Once your baby has graduated to eating solids, it’s time to start thinking about what you want to feed them for each meal and snacks throughout the day. You can make your homemade baby food or choose from the many baby food brands available on the market. If you’re anything like me and don’t have the time or energy to make your baby food, you’ll be looking for the best options to purchase. But with so many to choose from, which are the best options for your baby? We’ve done the testing and research for you.
But first, when should you start baby food?
Many parents are excited about this new baby milestone but unsure when it’s safe to introduce solids. Most pediatricians recommend introducing solids as early as 4 months to 6 months old. AAP recommends waiting until your baby is closer to 6 months old since waiting can help their overall long-term health.1 We know that every child is different, so we always suggest consulting with your pediatrician and evaluating your child’s health to determine if your little one is ready. Once you and your baby’s doctor feel it’s time, you must consider what you will give your baby. Here are the best-packaged baby food brands for your little one.
Best Baby Food Brands
Little Spoon is a great option for your family if you want to give your baby fresh, organic baby food but don’t have the time to prepare it yourself for every meal.
This baby food brand is subscription-based that delivers straight to your door every other week. We love that Little Spoon’s baby blends offer a fully customizable menu with over 80 organic ingredients. Parents can take a quick quiz on their website about their baby. Then, Little Spoon creates a personalized meal plan to meet their little one’s nutritional needs. All the different options expose your child to a nutritious, balanced diet and a wide variety of textures, flavors, and colors.
Little Spoon is an allergy-friendly company, so they don’t use the eight major allergens in their baby blends, including meat. And not only that, Little Spoon offers a line of boosters. These small packets are excellent nutritional supplements you can mix into your baby’s food.
Ready Set Food
Ready, Set, Food! is not a traditional baby food brand, but we feel every parent should know about their step-by-step allergen introduction system. Did you know that, according to the CDC, 5.6 million children in the U.S. have food allergies?2 That’s 1 in 13 kids. Again, according to the CDC, food allergies in kids have increased by 50 percent in recent years. With allergies to nuts, dairy, eggs, soy, gluten, and more on the rise, many parents are left wondering what to do about it.
The good thing is three clinical studies show that up to 80% of peanut, egg and milk allergies can be prevented.3 For the first time, results clearly showed that early exposure is key to reducing future food allergy risk. They say that breastfeeding alone doesn’t have the same allergy risk-reducing effect. Introducing egg, peanut, and milk gives the best results during the age of 4-11 months. The AAP, NIH, and other national medical organizations now support this approach.
But how do parents safely do this? This is why two doctors designed Ready, Set, Food! Their system consists of packets containing pure, 100% non-GMO, organic peanuts, cooked egg whites, and cow’s milk individually packaged in safe, targeted amounts. All parents have to do is open the packet for the day and add the finely powdered contents into their baby’s bottle of expressed breastmilk or formula. Amazing! This might not be your traditional baby food brand, but introducing these foods safely is a great way to reduce your baby’s future food allergies.
Once Upon a Farm
Once Upon a Farm is a great option if you want to give your baby fresh baby food but aren’t interested in a subscription service that delivers to your door. This baby food brand was co-founded by Jennifer Garner (whom I also met and who is super sweet). Their baby food pouches contain cold-pressed purees, which is different than what we usually see in pouches – cooked purees. Using the cold-pressed process, they are locking in the nutrients of the farm-fresh ingredients. Because of this method, their pouches must remain cold in the fridge or with an ice pack.
We love that every ingredient they use is certified USDA organic and sustainably grown. Their baby foods are also available in three different stages. Each stage increases with texture and more complex flavors for your growing babies and toddlers.
Amara Organic Baby Food
What’s another great baby food brand that uses cold-pressed to lock in nutrients? Amara Organic Baby Food! This baby food brand is the future of baby food and is truly amazing. Instead of heat, their baby food has been cold-pressed and freeze-dried. This locks in those original nutrients and vitamins in the fruits and veggies, unlike any other jar or pouch.
We love that Amara easily mixes with breast milk, formula, or water and gives your baby homemade baby food ready to eat in seconds! Amara is perfect for you if your family travels a lot or is constantly on the go. It travels easily and perfectly with its small packaging. Just have a bowl, spoon, and a package ready with your breastmilk, formula, or water, and you are ready to feed your baby wherever you are! Their blends are tasty and nutritious and made with the best ingredients. In the end, this is what every parent wants for their growing child.
Sprout is another wonderful baby food brand that makes a complete collection of over 50 different organic baby food products for babies and children. They use ingredients like zucchini, chickpeas, and quinoa. These ingredients offer a vast range of textures and flavors for our growing little ones’ palates. What sets Sprout apart? They use plant-powered products which contain vegetable-based protein from organic beans and legumes.
We love that their chef-inspired baby food purees are made from minimally processed whole foods sourced from certified-organic growers. This means no concentrates, preservatives, or GMOs, making happy parents and healthy babies.