Tuesday, August 13, 2013

DIY Baby Food

I feel like I've talked about Kenley's eating quite a bit, but I think it's because it's the one thing in regards to parenting that kind of stresses me out. I mean - what you feed your baby from Day 1 sets the tone for their health and eating habits for the rest of their lives. If you ask me, that's a lot of responsibility. Then you've got breastfeeding, bottle feeding, weaning, solids, allergies, store bought baby food, homemade baby food etc. etc. etc. PLUS, everyone has a different method or different idea of what and when and how to feed your baby!

Is your head spinning yet?

If you've been following for a while you know that Kenley was exclusively breastfed with some small formula supplementation for the first 6 months {or pretty much until I completely dried up - wah!} We started to introduce solids at 6 months with homemade fruit and veggie purees and added a new food every three days to allow us to pinpoint allergies {which so far, hasn't been an issue!} You may remember this handy dandy chart I created to plan out which foods to introduce when:
When it came time for me to start thinking about solid foods I did some research on making my own. I never really considered it and thought it seemed like a TON of unnecessary work. The more I looked in to it the more I realized it was something I really wanted to do. I love to cook as it is, so making Kenley's food has been something I've really enjoyed, not stressed over. Plus, the cost savings is amazing! A 4oz jar of store bought baby food runs somewhere around $0.50 - $1.05 depending on the brand and the store. If I buy one bag of baby carrots for $1.49 I can get 24oz of pureed carrots. That's $0.24 for 4oz or at least HALF the cost! Plus, I really love knowing EXACTLY what I'm feeding Kenley without any weirdo preservatives.

Once committing to making my own baby food, I invested in some supplies to help the process:

The actual process for making your own baby food is pretty simple. I just peel, steam or bake whatever I'm cooking and then throw it in our food processor. I usually add some water to the puree to get the right consistency. Then I scoop the puree into the freezer trays, cover and let freeze for 24 hours. Then I pop them out and put them in a ziploc bag labeled with the food and the date. Then I either pull and microwave the cubes to defrost or put one in the Fresh N Freeze container to thaw in the fridge overnight {which is what I do for Kenley's meals at day care}.
The cubes are good in the freezer for 3 months, so now that we're mixing up combos and introducing more foods I just make the purees on an as needed basis. The only things I don't freeze are bananas and avocados because they brown so easily. Those I'll just throw in our mini chopper before serving. 

 Of course now that Kenley is eating more grown up foods and is learning to feed herself, a lot of this is changing. No doubt I'll be doing another food post before too long but I was long overdue to share my experience with making my own baby food. Hopefully those of you considering making your own find it helpful!

Despite the confused and somewhat terrified look on her face,
Kenley gives mama's baby food two teeny thumbs up!

You can check out my other posts on baby eating by clicking these fancy links:
Boob Chat
Accepting the Drought
Starting Solids
What to Feed My Baby...When?



Link up every Tuesday!



21 comments:

Heather Leigh said...

I love making Evelynne's baby food! I find actually kinda fun. I do buy some veggies at the store just for emergencies like you said. And I also buy her meats because I can't bring myself to blend meat. Gross! lol

Kristen said...

K is so cute! I plan on making E's baby food too. It just seems easier, more cost efficient, and I'll know exactly what she's eating. Great post, I'll definitely come back to it on a few months (and probably email you too!).

P!nky said...

Boob chat...hahah!

Love that you made everything yourself, so smart!

And of course, your daughter is so cute! love that face

Kelly said...

I can't wait until we can make our own baby food too!! It seems like SUCH a wonderful way to save money and provide healthy food for your little one. So neat-- great post, friend! :-)

Schnelle said...

Great post! I planned on making baby food from day 1 but after trying 3 different machines I couldn't get the consistency right and I panicked that it was too thick. I've been feeding her gerber organic until she's older but I think I'm going to give it another shot now. I think I need to add more water. Thanks so much!

Kari said...

Do you know how often I reference your old posts?! Almost an embarrassing amount! So I'm so glad when you do these posts and I can reference it in a few months when Colin is starting on solid food! Cannot wait to see you guys this weekend! YAY!

Carolyn said...

I've seen firsthand how much Kenley loves her mommy's baby food! Good work Beeb!

Laura said...

this is really helpful! I totally plan on making my own baby food when the time comes. I'm pinning this for reference later!

Leslie said...

Such a great post!! I plan on making Connor's food once we start solids in a few months. I love to cook too and I am a SAHM so I feel like I will really enjoy it and have plenty of time to do it!

Stacie said...

I would love to use those freezer cubes next time around. I loved the Brezza and the whole baby food making process. I like your updates to see what new stuff is out there!

Did you start cup training yet? Everyone has their own thing, but I might suggest using a straw cup, which was suggested to me by our speech therapist at school. You could try both! There is something about the straw that is more natural and fosters good speech development habits. I can give you more details on the training if you want. It took one try and she was switched from a bottle overnight.

Kate said...

i have this post bookmarked and i'm now starting to think ahead and get prepped for the baby food making fun.

questions for you:

the brown rice and oatmeal cereal -- how many containers of that did you go through? buying 6 containers (of each) in bulk is super cheap on amazon... would i use 12 containers though?

i'm going to use your calendar... did that schedule work well for kenley?

i have more questions, but we'll start there :)

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