From roughly 7-8 months of age, many babies are more than ready to move on from eating purees alone to something more substantial. If your little one is raring to give ‘big people’ foods, take a look at our list of some of the best finger food for babies.
Is my baby ready for finger foods?
All babies develop at different rates so there is no set age which indicates a readiness to begin eating finger foods. However, the average age for introducing finger foods is between 7 and 8 months. If your baby is able to pick up items and put them into her mouth, then this is one possible sign that your baby is ready to move on to finger foods.
Finger foods for babies
The best finger foods for babies are those which can be easily mashed and chewed with few or no teeth. Foods that may present a choking hazard, such as grapes, should be avoided until your baby is older. You should also take the opportunity to introduce your baby to as many colours, textures and aromas as possible to help her to learn about different foods and to avoid fussiness during later childhood.
Finger food ideas
- Soft baked carrot, potato, sweet potato or butternut squash, cut into chip shapes
- Slices of cooked courgette
- Small 'trees' of cooked broccoli or cauliflower
- Slices or cubes of avocado
- Cooked peas or green beans
- Slices of tomato or cucumber
Tip: Finger foods that are slippery to hold can be rolled in a small amount of cereal dust, wheat germ or rice flour before serving to your baby to make them easier to manage.
- Stewed prunes
- Softened dried apricots
- Chunks of very ripe banana
- Slices of melon, deseeded
- Peeled and diced or sliced soft fruits, such as plums and peaches
- Slices of ripe mango
- Grated or stewed apple
- Slices of ripe pear
Cheeses, meats and everything else
- Small chunks of cheese, such a cheddar, edam or gouda
- Shredded or diced soft cooked chicken, turkey or beef
- Lightly toasted bread or bagels, spread with butter, cream cheese, or fruit or vegetable puree
- Bread sticks or small chunks of pitta or nan bread
- Hard-boiled egg yolk or scrambled egg yolks
- Soft cooked, roughly chopped fish
- Very small cubes of tofu
- Home-made pizza, cut into finger shapes
- Low-sugar breakfast cereals
- Crackers, broken into manageable pieces
- Rice cakes
- Cooked pasta shapes, such as spirals
Safety note: Remember to stay with your baby at all times while she is eating -- accidents can happen in an instant and true choking can happen silently.
Weaning from bottle to cup
Baby-led weaning: The fuss-free way to wean your baby