Baby-led weaning can feel tricky and complicated at first. With practice, patience, and a list of go-to first foods, you’ll be off to a great start.
Starting around five months of age, Landon has experimented with the various organic and nutrient-dense purees, bites, and puffs from Yumi, and it’s time for an update!
Life has been busy between an almost one-year-old, both parents working from home, two active dogs, and a global pandemic. Landon has fully jumped on the eating train, and since we’ve fully switched to baby-led weaning, we’ve relied on Yumi more than ever before. The bites and puffs have definitely been a lifesaver. I’m excited to share more with you, plus keep reading to save 50% on your first Yumi order!
What is baby-led weaning?
Baby-led weaning is an alternative way to feed your child, gaining popularity in the last 10-15 years. Instead of traditional spoon-fed purees, baby-led weaning puts the power of food in your little one’s hands as they learn to self-feed using the food on their tray.
In general, baby-led weaning means that you’re allowing the child to be in control of their feeding and meal experience. You simply provide age-appropriate and properly prepared food (often what you’re eating as an adult works!) and let your little one do the rest. Eating becomes an empowering sensory experience with baby-led weaning.
Yumi can help provide some of baby’s first foods
Introducing solids to your baby can feel intimidating no matter which route you choose. If you choose to baby-led wean, there are some guidelines to help make the transition easier, including a list of suggested first foods.
Some ideas for baby’s first foods with baby-led weaning:
- Avocado (ideally rolled in hemp seeds or ground flax)
- Roasted sweet potato
- Roasted broccoli floret
- Toast with mashed avocado
- Toasted with salt-free almond butter
- Ground beef, chicken, or turkey
Feeding tip: when getting started with baby-led weaning, it’s best to cut the foods into a finger-length shape. This shape makes it easier for baby to grasp until their pincer grasp is mastered.
In addition to the typical first foods for baby-led weaning, the bites and puffs from Yumi are an excellent choice thanks to their chunky texture and easy-to-grab shape. Plus, they’re made with high-quality ingredients, packed with nutrients, and are extremely convenient, so you don’t have to feel bad about popping one open for a last-minute lunch or snack (been there!).
How to start baby-led weaning
If you’re curious to get started on baby-led weaning, there are some important guidelines to follow. Ideally, all signs of readiness have been met before you introduce solids in this form. It’s important that your baby can sit unassisted for at least a minute, can hold their head steady, reaches for objects and brings them to their mouth, and is six months of age before starting baby-led weaning. Also, make sure they’ve lost their tongue-thrust reflex.
Also, there are some basic safety rules to follow to minimize choking and a suggested list of first foods (mentioned above) that, when followed, can make baby-led weaning a great option for your little one.
It’s important not to give your baby honey (before the age of one), added salt or sugar, sticky or chewy items, or anything extremely hard such as nuts, crackers, pretzels, chips, etc. Certain foods – such as hotdogs and grapes – should be cut in a specific way to minimize the choking risk. More on that here.
As always, please consult with your pediatrician before starting solids or introducing baby-led weaning.
The benefits of beginning baby-led weaning
Although more studies are needed to understand the benefits of baby-led weaning fully, it’s believed that this eating method can create a more positive relationship with food as baby learns when they’re full, how much to eat, what to eat, etc. Also, many believe that baby-led weaning can help develop fine motor skills and improve hand-eye coordination, but there are no official studies to back up this claim…yet.
As a busy mom, I can assure you that baby-led weaning is no doubt convenient and often straightforward. The downside is that mealtime can get extremely messy, so thank goodness for our two little rescue-mutt vacuum cleaners. I mean, dogs.
Why the bites + puffs from Yumi are perfect for baby-led weaning
There are plenty of days that I’m short on meal ideas, time, or energy (or a combination of all three!), and the bites and puffs from Yumi provide Landon a quick and nutritious meal that’s baby-led weaning approved.
Every item from Yumi is fresh, organic, easy to order by stage, dairy-free, gluten-free, preservative-free, allergen-free, GMO-free, and contain no added sugar. Their food features whole-foods based ingredients that give your baby a chance to try a variety of foods from a young age.
More about allergens and special diets from the Yumi site: Yumi is “Big-8” Allergen Free. The Big 8 include milk, eggs, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, and soybeans.
About the Yumi bites
Landon loves the tasty little bites from Yumi. Personally, I gently warm them in olive oil and then smash them into flat discs with a fork. He seems to have an easier time eating them flat versus in bite-form.
We use these for a lunchtime, paired with avocado or a vegetable. They’re also great for a quick meal on-the-go!
Here are the flavors he’s been loving lately:
- Cubano bites
- Pizza bites
- Southwest bites
- Butternut squash bites
About the Yumi puffs
The puffs from Yumi are an absolute lifesaver. Landon is in the stage of eating where he gets very impatient if he’s put in his chair without food close by. Now, we pop open a canister of the puffs from Yumi, and they keep him entertained and content until his meal is ready.
I love that the puffs are made with quality ingredients such as sorghum flour and coconut oil instead of rice, corn, or other filler ingredients with little nutritional value. Also, they’re quick to dissolve so that Landon can eat them with ease.
As of writing this, Yumi has two puff flavors available: beet and cauliflower. Landon loves them both!
Interested in trying Yumi?
Use code CARLEY50 to save 50% on your first order!
Important cautions + concerns
No matter how you choose to introduce solids to your baby, keep in mind that there are some important cautions and concerns to keep top-of-mind.
- Consider getting CPR-certified through an online or in-person class. You can learn more here.
- Choking is always a risk, but there is no evidence showing an increased risk with baby-led weaning.
- We invested in a de-choker device that we keep in an an-easy-to-access spot in our kitchen. This is the specific one we have. It gives us peace-of-mind, knowing we have a tool that could help in an emergency.
- Always talk to your baby’s pediatrician before starting solids. Make sure to tell them your plan and talk through all of your options.
My picks for baby-led weaning accessories
We’ve tried countless tools for making baby-led weaning work as best as possible for us. In addition to Yumi, my husband and I love the below accessories for baby-led weaning.
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