Your little bundle of joy has just flashed his first toothy smile. You find yourself going aww!  Misty-eyed, you run to capture this angelic moment in your camera. I bet you can die 1000 deaths to experience this magical moment in your motherhood.Cherish the motherly love that is oozing out of every inch of your heart.

Alright, now that your heart has had its fill, it’s time for your head to take over. The cooing and gurgling of your baby say, he is now ready to explore the next level of flavors in his mouth.

The first gobbles

Now, the hand-eye coordination of your baby is improving.He would try putting anything and everything into his mouth. The mommy has to be extra vigilant. Give him the right options.

If your baby can pick and eat any bite-sized, easy to eat pieces of food, you are offering him what is called finger foods.

Right time to Introduce finger foods

Experts say when your baby turns eight or nine months, that is when you should introduce finger foods to him. Your baby has a few teeth, so look for soft textured, and easy to gum rather chew foods.

Getting the baby ready

Any wrong action can increase the risk of choking. To avoid this, consider these tips:

  • Seat your child comfortably in a baby chair
  • Be around to supervise
  • Start with pureed food
  • When the baby is ready for finger foods, start with foods that your baby liked in pureed form.
  • Follow the thumb rule of one food at a time to gauge his system’s reaction.
  • Never force feed.

The making of a fussy eater could be avoided by a pleasant first experience. Consider these options.

Raw finger foods

  • Banana- small pieces
  • Avocado- cubed form
  • Tofu- diced
  • Blueberries- halved soft ones
  • Whole milk cheese- semi-hard/ shredded
  • Tomatoes- peeled, cubed
  • Watermelon- cubed
  • Puffed rice cereal
  • Whole grain bread- hard crust removed

Cooked finger foods

  • Apple
  • Peaches or Pears
  • Asparagus
  • Carrots
  • Zucchini-cubed, steamed
  • Broccoli- chopped, steamed
  • Sweet potato- cooked, diced/steamed/baked
  • Whole green beans- cooked soft
  • Chicken/ meat-pureed/chunked
  • Pasta-cooked spirals/macaroni
  • Hard-boiled egg
  • Cauliflower- chopped, steamed
  • Fish- steamed/poached in broth, bones removed(white salmon, rainbow trout, tilapia)
  • Potatoes-mashed
  • Peas- cooked

Finger foods to avoid

Raw carrots, uncooked apple slices, whole nuts, popcorn, baby carrots, whole grapes

Putting not just your heart but also your mind into choosing finger foods is the essence of a happy motherhood. Happy building memories!