Dairy free weaning: Beginning at 6 months

The most daunting thing about weaning a baby who is dairy free is where do you start? With my eldest, who isn’t allergic to milk, I started with baby porridge for breakfast, then simply moved on to include lunch and dinner. Taking dairy out of breakfast must be the biggest challenge for weaning a child who is allergic to milk.  
For starters most baby porridges already contain milk in them and those that didn’t turned grey and smelt disgusting with Matilda’s dairy free formula. It was no wonder she turned her head away the first week of trying her on it. Even when mixed with hot water, she wouldn’t eat it. But then I discovered dairy free coconut milk-based yoghurts, which soon became one of Matilda’s breakfast favourites, along with fruit pots and toast. See the baby and toddler section of my Quick Shopping Guide for more milk free options.

Below is a simple example of a breakfast planner for the early stages of weaning ideal for 6 months+. It is worth remembering that while  babies are still having a high volume of breastmilk or formula, they are getting all the nutrients they need from that and food is merely for pleasure and experimenting. So please do not worry in the early days if they don't eat much or refuse a meal one day, so long as they have their usual milk just try again next time. 

Dairy Free Weaning: Breakfast

Monday 
Baby Porridge made with fortified Almond or Oat milk 
Tuesday 
Little Co Co Nutters Mango and Passionfruit Puree Pouch and crumpet fingers
Wednesday 
Toast fingers with dairy free spread 
Thursday 
KoKo Dairy Free Strawberry Yoghurt and mashed banana
Friday 
Toast fingers and a mashed banana or avocado 
Saturday 
Baby Porridge made with fortified Almond or Oat milk 
Sunday 
Eggy Bread Toast fingers and watermelon fingers

Once breakfast has been going well for a few weeks, introduce another meal in the form of a lunch or dinner. 


Dairy Free Weaning: Lunch 

With other children and a busy schedule, lunch was often on the go and had to be convenient. Early on in weaning this makes lunch limited unless you are at home and can prepare food. Once your child is older and has more teeth for chewing you will find a wider range of on the go food they can eat. The table below just has some ideas for lunches for the beginning stages around 6months, as your baby grows so will the quantity and range of food they eat.



Monday 
Houmous, cucumber and bread sticks (the single portion multi-pots are good for out and about) 
Tuesday 
Fruit pot and Kiddylicious Wafers 
Wednesday 
Guacamole and toast fingers 
Thursday 
Little Co Co Nutters Strawberry and Banana Puree Pouch and melon fingers 
Friday 
A handful of Kiddlylicious fruit puffs and Koko Dairy Free Strawberry Yoghurt 
Saturday 
Pitta bread fingers and dip plus a banana 
Sunday 
Ella’s Kitchen Melty Sticks and fruit pot


Dairy Free Weaning :Dinner 


Keep it simple and easy for yourself. Often I would just give Matilda the steamed vegetable and mashed potato part of our meal, but as she got older I would cook family dairy free meals and if they weren't suitable for baby led weaning, I would whizz them down in the food processor to a constancy that is manageable for her at the time. However, just remember that babies are new to food so be mindful not to give them food that is too strongly spiced, garlicky or high in salt. Otherwise, you will risk unsettling your little one's tummy. 

Monday 
Mash potato made with dairy free spread, steamed broccoli and carrot batons 
Tuesday 
Steamed sweet potato and butternut squash wedges with broccoli
Wednesday 
Steamed salmon (flaked) with mash potato and steamed vegetables
Thursday 
Friday 
Basic Shepherd's pie with steamed parsnip and carrot batons
Saturday 
Sunday 
Baked Sweet Potato with dairy free spread and nutmeg


 I introduced fish with both my children around 7 months which went down well, especially when teamed with some steamed vegetables. Stick to fish you know is soft, flaky and safe from bones. Fish that I found worked well are: 

  • Cod or salmon fish fingers. You can cut off the breadcrumbs easily at the beginning to make them more manageable and healthier. The beauty of these is you know they will be boneless. 
  • Salmon fillet. Quickly steamed in the microwave works well or you can oven bake or pan fry. 
  • Sea bass fillet
See Dairy Free Weaning: 8-10 months to find out the next steps

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