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Homemade and Natural Baby Food Recipes! {Plus Book Giveaway!}

Posted Jan 12 2012 1:24pm

I know so many of you have babies, and want to make your own baby food, so your kids can have the 9781440528996cvr.indd freshest and healthiest food possible! That is why I’m so glad to have connected with Tamika! Tamika L. Gardner began crafting homemade baby food when her daughter was born in 2006. She created SimplyBabyFoodRecipes.net to provide resources for moms on a mission to feed their babies the best food.

Tamika just wrote a new cookbook, called 201 Organic Baby Puree’s and has agreed to share one of the recipes here!  I’ve also asked Tamika a few questions as I figured she had some great advice to offer!

For babies 9 months and older
This charming dessert purée offers a dose of vitamin C and lycopene, which protects cells from damage.
Yield 6–8 servings

  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 5 small peaches, peeled,
  • pitted, and chopped

1. Wash raspberries and drain, but do not dry.
2. Transfer moist raspberries and chopped peaches to a blender and purée until smooth
3. Pass purée through a fine-meshed sieve or strainer to remove raspberry seeds.
4. Freeze extra portions for up to eight weekssummertime_peach_raspberry

 

Tamika’s interview:

Do you have kids? How old are they? I have a daughter, 5, and a son, 4

Why did you start to make homemade baby food?  I started out breastfeeding, the natural and healthier way of feeding infants, and I wanted to stay on the natural path. The thought of purchasing commercial baby food as a primary feeding method was not appealing to me, at all! Initially, I reluctantly bought a few jars because I didn’t know any better. However, I noticed I was over-buying because I would purchase fresh bananas, sweet potatoes and frozen veggies and would purchase the same thing in the jar for my baby. I’m extremely thrifty so I new wouldn’t keep that up for long!

I can recall my first experience at the dinner table with my husband and new daughter, eating a meal I prepared and giving her baby food from a jar. I felt really bad that she wasn’t eating the same meal that we had in a form that she could eat. There was something totally wrong with that picture.

I did a little online research and found a few sites that explained the basics of putting the food in a blender to puree. Then I spoke with my grandmother who told me all she did was “mash up” the food with her hands or with a fork. That was all I needed to know to start my new mission.

I used the jars I purchased as a guide for the consistency of the food and kept them on hand for emergency back up only. I wanted to feel good about feeding both of my children and I knew making my own baby food would offer a more natural experience. I also found that my grocery budget only went up a few more dollars.

Tell us what a “ Puree Party” is, and how we can have one?  I briefly mention having a “Puree Party” in my book as a way to get women together to bond and make healthy purees with a new mom. Some of the objections I hear about making baby purees is that it’s time consuming. I haven’t found that it takes more time than making a normal family dinner, but each family has a different set of circumstances and time constraints.

When women get together to accomplish something (and with the dad’s too!), it creates a positive and healthy experience. So a good way to ensure a stocked freezer of purees is to have some people over to help make them.

Just like a birthday, housewarming or other event, I think everyone should have a Puree Party when the baby turns 6 months as a tradition to celebrate his transition to solids. So I created a few Puree Party printables that are available for free download to have a successful party with all the trimmings and fun. All the details about having a puree party can be found on my website at http://www.simplybabyfoodrecipes.net/p/throw-puree-party.html . I didn’t get to have a Puree Party so if you know someone who’s having one let me know so I can participate!

I have a sister in law with a new baby who wants to know what the best containers for storing and freezing baby food would be? Any advice for her?    Although there are plenty of gadgets and gizmos on the market now, my favorite, tried and true method for storing and freezing baby food is ice cube trays and freezer bags. Containers actually take up a lot more space and you can get a lot more frozen cubes in a freezer bag. Making baby purees should not cost very much, but when you add up all the gadgets you purchased, you can wind up spending a fortune when you don’t have to!

Do you have any tips on introducing new foods to babies?   First and foremost, I would consult the family pediatrician to talk about food allergy risks and your family history, then get assurance to start out on infant cereals around 4 months old. At around 6 months of age, single ingredients can be introduced with about a 4 day window of introducing the next food, just to be able to pinpoint any allergic reactions. Consistently offer a variety of fruits and vegetables, suitable for her age at regular intervals.

I don’t recommend feeding bottles, where food is sucked out, because it doesn’t teach the child to eat from a spoon, and usually parents introduce solids too early – which can cause other issues.

What age can we start feeding our babies, baby food?  4 months old is a good age to start out on rice cereal. However, babies can hold out until about 6 months old, since breast milk or formula should be their primary source until that time.

What are the first foods babies should be eating?  Primarily fruit and vegetables. Start off with bananas, avocado, apples, pears, peas, sweet potatoes, green beans, and squash to name a few.

What do you like to do for fun?  I enjoy cooking, sewing, graphic design, and playing the games that many people are addicted to on Facebook! I thoroughly enjoy playing with my children and doing creative things with them and for them, such as painting wall murals.

So, check out her website , her Facebook page, and especially her twitter profile , because she’s going to be having a TWITTER PARTY on Sunday night!!

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Tamika and I want to give a book to one Super Healthy Kids reader!!  Simply leave a comment and let us know how old your baby is (or the baby you want this book for) and we’ll pick a lucky random winner on Sunday night.

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