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Safe Baby Food Preparation 101

What can be healthier than fixing baby’s food at home? If you are going that route, you’ll need to learn a few things about how to prepare baby food safely. Let’s start at the beginning and go from there.   Fixing baby food at home has its benefits:

  • More nutritious
  • No preservatives
  • Access to the foods they want to eat readily
  • More economical

There are a few basic food preparation do’s and don’ts to observe while you are getting the hang of things. After a while it will all become second nature.

  • DO clean the area thoroughly before doing any food preparation (countertops, cutting boards, sinks).
  • DO wash your hands in the beginning and between each food that you prepare.
  • DO keep raw meats separate from vegetables and fruits.
  • DO clean all utensils to be used before and between foods (knives, colanders, food processors, bowls, jars and etc.)
  • DO wash all fruits and vegetables before cooking them. Even ones from the grocery store need to be free of all organic matter and as many bacteria as possible.
  • DO remove seeds and skins from fruits and vegetables before cooking them.
  • DON’T let meat thaw on the counter where juices can leak everywhere. Only thaw in the refrigerator.
  • DON’T serve baby any meat that is not “well done.”
  • DON’T leave cooked food out on the counter for more than two hours before refrigeration.
  • DON’T store foods warm. Allow them to cool first so no condensation forms inside the container.

When baby is first learning to eat, keep it simple. Finger foods are going to be the main thing that they crave. You can begin with fruit pieces like bananas, apples, peaches and strawberries. For the apples and peaches, remove the skin first.   You can store cubed fruits in Ziploc bags in the refrigerator for a couple of days. Add a little bit of lemon juice to the apple pieces to keep them from turning brown and yucky. In actuality, most fruits can stay on the counter until you are ready to feed them to baby. It only takes a few minutes to cut them up.   Any vegetable that you give to baby needs to be cooked first. This is not a complete cooking process but just until they are soft. Once the food has cooled, use freezer bags to store extra vegetables for a later time. Date the outside of the bags so you know how long you have kept them. Try to use them up within a month.   When you prepare baby’s food at home, cleanliness is the first order of the day. To keep baby safe, following the information above is a great start. Now, let them enjoy some wholesome, healthy food!