10 Best Baby Food Makers | March 2017
- comes with recipes and feeding guide
- hard to clean thoroughly
- bowl is made of flimsy plastic
|Rating||3.7 / 5.0|
- convenient one-touch blending action
- comes with six storage containers
- motor is underpowered for pureeing
|Rating||4.2 / 5.0|
- memorizes your last cooking time
- can sterilize bottles and jars
- blender struggles with prolonged use
|Rating||3.8 / 5.0|
- simple one-knob control
- measurement guides etched in
- no built-in timer function
|Rating||3.5 / 5.0|
- bpa- lead- and phthalate-free
- space-saving narrow footprint
- considerably expensive
|Brand||Beaba Babycook Pro 2X|
|Rating||4.4 / 5.0|
- intuitive lcd control panel
- precise temperature management
- plastic parts tend to crack easily
|Rating||4.4 / 5.0|
- milling and blending blades
- ample bowl capacity
- vertical space-saving design
|Rating||4.3 / 5.0|
- straightforward operation
- simple lcd with countdown timer
- bowl and blade are dishwasher safe
|Rating||4.7 / 5.0|
- blade locks in place when pouring
- includes a spatula and recipe book
- also works as a bottle warmer
|Rating||4.7 / 5.0|
- stainless steel water reservoir
- allows for one-handed operation
- cord can be removed for storage
|Rating||4.7 / 5.0|
Choosing The Best Baby Foods
Every parent wants nothing but the best for their child. That means a rewarding career, the finest university education, the best secondary schools, a wonderful summer camp, great music teachers, and on and on ad nauseam. But it all starts with a parent ensuring that their child is healthy and well-nourished. When a newborn first enters the world, initially he or she will be fed nothing but breast milk, formula, or a combination of the two. This will hold true for several months, but by the time an infant has reach four months of age, most children will be ready for the introduction of foods.
Introducing foods early has two major benefits: first, it allows a parent to ensure their child begins to ingest a balanced diet that will help fortify the youngster with all the nutrients they need for ideal development. Second, early food introduction helps to expose those young taste buds to an array of flavors, broadening their palate from those earliest months. The more tastes and textures a child eats when young, the more foods they will appreciate later, and the less the parents will have to deal with a fussy eater.
The first foods an infant eats are so thoroughly pureed as to be almost liquefied. Traditionally, parents first introduced their young ones to foods like apple sauce and rice-based cereals that offered minimal nutritional value and certainly did little to awaken an appreciation for a variety of tastes. Today many brands have begun to offer a wide array of infant foods intended for kids as young as four to six months of age that consist of a blend of several foods and that are rich in flavor and nutrition. It's not uncommon to find a child still under half a year of age enjoying a blend containing everything from pears to spinach to butternut squash. And while not every exotic blend of food is going to tickle the taste buds of every infant or toddler, the patient parent will be able to find a plethora of pureed foods their child will enjoy and that will help develop them into a world class eater.
For the even more involved, adventurous parent, though, the best baby foods around may well be the ones made right there at home. Whether you're struggling to find a blend of flavors your child will actually love, if you're looking to save money by preparing foods at home, or whether you simply want to make sure you know exactly what your child is eating at all times, homemade baby food is a perfectly viable option. And that's especially true if you have a great baby food maker at your disposal.
Choosing The Best Baby Food Maker
All baby food makers can blend foodstuffs into smooth purees, ensuring small mouths without many (or any) teeth can handle the foods they create. What separates baby food makers into categories is whether or not they can also cook the foods you want to serve.
If you're only interested in preparing smoothies and blends using fresh (or frozen) raw ingredients like fruits and vegetables, then a baby food maker that merely blends and purees foods is absolutely sufficient. These options are essentially just highly efficient food processors, but many are designed as modular systems that work well with food storage and/or serving containers, and they make it easier to prepare foods for travel, refrigeration, or freezing. A pureeing baby food maker is also often an affordable choice.
On the other hand, many baby food makers can cook and then blend foods, and these units can save a parent time and effort, which any busy parent will tell you is a luxury well worth the added expense. And while said expense can often reach (or pass) the two hundred dollar mark, serving your child homemade baby food is ultimately much more affordable than a diet consisting of any high-quality store bought organic baby food will be; simply put, making your own baby food will save you money, even if your baby food maker seems like a large initial investment.
Baby food makers that cook their own foods do so using steam heat, which can soften and break down even fibrous foods but which is the ideal cooking method for the preservation of nutrients. When considering a combination cooking and blending baby food maker, consider the quantity of foods you need to prepare (based on your child's age, appetite, and with the number of mouths factored in as well, of course) and on a few factors beyond the food prep itself. For example, take into consideration what parts of the unit are dishwasher safe if your home uses a dishwasher, and consider the physical size of the unit if space is at a premium in your kitchen.
Homemade Baby Foods Tips And Tricks
If you follow the right recipes, homemade baby food is a delicious and nutritious way to feed your cherished child. Homemade baby food is also a great way to sneak in foods they might not like: a few leaves of spinach in a fruit smoothie won't be tasted, but the Vitamin A will still be there, for example. The same goes for iron-rich broccoli or the Omega-3 fatty acids in chia seeds.
Homemade baby food is also a good delivery vehicle for medicines or supplements your child needs but doesn't want to take in their original form. (Though healthy food and hydration is often the best way to keep a child healthy anyway.)
And when it comes to storing and serving baby food, think beyond the options you see in stores. Ice cube trays, for example, can store small portions of pureed frozen foods to be thawed and served later, as do popsicle molds.
And don't forget that the same foods you love may well be enjoyed by your child; you'll just need to puree them first. That baked potato you're about to eat may be a hit with the baby, just add a bit of milk and/or water and blend it up. So too might your child love tomatoes, cucumber, carrots, and more. Remember, almost any food can become a baby food if it's processed and served properly.