Practically every parenting magazine or article out there praise breast milk to the skies, and rightly so! What else can give your baby such complete nutrition, at the perfect temperature and in the perfect quantity? That’s right – nothing else! While breast milk is great when it’s had straight from the tap, the expressed version of liquid gold can also be very useful. Yes, you can also try cooking with breast milk or formula!
There are probably many recipes that you’d like to try for your baby, but are hesitating because they call for the use of cow’s milk. And we all know that cow’s milk is not recommended for infants under one year of age. Most recipes will taste just as well by substituting cow’s milk with breast milk. If you are having trouble pumping, or you need a relatively large quantity of milk, you can also use infant formula in the recipe and nurse baby at other times. This is also a great way to use up extra breast milk in your fridge or freezer before they get spoilt. Many working Moms find that their babies refuse the bottle when they’re away, so using recipes with breast milk may be a great way to make sure they still get Mommy’s milk in their tummies!
Tips for Cooking with Breast Milk or Formula
1. The storage conditions of breast milk should be strictly monitored. Generally speaking, breast milk is good for 6 hours at room temperature, for 6 days in your fridge and for 6 months in the freezer.
2. Breast milk from the fridge can be brought to room temperature and used or placed in a bowl of warm water. You can also thaw and use frozen breast milk.
3. Thawed breast milk cannot be re-frozen.
4. If you’d like to use breast milk as a thinning agent and you freeze baby food, thaw the food first, and then add the breast milk.
5. Reheating breast milk should be fine in most cases but some Moms find that it can make the milk smell unpleasant.
6. Breast milk can be thinner than full fat cow’s milk, so it can affect the structure of your dish.
7. If you’re using formula, don’t keep it for more than 2 hours at room temperature and for more than 24 hours in the fridge. Never freeze formula and if it’s been more than one hour since the baby first started, throw the rest away.
8. Formula may be sweeter than breast milk, so adjust the recipe accordingly.
9. Always take care to sterilize all the equipment used to prepare baby’s food, whether using formula or breast milk.
Get more information about using a breast pump and storing breast milk in our post here.
8 Baby Recipes to make with Breast Milk or Formula
1. Breast Milk Pancakes
These pancakes from Daily Mom are a breeze to make and are ideal as finger foods or for baby led weaning. For young babies, you can skip the baking powder.
2. Breast Milk Butter
Yes, you can make butter from breast milk! This recipe from Food.com is pretty basic – just pour in a jar and shake, shake, shake till you get butter! Spread on pancakes for baby to enjoy!
3. Breast Milk Yogurt
Many Moms have tried making yogurt with breast milk, but some have reported it being too runny. Our advice is to try this recipe from Hippie Inside and add a little formula mix to make it thicker before leaving to set. Add fruit puree for flavored yogurt.
4. Breast Milk Banana Ice Cream
Now here’s the perfect summer treat for baby! Fit Mommy Diaries shows you how you can make breast milk ice cream where the milk and banana add the required sweetness and cinnamon gives it an extra zing!
5. Teething Popsicles
These popsicles from Fit Mommy Diaries are the best thing you can offer your teething baby to calm those sore gums! The cold is soothing to his gums and he also gets in some nutrition at the same time!
6. Breast Milk Smoothie
Okay, now this is something new! Grasping for Objectivity gives us a detailed account of how her son readily slurped up a breast milk smoothie made with frozen breast milk and peach puree. You can use any fruit of your baby’s choice.
7. Breast Milk Porridge
Porridge is one of the most common things on every baby’s menu, and My Fussy Eater shows you how simple it is to make it extra healthy with breast milk! Our tip – use 100% organic oatmeal for more nutrition.
8. Breast Milk Chocolate Banana Custard
If you’d like a dessert but don’t want it frozen, you can try this chocolate banana custard from Baby Centre. Get your doctor’s go-ahead before using the chocolate; else stick to the banana. It’ll still taste great!
In each recipe, you can substitute breast milk for the same amount of infant formula – just be sure to mix it correctly according to package instructions. Did you know that you can make a whole lot of non-food things with breast milk too? Yes, there are lotions, eczema creams, rash creams, nipple creams and soaps made with breast milk! Would you ever try them out, or are you content with using breast milk in your baby’s food?
39 years ago, when our son was a baby & our daughter was 2, I put breastmilk on her cereal & everybody I mentioned it to thought that was just gross. For the life of me, I couldn’t understand why. I’m glad to see it’s becoming socially acceptable to do the most natural thing for babies & toddlers & continue the most healthful food nature provided for them through their transition to other healthful foods.
Yes, you are right Lia 🙂
Hi can I make indian sweet with leftover formula powder more then 4 week open container box .
Dr Hemapriya says
You can make recipe for adults if it has not crossed the expiry date.
You contradict yourself, you say you can cook with formula then in comments you are saying not to use formula. I want to make cheese or butter with the extra container of powdered formula.
Dr Hemapriya says
In the first recipe if you see the pancake needs to be cooked for this recipe you cannot use Formula milk.
Formula milk cannot be cooked or heated or frozen but you can use it in smoothie to make formula milk yogurt as suggested in other recipe dear.
You can use formula milk but the main note is not to cook,heat or freeze it by doing this you are altering the components of the formula milk if it happens then it is dangerous for a child to have this formula milk.
You can use formula milk in recipes which doesn’t include these cooking or freezing methods dear.
Hello can I make any sweet with formula milk
You can add formula milk after preparing any sweet recipe (please make sure to select recipe according to baby’s age). Formula milk is not to be cooked.
Hi can we boil formula milk for cooking puree
You can add formula milk after making the puree.
what proportion of fm can be added for 18month old? (1:1 ie The fm pack I use says 30ml water for 1scoop.) or is it ok to water it down or water it up?
Also is it ok to add just formula milk powder to steamed fruit puree without adding any water? Because adding fm makes it too runny and difficult to feed with spoon.
My 18 month old has suddenly started refusing milk, so as an alternative, I would like to know if I can give him pureed fruits with fm powder ( say for eg 5 scoops to each serving of puréed fruits) 3 times in a day? To make sure he meets his calcium requirements? I understand with this, total water intake may fall if not properly hydrated, but by offering fm powder this way, does it harm the baby?
Dr Hemapriya says
Please make sure to prepare the milk (with formula powder) and then add it to the food when it’s in room temperature. You can make the milk thick according to your preference.
Can I bake with formula? Like make little muffins for my lo?
No dear, Formula is not to be baked.
Hi! Can I use Enfamil formula to make puree?
Yes dear, You can use the formula milk which you are regularly using.
Is it safe to bake breastmilk for baby food?
It’s completely safe to cook with breast milk dear.
Can I cook breast milk to make ragi porridge or wheat porridge or anything?
Dr Hemapriya says
Hi Prachi, You can add breastmilk to make the porridge thinner after cooking.
Hello! Thanks for this post! I know that you’re not supposed to thaw and re-freeze breast milk. But what if I make breast milk pancakes with thawed milk, then want to freeze the pancakes? Do you know if that’s safe to do?
Dr Hemapriya says
Hello Melanie, No it is better not to freeze pancakes made from breast milk.