I find that not many people out there are giving advice to the struggles us Mommys (or Daddies) have trying to transition from formula to purees. I looked on Pinterest and Google for hours and only found “Puree Recipes” or “Introducing solids to your 6 month old.” But very rarely did I find how to introduce purees! So I thought I would share my experience and what worked for us 🙂
Introducing your babes to puree can be quite difficult. And frustrating. And disappointing. I speak from experience. When our pediatrician told us we could start feeding Nathan purees at 4 months old, we were so excited!! I mean this kid can eat an 8oz bottle of formula like it’s going out of style. So we knew that adding in purees would help keep him fuller longer!
Yay! More time to do more activities! (Not so much)
So we went to our local Walmart and bought some simple purees. One’s that were only 1 ingredient that way if he was allergic to it, we knew what it would be. Think cereal. Or peas for example. Rather than Apple, Pear and Spinach puree all together.
We arrived home and got him ready for his new experience, big bib and 2 spit rags ready to go !
We fed him his first spoon full of cereal AND !……..
(Insert squinty emoji here) He spit it out, tongue going wild and all. Think of when you were a kid and stuck your tongue out and blew raspberries at someone you didn’t like. Ya, it went everywhere.
So the hubby and I being disappointed, we put away the spoon and continued with the bottle.
The next day was the same thing, and the day after that, and the day after that.
I knew there had to be a way to get Nathan to eat the puree without making faces like he just swallowed a whole lemon. So I did my research and I found that these steps and tricks helped baby go from “icky faced” to wanting more and cutting bottle feedings from 8oz to about 4-6oz per feeding!
Add more formula / breast milk than the container tells you (If you are starting with cereal like we did)
When we first started with cereal, apparently it was too thick and he didn’t know what the heck to do with it… It’s expected. And it’s okay! The container told us to do 3 tablespoons of cereal and 6 tablespoons of liquid. It was way too thick, but I didn’t realize it at the time. Going from formula/breast milk to chunky cereal puree probably doesn’t taste very good to the babes. And I’m sure it’s hard to swallow.
My suggestion is to add an extra 1-2 tablespoons of liquid on top of what the container tells you. It’s almost to the consistency that they are used to. At first, he still didn’t like it, but it helped him swallow it for the most part.
Use the bottle to help “chase”
So because Nathan was still spitting up most of the cereal I thought of feeding him a spoonful of cereal, letting him process it for a second, and then fed him the bottle for a few seconds to help chase it down.
I think this worked because he didn’t really have much time to taste the food haha. And on top of that seeing the bottle helped him open his mouth wider and forced him to swallow it. But It was getting him used to consistency and taste.
I wouldn’t say this is my number 1 “go-to” to getting him to eat purees but it helped at the beginning.
Add your cereal to the bottle itself
My grandmother was the genius behind this one. I had told her that Nathan didn’t like the cereal puree and that I didn’t want to keep chasing it with a bottle to get him into that habit. So she gave me this tip.
If you’re using a #1 nipple (smaller hole) jump to a #2. Add the cereal to the bottle of formula. A #2 nipple will help the cereal get out since it’s a bit bigger hole. Simple as that.
For example, what I did was made a 6 oz bottle of formula and added 2-3 tablespoons of cereal. It was almost like feeding him a regular bottle but the consistency was a little thicker and the taste was different. That way when I used a spoon again he would be familiar with the taste.
I guess, from experience, getting babes used to the taste and actually swallowing it was the key to our success. So this was another trick that worked great.
But be aware, I wouldn’t use this technique all the time! Your baby won’t get used to eating from a spoon and won’t know what to do when he sees it.
The airplane and mouthing helped out believe it or not!
My husband told me to try the airplane with the spoon and my response?
“You’re ridiculous honey, he’s 4 months old. He won’t know what to do with that.”
I ate my words.
As soon as I started the airplane, he was smiling from ear to ear, mouth wide open. That gave me the chance to enter the spoon into his mouth.
I believe he’s getting used to the airplane. When he sees it, he knows food is coming.
So I got the spoon and food in his mouth but now getting him to swallow it was where I was having trouble. He wouldn’t swallow the darn stuff!! So I looked like an idiot smacking my lips together to show him how to “chew” or eat it. Haha ! I don’t think he knew what I was trying to insinuate, but hey! He smiled and it forced him to swallow it… eventually 🙂
Introducing other purees other than cereal
So this one was fun! Cereal is bland. And almost tasteless. And no fun!
Our next one that we introduced was sweet potato. OMG he loved it !! As soon as he saw the airplane, he opened up wide and swallowed the puree like we never had problems before.
Our new techniques were starting to pay off!! Not to mention it was a lot sweeter and he takes after his Mama; sweet tooth 😉
I think now that he has found different purees that he likes, it will be a lot easier to feed him the purees and introduce others ones as well.
Continuing the routine…
These were the tips and tricks that we used in hopes that it would work. After time and consistency it eventually did.
Now I am not saying that this will work for everyone, but I’m hoping that it will help your little one get into the swing of things.
It took a little time, consistency and change of purees until he found one he liked, but it was well worth it. These tricks aren’t complicated and they definitely worked !!
Try some out and let me know if they worked for you and your little one 🙂
Happy feedings !!