At what age do you stop taking food for your baby to a cafe/restaurant?

(37 Posts)
TheDetective Tue 27-Aug-13 16:03:40

What age is acceptable to take food with you? Does it make a difference if it is puree, or finger food?

What if your child has an allergy or intolerance to a food, or several foods?

Any opinions?!

imip Tue 27-Aug-13 16:12:56

Depending on the cafe/restaurant in question and what they serve. If they do not serve food that you could feed your baby or the children'smeals are meant for older children, then I think it would be acceptable enough to bring your own. Definately while they are still weaning etc eg, def, under one. When your dc can eat cheese sandwiches etc, then that's when you should probably buy them. However, my youngest dd is 19 months and I still take snacks in case she wouldn't eat the food on offer or I'd give her some of my or my other dds meal.

OneLittleToddleTerror Tue 27-Aug-13 16:15:28

I think as long as the adults are paying, it should be ok? And if you feel guilty, how about buy extra drinks?

FWIW, we never bring our own food to resturant for our DD. Only the water. However, she eats so little that we don't order a child's meal for her either. We just pick bits out from our own plate. She's 2yo. So from that, I think it's fairly reasonable if you bring your own food for your 2-3yo still.

DD2 is 19 months and I've pretty much stopped taking food out other than breadsticks etc. She shares our dinner if in a restaurant or has her own if it's a cafe lunch type thing.

We stopped at about one but like imip always have emergency snacks in my bag. Ds is a little piggy though and will eat most things. In the case if allergies I would check with where I wad going if there would be anything suitable available and if not just mention that I was bringing something.

MortifiedAdams Tue 27-Aug-13 16:21:03

DD is 22mo. We ask for a small plate and she has a share of mine and dhs dinner. HOwever I always have a tub of raspberries, grapes etc in the bag incase the meals take too long or to serve for pud.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Tue 27-Aug-13 16:21:48

I would say up to a year it's perfectly acceptable without thought.

From 12-18 months it depends on what they serve and what you bring (so if you went for say a curry and took the baby some bread sticks, sandwich, grapes etc fine, but if you go somewhere that serves those things it's not fine to take your own).

After 18 months or so it's really not OK to take your own as you should be able to find something they'll eat, but if you have particular issues, allergies etc then needs must.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Tue 27-Aug-13 16:23:06

- but yes, I also take 'emergency' nibbles and wouldn't hesitate to get them out if necessary.

MiaowTheCat Tue 27-Aug-13 16:24:35

about 11 months with dd1, but I still take either a cup of water or an empty sippy cup and ask them to just fill it from the tap for her. I also usually have an emergency satsuma in case food takes a while to come.

Will prob be later with dd2 as she has food allergies we're praying she'll grow out of in time.

HaroldLloyd Tue 27-Aug-13 16:26:05

About 1/2 yo?

I think play it by ear. If they are a good eater and will eat a whole plate of food and you are more or less taking a full meal then I wouldnt. I would take breadsticks bits of fruit etc but not a container of pasta or anything meal-like.

If they are picky or not yet eating that much then I think its fine to share yours and bring some bits.

I would take snacky bits with me but not a full meal for DS we would order an extra side dish or share ours or order a childs meal..

TheDetective Tue 27-Aug-13 16:45:35

That's good to know smile

Going to a cafe for lunch on Friday. DS is 9 months old but possibly looks a bit older.

I've just stopped purees really and he's doing mostly finger food or mashed up stuff.

However he has CMPI and has reacted to tomato. He's weaned dairy free. And now tomato free!

I find most places don't seem to cater for this so I was thinking ill be taking his food along for a while longer yet.

Dairy is hidden in everything! sad

Sirzy Tue 27-Aug-13 16:48:30

I am with chipping.

I think from about 12 months I either gave him a plate with some of what I am having on or he shared a meal with his cousin (who is 11 months older). From 2 I always purchased him his own meal although often ended up going for something off a light bites type menu as he refused most childrens meals.

thedetective when you are looking to buy him his own look at the jacket potatos they are often an easy simple option whereby you know what you are getting!

My two are two, and generlly a nightmare about all things food-related, so I take stuff with me but 99% of the time I'll order something for them to share.

The cafe is getting my money anyway, and me feeding them a few sandwiches while we wait means less screaming for the rest of the customers, so I've not been queried yet.

TheDetective Tue 27-Aug-13 16:52:54

It's a bit dry though, a jacket on it's own sad He can't have any of the usual fillings, no marge, no cheese, no butter. Suppose beans may be possible. He hasn't tried those yet though.

Could always take his own vitalite? I take my own butter bud as it is (10cal butter powder!).

MortifiedAdams Tue 27-Aug-13 16:53:39

If I do order for dd, I do it first, before Ive even sat down. THen we look at the menu and order for us. That way her meal arrives sharpish and usually is too.hot so cools and is ready to eat by the time ours arrives.

FruitSaladIsNotPudding Tue 27-Aug-13 16:54:20

About one I'd say. I take snacks and beaker of water though, and I usually have a banana in my bag for emergencies. I can't think of many (any??) places which would have NOTHING a one year old could eat.

Sirzy Tue 27-Aug-13 16:54:40

If you are buying a potato I don't think anyone would even notice your putting your own butter on it for him and if its for allergy reasons then it makes perfect sense!

FruitSaladIsNotPudding Tue 27-Aug-13 16:55:58

I think it's different if there are allergies to take into account though, obviously. Think you'd be fine to take him a sandwich.

TheDetective Tue 27-Aug-13 16:59:54

Not that there are many breads dairy and soy free grin.

Although we have experimented with soy traces, which he hasn't reacted to. Where as full on soy, he did.

So we could take him a sandwich at some point. smile

Sirzy Tue 27-Aug-13 17:01:17

Can he have mayo? If so tuna mayo may be an idea for jacket potatos

Surely beans are in tomato sauce so would trigger his allergy.

TheDetective Tue 27-Aug-13 17:10:54

Of course they are Lady and this is why I always check foods first grin.

Beans are off the list. D'oh!

No mayo under 1. I had to check the ingredients. Hellmans was the first one I came across, and that had soya oil as it's first ingredient, which means unlikely he can have it - yet.

Hulababy Tue 27-Aug-13 17:21:30

Once DD was happy to eat finger foods, such as bread, vegetables, etc I only ever took snacks out and about. When we went out she would either eat from our plates or have a child meal or starter option as she got bigger. We find most places were happy to give us a little plate for her to have some of out meat, fish or veg though, and some would bring her a side potion of vegetables or salad stuff for free too.

Hulababy Tue 27-Aug-13 17:24:46

Can you take out small portions of dairy free milk and spread with you, as he gets older? I was dairy free for several months a few years back and did this as it was easier - then I could have drinks out easier, and would have jacket potato with my own spread, or bread - and add my own spread - with a side salad, etc.

fieldfare Tue 27-Aug-13 17:26:21

I cm and am always out and about. My smalls are very good at eating a variety of things and have no food issues or allergies etc. I'll normally order them a sandwich but normally have yogurts, a tub of soft fruit, a banana and some rice crackers in my bag in case they don't like it or are having a picky day.
As long as I'm buying food for me and the older children it's not really occurred to me to worry about it.

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