Daily menu suggestions, vegetarian diets and eating healthy on a budget.

Age  Guidelines  Suggested foods

Six months 

Offer solids two to three times a day before or after breastfeeding

Mashed or finely-minced texture

Start with high-iron foods

  • well-cooked, finely-minced meat, poultry, or fish (moistened with breast milk or cooking water)

  • single-grain, iron-fortified baby cereal

  • mashed cooked egg

  • mashed legumes such as beans, lentils, or tofu

Once baby is eating high-iron foods, offer:

  • mashed cooked vegetables

  • mashed skinless fruit

  • nut butters mixed with baby cereal

Seven to eight months 

Offer solids two to three times a day before or after breastfeeding

Mashed and soft finger foods from the family meal

Offer high-iron foods like meat, poultry, fish, eggs, legumes or baby cereal two or more times per day.

Meats and alternatives

  • finely chopped chicken, fish, meat, or egg

  • mashed, cooked legumes such as beans, lentils, or tofu

  • nut butters mixed with baby cereal

  • vegetables and Fruit

  • mashed or chopped pieces of soft vegetables

  • hard vegetables that are cooked until soft

  • mashed or chopped pieces of soft fruit, remove tough skins and pits

Grain products

  • baby cereal (iron-fortified)

  • oat ring cereal

  • small pieces of toast, crackers, or pasta

  • cooked grains such as rice or quinoa

Milk and alternatives

  • yogurt, cottage cheese

  • small pieces of hard cheese

Nine to 12 months 

Offer solids three to four times a day before or after breastfeeding

Soft, lumpy, cut-up pieces of food from the family meal

As your toddler eats more solid foods, they will gradually drink less breast milk.
 

Meats and alternatives

  • small pieces of egg, tender meat, poultry, or fish

  • legumes such as beans, lentils, or tofu

  • nut butters (spread thinly)

  • Vegetables and Fruit

  • small soft pieces of vegetables

  • small soft pieces of fruit

Grain products

  • baby cereal (iron-fortified)

  • oat ring cereal

  • small pieces of toast, crackers, or pasta

  • cooked grains such as rice or quinoa

Milk and alternatives

  • yogurt, cottage cheese

  • small pieces of hard cheese

  • babies can start to try 3.25% M.F. milk at nine to 12 months old if they are eating a variety of iron-rich foods

One to two years 

Offer the same foods as the rest of the family on the same established schedule for meals and snacks.

Continue to offer breast milk if possible.

Continue to offer a variety of foods from Canada’s Food Guide. Offer amounts based on toddler's cues of hunger and fullness.

Avoid foods that are choking hazards

More sample meal plans and snack ideas

Vegetarian diets

Babies and young children who are fed vegetarian diets can meet all of their nutritional needs if their meals are carefully planned.

It is best to speak to a registered dietitian to make sure your baby is getting enough nutrients including: iron, zinc, omega-3 fats, vitamin B12, calcium and vitamin D. 

At one year of age, vegetarian toddlers who are not breastfed and are not going to receive 3.25% M.F. cow’s milk should transition to a follow-up soy-based formula until they are two years of age. At two years of age, you may offer your toddler a fortified plant-based beverage like fortified soy milk. Not all plant-based beverages offer the same nutrition so pediatricians and dietitians advise caution.


Contact a dietitian

If you have any questions about healthy eating, food, or nutrition, call 8-1-1 to speak to a registered dietitian.

Eating healthy on a budget