How to Make Baby Food

how to make baby foodBy Stacy Whitman

Learning how to make baby food can be surprisingly easy and far less expensive than buying commercial varieties. The only special tools you’ll need are a strainer and either a blender, food processor, food mill or baby-food grinder to purée soft-cooked foods. To prepare fresh fruits and vegetables, start by scrubbing and removing all seeds or pits. Some foods, like ripe bananas, need not be cooked, but firmer choices must be steamed, boiled or roasted until soft.

To make baby food, once puréed, foods can be placed in ice cube trays and frozen. Transfer frozen cubes to a freezer bag or container labeled with the date, and keep them in the freezer for up to a month. To serve the solid food, thaw cubes overnight in the refrigerator, over low heat in a saucepan or in the microwave for 1 to 2 minutes. If heating purée, be sure to stir it thoroughly to avoid hot spots, and allow it to cool so that when you hold it against your own lip, it feels only slightly warm before you offer it to your baby.

Click through for a list of the best first foods for baby with preparation instructions from Eileen Behan, RD, author of The Baby Food Bible. Plus, get more yummy ideas for homemade baby food.