Toast is an easy and healthy breakfast for babies and toddlers– especially when you add some nutrition boosters as toppings. Everyone knows about the magic of avocado toast, but what are some other ideas to make a healthy toast breakfast? I have 7 healthy toast ideas for babies and toddlers that you’ll love– and your little one will eat right up!
Best Bread for Babies & Toddlers
For baby, there are a few things to consider, like:
- Type. I would stick to sandwich-type bread. Opt for thinner slicers, or softer breads like sourdough (that aren’t too crusty). Bread that’s too thick (think rolls or potato bread) have more of a chance of being gummy and difficult to swallow.
- Sodium. Babies should have less than 400mg sodium per day. Bread tends to be high in sodium, so look for low sodium options.
- Seeds/nuts. Make sure that the bread you choose doesn’t have whole seeds or nuts (or even pieces of nuts), because it can be a choking hazard for babies.
- Whole Grains. Babies are more sensitive to fiber, so you don’t necessarily want to give them all whole grains in their diet. Whole wheat bread is okay, just keep an eye on how many whole grains you give throughout the day, and keep it to around 50% or less.
For toddler, you’ll want to look for:
- Type. You can start to give some different types of breads and rolls once your toddler has more teeth and a better ability to take bites.
- Sodium. Toddlers should have less than 800mg sodium per day, so you can be a little more relaxed about their sodium intake, but it’s still worth double-checking your bread label. I look for bread with under 250mg sodium per serving.
- Seeds and nuts. These can still be choking hazards for toddlers, so avoid breads with whole nuts or seeds.
- Whole Grains. You can start to increase the amount of whole grains they eat in a day after they turn one.
Best Bread for 6 Months and Up
My favorite bread for ages 6 months and up is Ezekiel Low Sodium Sprouted Grain. This has no added salt or sugar, which I prefer for babies. You’ll find this bread in the freezer section.
Best Breads for 1-Year-Olds and Up
Alpine Valley Honey Sprout is a great one! I find this at Costco, but I know it’s at other stores too. It’s not safe for babies because of the honey. But, it’s a great option for toast or sandwiches for a toddler.
Dave’s Killer Bread White Bread Done Right is my favorite of the DKB products for toddlers because it’s lower in sugar than their others. It also tastes a lot like a white bread, but still has fiber from whole grains, and doesn’t have any large seed pieces.
Toast for Babies
Toast is safer for babies to chew than regular bread BUT you want to go for lightly toasted. If it’s too well done, it will be very crunchy, which doesn’t do well with your baby’s toothless mouth. It also becomes more likely for them to get off too big of a piece and potentially choke if it’s very crunchy. Nailing the perfect toast can take some trial and error, so once you get it right, memorize those toaster settings!
You’ll also want to cut the toast into strips, as pictured below. This shape is easiest for your 6 to 9 month old baby to pick up and take bites from. If they are 9-10 months old or older and have a pincer grasp (they could pick up a cheerio with their thumb and index finger), then you can cut toast into smaller, bite-sized pieces.
Toast for Toddlers
Toddlers should be learning to take bites from bigger pieces of food, so it’s okay to just slice their toast in half. If you find they’re having trouble taking bites, or are wanting to stuff the whole thing in their mouth, you can help them by:
- Coaching them to take a bite, then a break. (Put the food down in between bites.)
- Only adding a topping to the toast on the edge, approximately the size of one bite. Tell them to just bite the spot with the topping. Then once they chew and swallow, repeat this for another bite.
Healthy Toast Ideas for Babies and Toddlers
A note that all of these fun, delicious, healthy toast ideas contain nuts and/or seeds. I love adding them to toasts because it’s important to safely introduce babies to these common allergens while they’re little.
#1 Greek Yogurt with Cinnamon and Chia Seeds
Yogurt is by far one of the messiest things to feed babies, but it’s a great source of protein and fat for them so it’s perfect as a healthy toast topper. (If you need, I can help with choosing healthy yogurt.) Chia seeds also add a nutrient boost, and are small enough that they are not a choking hazard.
#2 Cream Cheese and Ground Hazelnuts or Cashews
I like to grind up about ¼ cup of nuts and keep them in a container in the freezer. You can really do this with any unsalted nut. This is a great way to serve nuts to a baby or toddler since whole nuts are a choking hazard and nut butters other than peanut butter tend to be very pricey!
It’s important to feed nuts and peanuts to babies to expose them to those allergens. You could just do butter or mascarpone instead of cream cheese, too. But I think the cream cheese + hazelnut combo tastes delicious!
#3 Hummus and Sesame Seeds
You can skip the extra sesame seeds on top if you don’t have any on hand– I just happened to buy a hummus that had them sprinkled on top. Hummus is made with tahini, which is sesame paste, so they get exposed to sesame seeds even without adding any extra on top.
#4 Mashed Pinto Beans with Ground Flax
You can use any type of beans here, just look for unsalted if buying canned. Beans are a good source of protein, and they’re a great way to make toast into a more filling breakfast. I added some ground flax on top to add a healthy fat boost!
#5 Peanut Butter and Mashed Raspberries
Peanut butter can be a choking hazard if you spread it too thickly. Mixing it with another food, like mashed berries, helps to thin it out and add some more moisture so it’s easier to eat. And, I like putting mashed berries on toast because young babies can’t pick up a berry yet, so it’s a nice way to introduce the fruit.
#6 Avocado and Hemp Seeds
I had to include some avocado toast options because it’s so delicious. And, adding hemp seeds gives a little bit of protein. I love hemp seeds because they’re small enough to not pose a choking hazard, but feel free to grind them up if you’d prefer. (Also, try adding them to pancake and muffin batter!)
#7 Avocado and Ground Flax
Super similar to option #6– just another avocado variation to try!
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