I do what?
I buy baby food purees.
If we're just being honest here, I'm telling you that I buy Lauren's baby food purees. And I bought Ian's and Aaron's too.
Not all of them. I made pumpkin and squash baby food when they were in season and I froze them for later. I also make our applesauce (or let my mom, dad, & sister make it for us.) I made all the pureed meat I ever fed to Ian. (With Aaron & Lauren we'll skip that step entirely.) For the majority of the purees, I buy them.
My kids don't seem to like pureed baby food. Once they're in a high chair at the table, they seem to be far more interested in self-feeding finger foods. So the baby at our table usually skips most of the purees in the name of eating whatever fruit or vegetable or starch that we're eating for dinner. If we're having rice with dinner (I usually do a 50-50 combo of white and brown) then baby gets rice grains for dinner. She seems to enjoy trying to pick the individual pieces of rice up with her fingers and expresses great joy when she has success getting it all the way to her mouth. (And don't forget how much fine motor skill practice this exercise is!)
If we're having peas, she gets peas to
Green beans, carrots, white potatoes? I slice them long ways then into tiny pieces.
Pasta? I leave some plain. (Un-sauced or spiced.)
In another couple of months we'll add in sauced pasta and maybe even meat. Tiny pieces, not purees.
When I offer pureed food, it is Earth's Best brand pureed combinations like Spinach and Potatoes, Peach Banana Oatmeal, Apples and Blueberries, Apricots, etc.
It's more cost effective for us because she eats such a small amount of the pureed foods and I am confident that Earth's Best is doing a good job making healthy foods for my baby to try. Since she only eats a tiny bit, it seems to be a waste of my time to make it. Especially since she is already so good at eating finger foods. I also really get annoyed when I make baby food (like sweet potato) and freeze it in individual servings etc. only to find that they give her a tummy ache! It's frustrating, so I avoid it.
I think there is definitely value in making your own baby food. If your baby loves purees, then by all means, you should make your own! It will probably save you a lot of money in the long run and you'll feel great about feeding your baby the food you made her. If you don't have time, though, or if your baby doesn't love purees like my baby, I think it's perfectly fine to buy them.
And there are lots of crafts to do with your toddler using cleaned baby food jars!
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