A baby food maker is an appliance capable of processing foods into purees so that your baby can digest and absorb it more efficiently and safely. You can compare this device to a food processor but with additional features such as steaming or even bottle warming. If you are a busy parent who likes multi-tasking, an appliance who can do more than one thing is incredibly appealing, especially if your baby is going to start baby-led weaning.
So how can you choose the best model for your home? According to CuteLittleDarling.com, the best baby food maker is a device from the Homia. They have crowned this unit the best in the market because it is packed with features that both you and your baby can benefit from. This model also managed to tick off all the boxes in the best baby food maker checklist.
A baby food maker’s advantage over the traditional food processor or blender is the fact that it can do more than blending or pureeing. But what are the other functions that a baby food maker can do? Which of these functions are important?
- Blending: It is safe to say that blending is a core function of every model. This function is incredibly important when it comes to making baby food because this purees solid food into a more appropriate consistency for babies. You can also check the motor and blades of the baby food maker that you are buying just like you would when you are purchasing a blender or food processor. It wouldn’t be safe if a device still leaves large chunks of food after blending because it can lead to choking. Also, properly blended food means better nutrient absorption for your baby.
- Steaming: A common trend we notice with most baby food maker is that blending and steaming comes side by side. This is probably the main differencing feature of models with a blender/food processor; it can cook raw foods for you! We prefer steaming as the best method of cooking raw food for your baby because it preserves the food nutrients or you can collect the food extract from steaming and add it to the puree.
- Chopping: Chopping is a nice additional feature to have besides pureeing because this gives your baby a chance to try different textures of foods. Babies are naturally curious and giving him/her finger foods will let him/her learn how to feed himself/herself.
- Defrosting: Yes you read that right, defrosting. Some devices have a defrost function that would be incredibly useful for busy parents that like to make food in advance and store them in the fridge.
- Reheating: Along with defrosting, some baby food makers also added reheating as an additional function. If you can defrost and reheat in one device, this means you will have fewer dishes to wash and at the same time, gives you additional time flexibility to do other things.
- Auto-cleaning: Speaking of time flexibility, a food maker with an auto-clean function means you will have less time in the sink. This function also gives you less room for human error in cleaning that can lead to a broken unit. Most baby food makers are also built to be dishwasher-safe so you can make food then clean on-the-go.
- Disinfecting: We all know how sensitive babies are, and we have to be careful with everything we use for them. Disinfecting is a useful feature in addition to auto-cleaning because this gives you ease of mind with the device you use to make baby food.
- Bottle warming: Some devices have an additional compartment dedicated for bottle warming where you can leave bottles inside and let the baby food maker warm it for you.
- Bottle sterilizing: As we have mentioned earlier in disinfecting, everything our baby touches should be immaculately clean and safe. That is why bottle sterilizing is a great feature to have in a unit that you will be making your baby’s food in.
After reading these functions, it is up to you whether you would prefer a 4-in-1 unit over a 7-in-1 unit.
Tip: If you think that you don’t need functions like bottle sterilizing, for example, you can choose a baby food maker without it and find another unit with a function that you think you can use more than bottle sterilizing.
We believe that safety is the most essential feature a baby food maker can have. An excellent point to look out for is if the model that you are buying is free from chemicals that can leach into food.
- BPA: is a chemical found in polycarbonate plastics that can cause effects on young children’s brain and behavior. BPA also affects the prostate gland of developing children.
- Lead: is a toxicant that can affect brain development and cause behavioral changes in young children.
- PVC: a carcinogenic substance.
- Phthalate: is a chemical group that can disrupt hormones.
Besides chemicals, some devices also have safety features that you can take advantage of. Another selling point that baby food makers have is that it does the cooking for you. This means you should feel confident leaving it on its own. Some devices have sensors that can detect if their water tank water level is below necessary so that you know that you have to refill it and prevent overheating. Some additional safety features that you can find are heat-resistant surfaces to avoid accidental burns when transferring food and lock-on features that prevent the machine from starting when the main bowl is not attached correctly.
Ease of Usage
The best baby food maker you can have should be incredibly intuitive to use. Some food makers utilize a touchscreen panel, while some are designed with a single dial so you can use it using just one hand. Most food makers also use timers that will alert you once they have finished cooking the food so you can maximize the so-called ease of usage. This means you just cook-and-go, stress-free!
Alongside safety, a durable machine will give you fewer worries about random accidents like chipping, overheating, or plastic melting. You can choose models made with stainless steel or Tritan to ensure the unit’s longer lifespan.
Sometimes, the more features a baby food maker has, the bulkier it gets. Unfortunately, bulky appliances would be a problem for people with small kitchen space. But don’t worry, manufacturers have designed compact products without compromising functionality. There are even units with detachable cords so you can store them neatly.
If you have remembered the defrost and reheat features earlier, wouldn’t it be fitting if your baby food maker can make large batches of food? This might be an important factor to consider especially for busy parents who would instead make large batches in advance. Just keep in mind how much food will you make per serving and base your decision on that.
Baby-led weaning means introducing your baby to other foods besides breast milk. It is a very crucial milestone for your baby but also an excellent opportunity to have fun and bond with your baby. Even if you are quite busy, you don’t have to worry about getting dethroned as the best “chef” in your baby’s eyes. With the help of a properly chosen device, preparing baby food will be easy, fast, and safe.
Ideally, the best baby food maker you can have for your home should be able to fit in well with our checklist. However, you should base your final judgment with how you weigh which of the factors and features are your top priorities and which of them are you willing to compromise with another.
To wrap things up, we are very proud of you for choosing to make baby food yourself. We hope you have fun in finding the best baby food maker for your home. And always remember to research, research, and research!