There’s nothing new about organic baby food. It’s been on grocery shelves for a while, and even the major infant-food makers have laid claim to the “natural” label. But a wave of innovation promises fresher, more natural food for your little one. Several small companies – most owned by moms who wanted to keep their own babies’ meals healthy – are making frozen organic baby food that comes in little serving-sized ice-cube-like trays.
For most adults, the “biggest trigger” to go organic is having a baby, according to Progressive Grocer, a trade magazine. The magazine cites a study that said sales of baby food with “organic” on the label rose more than 16 percent last year – and regular baby food sales dropped .8 percent. Parents say the main reason they want organic food for baby is to avoid pesticide-laden meals, the magazine says.
At least six makers of the frozen cubes have sprung up in the last few years. Several of them serve a limited market area, but others have made it to the freezers of Whole Foods and a handful of other major retail chains in the U.S. and Canada. One says it can ship the frozen cubes anywhere in the U.S.
Happybaby – sold at many Whole Foods – sells 12 one-ounce cubes (4 servings) for $4.99 a box and each box has two flavors. Among their offerings are Thank You Carrots, Paradise Puree and Chick Chick chicken.
Designer Stella McCartney is a fan of Tasty Baby frozen organic cubes, which comes in 9 flavors and is sold in California, Arizona and Nevada. On the East Coast, BoBoBaby sells organic baby cubes in a few states and Canada, but you can also buy their food online from Wellness Grocer. There, a 12-ounce box that highlights the proper age to give your baby each of their products, will cost $5.49. BoBoBaby says its goodies are kosher and free of most any ingredient that you might not want to serve – from salt to sugar to peanuts to dairy or meat.
If meat doesn’t bother you, Plum Organics (also at Whole Foods) sells frozen cubes that have chicken or beef, along with whole grains, fruit and veggies. Baby Cubes operates in the San Francisco area, but they will ship their frozen goodies nationwide.
For lots of parents these pop-em and heat-em baby meals will be convenient, even if they are a little pricey. But if you want to do it yourself, Fresh Baby makes a “So Easy Baby Food Kit” for about $35.
If you really want to do it yourself, buy fresh organic produce, two ice cube trays and follow the advice for cooking, pureeing and freezing at the Early Motherhood website.