Do you guys make your own baby food? It’s something I always wanted to do but never quite got my system down in time.
I really wish I’d had Kaley write this post about a year ago!
She walks you through every step and points out the exact tools you’ll need to get the job done quickly and easily. She makes it look so easy I’m going to give it a go and serve it up to my 6, 4, and 1-year-old in reusable pouches like these as a nutritious snack!
Oh, and P.S., be sure you check out all of Kaley’s brilliant fruit and veggie puree recipes at the link near the bottom of the post!
Making fresh, homemade baby food is easier than you think, and you will feel good about giving your baby the very best food possible.
Most times, it is healthier, tastier, and cheaper than jarred baby food. It does take a little bit of preparation, but once you get the hang of it, you won’t even think twice about it.
Plus, you can put all the money you will save into baby’s college fund!
To make your own healthy baby food, you will need:
- fresh produce (organic if possible)
- a pot
- a steaming basket or strainer
- a rubber spatula
- a blender – Don’t fall into the trap of buying a baby-specific blender. While the idea is great, to steam and blend in one, they only make a serving or two at a time, which isn’t the best usage of your time. Also, they are expensive and won’t be used for long. You will be much better off investing in a really good blender, that can be used long after your baby is done with purées. You can also just use whatever blender you already have, a nice blender just makes things a little faster and easier. We have been using this blender for years and are very happy with it (and Steph and her family love this one if you’re in the market for a super cost-effective alternative).
- glass containers to store baby food in the refrigerator – I use Weck jars with an air-tight lid for storing, and also for serving.
- freezer trays for freezing baby food in small portions – Anything that won’t be eaten in the next day or so goes into a Beaba Multiportion Freezer Tray. I love that it freezes in nice 2 ounce portions, and comes in bright, fun colors. If you prefer to freeze in 1 ounce portions instead, this cube ice tray also works well.
- baby food cookbooks for inspiration
To make baby food purées:
- Start with fresh, organic produce.
- Wash the fruit or vegetable well, peel if necessary, then cut into chunks.
- Steam until soft, reserving the cooking liquid.
- Transfer the steamed fruit or vegetable to the blender, add a little bit of the cooking liquid.
- Blend until smooth, adding little bits of cooking liquid until the purée reaches the desired consistency.
- Transfer to small glass jars to store in the refrigerator, or into trays to freeze.
To heat up frozen baby food purées:
- Place frozen cube of food into a glass container.
- Allow to defrost in the refrigerator, if possible, then heat on low in the microwave, testing every 10-15 seconds.
- Once heated through, stir well, then allow to cool until tepid.
- Before giving food to baby, test on the inside of your wrist.
Here are some helpful tips as you started on the baby food making journey:
- Spend an afternoon making enough baby food to last you a few weeks or more. Freeze it and defrost just enough for each day. Trying to make baby food every single day is too time consuming.
- Shop at your local farmer’s market. You are likely to find produce that is much fresher, and therefore more nutritious, than what can be found in the supermarket.
- Get creative with your purées! Why serve plain sweet potatoes when you could serve Japanese sweet potato with baby bok choy & thyme? Here are some ideas for fruit purées and vegetable purées.
- Introduce herbs and spices as soon as possible. Not only will they make your baby’s food more exciting, it will expand baby’s palate and allow baby to eat with the rest of the family sooner.
- When in doubt, always check with your pediatrician.
- Have fun and enjoy this special time with your baby!
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