4 Tips for Homemade Baby Food Success

Posted by on Aug 8, 2014 | Comments Off on 4 Tips for Homemade Baby Food Success

Baby food

Making your own baby food offers so many benefits to both you and your baby. You’ll save money, nurture a love of home-cooked, healthy meals, and decide exactly what goes into your baby’s mouth. That said, the thought of embarking on the homemade baby food journey can be overwhelming for new moms with a million other things to do without having to set aside an afternoon to make purees. Read on for 4 tips to help ensure success.

#1 Invest in a Baby Food Blender
Buying a blender that is specifically made to process baby food (or purchasing a food processor to designate solely for this purpose) is important for a couple reasons. First, it’s recommended that you introduce new foods to baby every 4-7 days only to allow time for an allergic reaction to show up. If you’re using the same food blender for baby food as you are for smoothies, pestos, and refried beans, your baby could have an allergic reaction to a food whose leftover residue flew under the radar and made it into your baby’s puree. This is especially important for babies who have known food intolerance. Second, it’s no secret that making your own baby food can be time consuming. The beauty of baby food blenders is that most brands build in a steaming feature so that you can throw a cup of frozen veggies in, turn on the steam, and come back to puree them once they’re cooked. This eliminates the step of cooking veggies in the oven or on the stove-top and makes less dishes to wash. While you’re at it, buy a few sets of silicone baby food freezer molds or silicone ice cube trays for portioning and freezing.

#2 Buy Organic and Local
Babies who haven’t yet tried solids don’t yet have mental preferences for certain foods (though as you’ll learn their taste buds will still gravitate towards some foods and not others). The introductory, mashed-food phase is a great time to introduce healthy, organic, local vegetables to get your little one’s palate attuned to the healthy stuff. Additionally, babies’ little systems are so much more susceptible than adults’ to the endocrine-disrupters found in pesticides and GMO foods, making it essential to buy only the best ingredients for their food.

#3 Make Enough…But Not Too Much!
While it’s tempting to buy an extra freezer to fill with frozen purees just so you don’t have to spend more than a few weekends making homemade food, resist the urge to make enough at one time to feed a baby army. You don’t yet know what foods your baby will favor, which ones will cause an allergic reaction, and which just won’t turn out well. It’s best to make a medium-sized amount—say two to three baby food freezer trays worth—first to see how the foods you’ve chosen go over.

#4 Learn to Accept Rejection
So many new moms slave over elaborate purees, perfecting the texture, portion size, and food combinations only to be met with tears and tight lips when their creations are offered. Because babies don’t yet have ideas about what they “should” eat, they tend to follow their intuition—their gut response if you will!—when it comes to what they put in their mouth. This is a good thing and if nurtured will become a skill that will serve them in so many ways later in life. At least one of your homemade creations will be rejected; the best thing to do is try another recipe or food and move on. Now that you know this, you can relax and let the baby food fly!

Have you tried serving your baby homemade purees? What was her favorite? What’s your best baby food blooper?

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