We all hear about those super moms who make their own baby food from scratch. We all wonder where they get the time and energy, as if babies did not demand enough already. I used to wonder about that. I heard stories about so-and-so making all of her own food, feeding her baby nothing but organic foods, unlike the store bought, processed, stuff full of preservatives that I was feeding my kids. I also heard that making your own foods can help eliminated food allergies by not exposing children to chemicals early on.
I finally gave it a try. The first time around I could have sworn giving birth to another child would be easier than making a batch of baby food again. However, as I did my research and repeated the processes a few times, I worked the kinks out, and found that it can be a fairly easy way of feeding my kids healthier food. Not to mention it is cheaper than baby food (especially when get to stage 3 foods).
Here are 5 easy steps for making your own baby foods.
1. Find 4-6 ounce containers that can go from freezer to microwave.
This is a one time start up expense. Buy as many as you think you will make at a time. For example, I make baby food for 2 weeks in advance, so I need 14 containers for breakfast, 14 for lunch, and 14 for dinner. I have found one of the biggest mistakes people make is that they try to make food only a day or two in advance. This is more work.
2. Buy in Bulk
Find the store where they have fruits, vegetables, and meat on sale, and buy in bulk. You may have to go to separate stores for this. Depending on the size of the containers you bought, and the type of fruits and vegetables you will use, you will have to experiment with yield. Even though I definitely suggest making the food in bulk, the first few times you may want to start small to get a feel of how many fruits and vegetables you will need. Once you get the right ratio, you will want to make more each time to minimize the amount of time you spend cooking vegetables and cleaning the kitchen counter, utensils and appliances.
3. Boil Everything (Except Fruit)
Since you bought everything, just get a couple of large pots out and boil all of your vegetables and meat. You can boil each type of vegetable in a different pot, or you can do a vegetable mix. You can also add boiled noodles to your vegetables for a pasta primavera recipe. Make sure to boil your meat all the way through.
4. Blend Fruit
While your vegetables and meat are boiling, you can blend your fruit. If you need to peel them, do so first. Then cut them into chunks and put them in your blender with a bit of water (bananas and berries are an exception; do not use water with them). Blend until they are the consistency desired. Start out with just a few drops of water and gradually add more as needed.
Put the freshly blended fruit into the containers until all of them are full and now you have all of your breakfast foods ready. Just place them in the freezer and pull one out each day. Stick it in the microwave in increments of 30 seconds until thawed enough to eat. You do not necessarily want your fruit to be hot like lunch and dinner dishes.
5. Blend Vegetables and Meat
Essentially do the same for your vegetables and meat that you did for your fruit. Use the vegetables for lunch foods, and do a mix of vegetables and meats for dinner (unless you are a vegetarian and would like to raise your child the same, in which case skip the meat and add anything else your pediatrician may recommend).
You now have homemade baby food! Trust me, it gets easier each time.