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Jan 3, 2007 08:50 PM

Homemade baby food.

Okay, I was on the General Board asking about the best organic baby food brands, and virtually everyone told me to make my own. Various books and techniques were recommended, but I thought this might be the proper board for homemade baby food recipes, tips etc.

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  1. You can make virtually anything by cooking it and pureeing it in the food processor. My grandaughters had the experience of homemade baby food by a nanny who cooks everything with garlic.LOL.

    1. It's easy. You can control ingredients, organic content, seasoning, salt (or not), sweetening etc. You can also control portion size by freezing in whatever size works for your baby. We used to make several foods at a time, freeze in ice cube trays, pop out and save in freezer bags for later use. Good luck. (Our kids are now 31, 25, 22, and 20)

      1. This site has a lot of info, recipe ideas and sample weekly menus:

        I made a lot of baby food for my daughter and some of it she loved and some of it she didn't. I used ice cube trays to freeze it in portions (each cube is about an ounce), then, once frozen, I popped them into freezer bags. Then, I'd defrost/warm them in the microwave. It was only a wee bit less convenient than opening a jar of commercially made food. I'd buy a few jars of commercially made food to take with us if we were going somewhere (no refridg. necessary until it's opened).

        You may want to spend a little money on a food mill, which would remove skins and make the purees a bit smoother. Two things that doesn't really puree smoothly are green beans and peas.

        Once thing she loved as a baby was fresh avocados, so give that a try. Also, once she started finger foods, edamame was (and still is) a favorite.

        1. cook and puree-easy--veggies and fruits-apple sauce-peas,carrots,turnips,sweet potatoes,good for baby

          1. I'd just like to add that once they get a few teeth, babies don't need pureed food. My neice just turned one (the week before Xmas) and she's been eating "regular" food (diced up small) for months. Her parents steam or roast veggies until they're pretty soft, and cut up fruit, meat and cheese. She likes to chew on baguettes, and she even eats cottage cheese with her hands. It sure makes meal time easier (if a bit messy) if the baby can feed herself, rather than sitting there trying to force a spoon into her mouth!

            I think eating real food and being able to feed herself has helped her develop into quite the little chowhound -- you should have seen her at our December family birthday dinner (three generations of birthdays): she was grabbing radicchio out of my Mom's salad (I think she must have liked the color) and happily stuffing polenta and lasagne (with white truffle oil!) into her mouth.

            4 Replies
            1. re: Ruth Lafler

              Agreed, mine was initially totally disinterested in being spoon fed but started picking up and feeding herself small pieces of fruit, etc, around 8 months. Now at 13 months she eats pretty much everything we eat (in small pieces) with her fingers. Last night that was a whole wheat pasta bake with hot italian sausage and rapini. She will tolerate spoon feeding of yummy things like yogurt, but not of boring purees.

              So basically I found the baby cookbook someone kindly gave us totally useless. Do you know how to cook and then puree food? You're good.

              1. re: julesrules

                Yeah, I think the most useful part of the baby book was ideas about how to introduce new foods and other feeding techniques. Actually, I think the most helpful thing in Super Food was the suggestion that meal time be about eating -- I think too many people try to coax their babies into a good mood at meal times by offering them toys and other stuff, when they should be concentrating on food. Again, letting the baby feed herself as soon as she shows any interest in it makes it more interesting for the baby as well: it becomes an active experience rather than a passive one where they sit and are fed. Of course, babies are all different -- my neice is definitely the kind of baby who picks things up and puts them in her mouth. On the other hand, my housemate's son (born and raised in my house) was much less likely to do that (we baby proofed the cupboards, which turned out to be completely unnecessary, since he never got into things).

                1. re: Ruth Lafler

                  Some babies have stronger gag reflexes and this apparently affects how well they handle solids as well. And I probably shouldn't be so dismissive of baby cookbooks in general, it was The Baby's Table that I really found a useless guide to pureeing.

                  1. re: Ruth Lafler

                    You are so right. Babies put things in their mouths. Better it should be good food. I popped mine in the high chair while I was cooking and put bits of things on the tray. Watching the concentration as they worked to pick it up and get it into their mouths was so funny. Sometimes it went in the ear or on the floor but it amused them as well as getting them to try just about everything. Doing it at their own pace makes them less likely to gag.
                    We pulled the chair up to the dinner table with us too. Monkey see, monkey do. If the adults eat everything, so will a child. Our kids always ate pretty much what we have eaten. Our mealtimes are about food and conversation. No toys, no TV, no answering the telephone.