We get a lot of questions about when to introduce solids and the thing to build a great palate. We’ve put together a calendar/cheat sheet to help you along in the process that we recommend to build a robust palate. You can download from us here or it comes with your subscription of Harvest to Highchair baby food. In the meantime, here’s a couple hints and tips to help as you move into this new and exciting stage!
Every little one is different and will show signs of starting solids in their own time. Here are a couple quick initial ways to tell. 1. Do they pay attention when you eat? If they are watching your every bite or grabbing for your spoon, it might be time.
2. Hold an empty spoon to their lips. If they use their tongue to push it away, it’s probably not time yet. Your little one still has their extrusion reflex - a reflex they were born with to safeguard from choking - and isn't ready for solids. If they readily accept the spoon, the reflex is starting to dissipated and it could be time to start. But...always check with your pediatrician first.
When you do start introducing, it’s crucial to use high quality, single flavor purees one at a time so you can really allow your first time eater to experience the different tastes and textures. To really learning what they love - if the purees are mixed, then it's hard to know what they really like and dislike! We recommend starting more savory first since we are all predisposed to prefer sweet flavors. If you start sweet, they will alway be looking for that flavor and might shun the more savory flavors. Think sweet potato or butternut squash over apple or banana. One of our favorites to start with is a quick puree of avocado with either breast milk or formula until it's whipped. It's a great neutral flavor filled with healthy fats that get your little one used to moving food around in their mouth and swallowing something a little more 'solid'.
Most importantly...and as we always say...have fun! Make funny faces and play...it makes mealtime really enjoyable for both of you!