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Guidelines for Child Care Providers

Healthy Finger Foods for Infants

Finger foods should be added to the diet of infants when they are ready at 7 to 10 months. Offering an infant a variety of healthy foods can lead to healthy food choices in later years. Infants do not need to have teeth to eat finger foods. Limit foods made for adults, as they tend to be higher in salt and preservatives. Avoid foods that are round, hard and don’t dissolve in saliva. Below is a list of healthy finger foods for infants to try. Always watch infants when they are eating!

Appropriate Healthy Finger Foods

7 Months

  • Teething Biscuits
  • Arrowroot Cookies

8 Months

  • Graham Crackers
  • Unsalted Crackers

9 Months

  • Cooked Macaroni
  • Dry Toast Strips
  • Canned, Chopped Fruit
  • Dry Cereals

11 Months

  • Bananas (cut into sticks*)
  • Soft, Well-Cooked Vegetables and Chicken (cut into sticks*)
  • Scrambled Eggs

* = the diameter of the sticks should be no larger than the size of an adult’s little finger

Avoid These Finger Foods Because of Choking Risk

(it is the size and shape of these foods that are a problem):

  • Nuts
  • Popcorn
  • Candy
  • Corn
  • Peanut Butter
  • Chips/Pretzels
  • Fruit (not cut and with seeds)
  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Grapes
  • Raw Vegetables
  • Chewing Gum
  • Raisins/Dried Fruit
  • Hot Dogs
  • Olives

Updated April 5, 2014

© 2016 All Rights Reserved, University of Northern Colorado, Alena Clark, Author