Thursday, March 28, 2013

Review: Freshfoods Cook-n-Blend Baby Food Maker

I talked about my woes recently with my perfect eater turning the tables on us. Our 13-month old is disinterested in eating table food and is quite fine drinking his dinner every night. I know that as long as he's getting the nutrients, I shouldn't bother with how they are being consumed, so we've resorted to a more pureed and liquid diet for the last week. I even bought some reusable squeeze packs so I can puree up my own foods for him to eat.

Problem is, I had no purees left in the freezer. I guess it was perfect timing, because I was given the opportunity to test out a fun baby food maker that works for kids right in Benjamin's age range. The Freshfoods Cook-n-Blend Baby Food Maker suits kids from 6m-36m+ and can even be used by the whole family using the smoothie blade, for homemade applesauce, or even to make fruit fillers for popsicles. I think this will come in handy if we ever have another kiddo in our home, as I doubt I'll have nearly the amount of time I have with Benjamin to devote to making healthy foods. This machine will make that possible.
I was excited that I could both steam and blend all in the same device, which is something my regular blender doesn't have the capacity to do, and I end up using a lot of dishes. I'll list up the pros and cons of using this cute little baby food makin' machine after some pictures. I've used it twice now; once for making steamed carrots and the other for steaming/pureeing up some fruits and veggies for his reusable squeeze pouches (aka, the only thing my picky eater will ingest right now besides crackers).

The carrots were steamed up perfectly. Not too mushy where they fall apart, but perfect for little fingers. It takes 17 minutes to steam and the Freshfoods maker turns off with two beeps when finished. No overboiling on the stovetop with a busy toddler rummaging through the house.
For the puree, I cut up one regular sweet potato and one small apple. I placed them in the steamer basket, added the 7 oz. of water for steaming, and pressed the on button. 17 minutes later, I opened the container and poured it all into the nutrient-rich water and pureed until smooth.
While I could've stopped there, I also wanted to add some avocado to the mix. I threw it into the orange mixture and pureed until it was incorporated and smooth. Then I filled up four 6-oz. reusable squeeze packs for the kiddo. He happily consumed one for lunch yesterday.

Pros:
- Both steams and purees in the same container... saves dishes...which saves time...and water!
- Quick and easy to fill
- Self-timer for steaming is so helpful for a busy mom
- Saves money
- Cooks, blends, reheats, and defrosts
- Don't lose out on the nutrient-rich water by incorporating that into your puree.
- Comes with two steamer baskets to separate foods
- Attractive and compact design that won't take up much space in the kitchen.
- Combinations of foods are endless
- Comes with smoothie blade, spatula, and recipe book.

Cons:
- No measurements on the processor container itself, making it hard to judge how much food is being made.
- Water must be measured in a separate device before pouring it in. The fill line makes it hard to judge.
- Small capacity allowed barely 1 regular sweet potato and one small apple for steaming.
- To puree, you must hold down the lever. It would be nice to have a timer or easy-push button for that.
- No easy-pour spout. I had to use a spoon to scoop out the puree. They wouldn't pour easily from the sides.

Overall, I really liked the machine and I'll continue using it to fill those reusable pouches. I've even considered making applesauce in there for my husband's lunches as well, and I can't wait for the weather to warm up so I can test out making popsicles with fresh berries.

There are a series of accessories to complement the baby food maker as well:
Freshfoods Mash & Serve Bowl: Home or on-the-go mashing of already steamed veggies/fruits
Freshfoods Food Mill: Simple mill that grinds up hard-to-digest skins on veggies/fruits
Freshfoods Freezer Tray: 9-portion silicone covered tray for easy and quick storage
Freshfoods Stackable Cubes: Easy to use little cubes to hold baby food
Freshfoods Fill & Freeze Pops: For your homemade popsicles!

For more information about the NUK/Freshfoods brand, see their website or facebook page. They also have a $20 off coupon for the Freshfoods Cook-n-Blend Baby Food Maker, and a coupon for $1 off any accessory I mentioned above by clicking here. I'd love to have those freezer pops myself!

I was given this opportunity as part of {Green} Moms Meet. Moms Meet is an online resource for moms that encourages healthy and green parenting/living. As an added bonus, I sometimes get to share healthy, green products with friends at playdates and report back on our likes/dislikes.

Disclaimer: I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms Meet program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agreed to use this product and post my opinions on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturer of the product.

2 comments:

Teresa said... [Reply to comment]

This is really similar to the Babycook we have from Williams Sonoma. I agree, being able to steam and blend at the same time is awesome! We still use the Vitamix for some purees (mostly those that don't have to be cooked), but we love the baby food maker! I've had mixed results using the pasta/rice cooker that came with it. I'm more inclined to just cook that stuff on the stove or with our food.

LauraJane said... [Reply to comment]

That's awesome, and AMAZING timing!!! I hadn't thought about using it for making popsicles- such a great idea! :)