Teething. I say the word with a sigh. First teeth usually push through between 4 and 7 months. This means a lot of drool, a lot of gnawing--on fingers, on toys, even on furniture--and least fun for all, a lot of irritability. But you can help ease those aching gums (and save your sanity) if your little one has moved to solid foods. Chilled foods soothe the pain and firmer foods help massage the gums.
My kids adore these simple, homemade Cheerios teething biscuits… Even my picky six-year old who is losing teeth as her younger sister gets them. The biscuits are hard enough to massage a baby’s gums, but chewy enough to dissolve if gnawed.
Recipe for Cheerios teething biscuits
1 cup crushed Cheerios*
1 cup infant rice or grain cereal
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 to 4 tablespoons water
1 banana, mashed with a fork
*Place about 1 ½ cups of Cheerios in a zip-top bag. Crush with a mallet, hammer or rolling pin. Make sure to place a cutting board or towel beneath the bag to prevent damage to the surface beneath.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking tray with parchment paper and set aside. Combine the crushed Cheerios, infant cereal and cinnamon in a bowl and mix. Add the oil, 2 tablespoons water, and the mashed banana, and mix well by hand or with a standing mixture until a dough forms. If the mixture is too dry, add one to two more tablespoons of water.
On a lightly floured surface, briefly knead the dough with your hands to form a ball. Roll out or press out the dough to about ½-inch thick. With a knife or dough scraper, cut sticks about 4 ½-inches long by 1-inch wide. Make sure the pieces are larger than a baby’s hand to prevent choking.
Bake on the prepared baking tray until golden brown, about 20 minutes, or 25 minutes for harder biscuits. Let cool completely. Makes 10 biscuits.
More Feeding when Teething TIPS:
As always, make sure she is seated in a feeding chair when eating, make sure to never leave her unattended while eating, and pay attention for potential allergies.
Rings are easy for babies to grasp. Try cutting melon into small, round slices.
Or peel and cut cucumbers into long sticks. English cucumbers, with their sweet taste and minimal seeds, work great for baby. Chill the melon and cucumbers in the fridge or freezer to help soothe gums
Toast lightly-buttered slices of bagels for babies to gnaw.
You can also put smaller pieces of chilled and frozen foods, such as banana, apples, zucchini, broccoli, whatever they like best, in mesh bags for baby to chew.
Cold food, harder food, mushy food or dry food, everyone’s preference is different, but there are plenty of options for easing those aching gums. My kids are very different, but they both love their Cheerios biscuits. This one never smiles for the camera.
But this one is quick to flash the smile when the camera is on.
Meaghan Mountford, author of Sugarlicious:
50 Cute and Clever Treats for Every Occasion, has been creating crafty sweets for 15 years. She is especially fond of decorating cookies, marshmallows and putting sweets on sticks. See more on her blog, the decorated cookie.