Most babies can now sit alone, are better at hand-to-mouth feeding and can rotate food from side to side in their mouth. Food independence blossoms during this time which is why babies often refuse to be fed once they can eat with their hands. Expect your baby’s feeding schedule to become a lot more routine.
Food texture: Transition from feeding baby mashed/lumpy pureed food to ground, finely chopped foods or pieces of soft table foods (or a combination of the two).
Let baby go wild with a spoon even though she will prefer to eat with her hands.
Foods to introduce:
–Cooked and chopped beans (black, kidney and lentils), spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, beets, kale, grated apple and natural cheeses.
–By the end of this period your baby may be able to eat what the family is eating at dinner (combo foods) cut into small pieces.
–Finger food choices may include whole grain crackers, whole grain pasta cut up, oat cereal (like Cheerios) and well cooked, soft veggies cut up into small pieces (with herbs and spices minus the salt).
Nutrients of concern: Nutrients of concern are the same as they are for 6-to-8-month olds – continue to include a vitamin-C rich fruit or veggie with iron fortified cereal and other iron-rich foods.
Breast milk, formula and other liquids: Gradual decline in breast milk and formula: 4-6 nursing sessions and 20-28oz formula (amounts will vary)
How many meals? Transition from 3 to 4 meals (3 meals and 1 snack) per day with 3-4 food group servings at each meal.
Equipment needed (optional): Food grinder
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For more Resources and References see the 10 to 12 month page