When the time is right to feed your baby solid food you quickly discover that jarred baby food is not only expensive but can also contain some dubious ingredients such as thickening starches and sugars; not to mention the significant amount of water that goes into these products along with the thickening agents in order to yield larger quantities for smaller costs.
This means that the main ingredient of canned baby foods is water, reducing the actual meat, fruit, or vegetable content to staggeringly low quantities. Bulking these products with refined starches and water means that your baby is getting food with lower nutrient contents. The required daily intake of minerals and vitamins is not met by most commercial baby foods, including some organic brands that cost even more but fall equally short of meeting nutritional values.
Make Your Own Baby Food
Although it takes a bit more time, making your own baby food will ensure that your infant starts his solid food diet with the proper vitamins and minerals for a healthy growth. There are many delicious baby food recipes to help you come up with tasty meals for your child without skipping on the necessary nutrients.
Not only you will save money by buying fresh produce that is significantly cheaper than canned baby food, but you’ll also know exactly what goes into every meal that you feed to your child. If you’re still wondering what it takes to get started, here are some useful things to keep in mind when making baby food at home.
Get the Right Equipment
Many parents worry about how time-consuming it will be to make baby food at home. However, with the right equipment you can put together a healthy and tasty meal pretty fast, so you don’t have to spend all day working in the kitchen. Some appliances will become life-savers when you need to prepare a quick and nutritious meal at a moment’s notice, so investing in these parent-friendly devices could end up making things a lot easier for you in the long run.
All-in-one Baby Food Maker
This kind of appliance can steam-cook and then puree meat, fruits, and vegetables, so it will come in handy for multitasking moms and dads. If you’re looking for the ultra-fancy features some baby food makers can also defrost and reheat food that has been previously prepared. Look into shopping for one of these if you need something to do part of the work for you while you take care of your regular family meals.
Regular kitchen blenders or food processors can help turn anything into puree as long as it’s soft enough. You can use it for more than smoothies and mix a wide variety of ingredients to make a healthy meal for your baby as well. Make sure that what you blend in it is mushy enough to eat as some brands will work better than others depending on what features they have.
Manual Food Mills
Manually operated food mills are a very popular choice since they can be easily transported on trips and don’t require electricity. They are simple to use and will blend your food according to what your needs are depending on the blade you choose (different blades offer different textures).
Baby Food Grinders
Baby food grinders are inexpensive and portable and can help you blend food for your baby but they may not offer texture choices. While they are also non-electric, you should do your research before buying one so that you’re sure it will offer the right texture for your needs and it has a good track record when it comes to happy customer testimonials.
Make the Best Organic Baby Food with Fresh Produce
Organic fresh produce might cost a bit more than the regular fruits and vegetables you can find on supermarket shelves, but it will still set you back a lot less than canned baby food would. Plus, and it will ensure that your baby gets all of the vitamins and minerals needed on a daily basis. With many parents concerned about the pesticides, additives, and nitrates contained in the vegetables and fruits that their children eat, it’s no wonder that organic produce is gaining popularity in this segment.
Buying fresh, farm-to-table fruits, and vegetables will ensure that your child gets non-genetically-modified produce that hasn’t been sprayed with toxic pesticides, herbicides, or unfiltered water. If you stick to buying what you need for your home-made baby food from an organic store or farmers market, and use the produce within one or two days of buying it, you can be sure that your child will get the most out of the nutrients contained in the food.
If you can’t always make it to the farmers market every other day, you can look into organic food delivery services that can constantly supply you with organic farm-to-table produce that is in season. Some of these services even offer special organic baby food produce boxes that only contain baby friendly fruits and veg.
Prepare Delicious Meals
The first step in every meal is thoroughly washing the fruits and vegetables and peeling the ones that require this extra step, but some ingredients might need some extra softening before you can blend or puree them. Make sure you get some information on preparation methods for each item before you cook it for the first time.
There are many great tutorials online that can give you additional tips on how to make your own baby food so just look for the topics that interest you and start from there. You can find a lot of useful information on how to tackle foods that are harder to puree smoothly, or that might require more steps to properly peel and soften. Therefore, don’t hesitate to try alternative methods when you want to integrate new fruits and vegetables into your baby’s diet and don’t know how to do it.
Lastly, when you want to make your own baby food recipes are a key starting-point. Make sure you look for recipes that contain ingredients suited for the stage your baby is at in terms of solid diets and ask for professional advice if you’re unsure of what your baby can or can’t eat in different stages. Then just browse any library or web browser for recipe ideas and create your own twists on what you find. It’ll become a fun activity and your baby will certainly appreciate the great taste and variety that your home-made food will have.