First Foods Homemade

My little ones have both been major baby food snobs.  Any time I have gotten in a crunch and tried to feed one of them something from a jar, they totally and completely turn their nose up at it.  {They get it from their dad, I swear!}  Which is totally okay.  I love fresh, organic food myself…and I enjoy cooking for the ones I love.  So why would I not create homemade first foods for my sweet babies too?  Yes, it takes some planning.  And yes, it is a little bit of work.  But it is so incredibly worth it in the end – to develop baby’s palate AND to save some cash as well!  And over the course of cooking for two babies, I have learned some tips and tricks along the way.  So learn from my horrible disasters mistakes, and read about what works for me and my family here…

Homemade First Foods

Shop.

It all starts with organic, seasonal produce.  I buy mine at Whole Foods, but I am sure there are local farmer’s markets or food co-ops where you can get produce even cheaper and fresher.  But I’m a working mom of two.  And my life is crazy.  And the local Whole Foods is seriously five minutes from my house. But I digress…

Homemade First Foods - Shop

Plan.

Like I said, it takes a little bit of planning.  I like to find a quiet afternoon {ha!} when I can just cook in bulk and make ounces and ounces of baby food to last us for months on end.  Because while I love making baby food, it is certainly not something I want to do every other day.  Once every other month is much more my style.

Homemade First Foods - Plan

Cook.

Start cooking!  I prepare everything by either baking or steaming it, so it is just a constant flow of food moving from the cutting board to the stove or oven.  Timers are going off, spoons are flying across the kitchen and into the sink, and like today – sometimes I am even snapping pictures and wrangling children all along the way.

Baked Pumpkin

Ingredients ::

  • Pumpkin {make sure you get one for baking and not carving into a jack-o-lantern}
  • Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Directions ::

  1. Cut the pumpkin in half and scoop out all of the seeds.
  2. Drizzle the pumpkin lightly with EVOO and sprinkle with pumpkin pie spice.  What?  Babies like flavor too!
  3. Place the pumpkin halves upside down in a baking pan and bake at 425 degrees for about 45 minutes or until oh-so-tender.  {Sometimes I put water at the bottom of the pan so it kind of steams the pumpkin too.  I forgot this time though…and it turned out beautiful.}
  4. Scrape out the insides of the pumpkin and puree to your baby’s preferred consistency.

Other first foods that are perfect for baking – squash and sweet potatoes!

Homemade First Foods - Pumpkin

Steamed Pears

Ingredients ::

  • 3-4 Pears

Directions ::

  1. Wash the pears thoroughly.
  2. Peel, core, and cut up.  {No spices needed on these guys – they steam up deliciously sweet!}
  3. Boil an inch or two of water at the bottom of a saucepan.  Once the water is at a nice rolling boil, place the pears in a steam basket and carefully drop them in.  Close the lid and steam for just a few minutes until perfectly fork tender.
  4. Transfer the steamed pears to a food processor and puree until silky smooth.

Other first foods that are perfect for steaming – apples and green beans!

Homemade First Foods - Pears

Store.

Honestly, you can put the baby food in just about any little containers you wish from here.  {And I have!}  My current faves are these precious little Baby Bullet containers and these super nifty Infantino squeeze pouches.  Ice cube trays and other divided trays are fun too.  After that, I stick a few in the fridge for the next few days and then find homes for the rest in our deep freeze.  Easy, peasy, lemon squeezy!

Homemade First Foods - Store

Cost.

Remember how I mentioned that making your own baby food saves money?  I just did some very simple math and figured out that each container cost me about $0.75.  Compared to the $1.69 that most organic baby food pouches are running these days, I would say I did pretty good!  And the best part of all, seeing this look on my baby girl’s face.  Priceless.

Homemade First Foods - Cost

Anyone else out there have baby food snobs like me?  Wanna tell me to stop shopping at big box stores and give me advice on farmer’s markets and food co-ops?  I’m all ears…or should I say eyes…

Please Note :: I am in no way, shape, or form an expert on babies.  Just a mom who has two of her own.  Please, please, please consult your pediatrician before starting any type of first foods with your little ones.  THEY are the pros!

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11 Responses to First Foods Homemade

  1. Avatar
    Jessica October 18, 2013 at 10:52 am #

    wholesomebabyfood.com has been my bible for making baby food! I got giddy just typing the words…ha!

    • Avatar
      Kelly D October 18, 2013 at 9:53 pm #

      YES!!! Looove that website!

  2. Avatar
    Jana October 18, 2013 at 1:18 pm #

    The crockpot is great too!! I would make apples, pears, and carrots in the crock pot. So easy to just throw it in there and leave it for several hours. Then dump it in the blender. I added cinnamon/nutmeg/allspice to a lot of stuff. And I also love the wholesomebabyfood.com website. We’ll see if I do homemade with baby #2…I may just buy store bought 🙂 I am impressed that you do it with all you have going on!

    • Avatar
      Kelly D October 18, 2013 at 9:55 pm #

      I never thought to use a crock pot…genius! I need to make apples this weekend, so I will definitely be trying that. Thanks, mama!!

  3. Avatar
    Sarah October 18, 2013 at 4:48 pm #

    Making my own baby food was the one new baby goal I actually stuck with and followed through with completely. I went to the internet a lot and also used wholesomebabyfood.com along with some other sites I’m sure. I made in large amounts and froze the food in ice cube trays. Then I would bag them in snack bags and label them. This way they fit in my freezer and I knew what it was. We also went against the norm and skipped over cereals and went straight to avocados. Baby rice cereal isn’t something I wanted to eat, so I didn’t think my baby girl would want to eat it either. I think researching and playing around with what works best for mommy, baby and the family is the way to go! I’m jealous and wish I had a Whole Foods close by. Sprout is good and will have to work for now.

    • Avatar
      Kelly D October 18, 2013 at 9:58 pm #

      That sounds exactly like what we did with my oldest – skipped cereals, started with avocado, and my freezer was FULL of little food cubes in plastic bags. This time around, I did try brown rice cereal. But Hadley totally refused it. (Guess because it was store bought…ha!) So we moved on to avocado and haven’t looked back since!

  4. Avatar
    Chelsea October 21, 2013 at 9:50 am #

    I am majorly impressed. We haven’t started Jack on food yet, but I seriously need to get on the ball and look into all of this! Thanks for sharing how you’ve made it work for your family.

    • Avatar
      Kelly D October 21, 2013 at 2:31 pm #

      Definitely look into things that he can self feed with too, Chelsea! Hadley loves the silicone feeders filled with bananas or avocados and also the Plum Organics teething wafers. We should set up a lunch date for the two of them! 😉

  5. Avatar
    Roxanne W January 28, 2015 at 11:09 am #

    I make my little guy’s food too! I have to say though that fresh produce is nice, but frozen also works well – it still has the nutrients and you don’t have to worry as much about it going bad. I try to keep frozen peas, broccoli and peaches or mangos on hand.
    I marveled when we first started how much cheaper it was, but now that he’s eating more complex foods and 3 “meals” a day (he’s 9 months) those pouches that I would be buying really add up! So much cheaper to make your own.

    • Avatar
      Kim March 23, 2016 at 8:34 am #

      I second frozen foods– I can get good size bags of organic frozen fruits (mango, strawberry, blueberry etc) from Costco and just thaw, blend, and portion what I need for the week without much trouble at all!

  6. Avatar
    Penny September 2, 2015 at 12:37 pm #

    Or you could peel and slice that pear and give your baby a long stick of fresh food. Or let the baby hold a large piece of that baked squash himself and go at it. Baby food is pretty outdated and unnecessary! My kiddo feasted on steamed green beans and broccoli spears and eggs and avocado chunks from the day he turned 6 months on. He was eating whole apples by 8 months. No cooking needed. We did baby led weaning in the true sense of the word and it was the best. No appliances to clean or little containers to use or freezer space taken up. All fresh and healthy foods including meats and fish. I encourage people to look into it as I find a lot of kids that were on baby food and especially pouches now have texture and feeding issues as toddlers.

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