There is a myth out there that mothers who make their own baby food are supermoms. While it might be to the benefit of my reputation to propagate that myth, the real truth is that making your own baby food is easy, inexpensive, and could actually save you a ton of time overall.Don't Overlook All That is Mashable!
To start, there are these amazing foods for baby that you just need to mush with a fork. So, with your pediatrician’s ok, you can ignore the packet in the grocery store that contains some obscure combination of basil, mint, peaches, rutabagas, and plum in 3.3 oz. liquid form, and opt for a ripe banana. A mashed banana alone will give your baby slow released sugars and potassium. If you want to go crazy, try an avocado for vitamin E and monounsaturated fat. Up the ante again with an old papaya for papain, beta carotene, and Vitamin C. You get the idea.
The great thing about this mushed-up-with-a-fork food idea is that it can coexist with any other food philosophy you have. Except, of course, if your philosophy is that you shouldn’t mash anything. For the rest of us, here's a great list of easy mashable meals we love from the folks at One Crazy House. While you're there, you'll find plenty of other brilliant parenting hacks.
Transitioning to "Purées" without the Blender
Once you have explored all that is raw and mashable, you'll move onto foods that are mashable when cooked. Here again, this can be a really simple and inexpensive endeavor. These foods can also be puréed, and more power to you if you want to break out the blender, but it's really not necessary. Here’s a go to from our family:
Baby Butternut Squash
- 2 peeled, halved, and seeded butternut squashes
- 2 TBS butter
Step 1: Brush the squash halves with butter
Step 2: Roast the squash at 350° for 1.5 hours
Step 3: Let the squash cool, and scoop out into mason jars
Once we have a batch of "puréed" squash, we divide it up into the 4 oz mason jars that double as our baby bottles. We put a couple in the refrigerator, and a few in the freezer.
We serve the squash alone, or with our other mushed-with-a-fork specialties. Squash is a great jumping off point because its mildness lends itself easily to pairings with other fruits and vegetables like apples, pears, and peas. Just a couple can be the base of baby’s meals for days.