Crunchy Solid: These are often similar to meltable solids, but require more chewing to break apart. Examples are cheerios, saltines, and graham crackers. These foods require better control of the food in the mouth and more endurance for chewing.
Hard Munchable/Hard Stick: These two terms are used to mean a hard solid that is used for food exploration or mouth exploration without the expectation that the child will actually bite off a piece and eat it. Hard sticks can be used to stir and taste purees or simply for exploration on their own. These textures can help a child “get used to” the feeling of a hard texture in their mouth without having to chew and swallow the food. Examples of hard munchables/sticks are celery or carrot sticks, jicama spears, or hard pretzel rods. Always supervise a child when they are exploring with hard munchables to make sure that they do not accidentally bite off a piece and choke.
Mixed Texture: A mixed texture is just what it sounds like! It is a food which combines one or more of the textures featured here and in the Purees and Soft Solids articles. Stage 3 pureed baby foods might be considered a mixed texture, since they combine soft cubes within a thick puree. Chicken soup is also a mixed texture which combines thin liquids with soft solids and hard mechanicals. A child should be able to eat all the textures SEPARATELY before they are expected to eat the textures together.
Now that you know all about food textures, take a look around the next time you are at the grocery store or standing at your fridge. How many soft cubes can you find? How many hard munchables? Keep these textures in mind when choosing foods for your child. Ask your feeding team for additional information if you notice that your child is have difficulty with one or more of these textures.