How To Do Combo Feeding

Baby in highchair 'combo feeding' with Starting Solids Australia silicone suction plate

Baby led weaning (BLW) and puree…how does it actually work?

If you are reading this, then you have probably already heard a lot about baby led weaning (BLW). If not, head over to our post on BLW Vs Puree to find out more about each method and what might be the best fit for you (spoiler alert- you can do either, or a combo!).

For many parents, the idea of doing BLW straight up feels super overwhelming. Or maybe you have tried it already, but bub doesn’t really know what to do with a lamb chop or a spear of asparagus. For this reason, many parents decide to do a combo of BLW and

But where to actually start? 

How do you actually do a combo? 

Are you just making more work (and mess) for yourself?

Not necessarily. Here are our top tips for doing combo feeding:

Picking finger foods:

  • When it comes to finger foods, think of food that is the size of an adult finger length. 
  • We also want it to be really soft, so it is safe and easy for little bubs to eat. To see if it is soft enough, you can use the squish test. This is where you simply squish food between your thumb and index finger. If it squishes without any trouble it is likely very safe for little gums to tackle. 
  • The other option when picking fingers foods is what we call resistive foods. These are foods that are so tough and hard your little one can chew on them (great for learning and exploring) but don’t have the ability to rip pieces off that could then become a choking hazard. Things like lamb chops or shanks with most of the meat removed, corn on the cob or a mango pit. 
  • Pick finger foods that are the same as what you are already preparing to make life easier. This also exposes bub to the whole food as well.  Think spear of banana alongside the mashed banana you put into yogurt for example. 
  • You don’t have to do finger foods at every meal. 
  • Pick finger foods that are easy to prepare or require no prep if you are too busy to make something!
  • If finger foods make you nervous, then just offer them when someone else is home until you are feeling more confident with solids.

Picking puree and upgrading textures:

  • It is okay to start with fruit or veg, but quickly try and build a balanced plate with your puree. 
  • We want to add in carbohydrates (think grains, rice, pasta or root veggies), fats (think olive oil, yogurt, nut butter, avocado), protein (meat, legumes, dairy, eggs or nut butters) and iron rich foods. This might look like ricotta cheese with puree pears and almond butter or fork mashed pasta with mince meat, veggies and a drizzle of olive oil. 
  • Increase the texture of the food from smooth to lumpy or fork mashed as quickly as you’re able to. It is important that you are comfortable with what you are feeding your little one, but we also need to give them opportunity to get comfortable with new foods and textures. It isn’t a race, but we want to be working towards more texture foods when bub is ready.


At the end of the day, there is no single correct way to do solids.

Doing a combo of both methods, where you can be responsive to your bubs needs and work at a pace that helps you feel confident, is totally fine. Some people will tell you there is a higher risk of choking with combo feeding, but there is absolutely no evidence to support this. In fact, there is no evidence to say that one method of feeding is better than the other!


If you're feeling a bit overwhelmed or confused with the Starting Solids thing and wanting some personalised guidance head over and book a one on one consultation with one of our paediatric dietitian's. We can help you put a plan in place that suits your family and your lifestyle to make introducing solids stress free!


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