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Baby food basics

Learn to make your own

November 1, 2016
Mirror Moms

By Lauren Kudlawiec

For Mirror Moms

From pregnancy smoothies, to mom-friendly oatmeal, my culinary experimentation now revolves around quick meals for my husband and I.

More recently, I've ventured into the world of homemade baby food. At around 5 months, my son Gavin started to grab items off my plate and rip finger foods right out of my hand. I decided it was time to introduce him to some real foods.

Upon advisement from Gavin's pediatrician, we started with soupy oatmeal and then tried green and orange vegetables. In accordance with common standards on food introduction, we waited three to four days between each food to watch for allergic reactions.

Then, we ventured to fruits of all kinds, which are still his favorite. Simple, unseasoned meat and egg purees came next and then I started making combinations of the foods he tried already.

Some foods, like green beans and applesauce, were welcomed with excitement, while others were met with refusal and anger.

I offered each food multiple times, as acceptance for certain tastes and textures develop over time. For example, Gavin detested avocado when I first introduced it, but, after combining it with other vegetables, and then offering it again about a month later, it became one of his favorite foods.

My friend Jessica Burlingame of Altoona also makes a variety of foods for her little boy. She suggested that I use ice cube trays to freeze excess food to serve later.

The sections in a standard ice cube tray measure to roughly 1 ounce, which makes it convenient for portioning food. After the food-cubes are frozen, I pop them into individual freezer bags and label each with the food name and date.

It has been quite a fun adventure seeing my son explore new flavors and texture. I also enjoy knowing every single ingredient contained in the foods I serve him. It has been a huge money saver, as baby food usually costs at least 50 cents per serving. I can buy an entire bag of carrots for $1.50 and make 12 servings for him to eat.

Be sure to consult your baby's doctor before introducing solid foods. They will advise you on when to begin solid foods, as well as what foods are safe to offer at various points throughout the first year of life.

It is important to maintain breast milk or formula as the majority of your baby's diet through the first year. It contains essential nutrients and vitamins that are vital to a baby's growth and development.

Baby Oatmeal

Measure out 2 cups dry quick or old-fashioned oats and grind finely in a food processor.

To serve, mix 1/4 cup oat powder with 1/2 cup boiling water or 1/2 cup warm breast milk/formula. Let sit overnight in the refrigerator.

To serve, add additional breast milk/formula until a soupy consistency is reached. As baby ages, this mixture can be made thicker or mixed with fruit purees.


Peel and slice the entire contents of a 2-pound bag of carrots.

Roast at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and cover with foil to steam and soften.

Process in a food processor with 1 1/4 cup water or breast milk/formula, adding liquid in 1/4 cup amounts and scraping down the sides of the bowl.

Freeze in ice cube trays if desired. When serving, add additional liquid to thin out the puree as needed.

Makes 24 1-ounce cubes.

Green Beans

Blend 1 pound of cooked green beans with 1/2 cup or more of water or breast milk/formula until smooth.

Makes 18 cubes.


Puree 1 pint of fresh blueberries with 1/2 cup breast milk/formula.

Note: this mixture becomes somewhat gelatinous as it sits. Be sure to use a fork to break up large chunks before serving to your baby. Makes 16 cubes.

Avocado Spinach Puree

Blend together 1 whole ripe avocado, 1 cup fresh spinach and 2 ounces breast milk/formula in a blender until smooth. Makes 8 cubes.


Cook 6 beaten eggs in 2 teaspoons olive oil.

Let cool and then add to a blender.

Puree with 3 ounces breast milk/formula and then add to cube tray.

Before serving, add additional breast milk or formula to thin out the mixture.

Makes 16 cubes.



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