Fertility

The 7 Best High Chairs For Baby-Led Weaning & Factors To Consider Before Buying

Updated on 29 May 2022 • 14 minute read

 

Overview 

Giving your baby their first solid foods can be a big challenge, especially if you’re a first-time parent. But the best baby products can help make the transition easier for you and your baby.

A good high chair can make mealtimes safe, comfortable, and easier to clean up. 

It can be useful in BLW (baby-led weaning), by giving your child their own space in the dining room while enjoying meals with the family.

If you’re planning to do BLW, you might be asking yourself whether you need a high chair.

You might be asking questions like:

“How can I get my baby to like their high chair?

“What do you do if you don’t have a high chair?”

“Can a six-month-old sit in a high chair?”

You can find answers to these common questions and useful information about what factors to consider when choosing the best high chair for your baby.

 

Why Baby-Led Weaning?

Choosing BLW can help promote independence because your baby feeds themselves, gets to pick the food they want from what you prepared, and have their fill at their own pace.

You can’t overfeed in BLW because your child can eventually learn to self-regulate as they differentiate between being hungry and full.

This feeding approach can even help you raise a foodie instead of a picky eater.

 

Is A High Chair Necessary For BLW?

A high chair can be a useful tool in baby-led weaning

Here are some benefits of getting a good one for your baby:

  • The feeding tray can help encourage self-feeding
  • Stability and safety while your baby is seated
  • Personal feeding space with easy-to-clean parts
  • Easier feeding because your little one isn’t running around
  • Easier clean-up because the mess is limited to one area

 

Factors To Consider In Choosing A High Chair For BLW

Baby-led weaning focuses on your child’s self-feeding experience. This feeding approach might work better if they’re comfortable and well-supported.

The following are some of the factors to consider in choosing your baby’s high chair in BLW:

 

Safety Features

Your baby’s safety remains the top priority in choosing their high chair. 

A five-point safety harness can provide the safest way to keep your baby from standing up and climbing out of their high chair. It can also keep them from falling off because the straps restrain their legs and torso.

Always check whether the base is stable and if there’s no danger of the high chair toppling over if your child keeps squirming around.

Can the high chair carry your child’s weight? Some can support up to 250 lbs, while others can only carry 30 lbs. 

However, you might not need a high chair with a high capacity unless you’re choosing one that grows with your baby up to their teens and adulthood (because it converts into a regular chair).

This is the average weight for babies and children: (1)

 

Males

  • One year old: 17-21 lbs
  • Two years old: 24-34 lbs
  • Three years old: 26-38 lbs
  • Four years old: 30-44 lbs
  • Six years old: 36-60 lbs

 

Females

  • One year old: 15-20 lbs
  • Two years old: 22-32 lbs
  • Three years old: 26-38 lbs
  • Four years old: 28-44 lbs
  • Six years old: 36-60 lbs

 

Check if the legs are flimsy, and the connections might become loose with regular movement.

It’s important to check this to ensure that the high chair can properly support your active and ever-growing baby.

 

Safe Materials

Be sure to check that the plastic materials used to make your baby’s high chair are free from toxic chemicals like BPA (bisphenol-A), phthalate, and PVC (polyvinyl chloride). 

These chemicals can cause health issues such as increased blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, and damage to major organs such as kidneys, liver, and reproductive system. (2)(3)(4) 

For products with wood parts, you can choose the ones that only use non-toxic, certified-safe plant-based lacquer for finishing.

Printed fabrics should be free from AZO dyes, which can potentially cause cancers. (5)

 

Ergonomics

The right high chair can promote a proper sitting position for your baby’s safety. Check if your baby’s hips and knees are at a 90-degree angle when they’re on the high chair.

A high chair that offers recline positions isn’t necessary.

Some parents believe that this might be alright for a baby following traditional weaning with purees. However, a reclining chair can pose a choking risk with any feeding approach because food can get pushed towards your baby’s airway.

Always put your baby in an upright, 90-degree position while they’re eating.

 

Footrest For Stability

BLW pioneer Dr. Gill Rapley recommends a high chair with a footrest for stability. It can help your baby stay balanced on their high chair so they can get the most out of BLW. (6)

If possible, find a high chair with a wider range of adjustability. One with an adjustable footrest can provide stability for a small baby and grow with them.

Notice how uncomfortable it can be if you’re sitting with dangling feet for long periods. Your baby will also feel the same way.

However, if the high chair you currently own doesn’t have an adjustable footrest, you can make adjustments by putting a pillow or box to make it higher.

The IKEA Antilop High Chair with tray only costs $24.99, but it doesn’t have a footrest. It can still be a good buy if you’re up to some DIY to put a footrest for your baby.

 

Can Fit Your Table & Dining Room

A high chair is an extra piece of furniture that should also fit your dining room. Some are large and can’t be easily folded for storage, but others are foldable so you can keep them when not in use.

It’s good to choose a high chair that puts your baby higher than the table or at least chest height.

Check for high chairs with height adjustments so you can find a better fit for your baby at your table.

Some high chairs have a removable tray to let you slide it close under the table so your baby can truly eat their meals with the rest of the family.

 

Easy Clean-Ups

BLW can be messy, mama. Your baby’s bib can’t catch all the extra food and mess your baby makes. 

So, an easy-to-clean high chair is an ideal choice. 

Look for a high chair with a removable dishwasher-safe tray that doesn’t have a lot of crevices. There are some that you can remove with one hand.

It’s also a good idea to clean the seat cover and pads after each meal. You can pick a high chair with removable or wipeable seat pads, covers, and straps for easier clean-ups. Some can also be cleaned in a washing machine.

 

The 7 Best Baby-Led Weaning High Chairs

Abiie Beyond Junior Y High Chair

This is also known as the Abiie Beyond Wooden High Chair.

  • $199.95
  • Capacity: Up to 250 lbs
  • Adjustable 3-point or 5-point harness (a 3-point harness restrains your child’s lower body, while a 5-point harness includes straps over their shoulders and torso)
  • Wood frame with plastic tray cover
  • Adjustable seat height and footrest
  • Converts to a toddler booster seat or a regular dining chair for adults

 

Stokke Tripp Trapp High Chair with Tray

  • Stokke Tripp Trapp High Chair: $379
  • Capacity: Up to 242 lbs
  • 5-point harness (with the baby set)
  • Wood frame with plastic tray cover
  • Adjustable seat height and footrest
  • Convertible to a booster seat or a regular dining chair
  • It’s also available without a tray ($279)

 

Primo Cozy Tot High Chair

  • $99.95
  • Capacity: Up to 30 lbs
  • Removable 3-point harness
  • Polypropylene plastic with steel legs
  • Adjustable feeding tray that bends forward 
  • Converts into a toddler chair without a tray

 

Joovy Nook High Chair

  • $129.99
  • Capacity: Up to 50 lbs
  • Adjustable 5-point harness
  • Plastic and steel high chair with plastic tray
  • Easily foldable chair (folds flat and small)

 

OXO Tot Sprout High Chair

  • $261.99
  • Capacity: Up to 60 lbs
  • 5-point harness
  • Wood frame with reinforced plastic seat and tray
  • Converts to a chair for kids up to five years old (or 60 lbs max weight)

 

Keekaroo Height Right High Chairs

  • $189.95
  • Capacity: Up to 250 lbs
  • 3-point safety harness
  • Wooden high chair and tray with plastic cover
  • Converts to a booster chair and adult-sized chair

 

Graco Blossom 6-In-1 Convertible High Chair

  • Graco Blossom 6-In-1 Convertible High Chair: $179.99
  • Capacity: Up to 40 lbs (high chair) and 60 lbs (separate toddler booster seat)
  • Convertible 3-point and 5-point harness
  • Steel frame with plastic tray and leatherette seat pads
  • Six configurations possible

 

Learn more about the best high chairs for baby-led weaning below.

Abiie Beyond Junior Y (Abiie Beyond Wooden High Chair)

Price

  • $199.95

 

Key Features 

  • Material: High-quality European cultivated beechwood; recyclable and biodegradable
  • Safety Features: Free from BPA, phthalates, and PVC
  • Harness: Adjustable 5-point or 3-point harness
  • Portability: It isn’t easy to fold, but its small footprint can let it fit through doorways easily
  • Colors: Olive, raspberry, pearl, blueberry, and cream
  • Styles: Wood frame with cushion seats and plastic tray cover
  • Footrest: Yes, adjustable

 

Parts & Accessories:

  • Backrest and seat cushions
  • One-hand removable plastic tray cover 

 

Other Specifications

Capacity: Up to 250 lbs; suitable for big kids

Warranty: Standard three years, plus up to three years extended warranty for $39.95

 

This high chair passes the following quality specifications:

  • Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (2008) or the H.R.4040
  • ASTM F404-10 (American Society for Testing and Materials) standard for high chairs 
  • CARB (California Air Resources Board) Phases 1 & 2 for low emissions of formaldehyde

 

What Makes It Special?

  • Adjustable seat height and footrest.
  • Ergonomic design can keep your child’s back upright and knees at a 90-degree angle.
  • It converts to a booster seat or a regular dining chair for adults.

 

Product Recall

  • None

 

Cons

  • It isn’t foldable, so you can’t easily bring this in your car for trips.
  • The wood can blister easily with regular spills of food or liquids. 
  • Cushion colors can transfer to wet wipes or rags. 
  • Food might get through the gap between the wood portion frame and the plastic cover.
  • Some parents complained about the supposedly dishwasher-safe cover warping after being put in a dishwasher.

 

What Customers Say 

Positive Reviews 

The tray cover makes for easy clean up — so simple, especially since he’s a messy little eater. The seat pads are easy to clean too.”- Reviewer on Abiie’s website.

Negative Reviews 

It seems like there are a ton of little notches and crevices where food and crumbs accumulate/get stuck.” – Reviewer on Amazon.

 

Stokke Tripp Trapp High Chair

Price

  • High chair only, without tray: $279 
  • High chair and cushion with Stokke tray: $379
  • Adjustable chair, without tray or harness: $199

 

Optional accessories:

  • Baby cushion: $59
  • Junior child cushion: $59
  • Placemat for tray: $29.99
  • Storage: $39

 

Key Features 

  • Material: Beech, oak, or ash wood
  • Safety Features: Water-based, non-toxic paint for the wood; plastic parts are free from bisphenol and phthalates
  • Harness: 5-point harness with the baby set
  • Portability: It’s not foldable but is still slim enough to fit through doors easily
  • Colors: Combinations of white, gray, cream, and brown
  • Styles: Wooden chair with tray and cushion, depending on the configuration you choose
  • Footrest: Stable but adjustable footrest

 

Other Specifications

Capacity: Can be suitable for big kids because it can carry up to 242 lb

Warranty: Up to seven years extended warranty

 

What Makes It Special?

  • It’s adjustable and can grow with your baby up to adulthood.
  • The cushions are removable and machine-washable.

 

Product Recall

  • None

 

Cons

  • It’s more expensive than other high chairs with a similar style.
  • The safety harness is difficult to use because it’s hard to adjust.

 

What Customers Say 

Positive Reviews 

This high chair is very easy to clean. You simply can wipe down all wood parts and even the cushion. If needed, you can remove it to machine wash, but spot cleaning works in between washes.” – Reviewer on Nordstrom.

Negative Reviews 

It’s not very sturdy and wabblws unless every screw is in precisely.” – Reviewer on Amazon.

 

Primo Cozy Tot High Chair

Price

  • $99.95

 

Key Features 

  • Material: Polypropylene plastic
  • Safety Features: Free from BPA, phthalates, lead, and fire retardants
  • Harness: Removable 3-point harness
  • Portability: It’s foldable and also has legs that can be removed and reassembled quickly
  • Colors: Teal or black and white
  • Styles: Plastic with steel legs
  • Footrest: Yes, adjustable

 

Parts & Accessories:

 

  • The double feeding tray has an easily removable, dishwasher safe (top rack) cover.
  • No fabric parts for easier clean-ups

 

Other Specifications

Capacity: Can carry up to 30 lbs

Warranty: Not specified on their website, but the company indicated that it’s included in the instruction guide that comes with your high chair.

 

What Makes It Special?

  • The tray portion is adjustable and can bend forward so you can easily put your baby in and out of the high chair.
  • This high chair converts into a toddler seat without a tray.

 

Product Recall

  •  None

 

Cons

  • Some customers complained that the chair can be wobbly.

 

What Customers Say 

Positive Reviews 

Small foot print: we’re limited on space and having to have 2 high chairs is annoying to anyone who hates clutter (me!), i love that these are foldable, after meals they fold up and go straight into the kitchen pantry.” – Reviewer on Amazon.

Negative Reviews 

“…After a month of use the straps came loose and failed and it allowed my toddler to stand up in the chair.” – Reviewer on Amazon.

 

Joovy Nook High Chair

Price

  • $129.99

 

Key Features 

  • Material: Polypropylene plastic tray with metal legs and leatherette seats
  • Safety Features: Free from BPA, BPS, phthalate, lead, and flame retardants
  • Harness: Adjustable 5-point harness
  • Portability: Folds down flat for storage
  • Colors: Black, charcoal gray, coral, red, and turquoise
  • Styles: Plastic and steel high chair with easy-wipe leatherette seats
  • Footrest: Yes, not adjustable

 

Parts & Accessories:

  • Four-stage adjustable tray with removable dishwasher-safe insert

 

Other Specifications

Capacity: Can carry up to 50 lbs

Warranty: Two-year warranty, and 30-day returns with no questions asked

 

What Makes It Special?

  • It has a swing-open tray you can operate with one hand.
  • This foldable high chair can easily turn compact and flat for easy storage.

 

Product Recall

  • None

 

Cons

  • The straps can be difficult to clean.

 

What Customers Say 

Positive Reviews 

Set up is so easy and so is teardown. It folds up so fast and into such a small piece too, which is perfect for our tiny apartment.” – Reviewer on Joovy’s website.

Negative Reviews 

“…the chair broke at the joints that connects the backrest to the chair. My child is about 33lbs… Much less than the advertised limit.” – Reviewer on Walmart.

 

OXO Tot Sprout High Chair

Price

  • $261.99

 

Key Features 

  • Material: Wood, foam cushion, and plastic
  • Safety Features: Free from BPA, phthalates, and PVC
  • Harness: 5-point harness
  • Portability: It’s not foldable
  • Colors: Gray, taupe, pink, green, or navy
  • Styles: Solid ply birch legs with reinforced plastic seat and back
  • Footrest: Yes, adjustable

 

Parts & Accessories:

  • Lightweight one-handed tray
  • Water-resistant, wipeable cushions

 

Other Specifications:

Capacity: Can carry up to 60 lbs

Warranty: Seven years for the wood, plastic, and metal parts; two years for the cushion and harness straps

 

What Makes It Special?

  • You can adjust this high chair to different heights and depths.
  • It converts to a chair for kids up to five years old or 60 lbs maximum.

 

Product Recall

  • None

 

Cons

  • The food tray isn’t dishwasher or microwave safe.
  • Wood parts can warp if they repeatedly get wet from your baby’s food or drinks.

 

What Customers Say 

Positive Reviews 

I am using it for a 6 month old. Not only does it aesthetically pleasing, but it is comfortable for the baby and extremely easy to clean.” – Reviewer on Walmart.

Negative Reviews 

Just be careful to wash and dry fully as ours started to grow mold in the Velcro.” – Reviewer on Walmart.

 

Keekaroo Height Right High Chairs

Price

  • Height Right High Chair + Tray: $189.95
  • Height Right High Chair with Infant Insert: $229.95
  • Infant insert: $54.95

 

Key Features 

  • Material: Rubberwood frame with standard plant-based lacquer, plastic tray, and 100% polyester fiber cloth cushion
  • Safety Features: Free from phthalate, BPA, and latex, with anti-microbial protection
  • Harness: 3-point safety harness
  • Portability: It isn’t foldable but has a small frame that can be easy to carry
  • Colors: Natural and mahogany
  • Styles: Wooden high chair and tray with plastic bumpers
  • Footrest: Yes, adjustable

 

Parts & Accessories:

  • Removable plastic tray cover
  • The optional infant insert is made from non-toxic materials and is crack/puncture-resistant.

 

Other Specifications

Capacity: Can carry up to 250 lbs

Warranty: Five years

Certification: JPMA Board (Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association) Certified to the highest ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) standards.

 

What Makes It Special?

  • The brand claims that physical therapists helped design this chair to help promote your baby’s good posture.
  • It’s ideal for big kids and can grow with your baby up to adulthood.

 

Product Recall

  • None

 

Cons

  • Some parents complained about the tray warping and getting broken after several clean-ups.

 

What Customers Say 

Positive Reviews 

This is the second Keekaroo Booster we have purchased. Each of our kids are using them now on the bar height chairs at our kitchen bar.” – Reviewer on Keekaroo’s website.

Negative Reviews 

There are so many nooks and crannies where food gets stuck. There is no way to clean this properly without a good set of dental tools.” – Reviewer on Amazon.

 

Graco Blossom 6-In-1 Convertible High Chair

Price

  • $179.99

 

Key Features 

  • Material: Plastic and steel high chair with premium leatherette seat pads 
  • Safety Features: Free from lead, other restricted heavy metals, BPA, phthalates, and AZO dyes
  • Harness: Convertible 3-point and 5-point harness
  • Portability: Portable high chair with front wheels and locking rear casters
  • Colors: Different prints and colors are available
  • Styles: Steel frame with plastic tray and leatherette seat pads
  • Footrest: Yes, adjustable

 

Parts & Accessories:

  • One-hand removable, dishwasher-safe tray with pull-out insert
  • Machine-washable seat pads
  • Removable tray and seat back insert so you can position your baby closer to the table

 

Other Specifications

Capacity: Can carry up to 40 lbs (high chair) and 60 lbs (separate toddler booster seat)

Warranty: One year

 

What Makes It Special?

  • It’s a 6-in-1 convertible high chair: infant high chair with recline position, traditional baby high chair, infant booster seat, toddler booster, youth chair, and seat for two kids at once (with the separate toddler booster)
  • The reclining chair is ideal for feeding babies with a bottle, but shouldn’t be used for baby-led weaning. Be sure to put your child in an upright position while eating solid foods.

 

Product Recall

  • None

 

Cons

  • The straps are removable, but many parents complain that it’s difficult to remove them. Also, the rough woven material can easily become a food/morsel trap.
  • Some parents complained that the wheels don’t have a safety brake.

 

What Customers Say 

Positive Reviews 

It’s super versatile! Love the different and many (3) trays. My almost 3 month old easily sits in her high chair calmly while I cook. We are loving it so far and we are happy that it will grow with her!” – Reviewer on Graco Baby’s website.

Negative Reviews 

When my son started walking/ wanting to climb things, he would stand on the horizontal bars of the base which seemed so dangerous. The lack of brakes did not help here either because it would slip and slide underneath him.” – Reviewer on Amazon.

 

Summary & Recommendations

These high chairs can be suitable for baby-led weaning, but they certainly aren’t made equal. 

Here are some of our recommendations to help you pick the best high chair for your baby:

 

Choose the Abiie Beyond Junior Y High Chair ($199.95) if:

  • You prefer a chair that grows with your child
  • You’re looking for one that can carry up to 250 lbs
  • You want one with options for both a 5-point and a 3-point harness
  • You prefer a wood frame with adjustable seat height and footrest

 

Choose Stokke Tripp Trapp High Chair with Tray if:

  • You don’t mind the higher price tag ($379)
  • You’re looking for a high chair with good capacity (up to 242 lbs)
  • You prefer a wooden high chair with adjustable seat height and footrest
  • You want to have the option to buy a high chair without a tray ($279)

 

Choose Primo Cozy Tot High Chair if:

  • You want a budget-friendly option ($99.95)
  • You don’t mind the small capacity (only up to 30 lbs)
  • You prefer a high chair with an adjustable feeding tray that bends forward 
  • You want one that converts into a toddler seat without a tray

 

Choose Joovy Nook High Chair if:

  • You’re searching for a mid-range option ($129.99)
  • You don’t mind that it only has a capacity of up to 50 lbs
  • You want one that’s portable and easily foldable (can fold flat and small)

 

Choose OXO Tot Sprout High Chair if:

  • You don’t mind the high price tag ($261.99)
  • You want a wood high chair with a reinforced plastic seat and tray
  • You prefer a high chair that converts to a chair for kids (up to 60 lbs max weight)

 

Choose Keekaroo Height Right High Chairs if:

  • You’re looking for a wooden high chair that has a tray with a removable plastic cover
  • You want one with a high capacity (250 lbs) and converts to an adult-sized chair but with a lower price ($189.95) than Abiie or Stokke high chairs

 

Choose Graco Blossom 6-In-1 Convertible High Chair if:

  • You don’t mind paying high ($179.99) for a high chair that can only carry up to 40 lbs
  • You want one with a convertible 3-point and 5-point harness
  • You prefer a steel frame with a plastic tray and leatherette seat pads
  • You’re looking for a high chair with many (up to six) configurations possible

 

FAQs For BLW High Chairs

Can A Six-Month-Old Sit In A High Chair?

Most babies who are six months old can sit independently, with or without support. Make sure they can support their heads and sit upright before putting them in a high chair.

It’s a good idea to pick a high chair with a 5-point harness to secure your baby. 

If the high chair is still too big or the footrest too far, you can put pillows or other soft materials that can help make your baby feel more comfortable.

 

At What Age Should A Baby Sit In A High Chair?

Babies develop at varied rates, but they’re typically ready to sit upright in a high chair at around six months of age. 

If your baby shows signs of readiness for solid foods at four months old, you can put them in a high chair. 

However, get your pediatrician’s green light before feeding your baby if they’re younger than six months old.

 

How Can I Get My Baby To Like His High Chair?

Here are some tips to consider:

  • Create a meal routine
  • Ensure that the high chair is comfortable and their feet can reach the footrest
  • Offer praise and positive reinforcement

 

What To Do If There’s No High Chair?

You can hold your baby on your lap, but still let them self-feed.

Another option is to use boosters.

The following aren’t full high chairs, but you can use them to easily convert regular dining chairs to a high chair for your baby:

  • Phil & Ted’s Lobster Clip On High Chair – $98.99
  • Chicco 360 Hook On High Chair – $89.99
  • Inglesina Fast Table Chair – $79
  • Fisher-Price Healthy Care Deluxe Booster Seat – $39.99

 

These can be portable high chairs, but be extra careful about using them with your baby. 

Some safety tips if you choose these high chair alternatives:

  • Always check their capacity and your baby’s weight, especially for hook-on or clip-on types.
  • Always make sure to securely attach them to the table and double-check each time you put your baby inside.

 

However, we don’t recommend using these products regularly because they have potential safety issues and don’t have a footrest.

It’s best to ask for your pediatrician’s advice on these types of high chair alternatives.

 

REFERENCES

(1) https://www.stanfordchildrens.org/en/topic/default?id=normal-growth-90-P01625

(2) https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/expert-answers/bpa/faq-20058331

(3) https://noharm-uscanada.org/issues/us-canada/phthalates-and-dehp

(4) https://www.state.nj.us/humanservices/opmrdd/health/pvc.html

(5) https://www.productsafety.gov.au/products/chemicals/azo-dyes

(6) http://www.rapleyweaning.com/assets/Sitting_upright.pdf

 

 

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