This guide is a crash course in making your own baby food. Learn which ingredients are best for your baby and get five recipes for making baby food at home.
If you’re like most new parents, you want the absolute best for your baby. In a world full of genetically modified produce and artificial sweeteners, it’s easy to see why you would want to learn to make your own baby food. No doubt you are wondering which ingredients are safe for your baby, which fruits and vegetables support healthy development, and which ingredients you should definitely avoid.
What Not to Use
Babies don’t have the fully developed digestive systems that adults do. Because of that, you will want to avoid certain ingredients until your baby is at least a year old.
Honey, cow’s milk, fruit juices, and refined grains like pasta or white bread are all best avoided until your little one is a bit older.
Best Ingredients for Baby
Babies don’t have very large stomachs, so whatever you prepare, one or two tablespoons of food will likely be enough for your little one. If possible, try to get wild harvested, farm-grown or organic ingredients as they are usually harvested at the height of freshness and therefore contain more vitamins and nutrients. Some of the best ingredients for babies under a year old are: apples, strawberries, bananas, grapes, peaches, spinach, potatoes, snap peas, carrots, sweet potatoes, apricots, cucumbers, and celery.
Five Fool-Proof DIY Baby Food Recipes
- 1/4 cup brown rice flour
- 1 cup water
Slowly add rice flour to boiling water while stirring constantly. Once you have reached a thin consistency, turn heat down to simmer and cook for 10 minutes. Serve warm, not hot.
- 1 ripe banana
- 10 ripe blueberries
Using a fork, mash bananas and blueberries together into a loose mush. For younger babies, you can blend this mixture in a blender or food processor until smooth. Babies over six months will likely enjoy a little texture!
- 1/2 lb raw spinach, cleaned
- 1/8 tsp minced garlic
- 1/2 lb sweet potato, raw, peeled, cut into cubes
- 1 1/2 cup water
Boil sweet potato in water until tender, about 25 to 40 minutes. Drain 1/2 the remaining water, then add spinach and garlic. Simmer until spinach is done, about 10 more minutes. Puree everything in a blender or food processor. Serve at room temperature.
- 6 ripe apples, sliced and cored
- 1/2 cup water
Steam apples until tender, about 7 minutes. Puree until applesauce reaches desired consistency. Serve warm or cooled.
- 1 avocado, peeled and pitted.
Mash avocado flesh with fork until smooth. Serve immediately.
With these simple, fool-proof recipes you don’t have to be Martha Stewart to make baby food from scratch. As your comfort level and your baby’s palate expand, try experimenting with other child-safe fruits and vegetables to see what your infant prefers. Before you know it, you will become an expert at making your own baby food!
Related Content: The Role of Protein During Pregnancy
Most women recognize that the foods they eat play a huge part in helping their child to grow in the uterus. The quality and composition of foods eaten during pregnancy is just as important as the amount of food eaten. Protein is particularly useful because it helps to form new cells and build the body of the fetus.