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What's the best way to prepare and cook baby food?

Be sure to use good quality, fresh foods in your dishes. Don’t season them too much and never add salt to your homemade meals. You can freeze your baby’s food, but make sure to thoroughly defrost them before reheating. A baby’s food should be served at room temperature. It should be lukewarm and never hot as babies systems are extremely sensitive. Always check the temperature of food before giving to a baby.
 
Steaming or microwaving is the best way to cook vegetables as it retains more vitamins and also preserves their fresh taste. Vitamin B and C are water soluble and are therefore easily destroyed by overcooking especially when boiled. Broccoli, for instance loses over 60% of its antioxidants when boiled as opposed to less than 7% when steamed. You can buy a food steamer or you can use a saucepan that you can fit with a steamer colander. You can also try steaming using the microwave by placing vegetables in a microwave-safe bowl and covering with cling film-leaving one corner open.
 
You could also try baking certain vegetables such as sweet potato or butternut squash in the oven as it gives them a delicious flavour. Wash and scrub them thoroughly and prick with a fork and bake until tender, scoop out the flesh and mash with your baby’s milk or water. You can also boil vegetables or fruit but remember to use a very small amount of water and be careful not to overcook the fruit or vegetables. This will minimise the loss of vitamins and nutrients.
 
You should cook eggs until both the white and yolk are completely solid and meats should not contain even the slightest trace of pink in the middle. You should not reheat the food more than once and when you do, you must make sure to stir it through to avoid microwave hotspots.
 
Hygiene when preparing baby’s first solid food is imperative as your baby’s immune system is less developed than that of an adults and therefore is more susceptible to bacteria. You should take extra care to sterilise all utensils used when preparing food including baby’s bowls and spoons. Always wash your hands before preparing food for your baby, wash your baby’s high chair with hot soapy water and change tea towels frequently.

More questions

Fibre is important in your baby's diet but should only be present in small amounts as it can prevent the absorbtion of important minerals.
Fat is a vital source of energy for your growing baby.
Gluten is contained in foods such as wheat, rye, barley, and oats which are alll good sources of iron and fibre.
Honey should never be given to a baby under 12 months due to the risk of botulism poisoning.
There are lots of wonderful first foods for your baby to try including puréed vegetables, fruit, and baby cereals. 
There are lots of great ways to easily prepare and cook food for your baby.
A good breakfast is vital to ensure your baby is getting the best start to the day. 
In the beginning you should only feed your baby a spoon or two of solid food a day. This will gradually build up over a period of a weeks until they are enjoying three meals a day.
It is essential that you provide your baby with a well balanced and nutritious diet. There is a wonderful variety of foods to choose from.
If you're having problems weaning your baby it may be that they just aren't ready. Take a week or two to resume milk feedings and try again. 

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