Sample baby schedules for 3- and 4-month-olds

At 3 and 4 months old, babies are still eating frequently throughout the day but are capable of going for longer stretches at night. Breastfeeding parents can expect their baby to continue to eat often, anywhere from eight to 12 times a day. If you're formula-feeding your little one, they'll be ready for 4- to 6-ounces bottles six to eight times a day. As your baby grows out of the newborn stage, you may notice them starting to develop a more predictable schedule for feeding, sleep, and play.

A person feeding a baby a bottle
Photo credit: / Hiraman

At 3 and 4 months old, your baby may be naturally falling into a schedule. You can encourage them by adding more consistency to their days. Keep their naptimes, mealtimes, and bedtime routine about the same from day to day. Babies are awake and alert more now, making it a good time to start getting them on a more predictable schedule.

It can be a big help to see what other moms and dads are doing. Below, you'll find several sample schedules based on those of real parents and reviewed by a pediatrician on our Medical Advisory Board.

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As you're creating a schedule for your baby, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • The schedule for a formula-fed baby may look different than the schedule for a breastfed baby. At 3 to 4 months old, your formula-fed baby will have around 32 ounces of formula each day over five to eight feedings of 4 to 6 ounces each. (See whether your baby is getting enough formula.)
  • If you're breastfeeding, your baby will eat five to eight times a day, every two or three hours. (Here's how to tell whether your baby is getting enough breast milk.)
  • By focusing on longer feedings every three to four hours during the day, you can start encouraging your baby to sleep for longer stretches at night. Babies can go through the night without a feeding as early as 3 months, but it more commonly happens later, around 5 or 6 months

Sample 3-month-old feeding schedule

7 a.m.: Nurse.

8 a.m.: Daycare drop off; playtime.

9:45 a.m.: 4 ounces of expressed breast milk.

10 a.m.: Naptime. (Mom pumps at work.)

12 p.m.: Playtime.

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12:45 p.m.: 4 ounces of expressed breast milk.

1:30 p.m.: Naptime. (Mom pumps again.)

2:30 p.m.: Playtime.

4 p.m.: 4 ounces of expressed breast milk. (Mom pumps again.)

4:30 p.m.: Naptime.

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5:15 p.m.: Daycare pickup.

5:45 p.m.: Playtime.

6:30 p.m.: Nurse.

6:45 p.m.: Playtime and tummy time.

7:30 p.m.: Nurse, then bedtime routine.

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12 a.m.: Nurse.

4 a.m.: Nurse.

Sample 4-month-old feeding schedule

5 a.m.: Nurse, then back to sleep.

7 a.m.: Nurse and back to sleep again.

9 a.m.: Wake up.

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10 a.m.: Nurse, then tummy time and playtime.

12 p.m.: Naptime.

2 p.m.: Nurse.

2:30 p.m.: A walk in the stroller.

3 p.m.: Short nap.

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4 p.m.: Nurse.

5 p.m.: Playtime.

7 p.m.: Bedtime routine – bath, read a few books and sing a lullaby.

7:30 p.m.: Nurse and bedtime.

1 a.m.: Nurse, then back to bed.

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Tips for feeding your 3- or 4-month-old

You may be breastfeeding exclusively, pumping and breastfeeding, exclusively pumping, formula-feeding, or supplementing with formula.  No matter how you're feeding your 3- to 4-month-old baby, here are some tips for helping it go smoothly.

  • If you're breastfeeding, continue to nurse or pump often to keep your milk supply up. Offer both breasts at each feeding to keep signaling to your body that it needs to make enough milk to keep up with your baby's hunger.
  • It's hard to overfeed a breastfeeding baby, but at 3 to 4 months it's also okay to encourage them to go for slightly longer stretches between meals. By focusing on longer feedings, you can fill their belly and try to avoid your baby "snacking" all day long.
  • Eat plenty of nutritious foods to keep yourself fueled for feeding your baby. Breastfeeding moms need more calories (450 to 500 extra calories each day), and dieting can decrease your milk supply.
  • If your baby is nursing exclusively but you're ready to introduce a bottle, it can sometimes be a challenge. Here are some tips for giving your breastfed baby a bottle.
  • If you're exclusively pumping and you notice a sudden drop in milk supply, try power pumping. The idea is to pump frequently over an hour to increase supply. One commonly suggested power pumping schedule is pump for 20 minutes, rest for 10 minutes, pump for 10 minutes, rest for 10 minutes, pump for 10 minutes. You can power pump once or twice a day.
  • Practice paced bottle feeding if your baby is drinking formula or breast milk from a bottle. By feeding your baby in a more upright position and taking regular breaks to burp them, you allow them more control over how quickly and how much milk or formula they drink.
  • Keep your bottle-fed baby safe from foodborne illness by practicing safe bottle feeding. Wash your bottles thoroughly between feedings and be sure you're storing formula safely. Expired or compromised formula can be dangerous for babies, so double-check the label before feeding your baby from a new container of formula.

Learn more:

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BabyCenter's editorial team is committed to providing the most helpful and trustworthy pregnancy and parenting information in the world. When creating and updating content, we rely on credible sources: respected health organizations, professional groups of doctors and other experts, and published studies in peer-reviewed journals. We believe you should always know the source of the information you're seeing. Learn more about our editorial and medical review policies.

American Academy of Pediatrics. 2022. Amount and Schedule of Baby Formula Feedings. a new window [Accessed September 2022]

American Academy of Pediatrics. 2012. Breastfeeding Mealtime Milestones a new window [Accessed September 2022]

American Academy of Pediatrics. 2022. How Often and How Much Should Your Baby Eat? a new window [Accessed September 2022]

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2022. How Much and How Often to Breastfeed. a new window [Accessed September 2022]

U.S. Department of Agriculture. 2019. Infant Nutrition and Feeding. a new window [Accessed September 2022]

Mary Sauer

Mary Sauer is a freelance parenting and health writer living in Kansas City. She is a mom of four and loves to hike with her kids, read, and knit. Cooking a complicated meal her kids probably won't eat is one of her favorite pastimes.