Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Green Apple Baby Food Basics

What better way to begin this blog than to start with the basics of wholesome baby food. If you have a little one at home between 4-6 months of age and are eager (or at least exploring the idea) to make your own baby food, you've come to the right place! Chances are you also have questions on what foods to introduce first, what kitchen equipment you'll need, storage suggestions and reheating tips. Every recipe should answer the above questions but feel free to leave a comment if you're still unsure or just want to say hi!

Organic vs. Conventional
Simply stated, organic fruits and vegetables are grown without the use of pesticides or synthetic fertilizers. If you have easy access to organic produce and it fits within your budget, it's best to go organic to limit your baby's exposure to unnecessary chemicals. At the very least, if it's not so easy to find organic produce, there are 12 fruits and vegetables known as the "Dirty Dozen" that you should buy organic as they have tested positive for an average of 55 different chemicals!

Essential Equipment

Steamer: You will use a steamer frequently. If you don't already own one, you can buy a nice universal steamer for everyday use, or you can opt to buy a baby food maker, such as a Beaba Babycook. It steams, purees, warms and defrosts all in one. Just keep in mind that you only make purees for such a short period of time (in the grand scheme of things), so your money is probably better spent on a nice steamer for your kitchen.

Food Processor or Blender: If you opt out of the Beaba Babycook, it is essential that you invest in either a food processor or blender. Or if you're like me, I simply cannot choose between them as I use both for so many different things. Trust me, you will too!

Glass Baking Dishes (Pyrex):
These are great for baking rough-skinned vegetables like butternut squash, sweet potato and pumpkin.

Storage & Reheating
The general rule of thumb is 3-4 days in the fridge if opened, 7 days if unopened, and 4-6 weeks in the freezer. Just in case you are wondering, you would only have "unopened" baby food in the fridge if you stored each individual serving in its own little glass jar/container. That was a little too "Martha Stewart" for me, so I just stored it all in one container and removed the amount I needed for each feeding. Also, I did start out buying those cute colorful, flexible storage containers for the freezer, but eventually I realized that I was making food every 3-4 days anyways. Why freeze when you don't have to?


I'm sure you know that those little "micro-waves" going through the food probably isn't the best for our little ones, however, I am also realistic and know that when your baby is hungry, they want food NOW! If you can plan ahead, use low heat on the stove top. If not, take advantage of technology and get that baby some food!

For a complete list of all the products recommended above, click HERE!

1 comment:

  1. Hey Dana! I'm excited to bake up some of your pumpkin bread! I was looking at your disclaimer below and wondering what your 'milk formula' is for baby. My kiddo will be going to that stage shortly and I haven't figured out quite yet what I want to do. Let me know! Thanks! Burnsy