5 Great Tools to Puree Homemade Baby Food
You want the best for your baby and processed pots of baby food just won’t do – even if they do have organic emblazoned across the jar. Ok, so maybe you’ll use them occasionally, when you’re on the go. But at home, you’re thinking of going old-school. You want to make baby food from scratch!
Well, there’s one piece of equipment that can make the whole process a nightmare – or as simple as banana mash. That’s your trusty food mill.
There are a lot of options out there when it comes to steaming, grinding, and pureeing your baby’s one-pot meals . . . and a number of factors to consider. Check out our top picks across categories and find the right mill for your needs.
Consider this, before you invest in that
Depending on your usage, lifestyle, and personality, you’re going to have different requirements. And as with every invention out there, food mills come in a wide array of options to suit you.
So why invest in an all-in-one steamer and blender when a simple manually cranked mill might do? Also, consider what quantities of baby food you’ll be making. Will you be storing and freezing batches at a time or making one-off quick meals on a daily basis? And how much time do you have to dedicate to all of this anyway?
At just under $80, the Baby Brezza multi-functional baby food maker steams, chops, blends, and purees a nutritious meal in a single bowl without much work on your part (and very little mess!). It’s super easy to use and you can make a complete meal using fruit, veg, meat, and/or grains in as little as fifteen minutes. Once you have your ingredients washed, chopped, and placed in the bowl, all you have to do is set your cooking time and the meal will be prepared for you.
The bowl is BPA and Phthalate free, heat resistant, dishwasher safe, and holds up to 2.5 cups of nutritious goodness. You can reheat just-prepared foods in the machine itself and the entire thing is compact so you won’t be giving up too much counter or storage space.
Pros: Very easy to use with full functionality to make your meal start to finish. Easy clean up with a no-spill, one bowl design that you can pop in the dishwasher.
Cons: Can only make 2.5 cups of food so depending on the age of your baby, you’ll have some food left over to freeze, but not a whole lot.
Best for: Busy families who don’t have the time to monitor the entire baby food making process.
This little lifesaver steams, blends, warms, and even defrosts food in a single compact countertop appliance. At $150, it’s definitely on the more expensive side when it comes to food mills, but it produces purees so smooth that you won’t be seeing much of that gag reflex. It’s able to make a whopping 5 cups of baby food in one shot so that you’ll have plenty to freeze and store. So you’ll be making up the cost in no time at all once your baby is up to four or more jars of baby food a day.
The manufacturer claims that foods made in the Béaba Babycook are healthier, with more vitamins preserves, since the steaming process takes 15 minutes or less. Additionally, the food bowl is both BPA and PVC free for greater peace of mind. Just like the Baby Brezza, this machine is also easy to clean and dishwasher safe.
Pros: Easy to use, easy to clean, and it makes plenty of food in one go. Takes care of all aspects of cooking your baby food so you can focus your attention elsewhere.
Cons: Cost, plus a higher learning curve, but you will find both investments well worth it!
Best for: Slackers, working parents, and just about anyone who wants a quick, easy nutritious meal with minimal fuss.
Let’s face it, when it comes to pureeing your baby food, you want a mill that works great. But do you really care if it’s developed by a baby gear manufacturer? After all, your baby is not going to fall for your mill’s bright, kid-friendly color or adorable logo. You want a mill, get a mill!
The OXO Good Grips mill isn’t just designed for baby food, it’s simply a great food mill. It’s completely made of stainless steel so you don’t have to worry about all those plastic chemicals leaching into your food. It comes with three disks for fine, medium, and coarse pureeing. And it’s a real grown-up kitchen tool that you can use for your own soups, sauces, and jams as well. Plus, it comes in at about $50 dollars and will last a lifetime.
What this mill won’t do is: 1) use electricity, so be prepared use a little elbow grease (but hey, who wouldn’t mind a little arm exercise?) or 2) steam, warm, or defrost your food – this is just a hand-cranked food mill, albeit an excellent one!
Pros: Real kitchen tool that lasts well beyond your baby-food-making years.
Cons: No set-it-and-forget-it features here. You’re going to have to cook your baby food separately then put it through the mill.
Best for: Parents who plan on cooking baby meals in large batches and storing for future use. Foodies who love cooking and will be making soups and sauces or canning jellies anyways.
If you’re on a budget and looking for an easy, breezy versatile tool, Sage Spoonfuls ($35) is for you. It’s a hand-held electric blender and food processor that allows you to make small or large batches of baby food quickly and easily – you can actually blend a whole month’s worth of food in less than a minute.
Despite its size, it’s actually a very powerful tool. If you’re looking to simply blend a portion of your own meal for your little one, it will be able to handle it and get foods down to stage one smoothness. You can achieve coarser consistencies too and also use it for your own soups and sauces. It’s BPA, lead, Phthalate and PVC free and dishwasher safe. Plus, you can just pack it up and take the whole thing with you for baby food blending on the go. Perfect for when you’re Airbnb’ing it or for visits to grandma’s.
Pros: Incredibly easy to use, offers flexibility in desired consistencies and quantities.
Cons: You will still have to cook your food separately.
Best for: Families on a budget looking for a versatile tool.
First thing’s first: the NUK Mash and Serve Bowl isn’t the best tool to puree your one-pot meals. But it’s a fabulous one to mash up fruits and veggies on the go. Whether you’re serving up fresh vitamin-rich bananas, melons, nectarines, or want to get in a few steamed veggies, the NUK Mash and Serve bowl not only will get you the best consistencies (imagine trying to do all this with a fork!), you can feed your baby right out of the bowl. You can even mash up small amounts of cooked chicken, potatoes, beans, and meats from your own dinner to feed baby then and there.
The entire thing is microwave and dishwasher safe, BPA free, and easy to clean. Easy grip handles on the masher and bowl make it really easy to use and the bowl has a non-skid base that will come in handy for both you and the baby.
Pros: Great for quickly mashing up foods without needing to pull out bulkier equipment.
Cons: Can only handle single servings meant to be eaten right away.
Best for: Families looking for an additional piece of equipment to make quick and healthy snacks.
What is your favorite kitchen tool for making baby food? Share your favorite products with us in the comments below!
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Cover image by YumiTags : baby food