Baby

10 Finger-Friendly Foods for Babies

 

When it comes to self-feeding, finger foods are a great option and an important milestone. They encourage the development of motor skills and independence, as well as introduce kids to a wide variety of tastes and textures.

Why Self-Feeding Matters

When babies can feed themselves, Nicole Lattanzio, RD, CSP, IBCLC says, “They can build independence and develop their fine motor skills.” Babies are responding to their own wants and needs. “This may be choosing a specific food on their tray/plate to eat,” she explains, “combining foods, and stopping when they’re full.” Self-feeding also enhances the sensory experience of eating for babies. “Soft, hard, warm, cold, slimy—all the things!”

Finger Foods That Encourage Self-Feeding

In the early stages of eating (6–9ish months of age), Lattanzio tells us, “Finger foods should be finger-length and easily squishable solids.”

1. Strips of fruit (banana, avocado, and peeled ripe mango)
2. Strips of omelet
3. Strips of toast (with a tasty spread)
4. Steamed sweet potatoes/squash
5. Cooked zucchini spears

Around 9 months, babies begin to develop their pincer grasp, she says, “So, small bite-sized soft pieces can be offered.” As she explains, chopped foods and softer options allow babies to practice and perfect this new grasping skill.

6. Chopped versions of the above (omelet, veggies, toast)
7. Softer fruits like berries (cut as needed)
8. Cooked peas
9. Shredded chicken
10. Once Upon a Farm Plant-Rich Meals provide the ideal size, texture, and flavor combinations of foods for babies at this stage of development—plus, they’re super nutritious and tasty!

For you, and your baby, it’s all about trying new things. Be patient and embrace the mess!

Discover Once Upon a Farm Finger Foods