Tips to Making Homemade Baby Food

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I’ve been making all homemade baby food for a few months now. I started making homemade baby food since my son turned 6 months (He will be 9 months this Wednesday…wow where does the time go, right?!). I love it for many reasons. First of all, my son loves it! I think that is first and foremost the most important thing right there. Have you ever smelled or tasted baby food from a jar? Most of them are pretty disgusting! Nothing against anyone who uses jarred baby food…I just prefer this method myself. Secondly…it’s way cheaper, and I mean WAY! Okay, there may be a few exceptions here, such as the mega expensive and out-of-season blueberries I have been buying but that is besides the point 😛 Take for example, I just bought a huge butternut squash the other day for well under $2 (I can’t remember exactly). And it made 9 servings of baby food! Considering that most baby food jars or especially the food pouches cost over $1 as it is, this is saving a lot of money. Another reason to give you motivation for making your baby’s food homemade is that it is much more fresh! They are trying to find more ways to make jarred baby food more natural such as the Beech Nut brands that say there are no additives but I don’t think that it gets any healthier or more nutritious than making it yourself homemade. Only then can you know for sure what exactly is in your baby’s food. My last main reason for making my son’s food homemade is that I enjoy it! I would have a whole lot less motivation to do it if I dreaded it every time I had to make a new batch of food. I love making it and coming up with new recipes to try for him, so it is really easy to make it fun too!

Are you thinking of trying to make your own baby food? Here are some tips I can give you that I have learned over the last few months that can hopefully make things a little bit easier. Like I said, I have been doing this for a few months so I am by no means any sort of expert in this but I can at least share what I know and hope that it helps! Not to mention, you really don’t have to be an expert to make your own baby food…it is that easy!

 

First Starting Out – Around 6 months (You can follow what your pediatrician suggests, but my son’s suggested foods at 6 months and he had started cereal at 4 months)

  • Start out with fruits and veggies that will be easy on your baby’s tummy such as:
    • avocado
    • banana
    • green beans
    • peas
    • carrots
    • squash
    • sweet potato
    • apples
    • peaches
    • pears
  • At first only make single purees like these and wait until your baby has tried a variety before mixing them.
  • Only introduce one fruit or veggie at a time and give the same one to them for at least three days. This is to make sure they have no allergies to that particular food.
  • Bananas are the EASIEST food to give your baby and perfect for on the go. You can simply mash it with a fork and it doesn’t have to be cooked. This is one of my easy go-to foods for my son.
  • Avocados can also simply be mashed with a fork. My son was funny about texture at first so I had to blend them, but I am now to the point where I can just mash them up along with a banana.
  • Your baby may not like the new texture of eating solids right away. If they don’t like a particular fruit or veggie, try giving it to them with a little bit of baby cereal on the spoon as well.
  • Don’t give up right away if your baby doesn’t like it! Sometimes it just takes awhile to get used to the new texture, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they don’t like the taste. For example, my son haaaated green beans at first. He would eat everything else pretty well, but the green beans…nope! I will say, they were a grittier texture. I didn’t give up though, I continued to offer the green beans for a few days in a row, then offered a new veggie and then came back to the green beans again. He eventually got used to them and now loves his green beans!
  • You can add breastmilk when making a puree instead of water for added nutrients.

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After trying a variety of fruit and veggie purees – 7 to 9 months

  • You could now start making combinations of foods
  • Try adding spinach or kale to a veggie for added nutrients
  • Add some new fruits and veggies into your baby’s diet such as:
    • cantaloupe
    • potatoes
    • blueberries
    • mango
    • eggplant
    • papaya
    • asparagus
  • Some combinations that I have found to work really well are:
    • banana-avocado (my son’s favorite and SO easy to simply mash together with a fork!)
    • blueberry-pear
    • Green bean-kale
    • Kale-potato-peas
    • Spinach-sweet potato

Find more great combinations on my Homemade Baby Food page!!

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As baby gets older they will start learning to pick things up and feed themselves. I started giving my son puffs at 6 months. It was a bit early for him but by 7 months he was picking them up and putting them in his mouth like a pro! Now he is starting to do that with more things and liking that he can feed himself. I will give him cut up bits of noodles, green beans, cooked carrots, melons and recently started with cheese (which he is not yet a fan of!). I’ve also started giving him yogurt and cottage cheese (make sure it is full fat, NOT the fat-free kinds) for snacks. Just remember that every baby is different and this is what worked for us. You can always talk to your child’s pediatrician to check with suggested ages to start a certain food.

Check out my Homemade Baby Food page for all kinds of recipes and how to prepare them! Whether you are just getting started or simply looking for tips, good luck to you and I hope that this helps if even in a small way!

 

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Whippersnappers

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