How I Successfully Introduced Finger Food To Rosie

At 10 months old, we recently introduced finger food into Rosie’s diet. She took to it SO WELL and is thrilled with all the new foods she is able to explore. The sight of seeing Rosie handle ‘big girl’ food so well sparked a lot of interest on Instagram, so I have put this blog post together to share our experience, as well as some finger food suggestions and recipe ideas.

I have a separate blog post detailing puree and how I successfully introduced solids to me babies, which includes a recipe combinations guide for making homemade puree.

When we started and how I knew Rosie was ready:
By the time Rosie was eight months old, and had been enjoying puree for over two months, she started to show signs that she was ready to move onto finger food. She was flat out refusing to let a spoon into her mouth, grabbing all the food she could, and tolerating different textures and consistencies really well. Rosie had the ability to pick up the food, put it in her mouth and chew. Babies can be so different, as a baby Chloe was also very keen to move onto finger food, whereas Ari enjoyed puree for many months. Don’t feel pushed into starting finger food, use your intuition and follow your baby’s lead.

Some people like to offer their children finger food from the start and skip puree altogether, this is known as baby lead weaning. Others like to do a mix of both puree and finger food. Some do it in stages, where stage one is puree and stage two is finger food. I would say that we did the latter with Rosie. I started with puree with all of my babies, but they dictated when they were ready to move to the next stage, being finger food.

Getting started:
Finger food can be really messy! Little ones like to throw there food on the floor, and of course it magically reappears when we pick it up for them. This goes on and on like a bit of a game. To start your finger food journey I recommend a messy mat to protect your floor, a good quality highchair, a selection of bibs, plates, bowls, drinking cups and even some cutlery. If you scroll to the bottom I have some suggested some of my favourite brands to meet all of your baby’s feeding needs.

Preparing the food:
There are two things to think about
Keep it soft: finger foods need to be soft enough for a baby to be able to chew with little of no teeth. So this means, most vegetables and hard fruits will have to be cooked.
Serving sizes: foods will have to be either chopped into small pieces (roughly the size of a pea,) cut into strips which they hold onto or potentially grated into small pieces. I like to do strips that are about 5cm long and very thing.
Rosie is really good at pushing back out what she won’t swallow.

What to serve:
I like to keep cooking as simple as possible by encouraging Rosie to eat the same food as the rest of the family. For example if we are having pasta she has pasta, or if we have fish so does she. Sometimes I just need to cook her food slightly differently, or a little more, or cut it in a different way to the rest of us. I like to make sure that each meal is balanced and that there are vegetables, carbohydrates, some healthy fats and protein. I offer Rosie fruit for snacks or as a dessert.

Finger food suggestions
Here is my go to list of finger food suggestions for Rosie.

Fruit

  • Raspberries, halved
  • Blackberries, halved
  • Strawberries, diced or in quarters
  • Blueberries, cut if large
  • Oranges, cut into wedges with skin on to suck
  • Grapes, quarters vertically
  • Kiwi, diced
  • Apple, sliced and cooked
  • Watermelon, cut into thin sticks
  • Honeydew melon, cut into thin sticks
  • Mango, very ripe and cut into strips or diced
  • Pears, very ripe and cut into strips or diced
  • Fruit smoothies


Vegetables

  • Avocado, cubed or sliced or on toast
  • Pumpkin, cooked and cut into slices
  • Broccoli florets, cooked
  • Carrots, grated raw or sliced then cooked
  • Cauliflower florets, cooked
  • Cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • Cucumbers, sliced with skin off
  • Pea, cooked
  • Sweet Corn, cooked
  • Sweet potato, diced or slices and cooked
  • Edamame, cooked and cut in half as needed
  • Zucchini, diced or sliced and cooker


Dairy

  • Goat cheese, crumbled
  • Cottage cheese, on toast
  • Frozen drops of yogurt
  • Packets of yogurt that she can suck
  • Hard cheese, slices

Protein

  • Boiled egg, cut into slices
  • Scrambled egg
  • Beef, minced and cooked
  • Beef, cooked then shredded or stripped but needs to be soft to chew
  • Chicken, minced and cooked
  • Chicken, cooked then shredded or stripped but needs to be soft to chew
  • Deli meat like sliced turkey, ham, or salami, cut up into small pieces or if soft she breaks it apart
  • Meatballs, diced or slightly mashed
  • Salmon, poached or baked
  • White fish, cooked through and cut into strips

Carbohydrates

  • Crackers
  • Pasta, well cooked
  • Rice
  • Toast with spread
  • Quinoa

Other snacks

  • Homemade oat bars
  • Muffins
  • Pancakes
  • Cookies
  • Banana bread

Family dinner ideas that Rosie loves (I have linked some recipes that I found on google)


My favourite brands to explore and some discount codes:
Feeding products – BBox – natalie20 – 20%
Feeding products – Wean Meister – SWEETLIFE – 25%
Feeding products – Love Mila – SWEETLIFE – 20%
Feeding products – Lluie – SWEETLIFE – 10%
High Chair – Joie
Messy mat – Luxe At Play – SWEETLIFE – 10%
Messy mat – Hexxin Designs

I hope that this is helped you to navigate finger food with your little love.

Lots of love!

Disclaimer – As always please remember that I am not a midwife, lactation consult, nutritionist, doctor or any other medical expert.  I am just a Mother expressing her journey and opinions.