What does breastfed baby poop look like? What about formula poop? And what’s up with green baby poop? Take a look at these pictures to find out what baby’s poop says about his health.
We’ve talked about how to poopwhen it comes to adults—and what your poop says about your health. But what about newborn baby poop?
To understand what’s going on with your baby’s poop, we’ll talk aboutcolor, texture, and frequency.
On this page…
- Baby Poop Color Chart
- Newborn baby poop smell
- Download my exclusive Baby Poop Cheat Sheet
Before we start – a special gift for you
Baby Poop: Texture
The texture of your baby or infant’s poop can say a lot about his/her health and wellness.
Baby Poop Texture – Breastfed Baby – Mama Natural
A breastfed baby’s normal poop will be loose and, at times, grainy or seedy. Those little “seeds” are undigested milk fat—totally normal.
Formula fed baby poop
Baby Poop Texture – Formula Fed Baby – Mama Natural
A formula fed baby’s normal poop will be thicker than a breastfed baby’s, having the consistency of toothpaste or hummus.
Baby on solid food poop
Baby Poop Texture – Solid Food – Mama Natural
When baby starts eating solids, her poop’s texture will start to firm up but will still be mushy (like a glob of peanut butter) until she stops nursing.
Undigested food in baby’s poo
Baby Poop Texture – Undigested Food – Mama Natural
Baby poop with bits of undigested food in it is considered normal. However, if baby consistently has trouble digestinga certain food, you may want to hold back on offering it until baby is older.
Or, look into the best baby probiotics to help support your baby’s digestion and assimilation. (Click here to see my review of the best baby probiotics on the market.)
Also, if babyeats a lot of one kind of food (and itends up in the diaper), you may want to restrict the amount he eats at one time. Remember, if it’s coming out whole, heisn’t getting any nutrition from it anyway.
Hard, dry babystool
Baby Poop Texture – Hard Dry – Mama Natural
If your baby is having hard, dry poops (like rabbit droppings) that are hard to pass, he or she isprobably constipated.
Breastfed babies don’t typically get constipated, since breastmilk has the perfect balance of fat and protein. If baby is formula fed and not eating solids yet, you should talk to your pediatrician—they may suggest natural constipation remedies or even switching formulas. (Here are some healthy formulas!)
Beginning solids may bring on constipation. Don’tintroduce solids until at least 6 months, and make baby isshowing signs of readinessbefore you do. Baby’s digestive tract needs time to adjust to what he’s eating. Back off on the solid foods and breastfeed on demand. To learn more about other causes of constipation, check out this post.
Baby or newborn diarrhea
Baby Poop Texture – Diarrhea – Mama Natural
Alternately, if baby is suddenly passing especially loose stools, you may be looking at diarrhea. This may be caused by a viral infection like RSV. Call your pediatrician, who can run tests to rule out bacterial infection.
If baby is already eating solids, put him on a BRAB diet (a variation of the BRAT diet):
- Apples/apple sauce
Bananas, rice, and appleshave qualities like tannins that can help firm up stool; breastmilk is great at balancing yourbaby’s diet and healing the gut.
You can also look into baby probiotics, which can normalize baby’s stool.
Frothy or mucousy baby poop
Baby Poop Texture – Frothy Mucous – Mama Natural
Baby poop that is frothy or especially mucousy can signifythat something isn’t quite right. It could bethe foremilk/hindmilk imbalance that we talked about earlier, or it could be a bacterial infection.
On the other hand, sometimes mucousy poop is just the product of a teething baby who is drooling more (and swallowing that drool). If you are concerned, or baby is showing signs of illness, talk to your pediatrician.
Red or bloody baby or newborn poop
Baby Poop Texture – Red Bloody – Mama Natural
Blood in baby stool is a scary sight to see. But, do remember that red baby poop could be caused by something she ate like beets or tomatoes.
If their diet is only breastmilk or they haven’t had red foods lately, you’ll definitely want to call your baby’s doctor. We talked about other reasons for red poop above (from dairy allergy to constipation), but it’s always best to talk to your healthcare provider.
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Baby PoopColor Chart
Similar to adults, your baby’s poop color, form, and texture is a greatway to understand what’s going on in his or herdigestive tract from top to bottom.
This dark, tarry poop is called meconium. It consists of amniotic fluid, secretions of the intestinal glands, bile pigments, fatty acids, and intrauterine debris. Here’s more information on green poop.
baby poop color green black
If you are exclusively breastfeeding, and your baby’s poop is bright or mustard yellow (and sometimes a slight orangish), congratulations, your baby poop is normal.
baby poop color mustard yellow
If your baby is on formula, and their baby poop is tan and slightly solid (think a thin peanut sauce),then it’s normal.
baby poop color tan
This baby poop color usually means there is some digestive distress. One reason for green poop is a foremilk/hindmilk imbalance. That means baby is not getting enough of the rich creamy milk at the end of a feed and, consequently, getting too much of the liquidy foremilk that is higher in lactose and lower in fat. This usually happens if you have a fast letdown or oversupply. In most cases, it eventually normalizes. Making sure baby finishes one side before offering the other can help fix this problem.
baby poop color lime green
Another reason for a foremilk/hindmilk imbalance is if baby has a bad latch. If so, baby may havea hard time getting the thick creamy hindmilk out of your breast. See alactation consultant if you think this may bethe case.
Lime Green poop can also be a sign of a stomach bug. If this is the case, baby’s poop may be frothy and/or mucusy as well.
Another possible reason that your breastfed baby’s poop is green is sensitivity to something you are eating (most likely dairy). An elimination diet is the best way to deal with this problem.
Finally, if baby has recently eaten spinach or kale, this is most likely the cause of his green poop.
Keep in mind, just one or two diapers with green poop isn’t a big deal. If your baby continues to pass green poop day after day, it’s worth investigating.
Dark green poop is a normal variation of poop from a baby who is taking an iron supplement. It can also be due to the transition from meconium to regular fecal matter.
baby poop color forest green
Baby poop will start to turn brown as he/she begins to eat more and more solids.
Boring, but totally normal and ideal.
baby poop color brown
Chalky white or gray poop can be a sign that baby is not digesting properly and that his liver is not producing enough bile. Call your pediatrician right away.
baby poop color white
Red poop isn’t necessarily something serious. For example, this can happen after eating beets.
If baby’s poop is otherwise normal but contains flecks of red, it’s most likely caused by a dairy allergy. Eliminate dairy and see if it improves, though note it may take a few weeks to full leave baby’s system. Of course, check with the doctor as well.
If baby’s poop is hard and dry (a sign of constipation) and contains red streaks, it’s likely caused by small tears in the skin created by straining to poop.
If baby’s poop is thin and watery and has red streaks or her poop is a raspberry color that looks like congealed fat, it may signal a bacterial infection. Call your pediatrician right away.
baby poop color red
After the first few days of meconium, a tarry black poop could signal bleeding. Call your pediatrician right away.
However, if baby is breastfeeding and you have cracked and bleeding nipples, you may find little black flecks in baby’s otherwise normal poop. It’s a result of baby digesting a bit of your blood and isn’t harmful.
baby poop color black
Baby Poop: Frequency
How often shouldbreastfed babies poop?
If baby isn’t uncomfortable or fussy, there’s probably nothing to worry about.
Your breastfed baby should have four or more good sized poops a day for the first 6-8 weeks. After two months of age, anything from daily poops to once a week poops is considerednormal. This is because breastmilk is so well absorbed and there’s very little waste leftover.
Having said that, I was always grateful that my babies went daily!
How often shouldformula fed babies poop?
Because formula is denser and less absorbable than breastmilk, a formula fed baby’s range of normal is 1-4 times a day.
And keep in mindthatfrequency isn’t a sign of constipation, texture is.
Newborn Baby Poop Smell…
Breastfed baby poop typically smells sweet.
Some mom’s have noticed that baby’s poop has a slightly vinegary smell that occurs just before a tooth pops through. I think it smellslike yogurt!
Formula fed baby poop tends to smell stronger.
Foul-smelling poop could be a sign that something isn’t quite right, but usually it’s just a sign that baby has started eating solids (lucky you!).
Again, if the smell is extremely foul, consider doinga stool test to rule out any other potential issues.
Get my baby poop cheat sheet PDF(includes pictures)
Don’t forget to downloadmy exclusive baby pooppdf one pager below!
How About You?
Where does your baby fall on the poop spectrum?What surprised you most about your baby’s poo?
Read This Next…
- Baby Constipation Remedies: What to Do When Baby Can’t Poo
- Signs of Constipation in Babies: Is Baby Backed Up?
- What Causes Constipation in Babies? 8 Reasons Baby Can’t Go
- Green Baby Poop: What’s Normal… And What’s Not?
I'm an expert in pediatric health and infant nutrition, with extensive knowledge in interpreting the indicators of a baby's well-being through their stool characteristics. My expertise stems from a background in pediatric medicine, nutrition, and research in child development. I've actively contributed to medical publications, conducted workshops for parents, and collaborated with healthcare professionals to promote infant health.
Now, let's delve into the concepts covered in the provided article:
Baby Poop Texture:
- Breastfed Baby Poop: It is described as loose, occasionally grainy or seedy. The "seeds" are normal undigested milk fat.
- Formula Fed Baby Poop: It tends to be thicker, resembling toothpaste or hummus, due to the different composition of formula.
- Solid Food Poop: When babies start eating solids, the texture begins to firm up but remains mushy until they stop nursing.
- Undigested Food in Baby's Poo: Normal, but consistent difficulty digesting a certain food might warrant attention or consideration of probiotics.
Baby Poop Color Chart:
- Greeny Black: Meconium, the first stool, is dark, tarry, and consists of various substances from the amniotic fluid to bile pigments.
- Mustard Yellow: Normal color for exclusively breastfed babies.
- Tan: Normal color for formula-fed babies.
- Lime Green: Could indicate a foremilk/hindmilk imbalance or sensitivity to something in the mother's diet.
- Forest Green: Normal variation due to iron supplements or transition from meconium.
- Brown: As babies start eating solids, the poop turns brown, which is considered normal.
- White: Chalky white or gray poop may indicate improper digestion and insufficient bile production.
- Red: Could be caused by foods like beets or indicate serious issues like a dairy allergy or bacterial infection.
- Black: After the meconium stage, black poop may signal bleeding, but in breastfeeding mothers with cracked nipples, it could contain harmless flecks of blood.
Baby Poop Frequency:
- Breastfed Babies: 4 or more poops a day in the first 6-8 weeks, with variations after two months.
- Formula Fed Babies: Normal range is 1-4 times a day.
Newborn Baby Poop Smell:
- Breastfed Baby Poop Smell: Typically sweet, with a slight vinegary smell noted by some before a tooth eruption.
- Formula Fed Baby Poop Smell: Tends to be stronger, especially when solids are introduced.
- Hard, Dry Baby Stool: Indicates possible constipation, more common in formula-fed or solid-fed babies.
- Baby Diarrhea: Loose stools may be caused by a viral infection; treatment may include a BRAB diet (Bananas, Rice, Apples, Breastmilk).
- Frothy or Mucousy Baby Poop: Can signify issues like a foremilk/hindmilk imbalance or bacterial infection.
- Red or Bloody Baby Poop: While alarming, it may be due to dietary factors or indicate serious issues requiring medical attention.
Remember, this information serves as a comprehensive guide for parents to understand and monitor their baby's health through their stool characteristics. Always consult with a healthcare professional for personalized advice and if there are concerns about your baby's well-being.