Can i use breast milk storage bags for baby food

Breastmilk Bags - 8 Other Ways To Reuse Breast Milk Storage Bags

It doesn’t matter whether your breastmilk bags are reusable or from the unused stash, do not throw them away. With everyone trying to reduce waste, there are so many ingenious ways to reuse or upcycle your belongings instead of throwing them out. Here are 8 other ways you can put those breastmilk bags to work without adding more stress on Mother Earth.

1. Freeze smoothies

Image | Pinterest

Store your precut fruit mix in them because they are great for rush days when you only have time to make a quick smoothie for breakfast. Just cut up your fruits on grocery day and mix them up into whatever combos you prefer before freezing them. That way they are always ready for you when you need to make a quick smoothie.

2. Freeze baby food

Image | Musely

Aside from storing milk, breastmilk bags are great for storing homemade baby food as well. These are great for busy mums who need to cook them in huge batches over the weekend and weaning babies. Just freeze according to the portion you want. No eyeballing needed since you already have the measurements printed on the bags for you.

3. Store medication that leaks

Image | Pinterest

Have you ever tried putting all your bottle medications into a ziplock bag that’s a tad too big only to have them knock against each other and spill? Well, then try using breastmilk bags instead because not only will they stay upright all the time, you will also be able to fit in the syringe together.

4. Protect your phone from getting wet

Image | shakymommy

Knowing how well breastmilk bags are made and how leak proof they are, you could actually use them to protect your phones from getting wet. Of course, we’re not suggesting that you take your phone diving with you, but those double ziplock bags will definitely make your phone splash proof.

5. Bag your toiletries when travelling

Image | mrsmommyholic

Breastmilk bags are also great when you’re travelling with different toiletries. Smaller bags mean you can pack your toiletries into groups rather than dump several bottles into a large ziplock bag only to have them all mixed up.

6. Freeze your leftover boozy punch from Christmas

Image | Pinterest

Have some leftover punch from Christmas? Don’t throw them out! You can pack them into serving size with these breastmilk bags! Great for late night drinks and you won’t even need to break out the blender or worse, wake everyone up.

7. Soups or Broth

Image | rays_zen

If you’re on a keto diet, this is a good tip for you because now you have a way to keep all that bone broth you’ve been slaving over the stove for hours. Okay so maybe your pressure cooker did all the work, but with these breastmilk bags you will be able to store each portion easily and enjoy them throughout the weeks.

8. Packed fruits for the kids

Image | madtownworkit

This is a super great idea when you’re going on road trips with kids. Pack crackers, fruits or even pretzels into these breastmilk bags and hand them out to each child when they are feeling hungry. No need for unnecessary pit stops along the way and they can always reseal the bag themselves if they cannot finish.

Did we miss out any other ingenious uses for breast milk storage bags? Let us know in the comment box below!

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Everything You Need to Know About Storing Homemade Baby Food

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    This post may contain affiliate links. This means I get paid a small commision for things I gladly recommend at no extra cost to you.

    If you are ready to prepare some solids for your baby, you are going to need to know how to store your homemade baby food. Ever since I started my Instagram account, I have shared many of my followers’ baby food preps from real moms.  Here are 4 outstanding before and after examples of baby food preps from real moms you must see. It’s my way of praising the parent for all their hard work and also to show different recipes, explain how long it took, etc.

    The most asked question I get from these posts is “What container is that?”.  With so many options for storing homemade baby food these days, how do you choose?  Here are seven different “buckets” and my view on each.

    More baby food tips:

    • Best Blenders for Baby Food
    • 13 Baby Food Prep Hacks That Save Time & Money
    • FREE PRINTABLE: Baby Food Meal Planner

    But before we get to the storage solutions, make sure you know that baby food lasts 3 days in the fridge, and 3 months in the freezer. That’s why it’s so important to label the storage solution of your choice with the name of the combination and the date it was stored in the fridge or freezer.

    So let’s get started on all your storage solution options!

    1.  Ice trays

    The simplest and probably cheapest way to store homemade baby food is in ice cube trays. These are obviously easy to find and cheap – you can even find them at the dollar store.  These are a great starting point for young babies as the volume needed is not as high.   Filling up 2-3 ice cube trays would be easy and quick and could last a 4-6-month-old the rest of the week (since at this stage, it’s mostly experimenting with food and testing for allergies).

    A Must Read: 3 Mistakes New Parents Make When Starting Homemade Baby Food

    2.  Store Bought Baby Food Glass Jar

    If you’ve purchased some store bought baby food (it’s ok!), but don’t throw them out, it’s perfectly fine to re-use them – I did!  I used these to store a large batch of my Hearty Cauliflower and Chicken soup.

    3.  Mason Jars

    Mason jars are my favorite for storing homemade baby food.  They could be found anywhere these days, even at the dollar store. They come in small, medium and large so you have plenty of options. Make sure wash thoroughly before you first use them – even sterilize them just in case.  If you decide to go this route, I would highly recommend the jars by Sage Spoonfuls.  This system is compact, versatile and durable.  I still use it today, even though I’m way past the puree stage.  Below you can find my Kale, Parsnip, and Pear Puree.

    4.  Silicone Trays

    Silicone trays are great because these days there are so many brands that make these in all sorts of shapes and colors. This option is the easiest to extract the food because you can push the pocket up without breaking and the food doesn’t stick to the silicone. Here are some great brands that make silicone trays:

    • Baby Bullet (pictured below)
    • Kiddo Feedo
    • Nuk
    • WeeSprout
    • Tovolo

    A Must Read: 4 Must See Before & After Baby Food Preps!

    5.  Food Storage Bags (sandwich/snack)

    There are 2 ways you can use sandwich bags for storing homemade baby food – 1. Put the entire serving in 1 bag, or stock up many individual cubes in a large freezer bag. This is also a great way to extend the food capacity when you are making a big prep – freeze in cubes, then move them to bags, and then continue filling the cubes.  Infinite space!  Also, Glad, Ziplock, and Target food bags are all BPA free according to their websites.

    6.  Breast Milk Bags (puree & finger food)

    If you over-estimated how many breast milk bags you needed or run out of ziplock bags, you can definitely grab the breastmilk bags to store solids. If it’s good for breast milk, it’s good for solids!  I know I had a bunch of leftover bags so I put them to use.  Just like the ziplock bags, you can include the entire serving or add cubes.  This is a great option when sending pre-portioned food to daycare or the sitters.

    7.  Reusable Baby Food Pouch

    Reusable baby food pouches have really exploded in the last 5 years. There are tons of options and many cute ones as well!   The idea is you prefill for on the go. But note that these are generally one serving per pouch so if you want this to be your main source of baby food storage, make sure you have a lot of them.  I recommend using other forms like ice trays or silicone trays along with these food pouches.  I own pouches by Sage Spoonfuls and Little Green Pouch.

    Please note that you don’t just have to use 1 of these methods for storing homemade baby food.  Use a few different ones at a time, or whatever you have handy at the time.  The idea is to get it done and in the freezer.  You can keep in the freezer for up to 3 months.

    4 Must See Before & After Baby Food Preps!
    Homemade Baby Food Recipe: Cinnamon Fruit and Quinoa Breakfast
    Homemade Baby Food Recipe: Banana & Peach Buckwheat Breakfast
    Homemade Baby Food Recipe: Kale, Parsnip & Pear Puree

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      How to properly store expressed breast milk

      From the first days of a baby's life, doctors explain to parents that breast milk cannot be replaced even with the highest quality powdered formula and encourage them to breastfeed as long as possible. But what if the mother is ill, she needs to leave for a while, drive off to work or even on a business trip? Do not worry and hastily transfer the child to artificial feeding. You need to learn how to properly store expressed milk, which at the same time retains the main composition of useful substances for quite a long time.

      Conditions for storing expressed breast milk

      To facilitate the storage of breast milk, manufacturers produce a wide range of related products: various models of breast pumps, container bottles in which baby food can be cooled and even frozen.

      For expressed milk, glass or good quality plastic containers are best. The main rule when choosing a container is ease of use. Special bags with fasteners, which can be found in pharmacies, are also excellent. These containers are sterile, ready to use and take up little space in the refrigerator. The fasteners of such packages are made in the form of wire ties or special fixing elements. It is desirable that the volume of contents in milliliters be marked on the package. It is also important to have a label to indicate the date when the milk was expressed. The bags themselves are made of durable food-grade synthetic material. Often, packages and breast pumps of the same brand have attachments to each other. You can also store expressed breast milk in special plastic containers with sealed lids or in glass baby food jars.

      Any container for storing breast milk must be pre-sterilized. The volume of storage of one serving of breast milk should depend on the purpose - it will be supplementary feeding or main nutrition.

      Ordinary plastic bags are not suitable for storing breast milk, as they are not sterile, pasteurization may not be of good quality, and when the liquid is frozen, the seams may burst.

      How long does breast milk last?

      In order for milk not to lose its useful properties for as long as possible, it is necessary to follow a certain technology, depending on the expected storage period and temperature. Studies have shown that the product does not spoil within 4-6 hours at room temperature of 25°C. The most important factor in effective storage at any permitted temperature is the sterility of the container itself.

      At 0ºC the storage time is extended to 8 days. It is best to place breast milk containers closer to the far wall of the refrigerator. At the same time, temperature drops during the process of opening the door will not affect the storage conditions. Freezing is used for longer storage. Pediatricians say that even after defrosting, breast milk is healthier than any dry formula.

      How to freeze breast milk?

      After expressing, breast milk must be cooled before being placed in the freezer. The shelf life and shelf life depends on the stability of temperature conditions. It is permissible to keep the product in a freezer at -18 ... -20 ° C for six months. For these purposes, portable freezers or cooler bags are also suitable. In this case, you need to make sure that they have a really stable temperature. For short-term storage, you can use a thermos. First, it should be cooled, filled with ice for a while, and only then place a container with expressed breast milk there.

      How to defrost breast milk? It is worth noting that the use of a microwave oven is not recommended. There is a risk of overheating the liquid, while reducing useful properties. It is best to heat frozen breast milk in a water bath, without bringing the water to a boil.

      Creating a Personal Breast Milk Bank

      If you can breastfeed comfortably for yourself and your baby, that's great. However, life can take its toll, and to stay flexible and adapt to changing conditions, you need to be aware of the possibility of stockpiling your own milk – a “personal bank” of breast milk. The situations in which your baby may need such supplies may vary.

      • Need for mother or baby to leave.
      • The need for the mother to undergo a course of treatment incompatible with breastfeeding.
      • The need for the baby to be in the hospital without the possibility of the presence of his mother with him.
      • Mom's going to work.
      • Need to stop breastfeeding to heal cracked nipples.
      • A sluggish child. Such babies are slowly gaining weight, so it becomes necessary to supplement them with breast milk or formula.
      • Feeding twins. The rhythmic process of feeding twins is difficult to organize. And twins tend to be born weaker and smaller. Therefore, they need a supply of milk.
      • There are medical indications for feeding a baby only expressed breast milk.

      You can survive all these situations without harming breastfeeding if you learn how to express milk that is convenient for you and follow the conditions for its storage and subsequent use. It has long been proven that expressed breast milk does not lose its beneficial properties when properly handled.

      So, pumping is most conveniently done in the following way: feed the baby on one breast, pump on the other. The good thing is that both the front and rear fractions of milk, which differ in composition, fall into one container. And for the baby it is better that he receives all the fractions in one feeding. Of course, other options are also allowed. For example, if you have to pump out the leftovers after feeding, which can be transferred to the “bank”.

      And most importantly, remember that it is impossible to express all the milk to the last drop, since it is constantly synthesized in the mammary gland. As soon as you start expressing milk, the process of its production is activated. Stop pumping as soon as the breast being pumped feels soft to the touch.

      How should breast milk be stored?

      Heat-treated sterile containers from 90 to 150 milliliters can be used to store milk. Pharmacies sell special disposable bags (very convenient) for storing breast milk. They have a double fastener, a scale indicating the volume of contents, a place for marking, they are conveniently compactly folded into the freezer of the refrigerator.

      It is ideal to collect one portion of milk in one container. That is, if your feeding regimen is one breast at a time, then a bag of milk from one expressed breast is just the portion that is sufficient for your baby. If you do not fit into such a scheme, then fill one container with no more than 150 ml. Containers with milk must be marked with the date of pumping. You can fill one container during the day, adding small portions of milk to it, while storing it in the refrigerator for no more than a day, and then it must be stored in the freezer. When stored in a container, the milk may separate, this is normal, everything is in order with it, just shake the container a little before feeding to evenly mix the milk.

      What is the best temperature and shelf life for milk? - numbers that must be remembered and strictly observed.

      Freshly expressed breast milk can be stored at room temperature 24-26 0 C for up to 2-4 hours.

      • In the refrigerator at a temperature of 4±2 0 C milk can be stored for 24 hours. After this period, the milk should be used for feeding, or frozen.
      • In the freezer at -20 -18 0 C breast milk is optimally stored for no more than 3 months. Storage is allowed up to 6-12 months, but its useful properties will be destroyed.
      • Milk to be frozen should first be chilled in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

      Breast milk defrosting.

      For slow defrosting (preferably), place the container of milk in the refrigerator overnight.

      Learn more