If you don’t make homemade purees for your baby, store-bought frozen baby food is the next best thing. Frozen baby food has a higher nutrient-content than shelf-stable food (such as purees in jars or pouches), and the flavor is generally superior as well.
What Happened to All the Frozen Baby Food?
Despite the superiority of frozen baby food, there are no longer many options available. Several frozen baby foods have been discontinued (such as Petite Palate and Tasty Baby). It seems that most people–myself included–are still going for jarred purees. The ubiquitous pouches of baby food, which Gimme the Good Stuff has also reviewed, are so convenient and portable, which is of course the major drawback to frozen food–you can’t prepare and serve it while riding the subway or at the playground.
Where Can I Buy FRESH Baby Food?
In 2005 and 2006, there were a dozen or so fresh baby food brands on the market, but now almost all of them have been discontinued. You may be able to find local companies making fresh baby food in your community, however. Surprisingly, New York City options are limited–Evie’s Organic Edibles delivers baby food that’s made to order at predictably outrageous prices.
The Good Stuff
Bambino’s Baby Food
Bambinos was created by Zoi Maroudas, a mom with a medical background who wanted to create better baby food. She uses fresh, organic ingredients, and she has an eye toward allergy prevention.
Bambino’s offers a wide variety of baby and toddler foods. They have frozen purees, including some with grains, fish, and meat, and Zoi also created these cool peanut cookies geared toward preventing peanut allergies–as the mom of one peanut-allergic kid, this is especially intriguing to me. I like that when her blends contain oil, it’s extra virgin olive, not soy or canola.
You will have to purchase Bambino products online. They aren’t available yet in stores, but your can request that your local Whole Foods or Sprouts Farmers Market stocks Bambino’s in the future!
How to Get Some
You can purchase Bambino’s online. Zoi has kindly offered my readers a free gift–just use coupon code GIMMEGOODS to receive it with your purchase.
(Read our review of Happy Baby pouches, too!)
The cardboard box contains 40% recycled content and is recyclable, as are the plastic trays, which are made of BPA-free polypropylene. Happy Baby offers more varieties than other brands, and I like the inclusion of whole grains in many of their meals.
I’m skeptical of all plastics, so I’d remove the cubes from the tray before heating in the microwave.
How to Get Some
Happy Baby frozen purees are available in select grocery stores.
Update: Yummy Spoonfuls Stage 3 has been discontinued.
Certain flavors–banana, blueberries, papaya, mango–are raw, and the rest are heated minimally. The BPA-free plastic that Yummy Spoonfuls uses for their cups is recyclable. I’ve been in touch with their founder, Agatha, and she is genuinely concerned with the health of babies and kids. She’s happy to share her recipes with parents who are motivated to make their own.
The cups are made of polypropylene, and I try to avoid plastic of all kinds when possible (it often isn’t). Yummy Spoonfuls founder Agatha says: “As a mother I personally don’t heat anything in plastic, even though Yummy Spoonfuls cups are microwavable safe.”
How to Get Some
Available at Whole Foods, Dean & Deluca, and on Amazon.
Note: Agatha sent me samples of Yummy Spoonfuls, but this did not affect my review.
Square One Organics frozen baby food is made from organic fruits, vegetables, and grains. Their products contain no added sugar, are dairy and soy-free, gluten-free, GMO-free, and are made in a nut-free facility. The packaging is BPA-free. The website is a great resource for parents.
The cups are made of #5 polypropylene, which is recyclable and considered non-toxic, but still plastic!
How to Get Some
Available on Amazon.
The Bad Stuff
Happily, I haven’t been able to identify any Bad Stuff!
The Sneaky Stuff
Happily, I haven’t been able to identify any Sneaky frozen baby food!
Why Go Organic?
I’m sure I’m preaching to the choir here, but feeding your kids organic food is important. Babies and children consume more calories per unit of body weight than do adults, and research shows that children have twice the pesticide levels (measured in urine) as adults eating a similar diet. Kids’ have developing organs and immature filtering systems (as the immune system is not fully formed). Finally, some types of organic produce and dairy has been shown to be higher in antioxidants and other nutrients than food that’s been sprayed with pesticides. Oh, and then there is the major benefit to the environment and farm workers, too.
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