The best family mealtime products for babies and toddlers

Family mealtimes can be fun, messy and a great opportunity for parents and little ones to bond together. Here's our collection of clever products to help you all make the most of your time round the dining table.

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1. Ella’s Kitchen’s Easy Family Cookbook ‘The Orange One’, 14.99, MFM Gold Award Winner

From the queen of baby weaning pouches, The Orange One family cookbook wins this year’s gold award for its great mix of family friendly recipes.

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It is very helpful at encouraging all the family to get involved in preparing and cooking food, and features more than 100 recipes with a perfect nutritional balance.

The design also includes a practical pull-out meal planner and special adaptations specific to weaning. The Orange One is the fourth addition to Ella’s Kitchen’s series of cookbooks.

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about Ella’s Kitchen’s The Orange One:

“A great activity book that would last for years. It has loads of ideas to introduce kids to new foods. The kids can have hours of fun. Love it!” MFM reviewer and Mum of 2 Janet Martin

“We as a family love this cookbook. It has some great recipes to please everyone and I love the meal planner! It’s fab to get organised for dinner time.” Mum of 3, Zoe

Available from: Amazon, The Book People and Book Depository


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2. Doddl Children’s Cutlery, £16.95, MFM Silver Award Winner

Our silver award winner is a lovely little set that reduces mess at mealtime and helps children develop the pincer grip and their fine motor skills. The knife is very clever, designed to cut food but safe on skin. 

The set makes eating easier for little ones, which makes for a more peaceful mealtime all round. They are high quality and long lasting, and entice little ones to enjoy family meals.

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about Doddl’s Children’s Cutlery:

“I have used this with my 17-month-old and she loved the spoon and it’s easy to use with the fork. It’s easy to clean and reuse – it is the best I have seen so far for children’s self feeding.” Mum of 2, Corrine CHECK SPELLING

“I really like the cutlery. My wee one is too young to use the knife, but the fork and spoon are easier for her to use due to the short bulky handle. She finds them easy to hold and more food gets to her mouth. The design is nice and they are small, so easy to pack away to take out with us.” Mum of 1, Karen

Available from: Boots, Kiddicare and Amazon


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3. Nana’s Manners Knife & Fork for Kids, £19.95, MFM Joint Bronze Award Winner

This is a great set to encourage older kids (from 3-13 years) to become more confident and independent at mealtimes. The patented shape of our joint bronze award winner supports the tri-grip position and finger stickers guide little hands into the correct grip.

Its ergonomical design is only comfortable when held correctly, so it’s great at making the correct grip into second nature.

Endorsed by occupational therapists and educational professionals.

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about Nana’s Manners Knife & Fork for Kids:

“We loved this product. It was so simple to use and intuitive for my daughter. Within five minutes she went from not being able to hold cutlery correctly to doing it perfectly! She does need to work a bit harder at cutting some food but importantly she is happy to try because she enjoys using the cutlery. I was amazed at how well this worked.” Mum of 2, Lynsey

“I’ve used these with both my 2.5-year-old and my almost 6-year-old and both managed to use them really well and found them fun to use. It encouraged them to eat correctly, although my eldest got the most use out of them. Before long he was managing to correctly use the cutlery at the table which was perfect when out.” Mum of 2, Zoe

 Available from: Amazon, John Lewis and Kidly


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4. Skip Hop Zoo Collection, £14, MFM Joint Bronze Award Winner

These charming tableware sets won over our judges with their cute zoo character designs. Designed to delight little ones during mealtimes, they are easy to mix and match, are made of durable and dishwasher-safe melamine, and feature wonderful bright colours and whimsical illustrations. Practical and fun enough to secure our joint bronze award.

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about the Skip Hop Zoo Collection:

“My 2-year-old loved the colourful character as it added some fun to breakfast and snack times. The Skip Hop Zoo design is bright and bold – really stands out from other sets I’ve seen.” MFM reviewer and Mum of 2, Janet Martin

“The plate and bowl set is a good size, well made and very durable. We’ve managed to drop the items on the floor a number of times and yet not a single crack or chip has appeared. The strong colours don’t fade with washing and the animal design is beautiful and perfect for kids.” Mum of 1, Simi

Available from: Amazon, Uber Kids and Boots


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5. Yumbox, £24.95

The Yumbox makes packing on-the-move mealtimes a pleasure. They feature removable illustrated trays which guide you on what to include for a perfectly balanced lunch.

They can be used for older kids as a snack tray or for baby foods during weaning. Their leakproof design means you can pack wet foods like yoghurt or apple sauce, and the kid-friendly latch means kids can help themselves.

Also available in a lovely range of popping colours.

Available from: Amazon


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6. Doodle It and Go Chalk Book, £24.95

This is a great product to keep your kids entertained during mealtimes in restaurants and cafes. A personal chalkboard, it provides an endless canvas to scribble and doodle on. It’s a great alternative to screen time and to fuel little one’s imagination.

It also comes with Zero Dust ButterStix chalks.

Available from: Amazon and Eatwell


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7. Stokke Tripp Trapp Newborn Set, £75

You can get your newborn involved in family mealtimes from day one with this brilliant attachment to Stokke’s classic Tripp Trapp highchair.

The newborn set enables the Tripp Trapp to be used from birth, with a 5-point safety harness and soft shoulder pads. This means that your little one can enjoy whatever is going on at the table, from the same height but in comfort and safety – this is particularly handy for younger siblings who are desperate to do whatever older siblings are up to 

The seat has red-green indicators to show when it’s mounted correctly. It also includes a removable toy hanger and removable and machine washable covers.

Available from: Amazon, Stokke and Mamas & Papas


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8. Bibetta Placemat with Pocket, £14.99

This clever waterproof fabric placemat can be used at home or on the move, on a highchair or table, to contain mess and spills, or in the absence of a bowl.

It’s a good size but folds down into a compact carry pouch. It has a handy pocket to catch dropped food and a non-slip backing.

Machine-washable and hygienic, this is particularly handy if you are doing baby-led weaning or offering finger foods.

What our reviewers say about Bibetta Placemat with Pocket:

“Useful product for containing mess at mealtimes – love that it’s machine washable and the non-slip base really works!” MFM Reviews Editor Magda Ibrahim

“Could be a cover for a high chair tray, or additional food catcher at the big table.” Mum of 1, Kat

Available from: KidlyBibetta and Babies Corner


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9. Lunch Punch Sandwich Cutters, £10

Anything that makes kids more likely to tuck into a packed lunch – or any lunch – is a winner for parents. Turning a bog-standard sandwich into a delightful design is a great idea, and these Lunch Punch sandwich cutters take this approach to another level. They feature really clever designs that minimise waste of bread. They are BPA, lead and phthalate free and are also 100% recyclable.

These sandwich cutters are particularly simple and easy to use and feature great designs, such as this unicorn set, which features one big unicorn and 4 mini unicorn themed sandwiches. 

Available from: Amazon and NotOnTheHighStreet


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10. We Might Be Tiny Placemats, £16

These super cool placemats from Melbourne-based designers We Might Be Tiny come in three animal designs, the cat, the bear and the bunny. They are very inviting around the dinner table, and are super practical – dishwasher and slip safe, and easy to wipe clean.

BPA-free and made from food grade silicone, they are available in grey, black, mint, pink, blue and white.

Available from: Lullaby

We’ve got more brilliant feeding and weaning product reviews right here…

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