# First Person: Making My Own Baby Food Saves Me \$31 a Month

Making my own baby food is not something I thought of as saving me money. I started this with my middle child and decided to keep it going with my youngest. When we fell on financial hardships a few months ago, I didn't realize how much money we would be able to put towards other things if we pureed and froze our own baby food. This is how much money I am saving by doing it myself, and how much it costs to make the food each month.

Cost of jarred food

Right now my son is just beginning to eat baby food, so everything is very basic. There are five vegetables and four fruits. He eats nearly three jars of food a day. Each jar costs \$0.63 at the local big box store. This means that the baby food we need for the entire month would cost \$56.70.

Cost of fruits and vegetables to puree

When we head to the grocery store, we purchase canned fruits and vegetables. Green beans, peas, peaches, and pears are all bought at once. The total for the four cans is \$2.21, including tax. I then head off and buy fresh sweet potatoes and bananas to mash. The price varies on those items depending on the store, but generally I can expect to spend around \$4 for both. The last thing on the list is applesauce, which is bought in a jar and costs just under \$3. We buy these items bi-weekly and spend a total of \$9.21. This means that our monthly total is \$18.42.

Items I can't make

There is baby cereal that I still have to buy. We mix it in the morning with formula and fruit. This runs about \$1.57 a box, and it is purchased bi-weekly. The cereal total for the month is \$3.14. I also have to buy squash in the jar because the hassle of making it at home is not worth it. I buy six jars a month, bringing my total to \$3.78. All the items that cannot be homemade come out to \$6.92.

The savings

Between buying the items from the store and making them homemade, I spend \$25.34 a month. By doing this myself, I am saving \$31.36. I am able to buy the items I need for two months by spending what I would normally spend in a month if I strictly bought and used only the pre-made food.

After everything is said and done, it is cheaper to make my own baby food. While the process can be messy and tedious, it is worth the savings of \$30.

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