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How do you heat up baby food?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
I am just starting on the adventure of making baby foods. I, for the life of me, can't figure out a safe and fast way to heat up the baby food. I have made some ahead and frozen in ice cube trays....which I realize I have to thaw well in advance. But even the things I've made the day before that are in the fridge...I have some in glass baby food jars and some in little plastic cups. I know I don't want to microwave....but is it safe to microwave some water and set the jar in there? I tried this method and it sat there for about 10 minutes and still hadn't taken the chill off. Any words of wisdom from some experienced mamas?
post #2 of 19
If you don't want to microwave, then it would be best to boil some water on the stove and set the jar in that to warm up.

I always microwaved, but only enough to make the food room temperature at best and then stirred thoroughly to disseminate any hot spots.
post #3 of 19
I'm making my own baby food and will heat it up in a very small pan on the stove....we have a gas stove so it works very quickly. I also don't want to microwave. And since I'm preparing it and freezing it in small quantities, there's no glass jar to set in a pan of water.
post #4 of 19
bottle warmers can also work for baby food, you can buy little jars just like the ones they sell and it steams it warm slowly.
post #5 of 19
Thread Starter 
I tried the bottle warmer today with the little glass jar. It steamed for about 7 minutes and it still wasn't warm. It seems like this is going to take a lot of thinking ahead to get it ready in time to eat! It's almost easier just to make as you go.
post #6 of 19
We warm up the frozen foods in a cast iron pan....heats up very fast!
post #7 of 19
When my son first started on solids I used to warm the food in hot water, but you're right it takes ages! I also found it hard to judge the timing and used to leave it too long so it was too hot.

In the end I did start using the microwave even though I hadn't planned to. That way I can take it direct from the freezer and defrost it - you can defrost so it's still cool. I then heat it for literally only 10 seconds and stir it very well and test the temperature from several areas before ds eats it.
post #8 of 19
We have a gas stove, so I plunk a little down in a small pan, whalaa!
We don't have a micro.
Funny you asked this, I was wondering what everyone else does too
post #9 of 19
what is the concern with microwaving?? i know some nutrients can be zapped but a couple ice cube only takes a few seconds and i cant imagin that little time in a microwave doing any harm. the whole point of making my own baby food was the convienience and the cost. if i had to boil water, wait forever and day to thaw it, or even have to think ahead then i dont know if i would have kept it up. hope you figure out what works best and easiest for you.
post #10 of 19
One problem with microwaving is that it can create "hot spots" in the food that can bur the baby...that said, I've used the microwave myself and just made sure to stir really well and test everything before giving it to dd.

While I have "cheated" and use the microwave my dh usually puts the frozen food in a cup and puts that in a pot of boiling water.

One trick is to make the food but then freeze it in little "cookie" shapes instead of in ice cube trays. (Put a spoonfull of food on a baking sheet/piece of waxed paper then smoosh it flat like a cookie....then pop the food cookies off the tray or fold them up in waxed paper and a ziplock once frozen). These cookies take up less room in the freezer and since they've got a lot of surface area they warm up much faster than the ice cubes!

Now that dd is older though we tend to just mash up whatever we're having for dinner using a fork, or our baby food mill if we want a softer texture.

Good luck!
post #11 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heatherb917
It seems like this is going to take a lot of thinking ahead to get it ready in time to eat! It's almost easier just to make as you go.
Or just to feed them little bits of what you are eating .
post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the ideas mamas!

We do feed ds what we're eating....but more often I'm noticing that it's things that he can't eat..... I realize that I've already buttered and salted my potato, so I won't give him that...or it's a sandwich or something not baby friendly. Plus I want to stick with one new food per week until we have a good variety under his belt. I just want to be able to have some things ready on hand.

I just have a bad vibe about microwaving ds's food. I'm fine with it for me, but not him. I don't even have any real reason...just my gut telling me.
post #13 of 19
I use the microwave to heat up the babys food and bottle. Then I test it to make sure its not hot.
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heatherb917
Thanks for the ideas mamas!

We do feed ds what we're eating....but more often I'm noticing that it's things that he can't eat..... I realize that I've already buttered and salted my potato, so I won't give him that...or it's a sandwich or something not baby friendly.
I can understand that. But if you do decide you want to avoid the hassle of having to have stuff ready especially for him ahead of time, or if at some point you want to place more emphasis in sharing in meals together...its an option to do no babyfood.

When you do potatoes, instead of remembering to heat up the babyfood, you could remember to set aside a little portion of potatoes for him without the butter and salt (though I don't think its the end of the world for him to get a little butter and salt). Or if you forget, you could try and go to the bottom parts of the potato to find some unsalted or unbuttered bits. And as for sandwiches, you could pick out bits for him to eat. My dfs's first food was the tiniest little piece of lettuce ripped off from the lettuce in a veggie sandwich I was eating. He loved it! Now that he is 9 months, I'll also just give him a hunk of whole wheat bread from my sandwiches, along with bits of veggies, which brings him so much joy.

Quote:
Plus I want to stick with one new food per week until we have a good variety under his belt.
That makes sense. We did the same thing. Luckily dfs's interest in foods waxed and wained so there were natural breaks before he wanted something again...giving us a space of at least a few days between different foods. I know some babies are in more of a hurry.

Quote:
I just want to be able to have some things ready on hand.
I hope you find a way to do this that works out for you. It might be easiest just to make stuff at the time you need it, though I imagine that makes for more dishes (?), if you use a food processor or whatnot.
post #15 of 19
I don't heat it up. He eats it right from the fridge. Sometimes I let it sit for a bit. I figure hey, if he eats it cool, yipee!
post #16 of 19
When DD#1 was starting solids I used the frozen ice cube tray method. What you can do is take out the cubes that you are going to use for the next day the night before and let them defrost a bit in the fridge. By lunch time you can set them in some warm/hot water and warm them up and they won't be frozen solid so it will take less time to heat. I have heard that the microwave causes hot spots and destroys nutrients. If you do use the microwave you could just make sure that you mix it really good to cool it off and add some cold water or breast milk to cool it off a bit. Good luck.
post #17 of 19
I understand your concerns about using the microwave...I feel the same way. There's just something I don't trust about it to heat up my baby's food. What I've been doing is freezing tablespoon size portions of food in Glad Press and Seal wrap. Have you heard of it? I love it, because you can actually press out most of the air and then freeze it. I don't bother with the ice cube method, because the food will get freezer burn if I don't remember to place the cubes in a plastic bag right away, and it can also start to absorb other freezer flavors...funky. Plus, the food is frozen in little piles, which is quick to thaw, as opposed to a thick cube. I just place the frozen food (still wrapped in the Press and Seal) in a bowl of warm water with the faucet trickling more warm water into it, and five minutes later, it's ready to eat! Then, you just squeeze the food into a feeding bowl from the wrap. Really easy, and no microwave use or boiling water!
post #18 of 19
I don't trust microwaves either.

I put hot/very warm water in a coffee mug and put his food in a sealed container in the coffee mug with a pan or something heavy on top to keep it from floating out - it typically defrosts really fast.

Normally I'll put his food in the fridge (from the freezer) in the morning... when I remember!
post #19 of 19
i have always had an aversion to the microwave, passed down from my mom. she was always scared of the waves. a lot of people believe that they don't emit out of the box unless it's old, but if they didn't they wouldn't tell pregnant women not to stand in front of them. if they can harm your fetus inside of your body, why go there?
and yes, they destroy nutrients. microwaves devitalize food. they essentially "deaden" your food. they have been proven to change the molecular structure of food. if you're familiar with yoga diets, what a microwave does is turn food that is sattvic in nature to tamasic. maya tiwari, in her book, ayurveda: a life of balance, states, "microwaves are a natural enemy to the harmonious energies of food". and if you microwave in plastic the plastic releases endocrine disruptors into the food. this has finally gone mainstream and can be googled for all sorts of facts and stats.
the time-saving and ease of use makes them so appealing, but i don't personally feel that the positives (ease, time) outweigh the negatives (health effects). i'd go with the glass jar in just boiled water or the cast iron skillet method, imho.
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