Best Finger Foods for Indian Babies
Finger foods are a great way to start baby led weaning and to sooth the tooth sprouts. Kids love to eat and play with food. Though we don’t encourage the playing part but the touch to the food is the first step towards eating with your fingers. The brain simulates to release the digestive juices and enzymes during this process.
When to Start Finger Foods
Baby’s first finger food is as important as his first smile, first crawl, first step or first birthday. Introducing solids foods to the baby is not a piece of cake. There are lots of things to consider like baby’s reaction to each food and the how digestion-friendly is the food. It may take around 10 months for your baby to learn sitting and eating foods using his hands. You can start with one, then two and after that, 3 meals every day. Also, finger foods can help in soothing the tooth sprouts that your baby may experience during this stage.
Here are some quick raw and just plain cooked finger foods for babies.
Plain Cooked and Fresh Finger Foods for Babies
Dry Coconut Piece
Coconut plays a vital role in India sweet and savory recipes. Coconut contains iron, Vitamin B, phosphorus and many other essential minerals required for the growth of your baby. Small and dry coconut pieces are great for your baby’s first finger food.
The reason it is placed at first position is because it’s Indian Traditional Finger food known to sooth teething babies. Also Coconut helps in healthy weight gain. Its hard enough to be a finger food.
Fruits, especially the citrus ones are very effective for starting your baby’s finger foods. Banana, oranges and apple are some of the fruits that are easy to chew and digest. Your baby gets sufficient Vitamins and minerals from these foods and it’s a great way to kickoff his solid food regime as well.
Vegetables/Salads: Carrots/Cucumber/Sweet Potato
It’s time to add some more elements to your baby’s first food list. Your baby must get used to with the tastes of the veggies like carrot, cucumber and sweet potato. You can either prepare a colorful salad or just boil these veggies and serve. Always try to get the organic veggies to avoid the adverse effects of pesticides.
Read: How to Clean Vegetables to Remove Pesticides
Paneer is a very healthy dietary element for small babies. It’s soft, tasty and healthy. The phosphorus and calcium content in Paneer is good for those tiny, soft bones. Paneer cubes are easy to make and tasty recipe. Make sure the Paneer is made at home from pasteurized milk. It will be helpful for baby’s digestion. (Only for Babies Above 12 months)
Boiled Peas, Soft Broccoli Pcs and Cooked French Beans
If you think it’s not the time yet to for some crispy fried recipes then you can simply offer your little one some healthy alternative like boiled peas, French beans and soft broccoli. Boiled or slightly cooked veggies boost baby’s digestive system and he will also develop a habit of eating boiled foods.
Tips on Finger foods
If your baby is all set with his magical fingers to taste his first solid food then there are plenty of choices in front of you. But, there are some precautions and tips to be followed before making baby’s finger food.
• Cut or make it a finger long or small cube shaped
• Always be with baby to avoid chocking
• Avoid deep fried items
• Neither too soft nor too hard food
• Small bits or dices of fruits or veggies
• Rice or brown rice should be cooked properly
• One food at one time : Educate yourself with 3 days thumb rule
• Try again the rejected foods by your baby
• Offer vegetables or salads before fruits
• Bland food is good: This trick helps avoid making kid a fussy eater
• Wait for a couple of days before offering a new food
So, your baby is ready for his solid food mission and so are you. As a parent, it’s your job to make your baby’s first food experience productive, safe and healthy. The above foods and tips will save your time from delving into the articles on how to make baby’s first food or what to cook for him.