Transitioning to cow's milk

O is almost 10 months now and I've been thinking about when we make the switch to cow's milk. Planning on doing it around the 12month mark. I'm not in a rush to drop bf altogether, happy to continue the bedtime feed for a little longer but I resent expressing every evening!

I just wondered how you made the switch and when? Did you start with one feed a day? Did you mix the milk? Did you use a bottle or cup?

Really interested to hear people's experiences xx


  • I'd offer it in a cup/beaker and not a bottle if you're still BFing. With us, we didn't even make it to 12 months feeding W formula.  He just didn't like the milk once we started to introduce food into his diet.  We started offering him blue top cows milk at meal times as well as trying to bottle feed him up to about 11 months.  I even went as far as mixing it into a yoghurt to make it flavoured to get him to take it!

  • My daughter didn't take well to the switch! We tried to mix expressed breast milk with cows milk in a cup just after 12 months (she happily drank water from an open cup with meals from 6 months) but wasn't having any of it. I tried to mix it in her bottles of expressed milk for nursery (like you I got fed up of pumping in the evenings!!) but she then started to refuse those!! In the end we introduced soya milk which she took to really well, then every now & again offered cows milk. I was still breast feeding her 1st thing in the morning & last thing at night from 12-18 months. At 15 or 16 months she just started to drink the cows milk by itself without any fuss so now wish I'd introduced it without the mixing but you just don't know!!

  • Z was bottle fed formula from 3 months.  We changed to cows milk at 12 months and I literally just swapped like for like one day to see what she thought and she took it fine, no issues.  She still has it in a bottle first and last thing.  I know theres something about no bottles after one but I'm not ready for that battle yet!

  • Both of mine have been fine, literally around 12 months had their morning milk (cows milk) in a beaker (they had been having cows milk in cereal from 6 months), then it was if I was there at night I'd feed if not then a beaker of cows milk.

    I know a few people who do it gradually, so swap ounce by ounce iyswim, say 4oz bm  or formula and 1oz cows milk, then gradually increase the cows milk and decrease the bm/formula

  • I put cows milk in a beaker at breakfast for a bit so he got used to the taste and then just started giving it him one night with formula as back up which he never needed!

  • I wish we'd given it in a cup/beaker. A got all his milk via breastfeeding, then after his 1st birthday we tried him with cows milk in a bottle (straight from fridge, for my own convenience) and he took to it like a duck to water. But we can't now get him off his bottles!

  • My 18 month still BF but point blank refuses cow milk and has only recently started easting cheese. She just reversed cycled as she never took any milk from bottle or cup tried lots of different types of cup, bottle and even milks. So she would have water during the day and BM morning, when we get in from work/childminders and bedtime and often a feed or two at night. Not saying all the night feeds were easy when she was younger as had more like 3 or 4 but it meant i didn't have to worry about nutrition particularly.

  • We found the transition easy, L was on formula from nine months and one day just before he turned one I gave him a bottle of cows milk instead and he didn't bat an eyelid. Like someone else said though, I wish I'd gone straight to giving it in a cup as there is no way the bedtime bottles going to go without a fight!

  • Sorry I'm so late back to this! Thank you for the replies, think I'll try and move straight to cup rather than bottle then and mix with breastmilk if necessary!

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