Homemade Baby Food
Homemade baby food is a satisfying, low-cost, nutritious option for those who have the time and inclination to peel, cut, steam, and puree. Many parents start making their own baby food because the color or taste of commercial baby food can be unappetizing. Commercially prepared baby food often contains varying amounts of water, starch, and sugar that change the color and taste of the baby food. Preparing homemade baby food ensures you know what, and how much of each ingredient, is in your baby's food.
In all reality, homemade baby food does not take much time to prepare. An hour in the kitchen can yield a three week supply of baby food, especially in the early stages of feeding. It is much less expensive than commercially prepared baby food, looks better, and tastes better. When you prepare homemade sweet potato baby food, your baby food looks and tastes like sweet potato – the only thing you add is just enough water to puree the vegetable and that's it! There is no need to add starch, sugar, or other additives, which darken the puree.
If you want to make your own baby food, all you need is a pot to steam in and a food processor or food mill to grind and puree your baby food. Take extra care when preparing homemade baby food. Babies are more vulnerable to germs because their digestive systems are not ready to destroy food-borne bacteria. Always wash your hands, produce, utensils, and storage containers thoroughly.
Most parents prepare three to four weeks of baby food at a time for the sake of convenience. You can store one to three servings in an air-tight container in your refrigerator for up to three days, but the remainder must be frozen.
A very handy way to freeze baby food is to pour it in ice cube trays. When you are ready to feed your homemade baby food to your baby, pull a cube out of the freezer and thaw. You can thaw one to three cubes in the refrigerator or heat in a small dish set in a warm pan of water if you need it right away.
It is not recommended to use microwaves to defrost or heat baby food as microwaves can heat unevenly and create hot spots in the food. If you use a microwave, do not overheat. Always let the food sit for a minute before serving, and always stir thoroughly to dissipate any hot spots before feeding your baby.