A coworker friend of mine volunteered at a local organic farm and gave me a box of leftover sweet potatoes. At the same time, I was a lost first time parent attempting to find the best first baby food to start my little one with. Organic locally-grown sweet potatoes made into a fresh puree for my little one seemed to be the top option available.
After having started all three of my children on sweet potato, it is my absolute favorite first food. It is a very neutral puree… delicately sweet enough to not be objectionable, but not a candy kind of sweet that taints a baby's taste for only the more sugary purees (like banana.) Sweet potatoes are also considered a "superfood" for babies making them a perfect first dish.
With the rising cost of food, I decided to make my own purees to save money. I actually made almost all of my first baby's food. However, after baby #2, I gave up on the notion. Making your own baby food is simple, but difficult when you add the task on top of all the other responsibilities of being a mom. To simplify my life, I make purees in bulk and freeze them in ice cube trays. This method means I am making baby food far less often, hence saving me time. When it is mealtime, I pop a few frozen cubes of food into a glass bowl and heat it up.
Sweet Potato Puree Recipe
What you need:
1 baby (ripened enough to start solids)
5 cups filtered or distilled water
3 pounds sweet potatoes
Blender or food processor
Ice cube trays (or mini muffin trays)
Place the baby in a bouncer where he can happily watch you make baby food.
Wash, peel, and cut potatoes.
Pour 4-5 cups of water into large pot. (It is important that you use drinking-quality water, as some of the liquid left after boiling will be used in the puree and consumed by your baby.)
Boil sweet potatoes until a fork sticks easily into them. (For me this was around 25 minutes starting with cold water.)
Take pot off heat and allow the contents to cool for at least 10 minutes.
Scoop potato chunks and ½ cup of remaining liquid* into blender.
Blend until smooth, adding more liquid if desired.
Spoon puree into ice cube trays. (I needed three for this size batch.)
Remove cubes from trays and place into freezer safe container or ziplock bag. Keep cubes frozen until ready to serve.
*You can substitute the water for breastmilk or formula to make an even more palatable first time baby food.
I keep a good stash of sweet potato puree in the freezer. I find it convenient to make the puree in bulk when I have time and pop it into the toaster oven to heat when I need it. Feeding my baby a healthy homemade meal and saving money is a total win!