How to Make Simple Vegetable Purees for Weaning

Although some parents prefer to wait until their child can manage finger food, a common method of weaning a child onto solids is to introduce purees. Vegetables are the ideal ingredient to use for a puree as, when cooked, they have a soft consistency, are full of vital nutrients and offer variety. A further benefit is that there is a lot of color choice in vegetables and this can make the food more appealing to your child. Here are some tips on making simple vegetable purees for your child.

Choose your vegetables

At first, you may only wish to introduce one or two new flavors into your baby’s diet and it is often a good idea to start with vegetables with a bland taste, such as potatoes. It is also important to choose vegetables that have a smooth consistency when blended at first, such as carrots, parsnips and turnip. Once your baby has got used to having solid food, you can start to introduce more vegetables with different textures and stronger flavors. Try combining several different vegetables together to provide a good mix of nutrients for your baby and to give them a variety of flavors.

Cooking

The best method to use for creating a vegetable puree is boiling as this will soften the vegetables quickly. Simply peel the vegetables, chop them into pieces and boil in a pan until soft. Once cooked, drain the vegetables, puree them using your preferred method and then add a little of the milk your baby usually has, such as breast milk or formula milk, to create a smooth consistency.

Methods of creating a puree

There are several different methods of making a vegetable puree for your child. The first is to use equipment that is specifically designed to make baby food. There are blenders that are specially designed to make small amounts of baby puree and can be found in electrical stores, specialist baby shops and on the Internet. The second method is to use a food blender. These are good if you are making larger quantities of vegetable puree and plan to store some for a later date. A third method is to mash the vegetables yourself. This is a cheap option as it does not require buying a blender. However, it is worth noting that you may still get small lumps in the food depending on what vegetables you have used, so this is not the best method if you have not started feeding your baby food with lumps in yet. The final method is to pass the cooked vegetables though a sieve. This will remove all lumps from the food but is time consuming.

Storage

Many others choose to cook a larger quantity of vegetable puree than they need at the time so that it can be served at a later date. This is a god way of saving time if you have decided to make homemade baby food while weaning your baby. It also means that you can later use the vegetable puree as a base to add other ingredients to once your child has adapted to eating solid foods. The best way to store the puree is in the freezer. Storing the puree in small portion sized containers means that you only have to defrost the amount that you need, as and when you need it. It is possible to buy containers specifically for this purpose. Another option is to use an ice cube tray and then you can simply remove the required amount of cubed portions when you are ready to use them.

Making baby food yourself is a great way of controlling your baby’s diet and saving money. Vegetables are an ideal food type to start weaning with as they have a soft consistency, offer variety, are simple to prepare and don’t cost a lot of money. Purees can be made by using blenders, mashing or sieving the vegetables and adding a little milk. Cooking more vegetable puree than is needed and storing them in portion sized containers in the freezer is a great way of saving time at a later date.