Friday, October 12, 2012

Adventures in baby-food Making: Chicken

Making home-made pureed meat is probably the last thing I would ever see my self doing! It sounds gross and weird BUT I committed to attempting to make all of Sawyer's food and making meat should be no different. Of course I decided to start with chicken because I'll be honest I know NOTHING about cooking red meat or even ham so we are starting with what I know and then I will try to teach myself.
Usually we buy SmartChicken because it is hormone, antibiotics and preservative free. Dillon's now has a brand of chicken (Simple Truth Organic) that is exactly the same as SmartChicken but tons cheaper (like half). It worked great! We added some frozen carrots, half an onion and we had already made broccoli for dinner so threw a few florets in and it made a really nice Chicken Dinner for Sawyer.

Dillon's new SmartChicken- like chicken breasts


1. Add chicken and vegetables of your choice (we used frozen carrots & half an onion) to a pot covered in water
2. Cook on medium to high heat for 25-30 minutes covered until meat & veggies are very soft
3. Strain out stock in a separate container to use for processing.
4. shred or cut chicken into smaller pieces.
5. Put into a food processor, blender or Baby Bullet add some of the stock from cooking to the blender. I added about 1/2 cup. Puree. 
6. Put in storage containers, freeze or refrigerator depending on when you plan to use them. (Here are some rules of thumb – 3 days in refrigerator or 30 days in freezer)

Made 38 oz. of food which is more than 9 servings for Sawyer
The Math
This turned out to be way cheaper than I anticipated. When I think about cooking meat, I expect it to cost a lot. With just 2 chicken breasts, half a bag of frozen carrots, half an onion and some already cooked broccoli, the total only came to $4.02. That's a whole chicken meal practically! It made a ton too!

2 chicken breasts at  $3.27 for 1.37 lbs, half a bag of frozen carrots for 50 cents and half an onion for 25 cents – made 38 oz of baby food = $4.02
Total cost per ounce = 11 cents

Gerber 3rd Food Chicken & Mixed Vegetable comes in 1 – 6 oz. jar for $1.25 each,
so 38 ounces = $6.33
Total cost per ounce = 17 cents


1 day of Gerber 3rd Food Chicken & Mixed Veggie (1.5 containers or 9 ounces per day) = $1.63
1 day of Home-made Chicken & Veggies (9 ounces per day) = 99 cents
Total Savings per day = 64 cents
Total Savings per week (7 days) = $4.48
Total Savings per month (30 day month) = $19.20
Total Savings per year (365 days) = $233.60

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