Top tips

Take your time

Allow plenty of time for feeding and go at your baby’s pace, as solid food will taste and feel very different to what your little one has been used to. Your baby will need to learn to move solids from the front of the tongue to the back, and how to swallow.

Mix and mash

Mix mashed vegetables, fruits or rice with your baby’s usual milk (breast or formula) to a soft, smooth consistency. Start by offering a small amount before a scheduled milk feed or in the middle of one. You could even try after a milk feed as some babies are too grumpy to try something new if they’re feeling hungry. The key is to experiment and see what works best.

Do the temperature test

Remember to always test the temperature of any food before giving it to your baby.

Be prepared for some mess

Weaning is an integral part of your little one’s development, but it’s rarely a clean experience. Let your baby touch and play with the food if they want to - just make sure you have bibs, muslin cloths and wipes at the ready.

Don’t force feed your baby

Most babies know when they've had enough to eat, so don’t force feed your baby. If you are using a spoon, wait for your baby to open their mouth when the food is offered. If it’s not a good time, just try again later.

Be patient

It can be very frustrating when your baby refuses to eat, but be patient. Offer just a few teaspoons of food once a day and give them a range of foods and textures to taste.

Be aware

Always stay nearby when your baby is eating to make sure that they don't choke. 

Invest in a highchair

Use a highchair for feeding times to help your baby sit up straight and explore foods. Babies are also less likely to choke whilst learning to chew and swallow.

Share meal times

During feeding times, try and eat something yourself at the same time, as babies love to copy.


For more information

Download the Department of Health’s policy on introducing solid foods by visiting their website

Visit the NHS Choices website for more information on weaning.


When to start
Starting at 4 months
Starting at 6 months
Weaning recipes
Allergy risks
Top tips