Picnics are a great way to enjoy the outdoors throughout the warmer months of summer, but it can be a challenge when weaning your baby. We’ve put together some essential tips if you are using baby-led weaning and planning to head into the great outdoors.
What a mess
Baby-led weaning is all about nutritional finger food and your baby feeding themselves. This can be great fun but also very messy! Clean-up can be made easier by first putting down a wipeable or washable picnic blanket.
Make time to explore
Before tucking in, let your baby explore the picnic area, this way they will have already seen what their surroundings are like and will be more likely to remain interested once you are ready to eat.
Hand to mouth
It’s not always possible to have a table when going on a picnic, so why not forgo the plates and try the handing method instead? Offer your baby an item in each hand and see which one they choose to try. You’ll also avoid flying plates while you enjoy your lunch.
Food for all the family
Your picnic selection should be one that is suitable for the whole family, instead of spending time preparing food just for your little one, pick a tasty meal that your entire family will enjoy but that can easily be served as finger food.
Texture and taste
Introducing solid nutritional food to your baby allows them to experience a variety of tastes and textures, so be sure to give them a variety of soft, crunchy, sweet and savoury morsels to eat.
Try something new
The old favourites such as steamed vegetables, are always great when weaning, but why not try finger foods more suited to a picnic, such as boiled pasta with a homemade broccoli pesto, avocado on lightly toasted bread, homemade mini quiches, cheese sticks, and savoury muffins. Watermelon sticks are also a nice, refreshing choice for everyone. Many of these tasty snacks can be made at home without salt, so you can safely serve them to your weaning baby.
Always be prepared
As always when travelling with your baby, a change of clothes and wipes will be required after trying many new picnic foods. We recommend dressing your baby in easy to change outfits and remember to bring along some hand sanitiser for yourself as facilities are not always available nearby when enjoying the outdoors.
Baby-led weaning is one of many weaning styles – the most important thing is that your baby eats well and gets all the nutrients they need. Always remember to choose what best suits you and your baby and check with your GP or visit the NHS website for advice.