Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Making baby food

I am in charge of making the baby food for our babies who are six months and older here at the baby home. It is so much cheaper for us to make our own food and so nice to use fresh ingredients. Baby food is about $0.75 a jar here - can you imagine how much our grocery bill would go up? I thought I'd share some of my ideas for different foods to make for different ages. Maybe you will enjoy a little glimpse into our lives.

This was a year or two ago, but I'm pretty sure I got all of this for about $15 (or about 20 jars of baby food).

It's a fair amount of work! Thankfully I have my trusty friend Gertrude who helps me sometimes.

We introduce one new food every week when a baby is learning how to eat. We buy mabele porridge for one of their first foods (mabele comes from sorghum). Baby L loves it so much! We also introduce a number of fruits and veggies.

These are some foods that are affordable to make (depending on the season...) and easy to buy locally:






Plain yogurt


Green beans

Beets (known as beetroot here)



Sweet potatoes (white and orange)



They also enjoy various food combinations...we try to start them on veggies but some things we have to mix with a little fruit!


Mashing turnips and apples to mix together




Avocado/yogurt (this was pretty popular at one point!)


Green smoothie with spinach and various fruit

Standard finger foods around here include Marie biscuits (kind of like graham crackers) and Otees (South African brand of Cheerios).

It's pretty easy to make purees for the younger kids, but as they get a little older I have to get more creative. In a family they would probably just eat some of whatever the family is eating, but here I need to have things that are prepared ahead of time and easy to pull out of the freezer, or at least very quick to cook. Here are some of the things I have tried (with varying success...)

Pumpkin/rice mash

Potatoes and spinach

"Spaghetti" - macaroni with canned tomato and onions, ground beef, and spices - or finely chopped macaroni with tomato paste, spices, etc.

Creamy chicken and veggie stew

Mini quiches

Spinach patties

Macaroni and cheese with finely chopped viennas (like hot dogs, but taste more like Spam...big hit though!)

Veggie/ground beef soup

Baked beans and viennas (also very popular!)

Lentil/bean soup from dried mix


Some of whatever the nannies are eating!

More menu ideas are always welcome!

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