8 clever ways of reducing food waste when BLW
We have teamed up with Zenia from The Flavour Academy to bring to you 8 clever ways which you can reduce your food waste whilst weaning your little one.
Introducing solid foods to your baby is one of the most exciting journey’s you will embark on. Although, it can come with an array of emotions and a few challenges with your little one ‘growing up’. This is such a magical milestone for you and your little one, so it's really important you are calm and take each day as it comes. It's normal to feel overwhelmed and anxious, but remember, when it comes to weaning there’s no rigid approach to BLW vs. purees. Some babies thrive on purees, others on finger foods, and some on both. My advice would be is instead of committing to a certain feeding philosophy, it's best to remain flexible in your approach. Follow your intuition and your baby's developmental signs.
In this article I will focus on weaning without waste – specifically when BLW where you may give your little one more control with feeding themselves. Naturally, we expect that this may come with some food being wasted. Tidy Tot carried out some research and found that typically, as much as 80% of a meal can be wasted during weaning. At the Flavour Academy we can show you and share some clever tips on reducing food waste when BLW
- Serve appropriate portion sizes: Give your baby small portions to start with and gradually increase the amount as they grow older and eat more. This will help you avoid wasting food by over-serving. With the point above, it is also important to remember, parents who choose to do BLW may also worry about whether or not their little one is getting enough nutrients as initially, not all of the food offered will get eaten so may tend to offer variety of fruits and vegetables at the same time. Stick to new foods everyday not necessarily in one day.
- Use leftovers creatively: If you have leftover food from finger foods like roasted veggies or chicken, try to incorporate it into your baby’s meals in other ways. For example, leftover cooked vegetables can be pureed and added to your baby’s food or used as a dip for finger foods. Roast chicken can be used to make other meals like chicken croquettes, pies, easy chicken biryani or lasagne. Leftover hard-boiled eggs can be mashed with avocado for some toast fingers. These are great ways to make your ingredients go further.
- Freeze leftovers and ‘new’ foods you’ve bought specifically for baby to try: If you have too much food left over from meals, you can freeze it for later use. Some parents may not be keen on certain ingredients but still offer their little ones these foods (which is great for exposure and variety) but this may mean that that particular food may not get consumed by other family members. Therefore, freezing is a great way to save money and also a good way of being consistent in offering these foods.
- Use fruits and vegetables creatively: If you have fruits and vegetables that are starting to go bad, try using them in smoothies or purees for your baby. This is a great way to use up produce that might otherwise go to waste. You can check this post for more ideas
- Repurpose food scraps: Use (and freeze) food scraps such as carrot tops, fresh herbs, onion and garlic skins to make rich, homemade and nutrient-dense vegetable broth or stock for soups and stews. You can also use leftover bread to make croutons or breadcrumbs.
- Compost food waste: If you have food scraps that can’t be used, consider composting them. This is a great way to reduce waste and create nutrient-rich soil for your garden.
- Plan meals in advance: By planning meals in advance and writing a shopping list, you can reduce the amount of food waste that occurs. This way you can also stick to buying only what you need which can help save you money.
- Store food/leftovers properly: Make sure you store food in the appropriate way to keep it fresh for as long as possible. Storing in airtight containers in the fridge can help reduce food waste due to spoilage.
Above are a few tips which I have put together, but it is also very important to ensure you have a good bib which catches food well. The Bib and Tray kit is a wonderful way to reduce food waste and also encourages your little one to pick the food up again.