When it’s time to start solids, most first-time parents and caregivers feel lost on what to buy. There are so many options to choose from! You don’t need a lot of items but these Baby Feeding Essentials can help in this exciting journey!
I will share my top picks for highchairs, grip dishes, baby spoons, cups, and bibs. These are the 5 baby led weaning must haves to get started!
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Table of Contents
The Best Choice of Highchair
A good highchair ensures your little one is in a safe position to start introduction to solids. But the BEST highchairs have some other aspects to consider. Here are the most important criteria, in my opinion, when choosing the BEST chair for your little one:
- Pulls closer to the table – A highchair with a removable tray that pulls up to the dining table will allow the baby to be very close to the family during mealtimes. I remember when my son was very little that he enjoyed so much being at the table with us! Not to mention that babies learn to eat by observing, getting him/her used to mealtimes helps later on to have a successful introduction to solids.
- Grows with the child – A highchair that grows with your baby is a nice-to-have, especially if you are investing in a more expensive chair.
- Adjustable footrest – Your baby’s feet should always be comfortably positioned with 90 degrees at the knees and 90 degrees at the ankles.
- Upright seat – Babies should be fed seating at 90 degrees at the waist, with their shoulders aligned with their hips when seated.
Both the Stokke Tripp Trapp and the Hauck Wooden Highchair Alpha + meet these criteria. With my son, I bought the Hauck brand as we were living in Germany and it ended up being more cost advantageous. He has been using it since about 3 months old with the newborn set. At about 6 months old, we transitioned to the feeding chair and up to this day, with almost 3 years old, he still loves it! The Hauck chair is very stable and tilt proof.
With my little girl, I will be purchasing the Stokke Tripp Trapp as here in the US it is more affordable and has more availability.
Both of these options you can add the feeding tray for baby to eat off table or take it off and pull it up to the family dinner table. They also have newborn sets as accessories, this way your baby can get used to being part of family meals early on.
Best Bibs for Baby-Led Weaning
Before starting solids, all we had were cloth bibs. And this is how we started… they were terrible! The stains were impossible to clean. For solids (traditional feeding or baby led weaning), you need waterproof bibs…and, preferably, the ones that catch the mess!
Yes, you read it right, you need something with a front pocket to catch dropped food (which will be quite a bit…get ready! 😊). Both silicone and other waterproof materials work great. See below the ones we use and recommend!
Bumkins Waterproof SuperBib is a favorite. They can be wiped down or washed, they are lightweight, and this starter size is great for babies starting the weaning journey. This starter pack is the cutest.
Some people also like to cover the little ones arms, so these Bumkins Sleeved Bibs are a great option!
We also used silicone bibs, which work great but they are a bit heavier than the Bumkins waterproof bibs for little ones. We like the Cloud Island brand from Target and my son liked wearing them, however , some babies will prefer the lighter option from Bumkins.
Best Spoons for Babies
BABY LED WEANING
These are my top 2 favorite spoons for baby led weaning, they are perfect size for little hands. You can easily preload mashed food and they are very easy for babies to self-feed.
Your little one will use their feeding spoons several times a day, so it is important to inspect the spoons especially when the babies are teething. This will ensure that you can check for any damage and properly discard the cutlery if necessary.
- Bumkins Chewtensils – These have shields to prevent your baby from getting the utensils too deep inside their mouths.
- NumNum Pre-Spoon – They have a thicker handle for little hands to hold. The channels allow food to “stick” and the textured surface can soothe sore gums.
If you choose traditional feeding, my top choice is the Munchkin Soft-Tip Infant Spoons. Even though they are made of plastic, they are BPA free, and the spoon bowls are gentle on baby’s gums.
When I started solids with my son, I used these spoons and then transitioned to Bumkins and NumNum.
Best Baby Plates
Suction Plates can be helpful when babies are starting solids, especially if you are doing baby led weaning. They stay attached to the table and it is harder to tip over.
We have 2 favorite types of plates, silicone grip dishes and bowls from Bumkins and bamboo plates and bowls from both Bamboo Bamboo and Ecorascals. These 3 brands have very good quality, they will last for years!
Here is why I love them and my favorite picks for you!
- Bumkins silicone grip divided plate is microwave and dishwasher safe. The material is very sturdy, holds well to the table. And they come in a wide of variety of colors!
- Bumkins suction bowls are the perfect size to start. The set includes, bowl, lid and spoon.
- Bamboo plates are great as they do not retain the smell of food, the drawback is that they are not microwave and dishwasher safe. My favorite brands are Bamboo Bamboo and Ecorascals, they have very similar quality! Ecorascals is based in the United Kingdom and I got to know the brand when I lived in Germany…but they do ship to some countries, worth checking!
Here are our favorites ones from Bamboo Bamboo and Bumkins:
- Little Lamb – This one has a smaller size, we used more for snacks now.
- Bunny – Good size, can be used for main meals.
- Penguin – Has a great size!
- Suction Bowl – Bowl and spoon. We love this great size bowl, it is a bit larger than the one from bumkins.
Favorite Sippy Cups
When babies start eating solids it is important to start offering water during mealtimes. Open cups can be offered right when they start at approximately 6 months and experts consider this a better option! Open cups encourage a sipping action, rather than sucking, which is good for promoting jaw development.
Ultimately, it will be your decision to choose from an open cup or sippy cup! When we started solids, the first cup I gave water to my son was the Nuby no spill 360 with straw. He absolutely loved it; it is a great cup to start!
With time, we transitioned to open cups. The ones that we love are the ezpz Tiny Cup, which is 100% silicone and designed to fit baby’s mouth and hands (6+ months), and Bamboo Bamboo’s open cup for babies.
Frequently Asked Questions
– Baby spoons
– Bowls and suction plates
– Drinking cups
Breast milk or formula is the only food your newborn needs. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breast-feeding for the first six months after birth. After 6 months and all the signs of readiness solid feeding can start preferably offer fruits and veggies with safe cuts for BLW or purees.
Solid foods may be introduced in any order. I started with high iron foods, fruits and veggies. Only one single ingredient food should be offered to check for allergies before introducing recipes.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the World Health Organization (WHO) encourage parents to wait until six months of age before starting baby on solids, when they may show all signs of readiness.
From 6 months of age, you can give your baby small amounts of water when starting introduction to solids. Water should be offer with food and breastmilk or formula for the other feedings.