I decided while I was pregnant that I wanted to make all of Everly’s baby food. I knew I would probably stay home so I would definitely have the time and over the years it has become more and more important to me to eat foods as close to their original, unprocessed form. So I wanted to use that same line of thinking for my baby’s food. AND, I’m kind of a cheapskate sometimes.
I prepared quite a bit of fruits and veggies for the babe but I also thought it would be a good idea to make my own rice cereal. Rice cereal really isn’t that expensive but I wanted to use brown rice instead of white which was a little harder to come by and a little more expensive. Ultimately, I wanted to always have food around the house rather than getting to that dreaded day when I open up the cupboard and realize we are out of food for the baby. Making it at home ensures that there are no 6 am emergency trips to the grocery store for baby breakfast. We always have rice.
It is actually really easy, all you do is throw some rice in a food processor and run it until it becomes a fine flour. I used my mom’s vita-mix which makes light work of the grinding process. Here’s what it looks like when you’re done. Unlike boxed rice cereal, homemade rice cereal does need to be cooked before feeding to baby. To make it a more user-friendly food I make a large batch and freeze it. All you need is a ziplock bag and some ice cube trays. This is how I do it.
STEP ONE: Cook up a batch of rice using the rice flour you made in the food processor. I cook it on the stove top in a large pot. Start with some hot water, whisk in the flour, then I add more hot water until it reaches the consistency thats right for your little one.
STEP TWO: Let rice cool and pour into a ziplock bag. I usually put the bag inside some sort of container to keep it from spilling.STEP THREE: seal bag and snip off one corner (better to start small if you snip too much things can get out of control)STEP FOUR: fill ice cube trays with rice cerealSTEP FIVE: tap trays on counter to eliminate air bubbles and freezeSTEP SIX: once frozen pop cubes out of trays and store in labeled bag in freezerI take a few cubes out of the freezer and place them in a bowl in the fridge a meal in advance. If you aren’t planning a head they are easy to microwave from frozen. Rice can be stored for up to six months in the freezer.
*As a first food homemade rice cereal can be a little harder for a new eater to process. I started out with store-bought rice cereal and slowly switched over to the homemade version just to give her digestive tract a fighting chance. It seemed to be a pretty smooth transition.