Adventures in Homemade Baby Food Making
Bananas and Sweet Potatoes
The girls hit six months old at the end of July. For us, this meant starting SOLIDS!! I swear it feels like I've been waiting years for this day. Pushy relatives hoped we'd start solids much sooner and wondered allowed if our girls were eating enough. GRRRR. Being my stubborn self, this motivated me to wait until they were exactly six months to start solids.
Side note: EXCLUSIVE consumption of breast milk is awesome for your babies until as late as 9 months of age. The practice of starting solids at 6 months is solely to introduce the idea; not for nutritional value.
I digress... After much research, we decided to skip the rice cereal and go straight to solid food (fruits and veggies). This decision was made based on the fact that rice cereal offers no health benefits and is usually just a 'filler' food. Ain't nobody got time for that! In an attempt to hype up my husband, I asked him what he wanted their first solids to be. He chose bananas.
Another side note: Most experts say to introduce vegetables before fruits but I am picking my battles and I don't think the girls are suffering too much for this oversight.
Bananas are simple enough. You mash, mix in some breast milk (or formula, as the case may be), and serve. One of my girls loved it... the other did what we like to call the 'full body shudder.' 1 out of 2 ain't bad!
A few days later, it was time to try out the next food. I carefully planned a full month's worth of offerings to introduce a healthy balance of fruits and vegetables, then meats and legumes. See bottom of post for sample calendar. (yes... I'm super type-A)
Food #2 was a veggie: sweet potatoes. Considering this was my first real adventure in baby food making, I'll give myself a B+. There are things I'll do differently in the future, but it went okay. To begin, I cooked the sweet potato on the stove until soft (in the future, I'll cook a little longer). Once done, I peeled off the skin (surprisingly very easy to do!), cut into cubes, and throw into the food processor. Pulse the potatoes until fully 'processed.' Adding liquids will help with this process. If using breast milk, you may want to wait until the potatoes have cooled a bit, so as not to disrupt the makeup of the breast milk.
Tip: Breast milk will keep in the fridge for up to five days. Here are some options:
- Use up whatever baby food you've premixed with the breast milk in five days.
- Immediately freeze anything you won't use.
- Wait to incorporate any breast milk until you're ready to serve the baby food to your infant (if possible.)
This is our first month of solids - feel free to use and adapt this schedule.
Pureed sweet potato
Pureed black beans