Homemade baby food is all the rage. There are so many different products out there to use for making delicious baby mush. You’ve got the Baby Bullet, the Baby Breeza, the Babymoov, the Beaba Babycook and God only knows what else. These machines claim to help you save time by cooking food and pureeing it using one machine. Anything that saves time is invaluable, however, the price on some of these things says that they should also be laying golden eggs and cooking me a gourmet non mush meal with the touch of a button.
In the peak of my baby food making frenzy, I was able to find a few products that allowed me to make awesome meals for Savanna without breaking the bank. If you’re not looking to buy a fancy machine, you can still make your own food quick and cheap! Below you will find a list of MVPS of the babyfood making game.
The Immersion Blender. Ok, full disclosure, I actually purchased a Baby Bullet when I started making my own food. My mom talked me into it and I really wanted those cute little containers to store the food in. I came to realize, it definitely wasn’t worth the purchase. It basically functions the same as any other blender or a Nutribullet. The only difference is that the small blender cup does come in handy for making small portions. The containers are useful, but you can’t really freeze them and as baby gets bigger that is definitely not going to be enough food. Mine did come with a freezer tray but that always popped off in the freezer causing what I had made to get freezer burned.
At the time, we were living with my parents. My mom had bought my dad an immersion blender for Christmas. When I started to make bigger batches of food I decided to try this out instead of the blender. One use and I was in love. This thing pureed everything to a perfect consistency super fast. I could dump all of the food in a bowl and just blend it up all at once rather than small batches. It blends thicker items like oatmeal beautifully. You can also control how smooth or lumpy you want it to be for when baby starts getting more teeth. I decided to eventually buy my own and I use it nearly everyday. I found it for $30 in Costco. You can find pricier ones out there, but I don’t see the need for it. This machine has paid for itself and works like a beast.
You can find the Cuisinart Immersion Blender I got here.
The Steamer Basket. This is the simplest gadget that you most likely already have in your cabinet. Ok, I’m going to admit another embarrassing purchase. I actually got the Baby Bullet Steamer (with a gift card, don’t worry). This was not worth it. It cost about $30.00 and you are limited to how much you can cook at once. By using a steamer basket I was able to cook more food at once. Invest in 2 or 3 of these guys and you will practically grow a cape on your back feeling like you have just conquered the world buy cooking multiple batches of food at once. Again, these range in price depending on what you are looking for but I found this one for $4.84 on HomeDepot’s (random) website!
The Infantino Squeeze Station. Like I mentioned earlier, at around 6 months babies start to eat more solid foods and you can just whip up some bananas and call it a day anymore. I was working full time and decided I could not spend every evening over a blender. I wanted to make as much food as I could at once, be able to freeze it, and easily serve it to Savanna. She would go to a babysitter’s house a few days a week, so something that was easy to transport and pack was also a plus. That’s when and Angel came down from heaven and handed me the Infantino Squeeze Station. This cooky looking contraption allows you to squeeze meals into little pouches just like the ones you find in stores. They can be frozen and then quickly defrosted in warm water. Just what I was looking for!
It will run you about $20 at Target to get the squeeze station which comes with 10 bags. A box of 50 4oz pouches costs $16.95 on Amazon. You can also find reusable pouches like these that open from the bottom so that you can fill them. I’m sure these are great and will save you, but I wanted to be able to make as much food as I can at a time. In retrospect, it probably would have been cheaper to just buy a few boxes of reusables, but I’m not sure how easy they are to clean. After buying the squeeze station, pouches and food, the cost is about the same compared to a packet of organic baby food. However, you’ll only have to run to your freezer when your running low on your ready to eat packs instead of the grocery store.
It does take a bit of time and patience to get all of your food into the pouches. It also isn’t the cleanest activity. My kitchen would also look like a unicorn threw up on my counter tops after but that’s not too unusual for me. The squeeze station also comes with caps to seal your bags, but you get less caps that bags in the box. Be sure to save your caps. I ended up having a ton extra after getting into the habit of throwing them into a container after Savanna finished a packet.
Having your own food in pouches is convenient, healthy and makes you feel like you are mom of the year now that you have made a months supply of baby food. I would usually take one Sunday out of the month and spend 2 hours or so cooking and squeezing as much as I could. I kept the combinations simple which made Savanna more likely to like it and saved me time. I gave this food to Savanna as much as I could, but we definitely found ready made food useful. Like when we would go out to restaurants or be stuck in traffic and could grab that emergency packet out of the diaper bag. If you have decided you want to make your own food find the supplies and system that works best for you. Sometimes it takes a little trial and error. Before you know it, you will have become a baby food making machine yourself!