10 Best Finger Foods for Toddlers
Admit it! You have been through a stage when you have asked yourself and others—maybe shouted in your mind or at the house, too—“What the heck do I feed my one year old?!” Got you there!
Feeding your toddlers can be a tricky affair. First of all, you find yourself wondering what kind of food is suitable for them, and if they will like it. Secondly, your toddler has reached the age when they want to eat everything themselves, which may become a big source of frustration for you and for them. This may create a problem in deciding which finger foods to choose. Toddler food must be small enough to be held properly by your child, yet powerful enough to fulfill all of their nutritional requirements.
Below you will find the best finger food ideas for toddlers, all of which are 100% natural. We promise your children will love to get their hands on these scrumptious snacks!
Small chunks of Banana
Banana is considered an ideal food for both babies and toddlers. It is easy to digest and holding loads of essential nutrients in them. Because it is a soft fruit, it can be a perfect finger food for your toddler. Just make sure the banana you are giving your baby is very ripe so that they don’t have trouble chewing. You can also mash the banana—though it is going to be a mess—if you feel like your toddler won’t be able to hold the chunks properly. Bananas can be quite slippery!
Whole peas can be a new taste and texture for your toddler and will give them a pleasant surprise. Green peas can be offered steamed, boiled or simply frozen. In all forms, peas are healthy options of finger food for toddlers. If offered frozen, green peas are effective relievers for teething gums as well. Moreover, green peas pose no threat of choking as they are small and easily pass through the baby’s gut.
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Chopped Hard-boiled Egg
Although it was believed that egg whites should be kept away from kids below 12 months of age, it is now proven that eggs are a completely safe food option. Eggs are an excellent source of healthy nutrients including protein, iron and Vitamin D. These nutrients play a vital role in developing your toddler’s healthy bones and improving their immune system. Chopped hard-boiled eggs are an effective finger food option for toddlers as they are easy to hold, and do not pose a choking risk.
Pasta or Noodles
Many toddlers like pasta and noodles as they are delicious and easy to handle. Toddlers are completely engrossed by their soft texture and are often seen eating pasta and noodles as their favorite food. So, if you ever plan on having pasta for dinner, invite your toddler to join as well. They will thoroughly enjoy the occasion! Just make sure pasta strips are cooked really well and are cut into small pieces to avoid any choking hazards.
Small pieces of Steamed Carrots and Potato
Raw vegetables should be considered off-limits for babies and toddlers until they grow teeth and are able to chew or swallow hard food; however, steamed and well-cooked vegetables are healthy finger food options for babies around 7 to 8 months old since they do not create any risk of choking. Steamed carrots and potatoes, in particular, quickly become the favorite food for your toddler as these little bombs of nutrients and energy are also flavorful. Before serving any vegetable to your baby, make sure it is soft enough and properly cooked by squashing it between two fingers. If you have trouble doing so, it is not soft enough to serve to your little one.
Once your child is able to grasp small objects and eat food on their own, they should be provided with multiple food options to develop their taste buds. Beans are a healthy finger food as they contain the accumulated power of folic acid, proteins, and fiber, and are naturally fat-free, sodium-free and cholesterol-free proving to be a safe food choice for babies. Their mild taste and soft texture readily make them one of the best finger foods of toddlers. Always ensure proper cooking for safe chewing and swallowing.
Fruits are always a healthy food option for toddlers with their nutritional value. They have an added advantage of being eaten raw making them efficient and easy finger food for toddlers. Soft fruits like seedless watermelons, peaches, mangoes, and plums can be peeled and cut into long pieces or small cubes for little ones to hold and chew with ease.
Although a hard food for your toddler to bite before they grow teeth, cucumber strips are invaluable in soothing sore gums. Cucumbers are rich in vitamins and antioxidants making them helpful in preventing dehydration and constipation, curing stomach disorders, and controlling skin eruptions and burns. To prevent your child from biting off a large piece, cut the cucumber into long and wide strips.
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Small pieces of soft bread and bagels are also a safe finger food for toddlers. Having a soft texture and mildly sweet taste makes bread a favorite toddler food. You can also toast the chunks lightly for added taste. Also, if you want to add extra vitamins to your baby’s diet, spread vegetable or fruit purée on the bread.
Small pieces of Steamed Meat
Fresh, soft and easy to chew meat is a nutritious finger food choice for toddlers. Meat contains nutrients like iron, protein, vitamins, minerals and healthy fat which are essential for your child’s growth, proper hemoglobin count and enhanced body stamina. Fish and chicken are especially vital in this regard. To serve meat to your baby, steam or broil it without salt and cut into small pieces or long strips.
Remember, your child’s health takes priority over everything, so skip processed finger foods in favor of the above-mentioned natural and nutritious food options. Enjoy your food and let your toddler enjoy theirs!
Do YOU have any awesome finger foods to add to the list? Comment in the section below.
About the Guest Author
Sana Ahsan is a mommy blogger, who loves to write about parenting, pregnancy and baby care on her blog TheAdorableBaby.com. In her free time, she surfs the web to get motivated about life and nature. Follow her on Twitter on @AdorableBaby134
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