it must be long enough for them to hold onto and gum at.

Baby Led Weaning Pros and Cons

The pros of baby-led weaning are similar to the benefits above. One important pro is that BLW allows your baby to choose what and how much of something they eat. This makes them aware of their own hunger cues and prevents overeating when they get older.

The cons to baby-led weaning are that it is possible to have choking and can be very messy. Choking can be prevented, and you should understand the difference between gagging and choking before starting baby-led weaning.

baby eating spaghetti with BLW

Allowing your baby to feed themselves can create quite a mess as a result. To help with the baby-led weaning mess, I recommend getting an easy-to-clean high chair with a removable tray.

Having a baby-led weaning high chair with a removable tray is a time saver for clean-up! Also, look into getting a baby weaning floor mat you can put under the high chair for any mess that may spill over onto the floor.

Baby Led Weaning Essentials

Some baby weaning accessories can make BLW much easier for both mom and baby. Below are some of my favorite baby-led weaning products I used for my two kids.

Baby Plates with Suction - SILIVO Silicone Toddler Plates with Suction Cups,Suction Plates for Toddlers,Babies and Kids - Dishwasher & Microwave Safe
  • Plates with Suction Cups: Toddler plates with suction cups can stick...
  • Food Grade Material: Baby plates constructed of high-quality 100% pure...
  • Size of Silicone Plates: Size:10.0x7.7x1.0 inch,Perfect size with...

This baby-led weaning plate is amazing and so adorable. They come in different animal shapes and different colors. They have suction cups on the bottom to suction directly onto the high chair.

Bumkins Sleeved Baby or Toddler Bib, Smock, Waterproof Fabric, Fits Ages 6-24 Months, Disney Mickey Mouse Classic
  • FITS 6 TO 24 MOS – For babies and toddlers; the crumb catcher /...
  • SAVING YOU FROM MESSES – Offers generous coverage to help you save...
  • SOFT YET STRONG – Bumkins signature waterproof fabric is durable and...
Bumkins Sleeved Bib Baby Bib, Toddler Bib, Smock, Waterproof Fabric, Fits Ages 6-24 Months – Chevron Gray
  • FITS 6 TO 24 MOS – For babies and toddlers; the crumb catcher /...
  • SAVING YOU FROM MESSES – Offers generous coverage to help you save...
  • SOFT YET STRONG – Bumkins signature waterproof fabric is durable and...

These long-sleeve smocks make the best baby-led weaning bibs.

Olababy 100% Silicone Soft-Tip Training Spoon for Baby Led Weaning 2pack
  • Encourages baby to learn self-feeding
  • Flexible material to scoop food at any angle
  • Spoon base allows for hygienic, upright placement on any surface

These baby-led weaning spoons are so perfect. They allow your baby to scoop food no matter what angle they have it at. Then when they chew on it, they get some food. It makes it so easy for little ones to start using spoons.

baby led weaning mats

Here are some other baby-led weaning utensils and items that I also loved.

Conclusion

Baby-Led Weaning is a great way to introduce solids to your baby. You can start as early as six months with the okay from your pediatrician. When your child has control over eating, they tend to stop eating when they are full. Also, it helps later in life with not overeating; they learn to trust their bodies.

I had a delightful experience doing baby-led weaning for my kids. They are both great eaters now and enjoy all types of different foods. They are also not afraid to try new foods.

This method allows you to skip pureed food and move straight to solid foods. Baby-led weaning breakfast ideas are perfect for those busy mornings. Try out this method of introducing solid food to your babies. I know you will love it too!

Note: These are all my own opinions and experiences. This should not be viewed as medical advice. Always consult your pediatrician before starting to introduce solid food to your baby.

Ultimate Guide to Starting Baby-Led Weaning with Breakfast IdeasUltimate Guide to Starting Baby-Led Weaning with Breakfast Ideas
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6 thoughts on “Ultimate Guide to Starting Baby-Led Weaning with Breakfast Ideas”

  1. My baby is 5 months and I’ve been contemplating trying BLW! This post offers so ugh good info and addresses all my fears and questions. Thank you!

    1. Hi Rebecca,
      I so glad it helped you. You should definitely try it! As a new mom I was so scared to try baby led weaning but it has worked out so well for both my kids. It makes things so much easier. Especially when you go out to restaurant with little ones, you can just give them a little of whatever you are eating. If you ever have any questions about it let me know! Good luck Mama!

  2. This is such great information. I was a disaster as a new mom trying to figure out what they needed. I definitely could have used this then!

    1. Same! lol As a new mom I was terrified to try baby led weaning and had to do a lot of research before I did. But I am so happy I did baby led weaning, it made things so much easier!

  3. I’m considering doing BLW with my second (due this month)! This is a great, informative post. I love the recipe ideas as they also seem like things I can get my two year old to eat as well!

    1. Hi Cassandra,
      I’m so glad you found it helpful and I hope you end up doing baby led weaning. It really is a great method! Yes these recipes are also great for toddlers. My kids still love them (they are 2 and 4). Congrats on you soon to come second! I wish you a smooth and fast delivery 😊
      Heather

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