As an award-winning actor and busy mom of three, you might think Jennifer Garner had enough on her plate. But no—in 2015 she co-founded Once Upon a Farm, devoted to providing high-quality organic food for families. And recently she went a step further by introducing a range of “farm-to-table” baby food. (Psst… if you love farm-to-table food, check out these recipes.)
What inspired Jennifer Garner to make organic baby food?
Jennifer explained her inspiration to Living Maxwell: “As a mom with three kids, I have three lunch boxes to pack each day and understand the problems that must be solved with serving fresh food to young children.” So she set out to balance the equation of wanting to give your kids great food when you’re rushed off your feet.
The company mission sums it up in a nutshell: “To nurture our children, each other, and the earth in order to pass along a healthier and happier world for the next generation.” And if you think about it, this makes perfect sense.
The result was Once Upon a Farm’s new range of baby food, produced with the same ethos as the rest of their products.
The Once Upon a Farm mission
If we want to encourage our kids to enjoy healthy, nutritious food, why would we serve up anything but the best right from the get-go? So Once Upon a Farm focuses on using locally sourced, organic ingredients. And you don’t need to worry about “extras” either. You won’t find sugar, preservatives, or “other ingredients you can’t pronounce” in any of their foods.
Plus, their cold-processing extends the shelf life without affecting the taste and texture—so important when we’re introducing our tiny gourmets to the myriad of flavors and consistencies in the world of delicious food!
And baby food doesn’t have to be boringly bland or tooth-achingly sweet either! The Once Upon a Farm range includes a few ingredients unique to prepared baby food, like kale, turmeric and ginger—all of which have great health benefits.
Baby food options
Applesauce is a staple for weaning, and there are three mouthwatering flavors on offer, including spiced apple and a cinnamon-flavored variety. (If you’re looking for tasty applesauce for your young brood, check out our recipe for a good old-fashioned applesauce).
Fabulous fruit purees
Once your baby has got to grips with applesauce, you can tickle their taste buds with a wider variety of fruit, such as mango or strawberries (although be aware of possible allergies). And remember not to use honey as a sweetener—pediatricians advise that babies don’t try it before they hit a year.
Once Upon a Farm uses date syrup for added sweetness, and they offer tempting delights like mango, pears and an apple-blueberry combo that sounds good enough for mom or dad to steal!
Veggies also make a good starter food, full of nutrients and all kinds of good things. And introducing interesting tastes early makes it less likely they’ll turn their nose up at a serving of broccoli further down the line. The Once Upon a Farm range includes sweet potato, butternut squash, avocado and a mega-mix of goodies including carrots and beets.
Again, making your own veggie purees is easy with a good blender. Here’s our homemade baby food guide. You can thin these purees out with homemade chicken stock for extra nutrients. But watch with the salt, because miniature kidneys can’t handle sodium as well as an adult one!
Who doesn’t love a bowl of steaming oatmeal? And babies are no exception. Once Upon a Farm jazzes up their oatmeal with fruit, raisins, vanilla and cinnamon, but really the flavor possibilities are endless. For a few ideas for homemade oatmeal mix-ins, check out our guide to great oatmeal combos.
Nutritious home-cooked foods are a wonderful way to set your baby up for a lifetime of healthy eating. But as a busy parent, you might also appreciate the convenience of the Once Upon a Farm range when life gets too hectic for home cooking (plus, a great celebrity mama behind the brand is a plus!).