Making homemade baby food couldn’t be easier! Start with vegetables and you’ll gain confidence quickly.
Vegetables are by far my favorite type of homemade baby food. If I’m doing nothing else, I’m pureeing up some veggies for my kids.
Why are they my favorite? Well, they are the easiest to make — at least I think they are. It’s also the place where you can save the most money (I think — I haven’t done the math). A bag of carrots is super cheap and will make a ton of carrot purée to feed your baby.
I also like the versatility that it offers. When was the last time you saw a jar of parsnip or asparagus purée on the shelves of the baby food aisle? Parsnips were one of my daughter’s favorite foods.
I’ve mentioned this before, but one of my favorite things about making my own baby food is that you can control the consistency. The first couple of months, I like to purée the food very smooth. Then, gradually, I leave it a little more chunky and introduce my child to some texture.
This is by no means an exhaustive list of vegetables. I have found that these are my favorites. Do you have any specific vegetables you’d like preparation instructions for?
Carrots or Parsnips:
8-10 carrots or parsnips
yield: depends on size of vegetables as well as size of storage containers. About one large ice-cube tray.
1. Peel vegetables.
2. Wash vegetables.
3. Roughly chop vegetables.
4. Place vegetables in steamer basket in saucepan filled with ~1 inch of water over medium-high to high heat and steam about 15 minutes or until tender.
5. Puree (I prefer the blender or food processor for these vegetables), adding enough of the steaming liquid (or water if you’re doing carrots) to come to a good consistency. I like to err on the thick side because it can always be thinned with breast milk, formula or water.
Peas or Green Beans:
1 bag frozen peas or frozen green beans (use organic if you want)
1. Place peas or beans in steamer basket in saucepan filled with ~1 inch of water over medium-high to high heat and steam about 10 minutes or until tender.
2. Puree (I prefer the blender or food processor for peas and green beans), adding enough of the steaming liquid to come to a good consistency. Again, I like to err on the thick side because it can always be thinned with breast milk, formula or water.
1 large squash (I use butternut)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Wash squash, cut in half lengthwise, clean out seeds, and place cut side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roast for 45 minutes to an hour or until soft.
2. Once cool enough to handle spoon squash out of peeling and into the blender or food mill (I love the food mill for squash!). I fit the food mill with the disc that has the smallest holes for the first time. Next time I might use a disc with slightly larger holes to introduce N to more texture.
2 sweet potatoes
1. Scrub sweet potatoes clean, poke with a fork all over, wrap in foil, and bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for one hour or until tender.
2. Similar to the squash, once cool enough to handle, spoon sweet potatoes out of skin and into the blender or food mill (I prefer the food mill for sweet potatoes as well as squash). Again, I fit the food mill with the disc that has the smallest holes for the first time N tried sweet potatoes to make sure the smoothest texture.
- There are of course countless other vegetables you can prepare for your baby but these are some great starter vegetables for the first few months of solid foods. Pumpkin is also a great one for the beginning and can be prepared the same way as the squash. Wholesome Baby Food has great instructions for a number of different vegetables as well as some creative recipes for combining vegetables with other foods.
- Refer to my overview post for general instructions regarding preparation and storage of homemade baby food.
(spoon not pictured — but might be my favorite item!)
All of these things will make your baby food preparation, as well as feeding, a breeze. I LOVE the spoon — it is perfect for the baby’s tiny mouth, soft and flexible. It is comfortable to hold on to and the travel case makes it perfect for tossing into the diaper bag. The feeding dish is perfect and the grippy bottom will be great with N starts to try and feed himself. It also comes with a great cover. The freezer containers are great for storing the food in the fridge or freezer but also for reheating. The lids have a venting feature that is so helpful. And then the food mill! That’s obviously the cat’s meow. I made applesauce and didn’t have to peel or core the apples! The food mill did all the work. It was great for making a super smooth puree out of the sweet potatoes and squash. It will be used frequently in your kitchen, for baby food or any other purpose! All the stuff is high quality, just like you would expect from OXO and OXO Tot.
Use the widget below to enter the giveaway. It make take a second to appear. Any comments left on Rachel Cooks will be moderated within 24 hours. If the widget does not appear, you can follow the link to enter. Good luck!
Disclaimer: I am not a pediatrician nor a dietitian. Check with your doctor before introducing solids and definitely use this only as a rough guideline. Always trust your gut and do your research.