Baby Feeding Guide: What Dairy Can They Eat?

  • 1 min read June 13, 2024

Dairy foods help provide nourishment needed for growth and development at the important milestone of infant and early toddler nutrition. At about 6 months, infants should be introduced to foods that compliment human milk or iron-fortified infant formula feedings in order to gain nutrient-rich, developmental support.

After their first birthday, as babies transition from human milk or iron-fortified infant formula, whole milk and other dairy foods provide critically important sources of essential nutrients to support healthy growth and development. Whole milk is important until at least age 2 because the fat in whole milk provides extra calories and nutrients for development. Foods like yogurt and cheese also contribute high-quality nutrition that fuels brain maturity and overall growth as babies transition from human milk or iron-fortified formula.

Dairy foods are packed with nutrients and are considered one of the top food sources of vitamins and minerals that support growth and development.

You can read specific recommendations by downloading the resource attached to this article. It was co-created by the American Academy of Pediatrics and National Dairy Council. The resource includes recommendations for complementary foods you can introduce at about 6 months to help ensure adequate nutrition, encourage acceptance of a wide variety of nutritious foods and set the stage for a lifetime of healthy eating habits.

And remember, every baby is unique, so don't worry if your baby eats a little more or less than this guide suggests. Keep in mind that the suggested serving sizes are only guidelines to help you get started.