The best cracker type of food to start with is graham crackers. They are crunchy, but when they mix with saliva they turn into a puree and are easy to eat and swallow.
It is good to start giving regular table foods as they have a stronger flavor than baby foods.
Good mashing foods:
- Soft cooked vegetables such as potatoes, carrots, broccoli. (peas and corn don’t work well because they have a shell on them that doesn’t mash).
- Fruit such as bananas, peaches, cooked apples.
- Soft cooked pasta.
If the food is too dry when ground or mashed, you can add a binding sauce which could be a pureed baby food, spaghetti sauce, or milky sauce.
If there is a lot of gagging going on, start slow by adding a little of the mashed food to pureed baby food. Optimally there will be lumps, but not ones that are too difficult for the child to tolerate. Then you can increase the amount over time in manageable increments.