Makin' Baby Food: Sweet Potato

Have I mentioned that I don't cook?  Like, for real... I have not made a meal in nearly a year now.  (Yes, you can all be jealous of my amazing husband now!)  But I do make my own baby food.   For one, it's WAY easy... or else I wouldn't do it.  And for two, you know exactly what you're feeding your baby and you control the quality as well.  I like that.

The truth is, most babies only eat pureed baby food for a few months (4 months at most) before moving on to table food.  So if you make large batches, you may not have to make more.  Also, you can make things that don't exist in a jar... like mango, papaya, strawberry, etc.

Here I'll walk you through how I made 21oz of organic sweet potato puree for just a few dollars.

At Whole Foods, I bought these 3 medium sized sweet potatoes.  Sweet potatoes come in all funky sizes and shapes, so I tried to pick the more similar ones so that they would cook together evenly.

First, I preheated my oven to 400 degrees.  Then I washed the sweet potatoes and pierced them.  You can use a fork to do that, but I use a knife and stab it all over.  Do not forget this step, or you risk your potato blowing up in your oven. (What a mess!)

Then you wrap the wet potatoes in foil and bake them for 45 min- 1 hour.  I let it cook for an hour just to be sure that it'd all be super soft and not have any hard spots.

Once the timer goes off, pull the potatoes out and let them sit for a half hour or so.  They'll be too hot to work with straight out of the oven.  When you are ready to work with them, they'll be nice and soft and sticky.  You want to peel the skin off of the potato.  This is super easy to do and you don't even need a knife.  I use my fingers, even though it does get hot sometimes.  If you like peeling a sunburn, you're gonna love this part! 
Once you've peeled all of your potatoes, you can coarsely chop them and throw them in a bowl.  To puree, I use a hand blender, but you can also use your regular blender or a food processor.  I like using the hand blender best because I can physically control the thickness of the food... I can choose to make it super smooth and creamy, or leave lumps (like for stage 2 food).  My hand blender was only $50 at Bed Bath and Beyond.  

Consider how thick or thin you want your baby food to be.  If you've got a beginner, like I do, you're gonna want it to be really smooth.  I added a few ounces of breast milk to thin out the sweet potatoes... but you can use water or formula as well.  Just remember not to use cows milk!

For storing your purees, you are going to have to purchase some kind of freezer trays.  I bought these because they have a lid, they're BPA free and each cube is exactly 1 oz.  But, I've also used regular ice cube trays and they work just as well.  If you do that, you may want to cover them with cling wrap so they don't get nasty freezer smell/taste. 

Then scoop your purees into your trays and try to make it as even as possible so each serving size is roughly the same.  1 oz = 2 Tbs. 

Cover your trays and freeze.  Once you know they're good and solid, pop them out, throw them in a ziploc and you've got a ton of food at your disposal!  

What I love about this, is that it just takes 20 minutes of work, and then I've got food for a good few weeks.  I mean, Jonas isn't going to go through 21 oz that quickly... plus we've got other foods frozen and waiting as well.  I know exactly what is going in to my baby's body... no preservatives, only pure organic veggie goodness.  And, it does end up being cheaper than buying bottled baby food.  

So, although I will be making all kinds of veggies and fruits (no meats, I think that's gross), I will not be blogging about it again because this is not a food blog and it's too boring.  BUT, if you'd like to know more about makin' baby food with tips on storage, pairing and all sorts of recipes for every fruit or veggie you can think of, visit this awesome site:

And lastly, If I can do this... You SOOOO can too!