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Price Comparison on Homemade Baby Food vs Store Bought | Is it worth it?

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Is homemade Baby food worth the price? Homemade Baby Food. How to make baby food. Price comparison. Cost Comparison. Organic Baby Food Recipes. How to make your own baby food. My son and I just had the most amazingly fun week ever! He is now 6 months old which means we are transitioning into solid foods. So exciting! My mission, therefore, became to do a comparison between buying baby food and just making our own. So here is how our adventure started…

I went to Safeway and just drove my cart down every aisle tossing in all they had in Organic foods. There was really no list or plan because I wasn’t sure what I would find in season or really what to buy at all. I didn’t want to set my sights too narrow either. The whole idea is to broaden your baby’s tastes so why not just get everything? I’ll utilize my spice rack (which has been long awaiting a good use) to add flavors. I am not much of a “stick to the recipe” person anyway, I love to add my own twists to every recipe.

Here is what I came home with:

I bought just over $70 worth of groceries that I then had to turn into at least that much baby food. I did use a few other things that I already had:

  1. Water- just from the tap that I ran through my Brita filter
  2. Hummus- I already had it
  3. Spice Rack- Really, how many of us use this enough?
  4. Ice Cube Trays- I bought these at Target. I originally only bought 4 trays and then sent my husband back for more!

Once I got home I put everything out on the counter, took a picture of my haul and then put it all away. I then cleaned and put some veggies in my trusty double decker steamer and started some rice in the rice cooker. Once all that was going I jumped on Pinterest to find some recipes to start with. I did a basic search and really only came up with the common result of “you really can’t go wrong so long as they can’t choke…” Alright, so off I went to be a mad scientist in the kitchen! You can search through some of my findings here on my Parenting Preparation Board


I was actually surprised at how well some turned out and how others just smelled awful….like the spinach… it smelled like fish food.
Like I said above, my son and I had an amazing WEEK of making baby food. It took a lot longer than I expected, but I really enjoyed doing it, so maybe that’s why. I also brought a LOT of groceries home for a first round and I was dedicated to getting them all done.

 


Here is our adventure

The stage is set- Cash (my son) is in his high chair in the kitchen, mom has her Ninja mixer all revved up. I started with the simple purees, and the groceries that were fresh so I could get them done first before they spoiled.

A few problems I experienced right off….

Cash cried at the first blender run because the noise made him jump. How we solved this was just me making a lot of noise and prepping for it then making the noise fun. He was fine from the second blender on.

 

Half of my first round filled all 4 trays I had, which then took about 6 hours to freeze, so I was done for the day…. A lot of excitement cut short. We solved this the next day by sending dad to the store for more trays so we could have a rotating system. Day 1, one recipe, uh….

Day 2

We’re off and rolling strong early. The 4 trays from yesterday were finally frozen. I dug the cubes out and sorted them into gallon freezer bags. Yesterday I was able to finish all the prep work for the vegetables. I ran everything through the steamer and got it all nice and soft for today. I just put it all in glassware storage over night in the fridge. So today I have a buffet of ready to toss in ingredients. Put, more trays to fill!

Day 3

Day 2 and 3 were very, very productive in that I started earlier so I was able to get 2 rounds of 8 trays in and out of the freezer. I was then able to put a third round in before we went to bed. I also started putting the trays in the deep freeze in the garage instead of the house freeze because it is colder and freezes them faster. The other thing I did on day one while waiting on the freezer was to look up alternate baby food storage strategies other than the cube/tray method. I ran across these on a fellow blogger’s post: Yummi Pouches. They are refillable, reusable bags that can freeze! Holy cow! That is right up my alley! So I bought 12 and they were here by Day 4! I also used their website to glean a few recipes I liked and what to fill the pouches with.

Day 4

The great thing about using my Ninja is that the 3 smoothie individual sized cups are the PERFECT amount for one tray. Plus, with the sippy lids they make for an easy pour. I was able to pre-fill and even blend those while the trays were freezing and store the mixes in there.
When I would make a recipe I would let Cash try a little bit, or his cousin helped us taste a few too. If they like them then I would go ahead and freeze the trays. If they didn’t like it, for example, the carrots, I would have to fix it… For some reason, neither baby liked the carrots; both had a hilarious gag reaction to them. I think it is because I used the apple juice which was actually pretty tart. They didn’t care for the tartness. I had to dilute them a lot and add in some wild rice to balance them out before freezing. Days 5, 6, & 7 were all just blurs of the same process, or should I say blends?
A few recipes that turned out great and the babies lit up for were the Avocado Mango, the Cinnamon Oatmeal Raisin, Rosemary Edamame Potatoes, Spicy Sweet Potatoes and Vegetable Hummus Medley.

 


Now for the real breakdown… was this all worth it?

Here is my final chart comparison:
Each tray gave me 16 half ounce cubes, so each tray gave mean 8 oz of baby food total for the chart. I’m going to do my comparison among Target’s baby food selection, all organic:

So for a store bought brand of organic baby food you’re going to pay about $0.31 per ounce on average.

Ready for the big reveal?….

After all my fun, enjoyable, bonding with my baby and won’t have any food jars or pouches to recycle/properly dispose of, hard work I produced 40 trays of baby food and 12 Yummi Pouches.

Each Tray is 8 oz and each Yummi Pouch is 5 oz.

So at $0.18 per ounce, I would say that this adventure was an astronomical SUCCESS! I am so happy with the results. It was fun to do, it was a bonding adventure with my son, I will not have the waste produced by store bought packaging materials. I know all the ingredients in his food. I got to use my spice rack and unleash some creativity in the kitchen. Plus, I still have a few ingredients left that were not all used up, so really my cost is even lower.

I still have the:

Unfiltered Apple Juice- Once I realized they didn’t like the tartness of it I stopped adding it all in
The Wild Brown Rice- I only used half the bag
Whole Oats Can- Only used half
Plums- I have about a handful left
I could probably just combine all these together and make a plum cereal! I wanted my experiment to close at a week though, so maybe our next adventure

What I will do differently next time:

  1. Do not buy so much at once
  2. Not buy any spinach that is frozen (smelled and tasted like fish food)
  3. No unfiltered apple juice
  4. Start with more trays!

 

 

 

 

I hope you have found this inspiring enough to start your own adventure in baby food! Good Luck!

Is homemade Baby food worth the price? Homemade Baby Food. How to make baby food. Price comparison. Cost Comparison. Organic Baby Food Recipes. How to make your own baby food.

 

Like what you read?

Hi There! I’m Kandice
Wife, WAHM and mother to 2 Hooligan boys, sharing my Sweet & Sticky Story of Motherhood.
Life changes after 2 Toddlers {obviously} so now I’m sharing how I turn those every day #MomProblems into a Story of #MomWinning by building new Small Systems, Organizing Mom Routines and Making Mommy Money Online by Blogging.





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