Store Bought vs Homemade Baby Foods? Pt.1 of 2

Posted by admin 15/04/2016 0 Comment(s)

 

 

Store Bought vs Homemade Baby Foods? Pt.1 of 2

Here Comes Baby Boutique takes a look at the big question this week.

 

 

We as parents always want the best food for our children and especially when they are infants and toddlers for healthy, happy futures.  So in our home we had to question what was best, homemade baby food or store-bought? Now we aren’t experts but we do think we have a clue and we are trying to provide better than our parents did for us, right? So which is it: homemade or the store-bought? After some deliberation we went with homemade, and this is our story. Even with the time we spent preparing the food our little one didn’t like peas anyway. Who can blame her? All kidding aside, homemade food smelled far better, the texture and color was a lot different from the store bought, and the taste was miles apart as well. My wife and I are not big fans of pureed peas either, but for us there was a huge difference in taste. So we set out to become a DIY baby food family and so far it is working for us. We like knowing what’s exactly is in the food we are serving to our child and we compared a few things such as texture, taste (not a fan of any baby food), and research and we went with just comparing information to make an informed decision.

For us as parents the nutritional value and cost was key in the decision making process. Did you know that the average person consumes more than 150lbs of sugar PER YEAR? Taking that into consideration and the research showing just how bad sugar really is for you (natural sugars aside) we wanted to take a look at how much is in our sweetie’s food.  For example, according to an article found @ Slate.com using a banana as an example “Each Gerber 1st Foods Banana Purée  contains  Earth’s Best 1st Bananas —you know, the brand that’s supposed to be more virtuous than Gerber—contains 12 grams of sugar, 1 gram of fiber, and even more sodium (20 milligrams).” Moyer, M. W. (n.d.). 2013/09/homemade_versus_store_bought. Our other big factor: cost. We went through the differences and decided after the initial cost of storage supplies (which is negligible; a whopping $7 per freeze tray and $10 for a large pack of 4oz mason jars…I spend more than that on Starbucks in one sitting) that overall it would work out to be cheaper for us. Although other sites say there is nothing wrong with feeding your child pre-prepared foods and that in most cases it is better for them we as parents just want the best for our child, so we researched more. We went through article after article, and trust us you can find list after list of pros and cons on the subject, we decided it was just a matter of choice for us and any other parent. 

We came up with our own pros and cons…

The pro for homemade:

  1. You know exactly what is going in your child’s food at all times.
  2. Less chance of running out of foods that you want to serve to your child, because they are starting to eat what you eat.
  3. Most of the time it is far cheaper than purchasing pre-prepared foods.
  4. More varieties of food available, such as avocado, melon…
  5. No additives or preservatives found in your own brand.
  6. Far less sugar than store bought.

The cons for homemade:

  1. More kitchen gadgets? (most families own a blender or food processor and they store pretty easy)
  2. Does not stay fresh as long as the store-bought, but again no preservatives (still a plus).
  3. Takes up room in the freezer or fridge. Storing one or two ice trays (little tip in storage) really does not take up that much room.

Also if you have a sweet tooth like we do, it makes you give up that room given to those unwanted calories.

  1. More time spent in the kitchen. Okay, if you have limited time as it is this is a huge factor. Trying to balance the time is a hard part, so you have to be dedicated to the cause and really make it a point to make the time.
  2. Hard to travel with, unless you want to carry a cooler around everywhere you go.

The pros for store bought:

  1. Convenient, what’s more convenient than having your work already done for you?
  2. Storage, again they last far longer than homemade does because of the preservatives.
  3. You can always find the same brand that you pick for your child (well, most of the time) at any grocery store.
  4. It travels well with you, most of the time you do not have to refrigerate the food unless it has been opened once before.
  5. Some brands add DHA and Probiotics to their products which can be very helpful in your child’s development.  

The cons for store bought:

  1. Packed with preservatives.
  2. The eventual cost over time.
  3. Adding more to the recycling bin.
  4. You may never really know what exactly is going into your child’s food.
  5. Nutrients may be lost through the processing of the foods… This is a huge factor.

Ultimately it comes right down to your choice and how you as a parent want to proceed with feeding your child. For us it was a no brainer with no preservatives and far less sugar in making our own we had to give it a try. No matter what you choose, remember that parenting is a journey that is unique to everyone and that your decision is just that, YOUR decision. Next week we will be giving tips on how to make and store your homemade baby food, and our tips for feeding baby’s first solids! Happy feeding!

 

Have a happy Baby-tastic weekend!

 

Michael & Stephanie

 

Owners of Herecomesbabyboutique.com

 

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