Whether you’re following an organic diet, hoping to stray from popular brands and focus on more natural ingredients, or are sick and tired of supermarket advertisements highlighting sugar and empty calories, for some reason or another, you’ve been called to create your own healthy food for your baby. And while this may feel overwhelming at first, it doesn’t have to be.
Here are some tips to help you safely and easily create delicious food for your little one.
1. Prioritize Sanitation
When you’re making your own baby food, sanitation must come first and foremost. If things are not sterile, including your hands, containers, packaging, countertops, utensils, etc., you will risk getting your baby sick.
Before you start, wipe down countertops and surfaces with a bleach-free, natural cleanser. You’ll also want to wash containers and then re-rinse with warm water to remove any soap residue. And, of course, before you handle any food directly, be sure that your hands are clean as well.
2. Cook Foods Thoroughly
Depending on what type of baby food you’re making, it’s important to think about cook times and how long each item will need to be considered thoroughly cooked, steamed, warmed, etc. When you are preparing meat, this is especially important.
Make use of slow cookers and pressure cookers whenever possible to make your meats tender. You can also read up on the safety standards in the baby food industry to make sure that you are on the right path.
3. Preserve Your Baby Food
It is always better to make too much than too little food for your baby, especially because their appetite shifts from one day to the next! So, whenever you can, prepare food in bulk so that you have excess. When you make large batches of food you can freeze it in an ice cube tray so that you have small portion sizes. You can also use a ‘plopping’ technique (where you ‘plop’ different sizes of food onto baking sheets) and then transfer these ‘plops’ to the freezer.
Of course, you have to serve fresh baby food within a reasonable time to maintain freshness. However, note that if you can’t freeze baby food for too long, either, because this will remove nutrients as well.
4. Have Fun Making Your Own Baby Food
Making your own baby food can be a tremendous adventure! However, you need to do a lot of research so that you know exactly how to prepare food for your baby. There are different food groups that are recommended to be introduced at certain times; there are also potential allergies or reactions to consider. So, it may be best to introduce new foods one at a time, too.
The most important thing is that you research and ensure your baby is getting the proper nutrients from the food you are creating for them! Oh, and have fun while creating, of course!