When going from, or complementing with, breastfeeding your next step is solid food. Feeding the baby solid food is not easy in the beginning, but makes life much simpler in the end.
It is time to go for solid feeding when your baby shows less and less interest in bottle-feeding or breastfeeding. You need at all times make sure that your baby is not hungry and therefore solid food is the only alternative here. The age that is considered to be appropriate to give solid food varies from baby to baby.
Many parents wonder in the beginning if they can prepare their own meals and cook for the baby. The simple answer is yes, you can more or less feed the baby the same food as you eat yourself.
You have to start teaching your baby to eat solid foods gradually. Start with porridge and puree. These are smooth alternatives that resemble the state of milk in a way. Remember that your baby will find anything in the solid feeding range weird in the beginning – it has not tried it before and of course it will taste different. It may take several weeks to get your baby used to the new eating habits.
Start small-scale and give your baby a mashed banana on a plate and feed him/her with a spoon. Always be around to give your baby security – it has never been eating before when you have not been there!
Once the baby shows interest in being fed with solid food you can start to vary the food it will have. It is actually fine by eating the things that you will have on your plate, with some modifications. First of all, your baby cannot chew. The food needs to be smooth, so either serve him/her soup or mix everything you have in am mixer. It might not look as good, but the baby does not really care.
Different kinds of purée are also good to give your baby. The can either be homemade (cheaper) or bought in a jar at the grocery store (more convenient perhaps).
Another tip when you start with solid feeding is to only introduce one taste and thing at time. The baby needs to explore and get used to everything, so take it slowly in the beginning.