21 Healthy And Yummy Finger Foods For Toddlers

Healthy And Yummy Finger Foods For Toddlers

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Toddlers also have hunger pangs. And, given that they are still growing, they need the maximum nutrition they can get. Finger foods help check both the boxes – satiating hunger and providing nutrition. So, in how many different ways can you make a yummy yet healthy finger food? Well, you would be surprised that there are a plethora of finger foods you can give your toddler. MomJunction shares some such healthy and easy toddler finger food recipes that will appeal to your toddler.

What Are Some Popular Finger Food Ideas For Toddlers?

Toddlers can eat solid foods that they are not allergic to. And, the range of foods they can have is huge! Here are some finger food ideas that would suit your toddlers’ palate.

  1. Vegetables are the leading finger food choices for toddlers. Your toddler can have finely-chopped, boiled or steamed vegetables. Vegetables are important as they provide several minerals essential for a toddler’s growth and development (1).
  1. Pulpy fruits such as banana, papaya, and mango can be mashed and fed raw. Fruits with harder pulp, such as apples and pears, may have to be steamed to soften them. Older toddlers can perhaps have these fruits raw when chopped into smaller pieces. Fruits are rich in vitamins, which are vital for healthy immunity and overall health of the body (2).
  1. Meat is an excellent source of the essential nutrients such as iron, zinc, and the only source of vitamin B12 (3). You can feed your toddler chicken, fish, and even red meat. Prefer boneless varieties as it would be easier for the toddler to consume.
  1. Cereals made from grains make excellent finger foods. Grains commonly used are rice, wheat, and oats. Choose whole-grain cereals over processed as whole grains are rich in fiber, iron, and micronutrients such as copper (4). Also, only choose unsweetened and preservative-free versions of cereals.
  1. Nuts are rich in micronutrients that play a significant role in healthy metabolism, which is vital even for toddlers (5). Crush the nuts to tiny pieces and mix them in another preparation to prevent them from being a choking hazard.

You can combine the above foods in several ways to make exciting toddler finger foods. Let’s take a look at a few of them.

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21 Toddler Finger Food Recipes

We have divided the toddler finger food recipes into five categories, so that they are suitable for all the meals of the day.

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Breakfast Finger Foods For Toddlers

1. French toast stick

French toast stick

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French toast is a popular breakfast item made from bread and eggs. It can also make a good finger food item for the toddler’s breakfast.

You will need:

  • 6-7 slices of whole wheat bread
  • 3-4 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons honey

How to:

  1. Cut the bread into long strips. Beat the eggs in the large bowl and soak the bread strips for ten minutes.
  2. Heat oil in a pan. Transfer the egg-soaked bread onto the pan and shallow fry on a low flame. Keep turning and cooking the bread pieces till they become golden brown.
  3. Once cooked, transfer the bread to a plate. Let it cool and pour honey before serving it to the preschooler.

2. Cereal and nut bites

Cereal and nut bites

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A healthy mix of cereal and nuts with the sweetness of dates makes this dish a delightful breakfast finger food for the toddler.

You will need:

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 cup oat cereal
  • 1/3 cup chopped almonds
  • 1 cup seedless dates

How to:

  1. Transfer all ingredients to a large bowl and mix them well.
  2. Set aside out a small quantity of the mix and roll it into a ball. Continue making as many you can with the mix.
  3. Place the cereal bites on a plate and refrigerate them for 10 minutes before serving.

3. Honey toast sandwich

Honey toast sandwich

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Honey in combination with toasted whole wheat bread makes a delicious mix, thanks to the naturally sweet flavor of honey.

You will need:

  • 4-5 slices of whole wheat bread
  • 1/2 cup honey

How to:

  1. Toast the bread to the desired level of crispiness. Cut the toasted bread into smaller sections.
  2. Spread honey on each slice and cover it with another slice of bread to make a sandwich.
  3. Refrigerate for five minutes, and the delicious breakfast finger food is ready.

4. Oats and bananas muffin

Oats and bananas muffin

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It is a fiber-rich muffin made from oats and with the sweetness of bananas.

You will need:

  • 2 chopped bananas
  • 1 cup oats
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 cup sliced blueberries
  • 1/2 to 1 cup cow’s milk (optional)

How to:

  1. Put all ingredients, except blueberries, in the blender and blend well. If you intend to thin the consistency of the batter, then add some cow milk.
  2. Grease a muffin tray with a little quantity of oil and pour the batter into it. Top the muffin with the sliced blueberries.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (176ºC) and bake for 25-30 minutes.
  4. Once ready, allow the muffins to cool sufficiently before serving it to the toddler.

5. Scrambled eggs with breadcrumbs

Scrambled eggs with breadcrumbs

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A scrambled egg makes an ideal finger food for toddlers as it is easy to make, and have too! You can bump up its nutritional value by adding crumbs of whole wheat bread.

You will need:

  • 4-5 eggs
  • 4-5 slices of whole wheat bread
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

How to:

  1. Beat the eggs in a large bowl. Break the bread slices into fine crumbs and mix them with the eggs.
  2. Heat oil in the pan and transfer the eggs and breadcrumbs mixture into the pan. Use a spatula to scramble into small pieces.
  3. Keep cooking on a medium flame till the eggs are cooked well and developed a brownish color. Cool and serve.

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Lunch Finger Foods For Toddlers

6. Rice and chicken nugget

Rice and chicken nugget

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A chicken finger food recipe for toddlers with the goodness of rice makes it an ideal Indian-style toddler finger food for the lunchtime.

You will need:

  • 2 cups sliced boneless chicken
  • 3-4 cups of rice flour
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

How to:

  1. Cut the boneless chicken pieces into smaller bits so that it is easier for the toddler to eat them.
  2. Steam the chicken pieces for 10 minutes using a steam grill inside a pan or a cooker. You can also boil the pieces by placing them in shallow water and boiling them for 5-7 minutes.
  3. Remove the boiled chicken pieces from the water and roll them in rice flour multiple times so that there is a thick layer of rice flour around.
  4. Pour a tablespoon of oil into a pan and fry the chicken for four minutes on a low flame. Turn the pieces around and fry the other side for four minutes as well. Fry till the outer layer of the nugget turns golden brown.
  5. Let the chicken nuggets cool, and the delicious meat finger food for toddlers is ready.

7. Wheat and peas cutlet

Wheat and peas cutlet

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This vegetarian finger food recipe for toddlers that is easy to prepare and convenient to carry for outdoors activities such as camping or a road trip.

You will need:

  • 3-4 cup peas
  • 4 cups of wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoon vegetable oil

How to:

  1. Add water to the wheat flour and knead it to make a dough. In the meantime, boil the peas till they are tender.
  2. Roll the wheat flour with a rolling pin and place a few boiled peas at the center of the rolled dough. Wrap the peas into the dough and mix them till the peas are mashed.
  3. Shape the piece into a cutlet using hands and a rolling pin.
  4. Heat oil in a pan, and place the cutlets into it. Fry both sides on a medium flame, till the outer crust of the cutlets turn brownish. Cool and then serve.

8. Mashed potato rolls

Mashed potato rolls

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Wheat and potatoes make a nutritious mix in this recipe. The rich carbohydrate content makes it an ideal finger food for active toddlers. It is also great food for daycare, where toddlers involve in a lot of outdoor play that demands extra energy.

You will need:

  • 2 cups diced potatoes
  • 4-5 cups of wheat flour
  • 6-7 cups of water
  • 2-3 tablespoons of vegetable oil

How to:

  1. Boil the potatoes for 20 minutes or use a pressure cooker up to four whistles to make the potatoes tender.
  2. Mash the boiled potatoes. Add water used for boiling to soften the potatoes if required.
  3. Make dough using wheat flour. Use a rolling pin to roll out a thin layer of dough. Add some mashed potatoes in the center and roll the dough again. Cut the dough into small sections to make mini-rolls.
  4. Heat oil in the pan. Place the rolls, and shallow fry them on a medium flame for four minutes. Turn the rolls and fry for four minutes. You can continue frying till the roll develop a crispy golden-brown crust.
  5. Let the rolls cool, and the toddler finger food is ready to be served.

9. Spinach, cheese, and rice rolls

Spinach, cheese, and rice rolls

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Spinach, cheese, and rice, all rolled up together in this delicious finger food suitable for toddler’s lunchtime is packed with nutrition.

You will need:

  • 2 cups of finely chopped spinach
  • 1 cup grated cheese
  • 4-5 cups of rice flour
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

How to:

  1. Mix the rice flour with water to make a thick batter.
  2. Boil spinach for 10 minutes till it is completely soft.
  3. Sieve the spinach and transfer it to a blender. Add fresh water, grated cheese, and blend till it forms a thick paste.
  4. Heat oil in a non-stick pan. Use a ladle to spread a thin layer of the rice batter. Let it cook for 3 minutes on a medium flame. Then spread spinach and cheese on it.
  5. Gently roll the cooked rice pancake, cut it into smaller rolls, and continue cooking till the outer layer becomes crusty. Serve after cooling the finger food sufficiently.

10. Meat and wheat balls

Meat and wheat balls

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This is a protein-rich finger food with the added nourishment of wheat.

You will need:

  • 4 cups minced meat (mutton)
  • 3-4 cups refined wheat flour
  • 5-6 cups of water
  • 3 tablespoon oil

How to:

  1. Cook the minced meat by boiling for 20 minutes on medium flame. Alternatively, you can cook it in a pressure cooker for up to four whistles. Sieve out the cooked meat and let it cool.
  2. Make a dough with the refined wheat flour and mix it with the cooked minced meat. Mix and roll it well so that it develops a homogenous consistency.
  3. Make small meatballs with the dough and meat mixture. Heat oil in the pan and shallow fry these balls till the meatball develops a brownish crust.
  4. Let the meatball cool before serving it to your little one.

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Evening Snack Finger Foods For Toddlers

11. Baked sweet potato sticks

Baked sweet potato sticks

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If you are exploring some ideas about finger foods for toddler’s birthday party, then this recipe will appeal to the guests. It is a simple finger food for toddlers that is easy for the parents to prepare while being a sweet and nutritious treat for the preschoolers.

You will need:

  • 5-6 sweet potatoes
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

How to:

  1. Slice the sweet potato into long stick shapes.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400ºF (200ºC). Grease the baking tray with a small quantity of oil.
  3. Place the sweet potato on the baking tray and bake for 40 minutes.
  4. Once baked, transfer the sweet potato sticks into a bowl, add salt, and mix thoroughly. Wait till the sticks are cool enough before serving it to your toddler.

12. Assorted fruit salad

Assorted fruit salad

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This recipe is perhaps the simplest toddler finger food idea to satisfy the preschooler’s hunger pangs in the evening. Since it is an all-fruit recipe, it makes an excellent paleo toddler finger food.

You will need:

  • 1 cup sliced apple
  • 1 cup sliced pear
  • 1 cup chopped banana
  • 1 cup diced papaya
  • 1 cup sliced orange
  • 1 cup chopped strawberry
  • 3 cups water

How to:

  1. Boil the apple, pear, and strawberry in water for 10 minutes on a medium flame. Boiling will help make the fruit tender and prevent it from being a choking hazard.
  2. Let the apple and pear cool. Transfer them into a large bowl and to that add chopped banana, sliced orange, and diced papaya. Only use ripened varieties of the fruits to make them easier for the toddler to eat. It also makes this recipe an ideal finger food for younger toddlers with few teeth.
  3. Mix the fruits together, and the preparation is all set to be served to the hungry toddler.

13. Egg and vegetable muffin

Egg and vegetable muffin

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Combine the goodness of eggs with that of milk and vegetables in this delicious finger food snack for the toddler.

You will need:

  • 5 eggs
  • 1 cup diced cauliflower
  • 1 cup diced carrot
  • 1 cup cow’s milk
  • 1/2 cup grated cheese
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

How to:

  1. Beat the eggs thoroughly and add to it the cauliflower, carrot, cow’s milk, and cheese. Mix them thoroughly.
  2. Grease a muffin tray with oil and pour the beaten eggs’ mixture into each mould.
  3. Preheat the oven 375ºF (190ºC). Place the muffin tray and bake for 20 minutes.
  4. Let the baked muffin cool before serving it.

14. Boiled apples with lime

Boiled apples with lime

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This dish is easy to prepare, simple, yet healthy finger food that is ideal for an evening snack.

You will need:

  • 4-5 apples
  • 2-3 tablespoons of lime juice
  • 4-5 cups of water

How to:

  1. Cut the apples into long slices and boil them for 10 minutes on medium flame so that they turn entirely tender.
  2. Transfer the boiled apples to a bowl and let them cool completely.
  3. Add lime juice to it, and mix thoroughly. The healthy finger food evening snack is ready to be served.

15. Minced chicken finger sandwiches

Minced chicken finger sandwiches

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A simple finger sandwich recipe for toddlers, this is easy to prepare and has all the goodness of chicken and whole wheat bread.

You will need:

  • 5-6 slices of whole bread
  • 3-4 cups of minced boneless chicken
  • 2-3 teaspoons of vegetable oil
  • 5-6 cups of water
  • 1/3 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/3 tablespoon salt

How to:

  1. Boil the minced chicken in water for 15 minutes on medium flame.
  2. Transfer the boiled chicken into a blender, add black pepper, salt, and blend them all coarsely.
  3. Cut the bread into small pieces. Spread the blended chicken onto the bread and make small finger sandwiches.
  4. Heat oil in the pan. Place the mini-sandwiches and fry them on a medium flame for 3 minutes. Turn the sandwich around and fry the other side.
  5. Once ready, serve this fiber-rich chicken finger food to your toddler.

16. Cracker coated tofu

Cracker coated tofu

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An easy finger food recipes for toddlers that you can prepare in a matter of minutes.

You will need:

  • 1 slab of firm tofu
  • 3-4 whole wheat crackers
  • A ziplock bag

How to:

  1. Cut the tofu into small cubes that would be easy for a toddler to hold and eat.
  2. Finely crush the crackers and transfer them to a ziplock bag. Transfer the tofu cubes into the bag as well.
  3. Shake the bag vigorously so that the crushed crackers stick to the tofu cubes.
  4. Once ready, place the tofu on a tray, and the finger food is ready to be served.

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Dinner Finger Foods For Toddlers

17. Vegetable and rice momo

Vegetable and rice momo

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Momos are dumplings made from wheat and rice and filled either with vegetables or meat. It makes an excellent finger snack for toddlers owing to its soft and easy-to-chew consistency.

You will need:

  • 3 cups boiled of rice
  • 4-5 cups wheat flour
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 1 cup finely-chopped beans
  • 1 cup peas

How to:

  1. Boil the vegetable for 10 minutes on medium flame so that they are completely tender. In a separate vessel, cook rice.
  2. Add water to the wheat flour and make dough with it.
  3. Flatten out a small piece of dough, add some boiled rice, and boiled vegetables. Roll the dough to make a momo shape.
  4. Place the momo on a steaming grill and steam for 5-6 minutes. To keep the momo extra moist, you can steam them directly in shallow water for 5 minutes.
  5. Let the momo cool sufficiently so that the rice and vegetables are cool inside. Once, cooled, this fun finger food for toddlers is ready to be served.

18. Cauliflower fries

Cauliflower fries

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Cauliflower is a good vegetarian finger food option along with the combination of wheat flour, corn, and garlic.

You will need:

  • 1 cup thin-sliced cauliflower pieces
  • 1/2 cup refined wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup corn flour
  • 1 teaspoon garlic paste
  • 1/3 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups of water
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

How to:

  1. The cauliflower should be cut into thin slices. Use only the white section and not the leaves and stalk.
  2. Combine the two types of wheat flour, corn flour, garlic paste, and salt with water. Mix them to make a thick batter.
  3. Heat oil in the pan. Dip the cauliflower slices in the batter, and shallow fry them for 5-6 minutes. Keep turning the slice to cook it evenly.
  4. Continue cooking till it becomes light brown.

19. Applesauce chicken loaf

Applesauce chicken loaf

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A delicious chicken finger food that is filling and excellent for picky toddlers who would love have something unique every time.

You will need:

  • 4 cups ground chicken
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1/2 cup pureed carrots
  • 1/3 cup applesauce
  • 1/3 cup wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
  • Water as per requirement

How to:

  1. Transfer all the ingredients except olive oil in a large bowl and mix them well. Make a thick batter and use a bit of water for some dilution.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (176ºC). Grease a loaf pan with olive oil and transfer the batter. Bake for 45 minutes.
  3. Once ready, remove the loaf from the pan and cut it into thin slices. Cut each bread into small tiny cubes and serve to the toddler.

20. Broccoli and cheese cutlet

Broccoli and cheese cutlet

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Cheese and broccoli make a great combination in this delicious veggie finger food recipe for the toddler.

You will need:

  • 2 cups finely chopped broccoli
  • 1 cup toddler cereal
  • 1 cup refined wheat flour
  • 1.5 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

How to:

  1. Put all the ingredients except vegetable oil in a large bowl and mix them well. Add extra refined wheat flour to thicken the mix if required.
  2. Shape the batter in the shape of a cutlet. Heat oil in the pan and cook the cutlets till they develop a brown crust all around.
  3. Let the cutlet cool enough before serving it to your toddler.

21. Carrot and wheat sticks

Carrot and wheat sticks

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Blend carrot and wheat to make a nutritious dinnertime finger food for your preschooler.

You will need:

  • 1 cup long-sliced carrots
  • 3 cups of wheat flour
  • 4-5 cups of water
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

How to:

  1. Mix water and wheat flour to make a dough.
  2. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough and then cut small sections of it. Roll a slice of carrot in the dough so that it entirely covers the carrot.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (176ºC). Grease the baking tray with the oil and place the dough-rolled carrots on it.
  4. Bake for 40 minutes. Bake up to an hour if you want to make the slices more crispy.
  5. Once baked, let the slices cool, and they are ready to serve.

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Those were some amazing finger foods for toddlers that would get them sufficient nourishment while also keeping their taste buds satisfied. If you know any more toddler finger foods recipes, then tell us about them in comments section below.

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Rohit Garoo

Rohit Garoo took writing as a profession right after finishing his MBA in Marketing. Earlier he graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Botany & Zoology from the autonomous St. Xavier’s College in Mumbai. Rohit has also done a Stanford University certification course on breastfeeding. This botanist-zoologist turned writer excels at life sciences, and at MomJunction he writes everything about pediatrics and maternal care. In between writing and being overly curious, he spends time cooking, reading, and playing video games. LinkedIn profile – linkedin.com/in/rohit-garoo-263115aa
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