Six Simple Steps to Make Natural Baby Food

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by Linda Castillo

Natural Baby Food Preparation

As a mom, we always want to provide the best for our children, especially when it comes to what we feed them. I knew from the beginning that as soon as my little one was ready to transition to solid food I wanted to make my own baby food for several reasons. First, homemade baby food is healthy and fresh so she is not exposed to so many preservatives. Second, I wanted to set up a foundation of good eating habits that I could build on when she becomes a toddler. Third, making homemade food is very economical. For example, a 16 Oz bag of organic carrots cost approximately $1.49 in comparison you would be spending $3.30 in baby jar food for the same amount of food. Lastly, it is eco-friendly because you reuse all the serving dishes thereby reducing the amount of waste created by plastic or glass baby food containers.

At first I thought it was going to be overwhelming to find time to make baby food in an already busy schedule but I just dedicated at least two hours to prepare the baby food for the week (usually when my little one is asleep for the night). In the end, it feels good to know that I am giving my baby the best start with fresh fruit and vegetables and it was justanother way for me to show my love for my little one.

Six Simple Steps to Create Natural Baby Food:

 

  1. Start with a puree system. You may have one already own one or you can choose to purchase a system specifically designed to create baby food. My sister in law gave me the KidCo Complete Natural Feeding System which includes a guide, food mill, electric food mill, two freezer trays (BPA free) and a feeding dish. I also purchased several other freezer trays especially as your child begins to eat more you will need more! I love this Kidco system because it comes with everything even a step by step guide for beginners.
  2. Now it’s time to shop for all the fruits and veggies. I chose to buy organic so that there no exposure to pesticides. Squash, sweet potato, and pears were some of the first foods that I introduced to my little one and they happen to still be her favorites. As your child is older you can incorporate different recipes into their diet.
  3. Set aside a time and get your baby food making station ready. I wipe down the countertop and wash my hands before setting up all the clean cooking utensils, and pots/pans.
  4. Wash, chop, and cook your fruits and vegetables to prepare prep them to be pureed. I prefer to boil or steam the vegetables but there are other cooking alternatives.
  5. I usually end up cooking a variety of both vegetables and fruit for the week ahead. I purchased around 10+ freezer storage trays which at first I thought was too many but as my daughter eats more I am so glad that I have that many on hand.  Label the freezer tray with the type of food and date that you placed in the freezer. I simply use basic masking tape and a Sharpie pen to label the containers.
  6. When you are ready to feed your little one, just find the food you are looking for, pop out two or three food cubes and heat in a microwave safe container to serve.  I usually mix the fruit with organic oatmeal cereal and the vegetables with organic brown rice cereal to add to the consistency and texture.

I hope that after reading this you will see how easy it is to make healthy baby food for your little one.  Below I included some other helpful tips and resources. 

Helpful Tips:

  • Ensure you are giving the right type of fruit or vegetable for your baby’s age. Kidco provides a recipe book, visit online resources or consult with your doctor if you are not sure if you should feed a fruit or vegetable to your child.
  • Introduce only 1 new fruit or vegetable slowly into their diet at a time. Apply the 4 day waiting rule when introducing a new food to ensure that your child does not have an allergic reaction of any kind.
  • Babies are finicky when it comes to trying new food.  Try a few times giving a new food to your little one.  At first my little didn’t care for bananas but eventually she liked them. Be sure to get your video camera ready to capture all the cute and funny faces that are sure to come when they sample new foods.
  • When traveling for a few days I simply take a few of the freezer storage trays for the trip. If necessary I have had to incorporate store bought baby food for on the go when I know I don’t have access to a freezer or microwave

Other helpful resources:

Linda Castillo is the Founder and Executive Editor of www.ModernLatina.com. She writes on topics that empower and inspire Latinas including art, motherhood, green living, culture, travel, and issues transforming the Latino community. Linda has earned a B.S. in Business and a M.S. in Mass Communications from San Jose State University.