They’ve graduated bottle-feeding and mastered fruit and veggie purées, but you aren’t sure when toddlers are quite ready to feed themselves. Well, they already feed themselves leaves and Play-Doh (at least mine does), so why not stoke that flame and introduce these prime picks for teaching your toddler how to eat actual food? I polled my mama tribe for their top feeding finds. The tribe has spoken.
When your baby is used to a bottle but you want to start transitioning to a cup, here is your stage one. Babies use bottles (and mamas) to soothe themselves, so this can be quite a tough transition. With this gadget, they’re still drinking from a bottle, but get a feel for holding a cup. Buy it here.
Stage two: If your child holds this cup upside down (they will), nothing comes out! Liquid is only dispensed when they suck like they would from a bottle and your baby has already mastered that feat. Disclaimer: If this cup is suddenly hurled across the room, it’s a completely different story. In this scenario, liquid will be dispensed. Buy it here.
Stage three: Start them out with the handles until they get the hang of it and then graduate them to this one. Now your child is only one (very necessary) lid away from drinking like a grown up. Mommy wow, I’m a big kid now! Buy it here.
Sure, you want to neatly separate each component of your child’s meal but you do not want to do it on a plate that is not heavily secured. These suction to your child’s high chair tray to prevent them from turning into boomerangs or weapons. The curved edges even help your toddler learn to use utensils. Buy them here.
There’s also a bowl option complete with a lid for leftovers. Buy them here.
Once they can be trusted with an unsecured plate (when they’re in high school), graduate to microwave-safe plates. One frustrating element of toddler meal preparation is heating their food on a microwave-safe plate and then transferring it back to their plate. Do all of the above with these! They’re also top-rack dishwasher safe. Buy them here.
When toddlers are learning to use utensils, they can get frustrated. Set them up for success. These are the best utensils I have come across—a perfect grip for tiny hands! Buy them here.
This bib is easy to wipe off and and doesn’t require a washing machine. Ain’t nobody got time for that. It also doubles as a snack holder when you’re in a pinch. When my daughter notices that half of her meal has fallen into this bib, she just walks around snacking out of it at her leisure. Buy it here.
Honestly, feeding a toddler is not extremely challenging when you’re in your home and close to your arsenal of supplies. but sometimes, you gotta leave the house. We’ve got you covered.
A travel godsend. When you’re in the car or on the go, your kid’s snacks are safe(ish) from spills. Yes, one or two may sneak out, but these babies save you from the hot mess that spill would’ve been had it been dropped in any other container. Buy them here.
Ah, the pouch. The go-to. They’re easy. They’re nutritious. They travel beautifully…until they don’t and they spill all over the place. Buy these here.
And if your kid is too young to initiate food dispension from a pouch, keep these in your diaper bag to give them a hand (spoon). Buy them here.
Yaaaaaaas. These stick to the table to stay in place and allow your child to dine on a surface that is not a public restaurant table. I used to have a non-disposable placemat to use at restaurants and would have to go clean it off after each outing before putting it back in my diaper bag. Not anymore. Buy them here.
These disposable spoons have five stars on Amazon (as they should!) Throw them in your bag for your child to use at restaurants and TOSS em afterwards. Buy them here.
Okay…THIS. Whenever we’re away from her high chair and it’s time to “EEEEEEEAT!!!” (as my daughter subtly requests), I never have anywhere to put her. Problem solved. Feed them anywhere! The tray even comes off for non-meal seating. Buy it here.
— Head photo: Amazon.