Starting baby food/homemade baby food

Nicole - posted on 11/16/2010 ( 20 moms have responded )

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I am considering going out and buying some organic fruits and veggies to make some homemade baby food. I am first trying to figure out if its cost effective and second if it is time effective. I have found a couple websites on how to make it. Are there any particular recipes or ideas you have that are good?

We are still at the point where the baby is trying new foods in stage 1. If she has already tried certain things of store bought baby food, is it safe to make those homemade or do I need to start the process over again of trying something new every 2-3 days?

Also, what are your thoughts on the difference between store bought white rice and homemade brown rice?

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Angela - posted on 11/24/2010

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I made my own baby food at first because I was a single Mom (who liked to cook) and needed to watch every cent. When I had my second child I was married and could afford premade food but why when it is so easy and healthy to make at home!

My best tip is to not buy anything fancy to freeze and store your babyfood in. I used ice cube trays and would then pop out the food cubes into freezer bags.

I found this an easy way to store and defrost food. It was good for portions too because as she got older I just defrosted more cubes as needed.

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Callinda - posted on 12/15/2010

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Regarding homemade carrots - there is slight concern about feeding them this before 3 months old (at which time babies shouldnt be eating solids anyway) so dont worry about this. Refer to this website: http://www.wholesomebabyfood.com/nitrate...

I have 3 kids and they are all great eaters - and all they have even eaten is a variation of what we are having at dinner. For my first son, I went out and bought heaps of vegies and froze food, but quickly worked out that it was taking more time that I needed to - he could just eat the same vegies/meat as us.

Lyn - posted on 12/13/2010

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Once baby is used to a few variations, maybe try to as small amounts of spice to things such as potato. Baby will be more open to trying a greater range of foods as s/he gets older, in my experience. My eldest is an adventurous eater becauase of this, as is my third because he just had to fit in with our meals. My middle one somehow ended up with more tinned baby food: result - fussy eater (in my opinion). Coking the veges with a small amount of chicken or veal mince is a good way to introduce meats.

Nicky - posted on 12/06/2010

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i cook and freeze heaps of food in ice trays, then once frozen pop them into freezer bags, then, you have variety, once you have introduced a range of foods e.g carrot,pumpkin,kumara,parsnip,silverbeet, you can combine a cube of each, put into a glass jar (we just use old premade jars) in water to heat through, when cool enough, feed to baby, or transfer into bowl if you think they won't eat it all
i stewed apples, pears, raspberry/blueberry, nectarine, and did the same thing
just blend it up, keeping the water it was boiled/stewed in as it retains the nutrients and helps with moisture, then run through a mouli if bubs is just starting solids
these days, i grate some frozen cooked liver, or beef, into it, and sometimes some fresh blended herbs like basil (very very small amount)
for breakfast I thaw a fruit cube and put it in with the millet porridge, and sometimes put a dash of cinnamon, my wee girl gobbles it up
if ou are out of ideas, check out what they have in the pre-made aisles, esp. if you have tried it already and bubs likes it!

Kristin - posted on 12/05/2010

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I made a lot of my own babyfood. You can mash banana and avacad with a fork. Other things, I would make a big batch in the food processor and then pour it in a ziplock bag. If you snip off the corner it can be used like a pastry bag. Pour contents into empty ice cube containers and freeze. That way, you always have food available.

I would buy store bought baby peas b/c I've never seen fresh peas before (why defrost only to freeze again?). Also, you can buy bulk apple sauce and frozen squash or canned pumpkin. It's easier and just as cheap.

Laura - posted on 12/05/2010

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with all my experience i found that all my kids prefered the homemade to the storebought and found that it was much easier for them to go from stage to stage, my grandson is having a hard time going from storebought now to table food because of taste texture and FLAVOR, it is simple and easy and very cheap, i agree with the what i make now is what the baby is having although i always had a few frozen cubes ready for the occasion that he may not be able to eat what we are having(hot and spicy,etc) but i found that one of those little hand choppers or little electric choppers come in handy, a bit of texture or as much as you want, the best 10$ i ever spent. good luck

Marcia - posted on 12/02/2010

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It is very cost effective. I did it with my children when they were babies (18 & 14 now) there weren't organic stores in the area where we live, so I would just by bags of frozen vegetables that had no salt or preservatives in them. I would have to read the back of the package to make sure. I would then just steam them, puree them and freeze them in ice cube trays. It didn't take very long, we saved money doing it and my children liked it. Good luck.

Aysun - posted on 11/29/2010

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If you are buying ready baby food, you can't be sure what's inside. Of course you trust some brand names but still... Unfortunately I buy some ready baby foods,too. But I feel like I'm a better Mom when I feed my baby with homemade organic baby foods.

Melissa - posted on 11/29/2010

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its definatly cost effective, and it has so much better taste!! I did the homemade baby food for my daughter and just used icecube trays to freeze it then just stored them in freezer bags in the freezer. my daughter lvoed it, and i bought the jarred stuff a couple of timesto have for on the go, and i'd try to feed it to her and she'd just spit it out, so that just tells you about the flavors lol. as for time effectiveness, well it can take quite a bit of time, but its all worth it if you ask me. I used the site www.wholesomebabyfood.com it was amazing and has all different sorts of recipes for stage 1, stage 2, meats, even for vegetarian families!! my daughters favorite is Butternut squash or Sweet potatos.

Angela - posted on 11/26/2010

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I made my daughters food on my own from day one. I loved every moment of it. There is a great website that gives you information on when your baby is old enough for each food... it is http://www.wholesomebabyfood.com/
I loved this website and it helped me with a lot of my questions and gave me great ideas. The great thing about making your own food is that you can incorporate flavor into the food unlike the jarred food you buy in the store. I also froze all my purees, including apple sauce, in ice cube trays and then popped them into freezer bags. Its great for portion size and convenient for if you have to run out of the house quick.

When it comes to the rice question, I am totally against store bought rice cereal. If you feel the need to give her cereal there is also easy ways to make whole grain brown rice cereal at home. You are going to love the baby food making adventure. It is fun and fulfilling knowing exactly what your baby is eating and that you got to make it for her!

Deborah - posted on 11/22/2010

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I bought jars of strawberries, apple sauce, and banana and would mix pablum in it til she was 6 months old. Other then that she ate what I ate: she was eating (sucking on) smokies with skin, ribs, steak and everything else she could hold herself on by 2 months old once a piece got lose then I'd break it off and give it back it she wasn't finished. She got all the natural nutrients from foods this way and it was easy cooking for 1 more little mouth. She had mashed potatoes with gravy, rice with butter n soya sauce. As a child care provider of almost 30 years: I tell my parents when you feel that your child is hungry and milk is not enough then start giving something off your plate: let them watch you chew and they will mimic you. Only thing I do advise staying away from until 1 year of age are: cream soups n gravy's, cheese, nuts, eggs, and regular milk: your child's tummy is not ready to process these foods. And when you do start regular milk do not begin with the 3% (whole): your baby will put on weight real fast and the doc will tell you to go to either 1% or 2% so save yourself the lecture and begin with either 1% or 2%..



Remember: No One Knows Your Child Better Then You Do: Follow Your Instincts!

Amanda - posted on 11/21/2010

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I LOVED making my babies food, definitely cost effective and i enjoyed concocting the recipes to get him to try diff things. i think once you start you wont go back.
If you have glass jars, i saved and re-used them for storing home-made food, and labeled w/ scotch tape so you remember whats what.
if she already tried the foods with no reactions then you'll be safe to use the same foods.

Debby - posted on 11/18/2010

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this is the easiest thing in the world whatever you eat minus salt butter seasonings throw in the blender maybe a little baby water freeze in ice cube trays i did this with boiled cx and ground beef (rinsed) frozen veggies mash potatoes sweet potatoes never bought a jar of baby food

Brooke - posted on 11/17/2010

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Before you jump into making these things on your own, I would google it. I have read that you should not feed your babies carrots (that you have cooked and processed yourself) due to something that is actually removed from them when they make the baby food that you find in the stores. There were a couple other things that had similar statements. Good luck with everything!

Nicole - posted on 11/17/2010

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Oh my, today I tried apples as a starter. I can't believe how quick and easy it was. And how delicious they are!!! (usually apples are one spoon for baby, one for mommy!!) On my very first try I got them perfect. They are even the same consistency as store bought. I am so excited. It took me a whole maybe 5 minutes to peel and cut up 4 apples and then 10 minutes to steam them. I can't wait to try squash and sweet potatoes tonight. Although with them I'll freeze them. Since they say applesauce doesn't freeze well I'll make that on a need basis!

Thanks for everyones suggestions. I am very excited

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I made our baby food at home. I would buy fresh fruits and veggies from a regular grocery store. I would then steam, or peal them then steam them depending. The fruits I typically just pealed. I then would blend then until creamy smooth and if I needed to add fluid I would warm up a little breastmilk and use that until it was the consistency that I wanted. (of course EVERYTHING got washed before anything else is done with it) I got some baby food jars for free from a few other moms and would keep the baby food in them. IF you cook your veggies, fruits whatever and then blend them into the consistency you want you can do it in a way that it is all very very hot. Boil the baby food jars and lids for 20 minutes prior so they are ready when you get the food done. carefully take each jar out one at a time fill and put the lid on. Leave them to sit and cool at room temp. Once you do you have just canned your first baby food and it will keep for up to a week. (I say a week because that is all the longer ever had mine stored since we didn't put any preservatives in it. We also kept them stored in the fridge once cooled to room temp.) Frankly babies will go through a pretty good amount within a day or two so making small amounts really isn't hard.
We personally think it is better for kids to have as little preservatives as possible in their food and body. However, each set of parents is different and it is up to you if you think this will work for you. All in all it takes about 30 minutes to make step 1 carrots from start to finish and you can have as little or as much of them as you want.

good luck and god bless

Nicole - posted on 11/16/2010

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Thanks!!! I went and got a squash, sweet potatoes and some apples and I'm going to go to work on them tomorrow!!! I can't wait to try it for her! She seems to love anything we give her except peas LOL.

Amber - posted on 11/16/2010

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My daughter is 7.5 mo. and we started o solids at 6mo. I make her food, it is fun. I do make special food for her and freeze it in the icecube trays.
Usually there is left over (ex. squash) and then we eat it for dinner.

I have a question myself, I pureed peaches and froze them, but should I have cooked them?
Good Luck Nicole, Avocados and bananas are easy, no cooking at all.
Thanks!!!

Lady Heather - posted on 11/16/2010

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Definitely cost effective. I never found it very time consuming because she always ate what we were eating. I would just cook her portion of veggies a little longer and then mash or blend it. We never really did true purees and I never froze anything. I just figured that if I was cooking anyways, she may as well have what we're having. She ate pieces of meat from 6.5 months old, not even pureed or anything. Just really small pieces. I would just take a chunk of whatever we were having and poach it with some spice or herb or ginger or garlic or something. Poaching keeps it really soft for the toothless.

We didn't do the rice cereal thing. It didn't agree with her tummy. We have white rice once in a while, but our standard rice is brown.

You don't need to start your every 2-3 days thing over again. If she's had them in a jar they won't be a problem for her out of the jar!

Shannon - posted on 11/16/2010

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Clara really liked sweet potato puree. We just followed receipes we found online or we made up our own. Making your own is way more cost effective. We had so much in our freezer and in the fridge. Clara seemed to like it better as well. Have fun and try your own stuff. As far as rice, Clara never liked it and we were told it was empty calories so we didn't push it on her.

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