Sunday, May 15, 2011

Homemade Baby Food

Ok, so I posted about making my own baby food a while ago and I just thought I'd give a little update and some tidbits I've learned along the way.

First off, yes, I'm still going strong at this whole homemade baby food thing! A few people have asked if it really saves money, and while I have actually sat down and done a numbers crunch, I do believe it saves some money... just not sure how much. A one ounce can of baby food is what, $0.75? Well I can make almost 20 ounces of green beans from one frozen bag, which is like a buck, maybe! It just all depends on what food you're talking about. For instance, plums, I can only get like one ounce per plum. Plums are like $0.50 a piece, so I'm still saving money, but not as much compared to green beans/peas.

One of the greatest benefits is how convenient it is. I made tons of food over two months ago and still have over two weeks of food left. It's hard for you to wrap your mind around how awesome that is, huh? Plus it's all perfectly portioned so I know exactly how much food I'm feeding her since every cube is roughly one ounce of food. Oh, and it's pretty cool to talk to other people about making baby food and I've always received positive comments which makes me puff out my chest a little bit I must admit :) It's just neat to me that I'm able to do this for her, I know it's so minuscule in the grand scheme of things but hey, I think it's pretty awesome!

Now on to my tips:
1. I don't do avocados. I know nothing about them so I was afraid they'd be too ripe or not ripe enough. Plus those suckers are expensive! I've never seen jarred avocados, so I figured with all the other foods I was making, she wasn't missing much!
2. I don't puree two different foods. The website I use says to mix like bananas and apples to puree them to a mixture. Well I didn't want 100 different baggies of food in my freezer so I just make all the food separate and then take a cube of apples and a cube of bananas, thaw them together and serve. Much easier in my opinion.
3. When introducing new foods I make a calendar. That way I know what foods have been introduced for three days and what foods we have left. Plus it's so much easier to look at a food schedule than to stand at my freezer for 5 minutes trying to figure out what to feed her.
4. I do use frozen foods. Right now we're doing frozen peas and green beans. The work that would take to use fresh is something I don't have time for (I mean it's hard enough to find time to make the food lol), plus frozen is the next best option.
5. With my next kid I'm not introducing green beans until 6 months. You can't get a smooth texture unless you use a strainer (and even then I'm not sure how smooth you can get them). Kimber didn't really care for green beans at first because it was rather chunky compared to the other foods you are introducing at that age. Once she had eaten food for a while it's a lot easier for her to chow down on some beans!
6. We just introduced turkey, and it's needs to be like 2:1 ratio with protein and another food they've already had. The texture is funky to them and I'm thinking she doesn't dig the taste because she gags. So far 2 bananas to 1 turkey has worked best for us.
7. If one of your purees is thick, it's ok, just mix it with water when you microwave it OR do what I do and mix it with a fruit or veggie that is watery. For instance, sweet potatoes are kind of thick so we mix it with squash so it balances out perfectly. The squash is kind of thin for her now since she's been eating for a while but the sweet potatoes are pretty thick, together they are the perfect little mixture.
8. Cook and/or cut food one day and puree the next. This is only something I just started doing and cannot believe I didn't think of it before. If you have a baby that doesn't mind momma being occupied then this might not be a tip for you, but my child wants to play and who am I to take play time and turn it into cooking time? The proteins I cooked and cut up one night and then pureed them the next. It's much easier than trying to get it all done in one night. Currently I've got pears and sweet potatoes in my fridge that are ready for the food processor.

I'm sure I'll have more tips and mostly I wanted to write them down for me, for future children. What I plan on doing next it sitting down and figuring out how much food yields how much baby food, as it's pretty much been trial and error so far!

And since I've made like 3 posts without pictures I feel like I should add a pointless picture to this post:
Who me???

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