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Monday, August 2, 2010

Homemade Baby Food = Success!

As you may recall from some of my previous posts, Mike and I were waiting until after Abigail's 6 month pediatrician appointment to start her on solids. After her appointment on July 21st, we got the go-ahead from her doctor and started her on organic oatmeal the very next morning (she's been getting organic rice cereal in her bottle for reflux since 4 months so I decided to skip it as a solid).

Turns out, she loved it! She learned to open her mouth for the spoon very quickly. I was pretty darn impressed by my little monkey.



Since she always seems the hungriest first thing in the morning, I decided that breakfast was an ideal time to start her on solids. I kept her on oatmeal only as a breakfast meal for the obligatory 3 day period. She didn't seem to have any issues with it so it has now become our regular breakfast food along with her bottle. Once we hit the 7 month mark and she has tried just about every fruit there is, I'll begin to mix various fruits with her oatmeal in the morning as well.



In the meantime, I made a trip to Whole Foods to pick up some quality organic fruits and veggies to begin making meals for my freezer stash. Abbey's pediatrician had mentioned that there is no longer a reason to start babies on vegetables only and he gave us the freedom to start with any type of food we wanted. Basically, his only recommendation was to just have fun experimenting with her meals.

From my first shopping trip to Whole Foods, I was able to pick up all of this for a grand total of $5.50:



Since I personally love avacados, I decided that I would start there as Abbey's first fruit - yes, avacados are fruit, not a veggie.



I then moved on to pureeing the squash.



And lastly, the bananas.



Abigail's favorite out of the three was definitely the bananas!





About a week later, I decided to run to Whole Foods again to pick up some more food to increase my freezer stash. I got the following for $13.30:



I bought the baby carrots instead of regular carrots with the thought that it will take less time to chop them up since they are already pre-cut. Eh. I think it would have been much easier to just chop up an entire carrot and there would have been significantly less waste as a bag of baby carrots takes about 1.5 batches to make. By the time I got around to the second batch, the carrots were visually less fresh. I would have preferred to buy just enough carrots as needed so that I could make them in one batch right away and be done with it.







All-in-all, I've found making my own baby food to be very enjoyable and extremely cost effective. Aside from the start-up costs, I'm able to purchase low cost organic fruits and veggies that I feel good about serving to Abigail. I will never have to agonize over the label on a can of baby food trying to determine what exactly is in the food that my daughter will consume. Even though I've incurred around $110 in start-up costs for this endeavor, the fact that I'll plan to make my own food for our next two hypothetical children will more than make up for those costs. I'd also really like to branch out from Whole Foods and hit up some local farmers markets before the summer ends. That way, not only will I be feeding Abbey food that I can feel good about, but I'll also help to support the local economy as well!

It's totally win-win.

4 comments:

Mrs. Dew

I really want to make KP's food when the time comes. You have to post some of your "recipes". Do you just boil the veggies and puree them? Do you have to add water to any?

Stacey

A great reference for homemade baby food is www.wholesomebabyfood.com. Right now, I'm just doing simple purees so they mainly consist of chopping up the fruit/veggies, steaming, and then pureeing. Very simple! The Babycook does everything but the chopping for me, but you can also use a regular vegetable steamer and food processor if you already have them.

I bought a few baby cookbooks to use once we start mixing things together for her, but I haven't gotten that far yet.

Mrs. B

Glad to hear it's going well for you!
I'm using a lot of frozen organic veggies and fruits which are just as nutritious (if not more since they are frozen so close to picking) and many times cost far less than fresh.

edmo

I love making my own baby food. Everyone told me that while I took the time with my first to make his food, that I'd never be able to do it for the second child. So far, he's 7 months old and only had homemade food. I'm very proud of that. Still easy, in my opinion.

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