How Nutritional Needs Change Between 12-24 Months

How Nutritional Needs Change Between 12-24 Months

July 26, 2023

Once your baby turns one and transitions into toddlerhood, you may notice that their physical growth will slow down a bit. As they move through the toddler years, specifically between 12-24 months of age, they will likely begin to become more independent. This is a time where they will work on honing new skills, such as walking and feeding themselves. As they move through this stage, their dietary needs will change from the needs they had during their first year of life. This is because their bodies now have new nutritional needs to adjust to their newfound mobility, as well as the fact that they will be ready to eat primarily table food.

 Toddler nutrition

During the first year of life, breastmilk and/or formula is all your infant needs to meet their dietary needs. With many organic formula options to choose from, there is no need to offer your infant anything else during the first year. If you choose to offer solids during the first year, doing so gradually will help your baby to become accustomed to new tastes and eventually, new textures. As they become more independent and work on new skills from one year of age to two however, they will be eager to try more table food and even try serving themselves. With help from your child’s pediatrician, you will be able to pinpoint the amount of food, milk or toddler formula your child needs. Toddlers between 1-2 years old typically need about 1000-1400 calories each day. This will vary depending on their activity level, as well as where they fall on their growth chart. To meet their nutritional needs, offer your toddler a variety of healthy foods that your family enjoys eating. Here are a few toddler approved suggestions to help get you started! The items in each of these food groups are suggested based on how easy they are for young toddlers to pick up and eat, as well as how easy they are to chew.

 First Solids


  • Bananas
  • Watermelon
  • Kiwi
  • Strawberries
  • Raspberries
  • Avocado
  • Pears
  • Orange Slices



  • Steamed Broccoli & Cauliflower
  • Carrots (easiest to chew when baked, but can also be enjoyed raw for toddlers accustomed to chewing well) 
  • Squash
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Peas


  • Oatmeal
  • Brown Rice
  • Whole Grain Bread
  • Whole Grain Pasta
  • Tortillas
  • Cereal (choose an option with no added sugar)  


  • Eggs
  • Seafood
  • Beans
  • Veggie Burgers
  • Lean Ground Beef
  • Chicken


Toddler nutrition blog post
Tips for trying new foods

While your child may show preferences for certain food items and turn away others, don’t panic at their refusals. Simply do your best to offer them a variety of choices from every food group each day, and practice serving them up in different ways to determine how your little one likes them best! For example, they may turn away raw carrots, yet they may really enjoy baked carrots with a little bit of honey. Involving them in the preparation of their meals can really help to encourage them to try new food items as well. 


Toddlers may request snacks frequently as their bodies are busy growing, so always keep healthy snack items on hand for them. Ideas include organic granola bars, pretzels with hummus, whole grain toast with peanut butter or fruits with yogurt dip.


Aside from milk or toddler formula, offer your toddler plenty of water each day to ensure proper hydration. If you are looking for an occasional alternative to offer that isn’t packed full of sugar, opt for coconut water.

 Toddler foods


Talk to your child’s care provider about their needs for specific vitamins. While offering them a well-balanced diet will likely provide them much of the nutritional benefits they need, your toddler’s care provider may suggest supplements such as iron or specific vitamins once they are fully weaned from infant formula or breastmilk.

Lastly, providing your toddler with plenty of opportunities to move their bodies each day will help them grow healthy and strong, while practicing their gross motor skills! Playing at a nearby park, going on a nature walk, swimming together, doing a freeze dance or simply spending time in your own yard are all great ways to encourage your toddler to stay active. 

Interested in more posts related to toddlers as they become more mobile and try new table food? Be sure to check out these related posts below:
A Checklist for Babyproofing Your Home -
Organic Meal Ideas For Babies and Toddlers -
Additional Toddler Formula Options: Search: 11 results found for "toddler" -

What is your toddler's favorite meal or snack item? Let us know below!

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