I didn’t plan on making my own baby food.
In fact, I had zero interest in going the homemade route, at least during my twins’ introduction to solids stage. I wanted mealtime prep to be simple and as hassle free as my time and budget could allow. Basically, I wanted to buy some prepackaged jars and pouches and be on my merry way.
So, I did just that.
Our doctor recommended that we introduce one food every four days or so to watch for allergies and reactions, which completely limited my options because most jars and pouches were combinations of foods even I don’t eat on a regular basis.
The first week went well. Nay; it went awesomely. We started with a jar of sweet potatoes and we did it with the grandparents around, filming every second of the twins’ hilarious reactions to their first solids. They didn’t love it, but they didn’t hate it either. They didn’t eat a lot, but, I guess, they didn’t need to. We were just getting started with tastes and learning to swallow textures and consistencies other than breast milk.
The second week was a little tougher. We introduced carrots this time, and they tasted surprisingly a lot like the sweet potatoes. We had less cute reactions and more hesitation eating this orange mush, so it was already less fun on our end.
The third week downright sucked. By this time, we had introduced green beans and butternut squash, both of which tasted… exactly like the sweet potatoes, which is really to say that the sweet potatoes didn’t taste like anything at all.
I went back to the store to assess my “flavour” choices, but all I saw was like a baby food Matrix: orange mush, brown mush, green mush. Once in a while it was a super-exotic-fruits-and-obscure-grains mush. (Honestly, who feeds goji berries to a 6-month-old??)
Finally, I found a pouch of plain apple. I flipped it over to check the ingredients listing… there were four ingredients. Four. I grabbed a jar of peas; the label told me that there was no guarantee these mushy green peas didn’t also include soy, gluten, eggs, dairy or wheat.
I’m sorry, what? They are PEAS. Not a pea strudel, not a pea soufflé. I mean, I get the cautionary labelling to a point, but come on.
So, I’m dealing with baby food options that are:
Enough with that nonsense. I’m making my own.
Turns out, homemade baby food isn’t as stressful to make as I thought. All you really need is some fresh veggies, a hand blender, food-grade storage containers, and an hour of uninterrupted time. The last one is 100% the hardest part. I like using the Braun MultiQuick 5 Baby Hand Blender because it has two different blending attachments that blend so much better than your typical baby blender. It’s powerful enough to blend through many different ingredients but not as loud as a chainsaw – important when you’re in a home with sleeping babies!
One night I set aside an hour after the babies went to bed and gathered up a few sweet potatoes and carrots, some peas, pears, and apple. Then I followed the same steps for each food:
Making my own food turned out to be easier than I thought if I schedule in the time once a week. It’s also cheaper, more nutritious using the whole foods, and easier to provide the quantities of food that I need for the twins’ ravenous appetites. And it was easier than expected - the Braun POWERBell Plus technology and extra milling blade finely chops foods - evenly blending them from cooked pieces to smooth purees, and the SplashControl means cleanup is a quick rinse and swish with hot soapy water. Plus, the EasyClick attachments make it a snap to satisfy a growing baby’s developing taste for new flavors and textures.
I love using the Braun MultiQuick 5 Baby Hand Blender because it blends the food down into the beaker versus upwards like standard baby blenders; where a lot of food gets stuck or not chopped to the same consistency. I can go back and forth between the attachments in two seconds, and the clean-up is basically non-existent.
So, fellow moms, don’t be scared of homemade baby food. Go forth, and blend your hearts out!