Thursday, July 8, 2010

Making your own babyfood--is it for you?

I tell you, this one lady's smugness just gives me all kinds of fuel for blog entries lately.

"It's a lot healthier, it doesn't get that processed sit on the shelf for three years taste"

First off, let me say that Mimi ate pre-made store-bought babyfood and she is still alive today!

So making you own babyfood. My opinions, suggestions, and pros and cons.

So did I make my own babyfood for Mimicans???
--you bet....90% of the time yes.
I made my own food because is was cheaper, seemed fresher and kept me busy while I was staying at home full time.  It was also kind of fun, mixing and matching to make unique flavors for Mimi to try.  Her favorite was apple/squash or mango/squash.

Without a doubt making your own babyfood, organic or not organic, is cheaper than buying pre-made babyfood.  For example, you can buy a small bag of organic carrots for $1.69 at my local grocery store--this small bag steamed and pureed with a small amount of water will make over 30 1oz servings(icecubes), which the small baby food jars are 2.5 oz.  So for under $2, you can have 12 jars of organic baby carrots, which sell for 50 cents a piece at our local grocery store (Earth's Best Organic 2.5 oz jars).  As far as organic foods go i did find that is was cheaper to buy organic prunes pre-made due to the high cost of organic prunes in the store.  

The foods I made the most were organic peas, organic carrots, organic apples, organic squash, sweet potato, bananans, green beans, blueberries, mango, and organic pears.  When she got a little older I mixed in oatmeal instead of rice cereal, due to her constipation issues.  We slowly transitioned into solids and table foods and now she eats what we eat.

So did Mimi have store bought food?
--Yes on several occasions.  Store bought food was convenient for two different situations for me.  My daycare does provide food, but no organic foods.  So when the Earth's best foods went on sale, I would stock up and take them to the daycare.  So Mimi ate those two days a week from about 5-7 months.  Other than that, she ate the jarred stuff when we were travelling for more than 3 days, or if we found ourselves unprepared and had to stop in a grocery store while out and get her some food.

Preparing and serving your own baby food is SUPER easy.  Basically, peal and steam the foods, anywhere from 7-15 minutes depending on the food, then puree them with water, breastmilk or formula. I poured mine in icecube trays, froze overnight, and popped them into a freezer bag.  Label the bag with the food type and date.  Foods stored in a conventional freezer will last 3 months.  Take 1 or 3 cubes and put in a microwave safe bowl (I prefer glass) and microwave for 20-30 seconds on high.  You can mix in cereal (rice or oat) to make it a thicker consistency, or leave it plain.  Voila--home-cooked, cheap and tastes so fresh!

I did notice that foods I made myself were a lot more flavorful (to my taste buds atleast) and brighter in color than the jarred ones--especially peas.  But to tell you the truth, Mimi showed no preference.  So there you go.

Pros--cheap, fresh, fun
Cons--prep time, storage space, not always convenient on the go


Jess Craig said...

i love the jars you've used...

and, i don't make wyatt's food. well, not pureed stuff at least. i just give him random things. he get's earth's best, or even gerber... actually, if you read the labels of some of the baby foods, even the gerber stuff was organic. not all of it, but a lot of it. and a lot of it had no preservatives either... but whatever.

laurapile said...

Thanks for sharing, we are coming up on this stage soon so it is interesting to hear from someone who has actually made their own food. I am going to make my own but like you I am not against stor bought stuff either.