Low birthweight (LBW) as well as early childhood stunting are risk factors for increased childhood morbidity in low-and middle-income countries (LMIC). The Covid 19 pandemic has exacerbated food insecurity and unemployment globally, prompting concerns for maternal and child health. We used data from the great recession of 2008 to examine the relationship between household food security and other risk factors with LBW and stunting using a longitudinal sample of South African women and their offspring. Food security indicators, alcohol use, blood pressure and other characteristics were examined in relation to LBW (=?2500 g), stunting (height for age = 2SD) and severe stunting (height for age = 3SD). Regression modelling with clustering at maternal ID level were employed to adjust for maternal characteristics and women who gave birth more than once during the reference period. Birthweight data were available for 1173 children and height for age 1216 children. The prevalence of LBW was 14.7% while stunting and severe stunting was 17.8% and 14.5%. Child hunger in the household, maternal hypertension and alcohol use were associated with low birthweight. Food expenditure below the Stats SA poverty line and low dietary diversity was associated with stunting and severe stunting respectively. Maternal height and low birthweight were associated with both stunting and severe stunting. Interventions that can improve household food security and nutritional status during the periconceptional and antenatal period may reduce the prevalence of low birthweight and subsequent stunting in low- and middle-income countries.