Feeding your baby with homemade baby food is not only good for your baby but for you as well. When you make your own baby food, you have 100% control over the type and quality of food your baby is eating. You also get to save some of your hard earned money because, most often than not, commercially prepared baby food is sold at exorbitant prices.
Moms who shun away from making baby food often have the misconception that it is a difficult and time-consuming task. If you are in the same boat as them, just think of homemade baby food as mashed or pureed baby food, and you will realize that it is actually a quick and easy job.
However, just like any task, there are some dos and don’ts that you have to remember when you make your own baby food. These are:
1. Before pureeing vegetables and fruits:
- DO check them for any imperfections and make sure that they are ripe enough to puree.
- DO wash them thoroughly with water. You need to be certain that there is not a hint of dirt or pesticide residue on them.
- DO boil or steam the vegetables or fruits before pureeing them. Many prefer to cook their homemade baby food by steaming rather than boiling to avoid losing the nutrients within. Those who do choose to boil believe that they are able to put back the nutrients by using the cooking water in thinning the puree.
- DON’T forget to properly remove their seeds and peels
2. When pureeing vegetables and fruits:
- DO use a processor instead of a blender. Unlike food processors, blenders sometimes leave lumps in the puree.
- DO use baby milk to thin the puree. This will help give a familiar taste to your homemade baby food.
- DON’T use cooking water in thinning the puree if the produce is high in nitrate. Too much nitrate intake is dangerous to your baby’s health. Many root vegetables such as carrots and beets as well as cherries and berries contain a high amount of nitrates. Check online for a complete list of high nitrate foods.
- DON’T add flavorings (natural or artificial) to make your pureed baby food tastier. They are unnecessary and unhealthy. Plus, you should give your baby a chance to savor the natural taste of the vegetable/fruit.
3. After pureeing vegetables and fruits:
- DO store your puree at a freezing temperature. Once the puree is thawed, never re-freeze and re-thaw it. This is why it is better to freeze them in small or 1-serving portions.
- DON’T store your puree in the freezer for more than 3 months. Although it is okay to leave your puree in the freezer for up to six months, a maximum of 3 months is recommended by experts to retain the taste and nutrients.
- Do label your stored puree. Write the name of the food and the best-consumed-before date. This will help you follow the “first in, first out” method in food rotation.
- DON’T use glass containers in freezing your puree. Most glass containers are not suitable for freezing. There is a high chance that they will crack and break.
Now that you know what you should and shouldn’t do when making baby food, you can start checking out different recipes for homemade baby food!