The following foods, if served whole or in chunks, are considered choking hazards for children under four years of age. Use these simple changes to make them safe options. Some foods cannot be safely altered, so it's recommended they not be served at all.
|*Foods that are not reimbursable. †Food that may only be served once every two weeks|
|Choking Hazard||Make It Safe By|
|Nuts and seeds||Chopping finely|
|Hot dogs†||Cutting in quarters lengthwise, then cutting into smaller pieces|
|Whole grapes||Cutting in half lengthwise, then cutting into smaller pieces|
|Raisins||Cooking in food|
|Chunks of meat or cheese||Chopping finely|
|Hard fruit chunks (like apples)||Chopping finely, cutting into thin strips, steaming, mashing or pureeing|
|Raw vegetables||Chopping finely, cutting into thin strips, steaming, mashing or pureeing|
|Peanut butter||Spreading thinly on crackers or missing with applesauce and cinnamon and spreading thinly on bread (use only creamy) (not chunky) version)|
|Choking Hazard||DO NOT SERVE|
|Dried fruits or vegetables||Do not serve|
|Popcorn*||Do not serve|
ACTION STEP: Be sure all foods are cut into bite-size pieces, steamed or mashed. Encourage children to chew completely before swallowing to ensure safety.