Milk to Meals: A Guide to Starting Solids

This best-selling book will educate, inspire, and nurture you and your child along your weaning journey.

by Luka McCabe & Carley Mendes


Ever thought, “Where do I even start?”

Considering the countless baby food options available and the seemingly endless list of feeding strategies, it’s natural to feel anxious about starting your baby on solids. 

But what if there was an easier way to cut through the noise? A trusted resource to guide you as you embark on this exciting new chapter of motherhood?

There is. (Hint: It’s this book! 😉) 

We hear you.

We wrote Milk to Meals because we knew there had to be a better way.

When we first started researching this topic, we found a surprising lack of clear information. The advice we did unearth included outdated advice that conflicted with our evidence-based research.

That’s when we joined forces and pooled our years of professional experience to create a resource we knew the world needed.

The result? This book! It was created for parents looking for a better way to nourish their babies — holistically and sustainably.

Take a sneak peek 👀


“I just wanted to send you the biggest thank you. I’m an RN as well and a recent, first-time mum. Your book is the best thing I’ve ever read. My girl is only 7 weeks and I wanted to fill my brain with useful and reliable info for when it’s time to transition to solids. This book has made things less overwhelming for me!”

– jess

“My partner and I are enjoying all of your recipes just as much as our baby! Truly an incredible book you’ve created. Thank you!”

– Michelle

“The best book! I’ve been following all the recipes for our 7-month-old and he absolutely loves it. He eats better than hubby and me! Thank you!”

– Dana

“Never leaves my bench. Completely filthy and dog-eared. Like any loved cookbook should be!”

– Shaye

“I received my book and it’s so amazing. It’s going to be my go-to gift now. Thank you for clearly explaining so many things! It’s also a beautifully presented book!” 

– Andrea

“This book is so amazing! 100% the best guide I’ve had on nutrition since starting my son on solids. You both are so talented. Can’t wait to make some meals.”

– Jess

“Your book is amazing, thank you. It arrived on the day I found out I was expecting baby girl #2. I’ve already told her she isn’t allowed to be a fussy eater like her sister! Thank you for creating this, it’s an amazing resource.”

– Hillary

Hi, I'm Luka McCabe

I’m a registered nurse, a registered midwife, and a CAPEA-endorsed birth and parenting educator, as well as a certified nutrition consultant specialising in postpartum and babies. I am also a mother to three beautiful children, Flynn, Florence, and Will!

When my oldest turned 4 months old, I encountered conflicting advice regarding the introduction of solid foods. Disappointed, I embarked on a personal research journey, determined to provide my child with everything his growing body needed to thrive.

This transformative experience led me to share evidence-based information through Boob to Food, providing guidance to parents who are hungry for trustworthy advice amidst a flood of questionable recommendations.

Through my platform, I aim to equip families with the information they need to make informed decisions for their children's well-being.

Get to know me


Hey, I’m Carley Mendes!

Hello! I’m Carley Mendes, a holistic nutritionist, childbirth educator, and founder of Oh Baby School of Holistic Nutrition. Most importantly, I’m the mother of two sweet little loves.

My path to nourishing mothers and babies began 15 years ago when I decided to become a nutritionist and pursue my passion for nourishing pregnancy. While my education provided me with a thorough understanding of how to nutritionally support general health, it was sorely lacking in the nutrition necessary to properly support women during this transformative time in their lives. I became dedicated to gathering experiential knowledge, pouring over modern research, working with mentors, and soaking up wisdom.

The information I acquired was truly eye-opening and starkly different from the conventional nutrition information being offered – especially in how we feed our babies! I was desperate to share what I’d learned and immediately saw that the benefits of proper nutrition for mother and child had the powerful potential to be life-changing, so I went on to found Oh Baby School of Holistic Nutrition. This school has grown into an international platform that allows women to share vital information about nutrition and health. By empowering individuals with this knowledge, we can help transform the future of generations of children.

Get to know me


Meet the authors

Milk to Meals is brimming with advice and loads of nutrition-packed recipes. It’s exactly the foundation your family needs to build healthy relationships around food and the priceless mealtimes you share together.

Nourishing your foundations


A gift they’d actually use!

Forget another swaddle or onesie, get them something that will make a lasting impact! Milk to Meals makes a beautiful gift for any parent or caregiver starting their little one’s journey to food


Why is Milk to Meals so popular?

A beautiful hardcover with 300 pages of evidence-based insights, including 90 fool-proof recipes, this book makes the transition from milk to meals a breeze.

The first 24 months are truly transformative for your child's health, so getting it right is incredibly important. We'll teach you how to…

Evidence-based practices for a seamless transition to solid foods

Feeding methods that fit your family's unique dynamic

How to navigate the top allergenic foods

Key nutrients essential to your baby's health

Healthy, sustainable eating habits for the whole family

When and how to introduce specific foods mindfully

How to help your baby develop an adventurous palate

You’ll learn things like:

Nourish them the right way, every step of the way.

Don't just take our word for it

Nutritionist-approved recipes? Yum!

Milk to Meals offers 90 nutrient-rich, delicious whole-food recipes designed to accommodate different feeding styles, including baby-led weaning and purees.

Nearly two-thirds of the recipes are plant-based, easily adaptable, and include age-specific guidelines to support your little one’s sensitive digestion. 

But here's the best part: These recipes aren't just for babies! Most can be enjoyed by the whole family, saving you precious time in the kitchen.

What's in the book


  • The magic of breastfeeding
  • How long to breastfeed
  • Heat and breastmilk

Getting Started

  • When should my baby start solids?
  • What if my 4-5-month-old is interested in solids?
  • What are the signs my baby is ready for solids?
  • What method should I use?
  • Spoon-feeding
  • Baby-led weaning
  • Combination feeding
  • Transitioning from puree to finger foods
  • Baby-led weaning: coking vs. gagging
  • Baby-led weaning: Food size, shape, and texture

Nutrients for Baby

  • “Food before one is just for fun”... Or is it?
  • Iron and zinc
  • Fats
  • Protein
  • Carbohydrates
  • Cod liver oil
  • Vitamin D3
  • Probiotics
  • Fermented foods
  • Plant-based baby
  • Rice cereal
  • Pouched baby food

How Much? And How Often?

  • “Boob before food until 1 year old”
  • How often should I feed my baby?
  • How much food should I feed my baby?
  • Summary: A guide to starting solids
  • What if my baby isn’t interested in solids?
  • Practical tips to help your baby eat solids
  • Family mealtime

Preparing Your Baby’s Meals

  • Food quality
  • The Dirty Dozen and the Clean Fifteen
  • Soaking and souring
  • Flavour
  • Salt
  • Building a balanced and nutritious meal or puree
  • Water and complimentary liquids

The First Food Guides: Omnivore & Plant-Based

  • The first food guides
  • 1 meal a day (5.5-7 months)
  • 2 meals a day (7-9 months)
  • 3 meals a day (9-12 months)

Food Allergies

  • When should I introduce allergens?
  • What is a food allergy?
  • How should I introduce allergenic foods?
  • Sign of an allergic reaction
  • The top 9 allergens
  • Allergen introduction timeline
  • Eczema


  • Formula
  • Weaning
  • Comfort bottles
  • When is the right time?
  • Nutritionally supporting yourself during weaning
  • Extended breastfeeding

Natural Remedies

  • Teething and appetite
  • Constipation
  • Dehydration


  • Fantastic first foods
  • 1 meal a day (5.5-7 months)
  • 2 meals a day (7-9 months)
  • 3 meals a day (9-12 months)

Our mission is to alleviate stress, provide clarity, and provide a comforting guide as you navigate this exciting and important phase of your baby's development. And hopefully, you'll even have some fun along the way!

– Luka & Carley

Shipping & Handling

Production & Transparency

We use Australia Post to deliver Australia and NZ wide, you can choose at checkout your preference to have your parcel left waiting for you, or whether you'd prefer signature on delivery. 

Shipping within Australia and NZ is a flat rate of $9.95 for standard post

Express postage is $14.95 and will be delivered in 1-4 business days.

*All our books are shipped from a warehouse in Brisbane, Australia. Please visit the Australia Post website to see shipping times to your area.


We happily ship internationally. We use DHL express which is unfortunately a more costly option, however due to COVID the shipping is incredibly fast compared to other options - where you may be waiting months for delivery.

All prices listed are in AUD

International delivery costs are a flat rate of $37 for USA, Canada, and Asia.

International delivery costs are a flat rate of $40 for Europe.

If purchasing from a country not listed here, the shipping cost will be calculated on purchase.

DHL express delivery time can be anywhere from 2-15 days from ship date to delivery depending on your location.
We realise that the shipping costs are high, unfortunately it actually costs our little business a lot more than this, but it is the most we can absorb.

We do offer flat rate shipping though, if you can find some friends to split the shipping costs and order in bulk!


We are a family owned and operated business, juggling motherhood and business daily.

We aim to ship the book out by the next business day.
You will be sent a confirmation email with your tracking number so that you can track the delivery of your book. 


Orders shipped internationally may incur additional fees & duties. The responsibility for any custom duties, foreign taxes or other fees which may be imposed rest solely with the customer.

Should the customer refuse to pay applicable duties & taxes applied by customs, the responsibility lies with the customer to arrange for the order to be returned in order to receive a refund.

If the customer refuses to accept the delivery from DHL and Milk to Meals are charged for return of the parcel, the return shipping amount will be deducted from the customer's refund.

Customers are responsible for collecting parcels from your post-office if an attempted-delivery has been made. We are not responsible for incorrect addresses entered and there will be a redelivery postage charge if the address was incorrect or item uncollected - so please double-check your address while checking out.

Shipping & Handling

Production & Transparency

Our book is a higher price point than a book you will find in K-mart or Amazon, and for some important reasons:

  1. Milk to Meals is completely made and produced in Australia. It is much cheaper to print the book overseas in Asia, however it was very important to me (Luka) to support my own country, especially in these hard economic times thanks to COVID. I also could not travel to Asia to see first hand how the book was produced and how the staff were treated, thus could not in my conscience invest in a company that could possibly be contributing to slave labour. However, this comes at a much higher price point per book, and a decision that I hope you will support me with :)

    Milk to Meals has been printed by McPhersons Printing who are based in Victoria. They have a strong vision for 'going green' using paper from well managed forests (certified by the Forest Stewardship Council and Program for Endorsement of Forestry Certification), non-toxic mineral based inks and the most economical design options to reduce waste.

  2. Milk to Meals is being printed to order, which means we do small print batches and then when they are sold out, we open up a preorder for the next batch. This may mean there is a bit of a wait for your product if you have preordered (which we will specify), but also means that 1000's of books are not contributing to landfill.

  3. We have tried to use small business at every step of the way for this book, so that they are supported! This includes (but very much not limited to) local photographers, Alicja Sieronski a mother of twins who photographed all the food from her home in the UK and Steph from St. Clement Creative for the graphic design and bringing the book to life! We also use a small Australian company Malpa3PL to quality check and ship all the books from their warehouse in Brisbane.

Thank you for investing in this book, and supporting all of the artisans that made this project possible!
Please let me know if we can help you with any further information.


Luka and Carley x

Nurturing online community offering understandable education, and inspiration in family and baby nutrition.

Important Preorder Information!

pre order today before we sell out!