extra credit: make your own baby food.
Ok, so before we get started I’d like to say something: this is a guilt-free zone.
For some of us, making our own baby food fits right in to our schedule (and in my case I’m just too cheap to buy pre-made food). But I realize that for a lot of us it’s just flat out easier to go let the fine folks at Gerber or Earths Best do the work. Whatever works for you. I just happen to be a tightwad.
Anyway, let’s begin.
I’m nearing the end of the baby food phase but typically I’ll chose one night a week and spend 30 minutes or so making everything for the week. Usually I’ll do whatever is in season or on sale – green beans, carrots, zucchini, squash, sweet potatoes, peas, apples, pears, peaches, mangos, etc. I’ll include a step by step guide to making your own food below, and I’ll list out a little handy-dandy guide for steaming/cooking your veggies too.
Make Your Own Baby Food
1. Wash/peel/cut or cube your veggies (or fruit).
2. Steam or cook your veggies/fruit of choice using filtered water until they are soft enough to puree.
3. Using a slotted spoon, toss them into a blender or food processor or fancy-schmancy baby food maker, and add a little of the water you cooked them in. Puree. Add more of the leftover water if necessary and continue pureeing until they reach your desired consistency.
4. Grab a tablespoon and spoon out the cooked veggies/fruit into ice cube trays. Each cube will be approx. 1 oz.
5. Cover the trays in plastic wrap, freeze them, then pop the pureed food out and keep them frozen in a zip lock bag with the date on it.
*If microwaving, please use glass!
Asparagus – 8-10 minutes steamed, 4-6 minutes microwaved
Green Beans – 5-10 minutes steamed, 6-12 minutes microwaved
Carrots – 4-5 minutes steamed, 4-7 minutes microwaved
Peas – 3-5 minutes steamed, 5-7 minutes microwaved
Sweet or Regular Potatoes – 10-12 minutes steamed, 8-10 minutes microwaved
Spinach – 5-6 minutes steamed, 3-4 minutes microwaved
Squash – 5-10 minutes steamed, 3-6 minutes microwaved
Zucchini – 5-1o minutes steamed, 3-6 minutes microwaved
Apples or pears – 10-15 minutes steamed, 5-10 minutes microwaved
For more recipes visit Smitten Kitchen’s Baby food blog.
For a little perspective I’ve seen jars of baby food go for $.39-$.99 per jar (1 serving).
Last week I did a pound of peas and a pound of carrots ($.99 and $.79 for organic at TJ’s) that will last about 7-10 days.