Baby Meals -- Without the Mess
When you decide to offer your baby finger foods, the items should be large enough to be picked up by tiny fingers, but small enough that they don't become a choking hazard. You can offer your child several solid foods at mealtimes. Some examples of baby foods without the mess include peas, oyster crackers, and toasted waffles.
You have gone through the different stages of pureed and mashed foods. It may now be time to start a few foods that babies can eat on their own. This is a fun and exciting step -- not only for your baby, but also for you. For the first time in a long while, you might actually get to eat your own meal at the same time as your baby.
Babies are still not coordinated enough to eat with a spoon. When beginning finger foods, you may want to start with a few items that are large enough to be picked up by tiny fingers. However, they should also be small enough to not become a choking hazard.
New items can include a variety of finger foods that are packed with nutrients and diverse in flavor and textures.
Starting solids and messy mealtimes often go hand in hand. Once you have gotten through the mushy and "liquidy" food stage, you can begin to mix things up. You can introduce foods to your child that they can chew with a few teeth (if they have any) or gnaw on with their gums.
Some great foods to start with that are practically mess-free include:
- Cubed or shredded cooked (not fried) chicken breast, beef, or turkey
- Lima beans
- Low-sugar dry cereal (i.e., Cheerios®, Chex®, Crispix®, and Kashi's Mighty Bites™)
- Oyster crackers
- Toasted waffles.