It turns out that puffs are a mystical 'melt in the mouth' cereal snack for babies that helps teach them how to feed themselves and how to chew. I guess you'll forgive my ignorance, but if the puffs melt in their mouth how does that teach them about chewing? I also noticed that all the brands I researched were primarily made out of rice flour (sometimes a little oat flour too), and were sweetened with sugar, or fruit juice concentrate. They also all contained a big dollop of flavorings, color, and preservatives in them. I wasn’t too thrilled with the ingredients of any of the brands I looked at. I decided to pass on puffs because I didn’t see any benefit to feeding them to her. During their first year babies don’t eat a lot of solid food so I think it’s important to make every bite count.
The next option I had was cheerios.
I felt like I was running out of options for a ready to eat, dry finger food until I stumbled upon a bakery product. I seriously love bread and baked goods. I could live on them all my life. I worked in a bakery inside of a supermarket for about three years and rather than turn me off bread, it actually intensified my love of bakery products. I always have some type of raisin bread at home, either from the local bakery, the supermarket and or from cafes like Panera Bread. I happened to have the Pepperidge farm brand at home one day and was about to eat a slice when my baby reached out for it. I thought there couldn't be much harm in letting her try it so I broke off a small piece for her just to see her reaction and she loved it!!! Since then, it has become one of her favorite snacks.
I like it for several reasons;
It contains raisins which are a sweet but healthy snack for young children, and it is a much fresher alternative than puffs or cheerios. It has cinnamon which is one of the many spices I am trying to gradually introduce to her. It is a baked bread product that has a short shelf life like regular bread, so it hasn’t been sitting on a shelf for months. And the ingredients are not a mystery to me. It is easy to carry around on days o ut and doesn't require refrigeration. It is much lower in sodium than cheerios. Even though it does contain added sugar and fructose from corn syrup, I still feel that the sum of their ingredients are healthier overall and have a higher nutritional value as compared to cheerios and puffs..
Usually I cut up a slice of raisin bread into small pieces for her to feed herself. She is 10 and half months now and really enjoys feeding herself. She would happily eat raisin bread all day, every day if I let her. But I try not to give it to her too often because it is still a processed food, and too much of it can cause constipation. I have also used it to make raisin bread french toast which she adores!
|Raisin bread french toast|