Wallet Friendly Tips for Feeding Baby

I vividly remember being so excited to give each of my babies their first bite of real food. It’s not only a rite of passage, it’s hilarious — new textures, flavors, and messes to explore. But as their appetites increased, so did our grocery bills. It was a bit of a shock, really. Well, I got the chance to ask Kim Laidlaw, a San Francisco mom and cookbook author (including the soon-to-be released title Baby & Toddler On the Go) for some tips on putting good food in Baby’s mouth, without taking too much out of mom’s wallet. I hope they help you too!

  • Shop and Eat Smart

    Shop and Eat Smart

    Take it from someone who’s done a whole lot of cooking. Cookbook author, Kim Laidlaw, has done her research and shares her great tips.

  • #1: Make Your Own Baby Food

    #1: Make Your Own Baby Food

    Making your own homemade baby food is not only economical (it’s less expensive than purchasing single package servings), it also lets you choose exactly which ingredients to include in everything you make — keeping food free of unnecessary additives, preservatives, sweeteners, thickeners, and sodium.

    Check out this recent Disney Baby post for how-to tips.

    Photo credit: Weldon Owen, from Baby & Toddler on the Go

  • #2: Make Meals in Bulk and Freeze Them

    #2: Make Meals in Bulk and Freeze Them

    If you take the time to make homemade food for the family, why not make a bigger batch and freeze it? You save time and money in the long run, because you can purchase ingredients in quantity at better prices, as well as always have ready-made meals at a moments notice. Once you get going and have 3 to 4 different meals stored, you’ll have a great array of foods at the ready.

    Photo credit: Weldon Owen, from Baby & Toddler on the Go

  • #3: Freeze Baby-Sized Portions

    #3: Freeze Baby-Sized Portions

    When you prepare meals for your baby in advance, divide them into small, individual-sized portions before freezing them (silicone ice cube trays work great for this!). Freezing individual portions for your baby or toddler cuts down greatly on food waste—since it’s sometimes hard to know when Baby will want to eat a lot or a little.

    Photo credit: Weldon Owen, from Baby & Toddler on the Go

  • #4: Buy in Season

    #4: Buy in Season

    Buy fruits and vegetables when they’re in season. Not only are they are more flavorful, they also cost less. Frequent your farmers’ market if you have one nearby, and choose fruits and vegetables that are in abundance. It’s also a great way to introduce your toddler to an array of new, healthy foods.

    Photo credit: Weldon Owen, from Baby & Toddler on the Go

  • #5: Buy in Bulk

    #5: Buy in Bulk

    When you need to purchase flour, rice, oatmeal, whole grains, or beans, purchase what you need from the bulk aisle or purchase an extra-large bag and divide it among friends. Purchasing pantry ingredients in larger quantities can help you save a lot of money in the long run.

    Photo credit: Weldon Owen, from Baby & Toddler on the Go

  • #6: Choose Family Friendly Recipes

    #6: Choose Family Friendly Recipes

    Even if your baby is still eating purees, there are many meals that you can make that the entire family can enjoy, saving you money. Roasted root vegetables can be pureed for baby, and served alongside a roast chicken for the rest of the family. Mac and cheese primavera, quiche stuffed with veggies and ham, or turkey meatballs served with marinara are all delicious and very toddler friendly meals.

    Photo credit: Weldon Owen, from Baby & Toddler on the Go

  • #7: Make Your Own Snacks

    #7: Make Your Own Snacks

    Instead of purchasing expensive, packaged snacks, make your own. A piece of toast with slices of avocado is easy to make and delicious. Making your own dips, like hummus, black bean, or roasted red pepper, makes snack time fun when toddlers get to dip healthy veggie dippers into them.

    Photo credit: Weldon Owen, from Baby & Toddler on the Go

Do you have your own money-saving tips? Please share them!

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