Baby Food Making - The Whole Foods Way

Written by: Taylor Dyer

I am embarrassed to admit this, but I have a split personality.   One is Everyday Taylor (the practical one) and the other is Fantasy Taylor.  My fantasy self wears high heels, has a spotless house, and, even though the CTA is my personal chauffeur, I get everywhere 10 minutes early.  My everyday self knows high heels hurt, the house just passes inspection, and that I’m always running 10-15 minutes behind.  Occasionally, the lines get blurred and Fantasy Taylor attempts to dominate Everyday Taylor.

My newest baby, just christened Pound Cake, turned 6 months this week.  A month ago, the pediatrician told me to start feeding her solids because “it takes some serious work to keep the chunk in those thighs.” She recommended starting with rice cereal and then offering the tastier additions of fruit and veggies. “And,” she said, “maybe you’d think about making your own purees?” 

Her off-hand suggestion inspired delusions of happily-homemade pureed sweet potatoes and peas being spooned into Pound Cake’s open mouth.  I couldn’t wait to start up in the kitchen making all sorts of yummy goodness for the baby. Not only that, but I could give tips and recipes to my friends- inspiring healthy eating everywhere!  Recipes were easy to find; I tried this one:

Baked Sweet Potatoes

  1. Wash your sweet potato, poke holes with fork (all over, don't worry about perfection) and wrap with tin foil.
  2. Place in a 400 degree oven and bake for 30-60 minutes or until you can get a knife through without force.
  3. Remove skins by slitting the sweet potato lengthwise when cooled then scoop out the "meat". Use a liquid from your preferred source to puree or thin the sweet potatoes.

And this one:

Apricot Puree

1 pound dried apricots
2 cups of white grape juice, pear or apple juice.

  1. Bring liquid and fruit to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes.
  2. Reserve any left over liquid to use for the puree.
  3. Put in blender and blend until desired consistency is reached.
  4. Add the reserved liquid as necessary to achieve a smooth thin puree.

Both recipes were great starter foods and were easy to make, but do y’all think I made them more than once?  Ummm… no.  After my initial excitement, reality crept in and convenience and practicality won out.  Fantasy Taylor waved the white flag as I picked up small jars of banana, sweet potato, and peach pre-made purees (Earth’s Best is Pound Cake’s favorite).   Although I fancied myself a baby food maker, I just can’t afford the extra minutes that the preparation and clean up cost me.  I think they’re better used arriving on time!

Tell me - do you make your own baby food?

You can follow Taylor on Chicago Whole Foods Market Twitter account #healthykidshappymamas, read her weekly blog, or stop into Whole Foods Market Lincoln Park to say hi!

Posted on September 03, 2012 at 10:54 AM