Now, before you get all, "oh, she thinks she so awesome and green and she should just get off her stupid high horse," hear me out. (probably you weren't thinking that but I have an undiagnosed problem with paranoia...just ask Billy) I do this for a variety of reasons and they don't all have to with being high and mighty. But I will say this: I do think its healthier. But only marginally so. I don't think that jarred baby food is bad for babies or that Gerber is evil - I have plenty of their onesies. I just think "homemade" is a tad better.
Another reason I do this is because I like cooking. I enjoy being in the kitchen and smelling the smells and mixing the concoctions. It's a like a little hobby for me. And since having the babies, I haven't cooked grown-up food as much as I would like so this is one way of getting me back into the swing of things. It's also nice to know that I don't have to buy baby food separate from grown-up food. We eat bananas, so do the babies. We eat avocados, so do the babies. We eat brown rice, so do the babies. And eventually, I will be cooking real meals for them anyway so I figure, why not start now!
Also, I have a sneaking suspicion that homemade food tastes better. Again, maybe only marginally so. But still, I like that I can select the freshest fruits and veggies and know that they will taste their best. I can select the variety of apples that they like best and have them try different kinds. I can even make fruits and veggies that they don't sell in baby food jars. Mango-avocado is a delicious combo! I know, because I finished Collette's when she got full. I might try that spread on my next burrito.
So, ya - those are my main reasons. Oh ya, and I can't stand the thought of all those baby food jars going in the trash. But then again, they can probably be recycled...whatevs.
And to be honest, it doesn't take up a lot of time or effort. If you have the time (and some people flat out don't) and you decide this is what you'd like to do with it, great! If you'd rather have a social life, that's probably better. But for the anti-social, blender-weilding:
- Buy enough of any one fruit or veggie to fill at least one ice cube tray. My trays hold about 20-25oz.
- Go to http://www.wholesomebabyfood.com/ to get the preparation instructions. This website is my baby food bible. Has all the nutrient info, too, as well as fun *recipes* for all different ages/stages.
- After food is cooked/peeled/whatever, put it in your blender or food processor. (I use a regular old blender that I had in hopes of making adult frozen beverages. Oh well.) I use my Puree setting for most foods but sometimes need a higher one (Liquefy!) to get the job done.
- If you like, save some puree in the fridge for the next 2 days. Otherwise, pour everything in the ice cube tray, put some plastic wrap over the top and lay it flat in the freezer.
- In the morning, grab a freezer bag, label it with the date and the food, and pop the cubes in. If they stick, just run some warm water over the bottom - that should do the trick.
To date, the twins have tried apples, avocados, bananas, green beans, peaches, prunes, pears, mango, oatmeal, brown rice, sweet potato, butternut squash, and peas. We have done all sorts of combos and the only thing they really dislike is green beans all alone. Mix it with some sweet potato and down the hatch it goes. Papaya is next - I'm just waiting for the one I bought to ripen!
(The fruits of my labor - so cute and colorful! See, I told you it's fun. They eat about 2.5 cubes each at a meal, although I think we can bump it up to 3 - these babies LOVE their food!)
Our only issue with feeding is that the babies kinda hate their high chairs. I have no idea why. They are adjustable and soft but they just don't like them. I think once they can sit on their own, they will like the idea of sitting in a chair like that for "extended" periods. Right now, I pretty much have to put food in their mouths immediately after plopping them in. And they don't last long in their chairs after the meal has ended which makes clean up a challenge. But as with all things baby related, this too shall pass.