Feeding a baby is a tricky business. And while breast milk or formula should still be the main source of nutrients for babies aged 6 to 12 months, you can start to introduce your baby to solid foods around the 4-to-6-month mark.
But before you reach for the baby food, try introducing your little one to baby oatmeal cereal. It’s one of the best places to start when weaning an infant off breast milk or formula since it’s easy to swallow, not too harsh on the tummy and full of iron and antioxidants.
When can you give a baby oatmeal cereal?
Infants can start eating baby oatmeal cereal as early as 4 months old. Although it’s recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics to start introducing solid foods at 6 months, there are a few indicators that prove infants might be ready for baby oatmeal cereal a few months earlier.
It’s OK to offer solid foods when your little one has good control of her head, can sit by herself (or with minimal support) and opens her mouth or leans forward whenever food is offered.
Is oatmeal cereal good for babies?
Oatmeal cereal is a smart, healthy choice for babies. It’s filled with vitamins and minerals that help baby’s health and development. Plus, it can be easily prepared with breast milk or formula—so it’s a familiar taste for babies who might otherwise be opposed to a new texture or flavor. Parents can mix 1 to 2 tablespoons of baby oatmeal cereal with about 4 to 5 tablespoons of breast milk or formula. (Find more baby food cereal recipes here.)
What is the best oatmeal cereal for babies?
While you can certainly create your own blend of baby oatmeal cereal, I personally found Gerber’s Single-Grain Oatmeal Cereal ($13 for 6) to be the best choice. The cereal is made with whole grains and is fully cooked. It’s ready to combine with breast milk, formula or other baby food.