While most new moms pack their registry with bottles and nursing gear, fewer have time map out the kitchen tools they’ll crave in four to six months when baby starts on solids. (Truth: your itty bitty newborn will be snacking on sweet potato faster than you think!) Registered dietitians Amanda Baker Lemein and Julie Pappas did the vetting for you—check out their favorite mom-tested, expert-approved feeding tools that make prepping nutritious meals and snacks a whole lot easier—and actually a lot of fun.
Puree dispensing spoon
The Boon Baby Food Dispensing Spoon makes the early days of feeding super simple—just fill the spoon with a puree (easy cleanup!), then store in the fridge for the next meal time. Bonus: this gadget is great for feeding on the go, too.
This teeny tiny cup from EZPZ helps introduce baby to drinking out of an open cup. (A number of speech pathologists and registered dietitians prefer this or straw cups to sippy cups.) This soft, silicone helps protect baby’s teeth and provides a non-slip grip. (It can be a little messy while baby gets used to an open cup—we love this one for at-home mealtimes.)
Ice cube trays and muffin tins
Batch cooking is a mom’s best friend, but it can be difficult when you’re thawing such small potions at a time. Ice cube trays (either the old-school kind, or BPA-free silicone freezer trays that make it super easy to pop the cubes out) are perfect for freezing puree cubes to be defrosted when needed. As your baby turns into a toddler and needs larger portions, muffin tins can be used to mold whole foods like veggie medleys, chillis, or mac & cheese.
These silicone, self-sealing bags work like your trusty plastic baggies, only better because they’re sans BPA and eliminate waste. You can use them to store fresh foods or leftovers or take a snack on the go, and they’re even safe for the microwave, dishwasher, fridge, freezer and oven. (They make a great pacifier case for long flights when you need 5 or 6 at the ready, too.)
Bowls and plates that stick to surfaces
Suctioned bowls and plates are worth the extra pennies—especially once your little has discovered the ‘drop it’ game. They make clean up much easier for mom and keep mealtime frustration-free for toddlers who can’t manage to hold a bowl and spoon at the same time. Brands we love: EZPZ, Munchkin and Bumpkins.
If you plan on making your own baby food, investing in one of these little machines will make the whole steaming and pureeing process totally goof proof and mess-free—no timers or hot pots of water needed. (You can even use the machine to defrost or reheat frozen food cubes.)
Plain and simple—you’ll love having one of these around to quickly cut up foods like pancakes, quesadillas, and toast sticks as your child starts munching on more finger foods.