How Do I Get My Toddler to Drink Milk from a Sippy Cup

Updated on June 20, 2008
P.B. asks from Mountlake Terrace, WA
10 answers

My son just turned 14 months and I have been trying to get him off the bottle completely. He takes water and juice just fine from a sippy cup since 11 months, but he refuses to drink milk from his cup. He doesn't use a bottle for comfort or bed time so I know that he can go without a bottle all day. Problem is, he would go all day without milk. I've tried giving him a sippy cup with a straw thinking that would be more fun for him. He'll take a few sips and then throw it on the floor. I would love to get him to drink his milk with meals and snacks as opposed to 3 bottles a day. Any advice?

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answers from Portland on

It's totally Britney Spears, but it worked for me: I used Strawberry Qwik for a week. I showed him the package and let him watch me make it, making a big deal over it being "bunny juice" (yeah, inside family joke for it). I never made it super sugary, but I made it good. Then once he was hooked, I weaned off the Qwik and pretty soon he was addicted to plain milk. Don't tell the authorities--I'll deny it!

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answers from Portland on

Oh how I wish you could locate archives on this site - anyone aware if that is a function?

Anyway, P., this is very similar to a situation I was having with my son awhile back. Here is the link to the advice I received:

In the end what ended up working for my son was cold turkey. Within about six hours he would take little sips from a sippy cup of milk. Within two to three days I got him up to about 10 oz a day of milk. I just make sure to get calcium in him other ways via yogurt, cheese, etc.

Ah, the things no one ever told us would be a challenge right?!?!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Tallahassee on

Have you tried warming the milk up? My son is 2 1/2 and has refused to drink milk that is not warm in his sippy cup for a year now. Annoying--but he loves it that way. For some reason I think that the milk just seems too cold since it comes out of the sippy cup in stronger volumes than a bottle. Just a thought to try:) Good luck!


answers from Seattle on

Well, my question is why you want him to drink milk? It is not healthy. If you need calcium in his diet there are other healthier ways. Why juice, too? So, he can easily switch to soda lately? If he drinks water this is all he needs and it is good for him. Everything else comes with lots of bad stuff in it and enforces only bad habits. It is not worth doing it just for few mm vitamin C or D. Get him to eat fresh veggies and you are setting a good habit for life. I was struggling with the same thing until I did my "homework" and found out all the information. My son takes water only and this is his choice and I hope it will be his choice for life. Good luck!



answers from San Francisco on

A couple of friends were telling me recently that they just cut out the bottle cold turkey. Their toddlers went without drinking milk, but they just upped their calcium content by giving them more yogurt and cheese. I have the same problem with my son,but I do think the bottle is comforting for him as he won't feed himself and likes to sit on my knee and cuddle while drinking his milk. He goes to daycare twice a week and they give him milk in a sippy cup. He's getting more used to that now and I'm hoping we can gradually remove the bottles in the next month or so. I started ordering him milk at restaurants and he was loving drinking from a cup and straw - I think that may have helped him drink his milk in a sippy cup at daycare, but he still prefers the bottles at home. He's also 16 months.


answers from Seattle on


My daughter is 15 months old and if I give her white milk to drink she'll take a day and a half to drink it. But, if I give her chocolate milk she'll down it in less than 10 minutes. This is a 12 oz cup I'm using.

She is just like her dad in this aspect. He can't stand the taste of white milk unless it's with spaghetti or lasagna. Otherwise he's all about the chocolate milk. Instead of fighting this one, I've gone to buying both kinds, and I'm about the only one that drinks the white. My son will if we give it to him, but he'll ask for the chocolate about half the time. He's 4 1/2.

Hope this helps,



answers from Eugene on

i also have a daughter who would not drink milk from anything because i nursed her and she wouldn't even take a bottle so i started making her banana milk i put a banana and whole milk in a blender and she loves it i also will peel and freeze bananas and blend with milk and it is just like ice cream no joke it is great you can also add other berries or banans and penut butter my older children 12 and 14 have one with lowfat milk my 13mo.old thinks she is getting a treat like her sister and brother! p.s. she drinks it best from a straw like them.



answers from Seattle on

My daughter was similar... she knew how to drink from a sippy cup but when we offered it to her she would either (a) hand it back politely or (b) take a drink or two then toss it. She wouldn't even drink water from a cup. I figured that someday she would want it, so I didn't worry much and kept offering it to her, making it her choice. At her 15 month well baby check up, the Dr said to put away the bottles and all accessories that day! She said she needs to be off the bottle completely... so I went home and put all the bottles away and gave her a sippy cup with milk, she fussed a little the first meal but was fine by dinner and I have not had a problem since! This is truly a case of out of sight, out of mind. Just put them away. If he wont drink milk for a few days, supplement his dairy/protein with cheese, yogurt, etc until he will take the milk from the cup. A few days without milk will not hurt him, especially if he is eating other foods. If he doesn't have a choice, he will adapt.



answers from Portland on

I would suggest you get rid of the bottles and go cold turkey. He probably won't drink much milk at first, but keep offering, and make sure he's getting calcium in other ways (cheese, yogurt). After he realizes there aren't any more bottles, he'll drink milk from a cup.



answers from Spokane on

I am having the same exact problem only my daughter is now 19 months and I have tried everything for the last 7 months with no success. Good luck!

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