This breakdown of a 1 year old eating schedule can help provide structure and consistency when feeding your baby and you can modify as needed. I’m also sharing several, dietitian-approved meal ideas for your one year old!
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As a Registered Dietitian and mom of three, feeding one-year olds is nothing new to me. I really enjoy the process of starting solids.
Honestly, I think these meal ideas for 1 year olds will help reduce your stress and anxiety around feeding babies and toddlers – it can be fun to watch them learn and explore new favors.
So, sit back and tune in to some of these easy meal ideas for one year olds and up. They are easy and nutrient-dense, just what you’re looking for.
I’ll also add that I find that the 1 year eating schedule is easy and predictable with two naps, since we’re more in a set rhythm now than when we were feeding at 7 months, when we were on an inconsistent three to four naps a day.
If you’re already on one nap, your schedule may look a bit different but most of the processes and ideas for baby food ideas for a 1 year old still apply.
If you want to see more baby led weaning feeding schedules, check out these posts:
- Baby led weaning recipes for 10 months
- Baby led weaning 9 months
- Baby led weaning foods for 7 months
- Baby led weaning schedule for 6 months
- Dinner ideas for baby
Typical 1 Year Old Eating Schedule
Here is what you can expect for a 1 year old feeding schedule. Of course, your timing may vary depending on lots of other factors, such as other children, number of naps, nursing, daycare, etc.
But, I’ve always found that it’s helpful to have a blanket structure to look at and modify as appropriate. Here’s our 1 year eating schedule for our son, Sawyer, who is on two naps.
I still use ezpz plates, cups and utensils since they are built to grow with baby and are made in conjunction with infant and toddler feeding specialists.
7:30 am – Baby wakes up and nurses.
8- 8:30 am – I should preface here by saying I have two older children (3 and 5), so breakfast can be a chaotic time since we are getting them ready for school. Sometimes, Sawyer waits to eat breakfast until after school drop-off, so around 9am.
10:30 am – Nurse, then nap #1.
12:00 pm – Lunch. I always serve a vegetable with lunch and dinner, and sometimes with breakfast. Here are some of my favorite hidden vegetable recipes for toddlers in this 1 year old food schedule.
2:30–2:45 pm – Nurse, then nap #2.
5- 5:30 pm – Dinner and then we start baths and the bedtime routine. You can see my favorite ezpz utensils, which also double as teething toys!
We will also do an occasional snack (like a My Serenity Kids pouch) around 5pm if dinner will be later on nights that we have commitments or activities for the older kids.
6:45 pm – Nurse, reading and then bedtime.
Nutrition Focuses at 1 Year
Here are some things to keep in mind when you’re serving meals to a one year old.
By the one year mark, you have probably gotten the okay from your pediatrician to serve whole milk to baby. If you are/were formula feeding, it is generally safe to trade that in for whole milk, but always check with your pediatrician.
Note, if you are breastfeeding, you can continue to breastfeed, unless you plan on weening. There are many benefits to breastfeeding, so you don’t have to stop at the one year mark unless it’s best for you/baby.
Either way, you’ve made it a year, which is an unbelievable feat – way to go, mama!
If you have extra breastmilk, you can always make breastmilk popsicles for teething.
Baby should be mostly able to self-feed at this point, which is so fun to watch.
Focus on healthy fats and iron
Healthy fats continue to be very important for baby’s brain.
You also want to ensure you are serving iron-rich foods, such as meats, poultry, beans, lentils, and seafood, especially if you were formula feeding and are no longer doing so (formula was providing sufficient iron, but switching to milk does not).
On that note, you also want to pair Vitamin C-rich foods, like citrus fruits, tomatoes and broccoli, with iron sources to improve iron uptake and absorption.
For example, lentils (iron-rich) with broccoli (Vitamin C). I also offered naan bread or rice as a carbohydrate to round out this meal below.
Continue to expose baby to a variety of foods
Serving a variety of foods can help expose baby to new flavors, spices and textures, improving their palate.
By now, you have hopefully introduced most, if not all, of the major allergens with the guidance of your pediatrician!
We now know that the updated research indicates that exposing babies to allergens earlier in life can help reduce the risk of allergies later on.
3 Full Meals + Snacks
Baby can be enjoying three full meals now, with the occasional 1-2 snacks in between, as well as breastmilk, whole milk or whatever type of milk you feed your baby.
Favorite Foods For a 1 Year Old Baby
Here are some of my favorite nutritious foods that pack a punch of nutrition for a 1 year old.
- chia seeds
- flax seeds
- sweetpotatoes (here’s a breakdown of sweetpotatoes for baby led weaning)
- eggs (more details on eggs for kids and brain health!)
- full fat yogurt
- butter or coconut oil
- olive oil
- salmon or tuna
- grass fed ground beef or bison (We do Butcher Box)
- chicken thighs
- quartered tomatoes or grapes
Fun Meal Ideas for 1 Year Old
While they can enjoy smaller amounts of what you have on your plate, here are some of my favorite fun snack and meal ideas for a 1 year old.
- Avocado toast
- Smoothies (no need to add protein powder)
- Homemade yogurt pouches
- Baby pancakes with nut butter
- Baby waffles
- Muffins and bars with fruits/veggies make for great homemade baby snacks
- Chia pudding
- Egg muffins
- Kale and meatball soup – my son lovessss slurping soup!
You can definitely make food fun, and you want to at this stage to form positive food associations.
Check out these food activities for toddlers for as your baby gets a little older.
More Meal Ideas for 1 Year Old
Your 1 year old can likely eat whatever you’re eating, provided it’s not extremely high in salt, saturated fat, or added sugars. Of course, you still want to cut food appropriately as well.
Here are some of my favorite meal ideas for a 1 year olds.
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