6 deliciously tasty finger foods that your baby and toddler will love to eat!
I get a lot of questions from readers on what finger foods are good for babies. It is usually more of a question about what finger foods can they serve their baby that aren't bland and boring instead of what is acceptable as a finger food. Because the reality is that when you read one of those lists titled 50 Greatest Finger Foods for Baby, most of the items are total duds and contain things like plain pasta, toasted bread (with maybe butter), plain eggs, string cheese and plain cooked potatoes.
I think we can do better then that boring list.
In fact, I know we can do better then that.
Remember our main goal is to provide baby the most delicious and nutritious food right from the start, whether this is in puree form or finger food form - both need to taste amazing.
So I thought I would take some time and a do a little series on finger foods for babies and toddlers that actually taste delicious and are naturally nutritious. This means we are going to play with spices, methods of cooking and just look for food to serve that is naturally delicious. It's going to be fun!
These are also finger foods that my girls started on, so they are all tried and true 'recipes' from me to you.
If you are just starting finger foods, the question always comes up about what size to chop the food to prevent baby from choking. There are really two ways to approach this issue, and the answer is usually answered by your baby.
Long Strips - The first method is to cut the food into long 2-3" strips (like as shown by the green beans) whenever possible. This lets baby be able to hold onto the item with a tiny fist and then gum the rest of the fruit or vegetable.
Finely Chopped - For this method, instead of long strips you finely chop everything into pea size pieces for baby. Both of my girls preferred this method and wouldn't eat anything that was long in size (I would have had to chop the green beans into small chunks for them). But like I said before, both methods are good for finger foods, it just depends on which way your baby will take their food.
Have any finger food questions on your mind? Then comment on this post and I can help you out!
6 Finger Foods for Baby - 7+ Months and UP
Chopped Raspberries - cut in half or in quarters depending on how old baby is.
- Raspberries are full of antioxidants, vitamin C, manganese and fiber and help fight against cancer, heart and circulatory disease.
- Olives are a good source of vitamin E, iron, copper and calcium. They are rice in antioxidants and help fight inflammation and help fight off infections caused by bacteria.
Pesto Chicken - Roast chicken in an oven at 350 degrees F for 30-45 minutes or until done (you can also use a rotisserie chicken, leftover cooked chicken or slow cooker chicken for this recipe). Chop chicken into strips or chunks and toss a baby size portion with your favorite store bought or homemade pesto. Any leftover chicken is great for a meal for you!
- Chicken is full of protein and a good source of essential vitamins and minerals. When buying chicken for baby, I recommend buying organic chicken without added antibiotics and hormones (read more on why here).
- Hard boiled eggs are full of good fats (monounsaturated and polyunsaturated), iron and protein, and are great for developing eyes and bones. Because eggs are full of iron they are a great food to introduce to baby around 6 months of age which is when babies iron reserves start to diminish. Note on allergies - if anyone in the immediate family has an egg allergy, you should only start baby on the egg yolk for the first year and skip the egg white as the egg white may cause an allergic reaction.
Feta Cheese - Chopped into chunks, or bigger crumbles. Both of my girls loved Feta's sharp and tangy flavor so much, they would eat it like it was going out of style. However, since feta cheese has sodium in it, I would try to limit their intake to a small spoonful at a time. Serving feta is more about developing their taste buds to appreciate and crave different flavors and textures then it is about nutrition, but all the same, it's a great cheese to introduce early.
- Feta is full of calcium which helps developing bones.
Green Beans - Gently steam green beans for 7 minutes or until tender (you don't want them mushy). Then toss them with a small piece of coconut oil (it will melt as you toss) and a sprinkle of garlic powder. Lemon juice, cumin, mild curry, ginger or nutmeg are also a great season to add to green beans.
- Green beans are a good source of vitamins A, C, K, B6 and folic acid, which help build strong bones and healthy eyes.