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Fun, Healthy Baby Foods to Make at Home

Making your own baby food is can be so much fun and there are so many ways you can give your baby added nutrition that you can’t find in canned baby food.  In addition you can also save money by making some or all of your own baby food at home.  There are a few ways you can do this – either with a blender or you have several options in grinders that are specially made for making baby food – including some even for travel.

Make Your Own Baby Food

My last pregnancy was twins and when they were born there was not only a rise in the prices of food in general, but now we had two to feed.  I had always made some of the baby food for my previous children, but now I had decided it was time to see if we could make almost all of it.

So, upon looking into it I realized it was so much easier than I anticipated and then I got to thinking – how did people feed their babies before there were baby food canning companies anyway?  Then I realized that I was definately making the right decision.  🙂

You, of course, should follow the advice of your baby’s health practioner… and note that nothing on this website is intended to advise or replace your doctor’s advice…

And, as your doctor will tell you, you should always start with single foods -one at a time – to be sure you don’t come across any allergies and if you do you know what it is that causes it.  And it may be easier to use some of the ready-made foods, either just to start with, to make sure you are covering a variety of foods and/or for travel.

One of the best basic foods to start with is butternut squash.  It cooks easily, is creamy – blends beautifully, and is naturally sweet.  Just cut your squash, remove the seeds and put it in a little water and steam till tender – no need to peel before cooking – though, be sure and wash it thoroughly.

Then when it’s good and tender throughout peel the center portions away from the skin and put in your blender or baby food grinder with some liquid – I always used some of the water left from steaming.  You have to play around with this a bit to make sure you’re getting the consistency right, and as your baby gets older you’ll want to make it thicker.

 

One, medium/large squash made about 2 and a half pints of prepared baby food.  While it was hot I would put it in half-pint jars and use the plastic lids – you can either refrigerate or freeze it then, or if you would like you can use the metal canning lids and follow a typical steam bath canning preparation.

 

I only put mine in the refrigerator because with the twins it didn’t really last very long.  With my other children I used to freeze it – and in smaller containers.

I always added about a quarter teaspoon of iodized sea salt to the squash when I put it in the blender, as I am not a believer in salt-free diets.  Your body needs salt and you can die without it, so especially since my twins were eating solids during the summer, I added it.

They also really liked mashed, fresh bananas – none of my children have ever liked canned bananas and after tasting them, I can’t bring myself to give it to them! There’s nothing like fresh – and bananas mash easily with a fork, and mix well with any cereal or yogurt.

One of my other favorite foods that I gave them, was a mixture of avocado, yogurt and applesauce.  This was especially welcome on hot summer days for lunch – like having ice cream, except really good for you!

Avocado – packed with vitamins and nutrition  -all of the B vitamins including folate, vitamin E, vitamin K, calcium, iron, vitamin C, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium (60% more than bananas) & zinc; the fat in avocado is digested like the fat found in breastmilk and it’s monounsaturated fat – which is good for brain development.  They are also naturally creamy and easy for babies to eat, and in my opinion, one of the best things you can feed a baby.

Just slice in half- to the pit and pull apart and remove the light green flesh from the skin, mash and feed as is or mix with applesauce, bananas, or whatever you like.

As I said I mixed it with yogurt & applesauce (equal parts each) – this was one of my babies’ favorite meals.  For yogurt – plain – with fat.  I don’t believe in giving any small child anything fat-free – I feel that it hinders their development, and I only give them wholesome, natural foods – we’re not talking potato chips and ice cream here! 🙂

Avocados make an excellent snack for your toddlers as well – just slice and give them as chunks or slices once peeled.  They’re great for throwing in your bag for a day out with peeled apple slices or small chunks, mandarin orange sections, or crackers and cheese.

Also, once I realized how wonderful avocados really are – I now add to salads as often as I can and eat them in slices – which I never did before.  So, instead of me teaching my babies healthy eating habits, it seems more like I’ve learned more healthy eating habits from them!  🙂

For other baby foods I steamed carrots, peas, yams/sweet potatoes, spinach, beet tops, apples, peaches, etc.

Mangoes were also something they loved – just peel, and clean all the fruit off of the pit and blend. One thing nice about mangoes, just like the avocado or banana, is you don’t need to add any liquid or do any special cooking. So, for something quick and highly nutritious they are some great options – especially added with cereal – either pre-made or instant.

For their cereal I made barley and pureed it for them, then refrigerated.  Barley is much more nutritious and easier for babies to digest than any other grain – you can buy it instant if you like. And for liquid I used evaporated goat’s milk with water or breastmilk, as they are both equally digestable.

I had so much fun making my own foods for my babies – as they got older finding combinations they liked and changing things around was also really helpful to give them a varied taste and they are not picky at all now. We also saved a lot of money – our one local store sold their soft produce at a discount and I could take it home and prepare it right away, and the fruit was always perfectly ripe. I knew they were getting a higher nutritional content than if I were just buying what we’re told we “should” feed them. There are so many benefits of making your own baby food if you really think about it.

Lots of moms have been doing this for many years and many are just realizing – he’s your baby – you can and should feed your baby what you think he needs – after all, you know him best! The freedom in just realizing that is amazing.

As with anything with your baby, take special care in choosing the right foods and preparing them for him/her.

 

Also comes in light green or aqua – get yourself a baby food grinder – less than $10!
Munchkin Baby Food Grinder, Light Blue

 

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