Your baby doesn’t like formula. This is a real struggle for many parents, especially those who started breastfeeding and are now looking to make the transition to feeding only with formula. And this is not even on baby-led weaning or figuring out healthy lunches.
We are here to help reduce the frustration and give you some real and easy solutions to try in order to make feeding time much easier. After all, getting your baby their nutrition shouldn’t be a hassle.
In this article we will answer the questions of:
- Why your baby doesn’t like taste of formula
- How to make baby formula taste better
- If you can you add flavor to formula
- What formula is closest to breastmilk
But my baby hates formula. What do I do?
If your baby rejects formula, you will need to start from ground zero and determine WHY this may be. There are a few factors to consider.
1. It Doesn’t Taste Like Breastmilk
The main reason may be obvious: your baby doesn’t like the taste of formula. Perhaps you are returning to work and switching from breastmilk to formula. Your little one is probably able to tell the difference between formula and the real stuff, as much as you’re trying to make the baby formula last.
The solution: find a formula closest to breastmilk.
Some great formula brands that taste very similar to breastmilk include:
Psst, I have some good news for you! Enjoy Free Shipping when you spend above $50 at Enfamil – you can check it out here.
2. It Makes Their Tummy Upset
Another reason your baby may hate formula is because of the way it makes them feel. If they are used to breastfeeding directly from mom, transitioning to a bottle can be quite different.
Formula fed babies have a tendency to a bit gassier. This could be due to the ingestion of excess air from bottle feeding. It could be the formula itself, which tends to be harder to break down in the digestive system. Or it could be a combination of both.
There are some baby formula brands great for gassy babies that offer blends designed to be gentler on your baby’s digestive system. A few of these include:
3. It Just Doesn’t Taste Good or the Texture is Bad
Formula may taste a bit chalkier compared to breast milk. It may also be a little bit chunkier, especially if it is a brand that does not mix well. There are even some formulas that may be too sweet or not sweet enough.
You don’t want to take away from the nutritional value of formula by adding too much sweetness. It probably isn’t a good idea to just add sugar or syrup to help your baby take it easier. This can lead to long term health problems, including diabetes and obesity.
Another possible reason is that, the formula has gone bad. Be sure to check the formula for expiry – you don’t want to feed your child expired baby formula.
How to Help Your Baby Adjust to Formula
When you are ready to make the change from breastmilk, or if you are starting from day one with formula but your baby is resistant, there are a few ways you can help your baby adjust to the flavor and texture. A few simple fixes can help maintain the nutritional value of formula while making it more palatable.
A lot of parents ask the following questions when it comes to helping their little one(s) like formula better.
Can you mix formula and breastmilk?
When they have been so used to breastfeeding and you are ready to switch, it can be frustrating, wondering how to make your baby drink formula. There is absolutely no reason you cannot mix formula and breastmilk together. It may help your baby take it easier if they are tasting something familiar.
It doesn’t have to be a permanent solution. Breast pumping is hard work, and if you are switching to formula, you may be trying to get away from pumping or breastfeeding altogether.
Mixing formula with breastmilk can be a great transitional step. It can help to introduce the flavor of formula a little at a time, gradually reducing the breastmilk until your baby is only taking formula.
What Can I Use to Sweeten Baby Formula?
When it comes to adding sweetness to your baby’s formula, some parents recommend adding just a hint of vanilla. Others say they add a tad of Karo syrup, though I don’t recommend this unless absolutely necessary out of desperation. You want to limit sweeteners as much as possible.
How long will it take for baby to transition to formula?
Whether you are transitioning to formula from breastmilk or you are changing the type of formula you are using, you need to prepare yourself to be patient. It can take some time for your baby to get used to something new.
It can take anywhere from 2-6 weeks for your baby to fully make the transition and accept what you are giving them on a regular basis.
What is the best way to introduce baby formula to a breastfed baby?
The best way to do this is to mix baby formula with breast milk, which we covered previously. This can be a permanent solution, especially if you have a large supply of breastmilk stored up, or it can simply be transitional when you are looking for a way how to introduce formula to breastfed baby.
This isn’t always possible though, particularly for parents who are starting with formula from the beginning. Some parents have also found great success when mixing formula in baby cereal. This helps to introduce the flavor of formula.
The Best Solution for How to Make Baby Formula Taste Better
The ultimate solution to how to make baby formula taste better isn’t to change anything with the formula you have. Instead, just learn what your baby likes through trial and error, trying several types of flavored baby formula brands.
It may be a bit tedious, but by utilizing a network of moms around you and getting free samples, it doesn’t have to be.
Ask other moms you know which formula(s) they use for their baby. See if you can borrow a little to try with your baby before you commit to buying an entire canister.
You can even contact the companies directly (or check their websites) to see if there is a way to get free samples for your little one.
It can be quite difficult – and even a little frustrating – when your baby hates the taste of formula. You want the best for your little one, and when you can’t get them to eat, you may feel discouraged.
Take heart! There are solutions that will help your baby take formula easier. Trying mixing in some breastmilk, adjusting the ratio until they are only taking formula.
Switch up the brand you are using to see if there is a flavor they like better. You can even add in a little bit of vanilla to improve the taste.
If you have any questions or ideas you have used to make your baby’s formula taste better, leave us a comment.