“ Brand: Cow & Gate / Age: 4 months „
When you have a baby, noone ever tells you that it is ultra expensive. There are so many hidden costs that you will find you are constantly forking out for one thing or another. I love spending money, but after having one child I was certainly of a more sensible frame of mind when having my son four years later. There was no way I was going to be as frivolous as when I had my daughter.
If you walk into Asda or any other supermarket, You will see a whole isle dedicated to baby food. This baby food is as varied as you could imagine. Apart from the different brands there is also foods on offer which are organic and luxurious which cost a small fortune, to basic nutritious and lower in price.
Then there is the way the food is presented. Jars, boxes, packets, containers. It is quite overwhelming. However the one thing I have come to realise is that you do not have to pay the high end prices to get a good nutritious meal for your child.
One thing that I had tried on my daughter, which she loved was cow and gate baby balance in the fruity breakfast flavour. She always seemed to find the sharp and tarte flavour of the fruits both refreshing and delicious. What I loved about this box of food was that it was a heck of a lot more cost effective than the small jars of food.
This cow and gate fruity breakfast is bought in a sealed box, within the box is a silver keep fresh bag which will ensure that thepowder inside remains in a fresh condition. The breakfast is so easy to make up. Basically you take a couple of spoons of powder and add cooled boiled water. Then mix until you have a smooth consistency.
When i added the water, I could always get the sharp fruitiness of the ingredients coming through. I could most certainly sense the inclusion of oranges as I found their scent quite mouthwatering.
When I first introduced my son to this breakfast he wasnt sure. I think the sharp tarteness of this breakfast takes some getting used to. However he soon began to favour this breakfast over all the others. He thoroughly enjoyed the smooth texture and the deliciously strong and forceful flavours.
A box of this breakfast would last me a good couple of days. The cost of this box was around £1.80 which is of exceptional value. I was pleased to read on the box how dedicated cow and gate are in delivering the best quality, nutritionally balanced meals for babies.
There is a lot of intresting dietry information on the packaging. Including the benefits of choosing cow and gate for your baby. There is also a comprehensive list of ingredients.
The main reason why I loved using these boxes is apart from the price is that they are so convenient. They are so easy to prepare and quick and easy to give to your baby. However if you are travelling they are very difficult to store once opened.
Cow and Gate Baby Balance Fruity Breakfast is an ideal first weaning food for your baby. I have used it for both my children and particularly liked it due to the fact that you mix it with water rather than messing about mixing it with your baby's usual milk.
My son loved it and my daughter hated it so I have mixed experiences of using the product.
My daughter did not like it I believe as it is too bland a flavour and so I would say that this is a great food to start weaning your child on, but if your baby does not take to it, try something a bit more flavoursome such as a fruit puree.
This product can be used for breakfast, lunch or tea so don't think it is just for breakfast. It contains all the vitamins you'd expect to keep baby healthy.
As a first weaning food this is great, however my one reservation about the product is the price. The packet does not last long and giving your child normal breakfast cereals with their usual baby milk once weaning is established is a much more cost effective way of feeding your baby.
I am a big fan when it comes to baby foods that you mix yourself for weaning your children. Usually you should start them on just plain baby rice which I have never done. I believe that a child should be given something with a taste so that they are getting used to new tastes and have found that they take other foods much better. This breakfast in my opinion is the best because it is mixed fruit, so this is getting your child to taste a lot of different flavours all in one.
This is made by Cow and Gate and is part of the baby balance range. I bought this with my son who is now 5, my daughter who is now 2 and now my new little girl who is 6 months old. All of my children have loved this and once they are fully weaned and eating a bigger portion I am then able to swap them onto my food and breakfast mixed with their milk.
The baby balance range is good for many reasons, it is to enable your child to have a balanced diet and ensure that they get all the vitamins and minerals that they need to grow. This breakfast is from 4 months onwards, my son and first daughter were 4 months when they went to solids, while my new baby was 5 ½ months. This is able to be used until the child is 1 years old but more of the packet needs to be used when they get older which starts to make it more expensive which is why I change to my own foods.
The information on the pack is very helpful and tells you everything that the cereal is giving your child. It provides 1/3 of your baby's key daily vitamins and minerals with not added sugar or salt, there are no artificial colourings, flavourings or preservatives. The cereals in this recipe come from a field where only cereals for this baby food are grown. They are separately harvested and carefully dried to have the highest baby food standards. This is comforting to think that this is specially made for your child there are no added extras and every process is carefully monitored to ensure only the best is being produced. If you want further information about the range you can contact them by phone on 08457623623 or visit their web site on www.cowandgate.co.uk.
The points that they pride themselves on are that the cereal is smooth and easy to swallow, this is good to know when you are first weaning your child that they will be able to eat this with no problems. It is approved by babies and their mums, this is also very good to know because you can be assured that this is recommended by people who are really trying this product with their children. There are no artificial flavourings, colourings or preservatives, this is great because you are assured that your child is only getting the best and everything they need. It is also gluten free and no egg, this is good information if you have a child with dietary requirements so you know if it is safe for them to eat or not.
The ingredients in this are on the side of the pack which are Baby grade fruit (apple, banana, orange), milled cereals (corn rice), demineralised whey powder, skimmed milk powder, vegetable fat this does contain soy lecithin, calcium and vitamins iron and zinc. The vitamins that this breakfast contains are vitamin e, antithetic acid, thiamine (b1), vitamin b6, vitamin a, folic acid, biotin and vitamin d3. This shows that they are ensuring that all the vitamins are provided to help with your child's health and development.
The storage advice is stated on the box and is easy to understand. You store this in a cool dry place and use within 28 days of opening, mine is all used in a week so none is wasted in our house and is kept in a cupboard out of the way. There is also a mixing guide on the back of the pack which shows a simple picture at the side of the guide to make it easy to understand, you use one spoonful of cereal and 3 spoons of water and stir. You are able to add more or less water to change the consistency of the cereal for your child if it is too runny or too sticky.
The reasons that I like this cereal so much is because when weaning your child will only take small amounts at first and you are able to make the amount for your child so none is wasted. IThis is easy to use and hold some very important vitamins for my child's development. They do a wide range of flavours to try your child on but I find this is my children's favourite. I can mix this to the consistency that my child likes so that she will eat it. This can be used for almost a month so when your child is only taking little amounts it will last. Asda sell this at 3 packs for £5 which is a good deal and when they stop this deal another supermarket usually starts it in their store so it is easy to find it good value for money. It is a healthy breakfast that is easy to use and my children have all loved it. I would advise this to any parent weaning their child.
My Son loves this for his breakfast. He goes through a box every 5 days so i may have to move him on to the next age stage!
This cereal can be mixed with cool, boiled water so its much easier then messing about with breast or formula milk. On the box there are mixing guidelines but i tend to just put some of the cereal into the bowl and then mix in the water until i get the desired consistency. Once mixed i usually put it in the microwave for a few seconds, just to warm it up for him, especially now its winter. The only problem is that sometimes the mixture can turn quite stodgy when its has been heated this way so you may prefer to add hot boiling water instead and just wait for it to cool slightly.
These cereal boxes come in many flavours, another of my Son's favourites is Banana and Strawberry Breakfast. They aren't exactly cheap and are around £2.00 for a box. Its not that expensive if you have a baby with a small appetite but my Son would probably eat the whole box in a day if i let him!
My son loved this when I was first weaning him, and kept opening his mouth for more. It is made with water rather than milk which I found excellent for first stage (under 6 months) weaning as you cannot use cows milk, I do not use formula and if it needed to be mixed with milk I would have had to express which is extra hassle and difficult to fit around the 2 hourly breastfeeds he was already having.
You make it with 2 spoons of cereal to 6 spoons of water. It does not make it clear what size spoons but we used tablespoon measurements and the portion size seemed about right.
It meant that if I was out and about I could measure a portion of cereal and ask in a cafe or restaurant for some boiling water, mix it up easily and give him a warm, hassle-free meal. As I made all of his other food from scratch (no jars) it was a different taste for him and he certainly enjoyed it. It was ideal for taking on weekends away as it is easy to make up anywhere and saves problems when some restaurants won't heat baby food up, as they will all provide boiling water.
However I found that if you make it up as per instructions it is far too sloppy even for a 4 month old - it was like water and very difficult to spoon feed. This was easily solved by making it up to a thicker consistency though.
Once my son had started being weaned and had tried his first tastes of baby rice and plain fruit and vegetable, I decided to try him with a different flavour cereal for his breakfast so he was trying a variety of different flavours.
I decided to try him with the Cow and Gate baby balance fruity cereal; this cost £1.77 for a 125g box. The box itself is blue and has a picture of a baby with a spoon in its mouth on the front and has a picture of fruit at the side of it. At the top of the box it has the Cow and Gate logo and advises that it is from 4 months onwards. It also states that it has one third of key daily vitamins, no added sugar and no added salt. Again, the cereal itself is in a sealed, silver foil packet, once you cut this open you can see that the cereal is a light yellow in colour and is fine just like baby rice. The ingredients are baby grade fruit, which is apple, banana and orange, milled cereals, demineralised why powder, skimmed milk, vegetable fat, calcium, vitamins, iron and zinc.
I particularly liked this cereal as it was easier to make up than baby rice, as you didn't have to use the baby's usual milk, you can just mix it with water. It doesn't state what kind of water to use on the box but I have always used cooled, boiled water as I believe that a baby cannot drink tap water until he is at least 6 months old. It advises that you should mix one spoon of cereal with 3 spoons of water, therefore you just increase the amount of water for however many spoonfuls of food you use.
I used two spoons of cereal to start with and mixed this with roughly 5 spoons of water to form a slightly thicker consistency than I did with the baby rice. I had a taste of the cereal and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by the taste, it was much nicer than baby rice, as I found the baby rice to be very bland and tasteless. This fruity cereal tasted a bit like very thin porridge and had a mild fruity flavour to it.
Once again, Rhys ate up the whole amount that I offered him, so he clearly enjoyed the taste of it too!!! I would recommend this as a change form the usual baby rice, as it is pretty much the same only it tastes nicer!!
At around 16 weeks old my twin girls had got to the point where they wanted feeding every hour, day and night it was driving me insane especially as i had 2 of them to feed. Theyd already been on hungry baby milk since 12 weeks but it hadnt made a difference. They were showing ever sign of weaning and i was a little put off trying because of the guidelines the heath visitors state to us now but i couldnt have waited so i went with one of the most well known brands cow and gate (i also use their milk) and started with baby rice.
However they never seemed too keen on baby rice i stuck at it for 3 days just to get them used to the texture and decided to try something with a bit of flavour with baby rice been so bland.
I bought a box of this for around £1.80. Its really simple to make up its 1 spoon of cereal to 3 spoons of water however i decided to use their baby milk mainly so i could get a few extra ounces down them and it made just as well.
They loved this and i also tried some of the other ranges in this brand and some other brands. I felt confidence using cow and gate as it states on the box there are no added sugars or salt, no preservatives and no artificial colourings.
I loved their dried range however wasnt too keen on their jarred food! Would definately recommend this one though especially as a first taste.
We started weaning my son at 4 1/2 months. Once he had been having 'lunch' for a couple of weeks we decided to introduce a breakfast. I saw this cereal and as Cow & Gate is a brand I trust, I decided to give it a go.
-The cereal is suitable from 4 months onwards, allowing for those early weaned babies.
-Fortified milk with mixed fruit and cereals.
-Contains 1/3 of the babies daily vitamins and minerals.
-No added salt or sugar.
-No artificial flavourings, colourings or preservatives.
-Contains banana, apple and orange.
I make it by putting cool boiled water into a small bowl then mixing the cereal in, roughly 1 spoon of cereal for every 8 spoons of water.
You can buy this cereal in most shops that sell baby food. I bought mine from Asda as thats where we shop for £1.77 which is cheaper than both Tesco and Sainsbury. Both Asda and Sainsbury have it on offer at the minute for 2 for £3.
My son loves this cereal, it was a big hit and always went down well. The fact that it mixes with water is especially handy as there is no faffing with formula/expressed breast milk. Even though he has now moved on to proper porridge, we still have a box of this in the cupboard. Just in case we run out of milk or I run out of his normal porridge.
It's only problem is that it can get expensive. Definitely something to pick up when it's on sale.
My baby was just over 4 months old and was starting to watch me closely when I was eating. She was also practically eating her hands! All signs of wanting solids so I decided to try her on some baby foods suitable for her age.
** Some facts about the company "Cow & Gate" **
In 1711 Cow & Gate started out as a small grocery shop in Guildford at Number 20 High Street, owned by the Gates family.
Cow & Gate is part of Group Danone, a leading global company specialising in health through food and beverages.
Cow & Gate still work closely with the medical profession to develop the best foods for babies with a wide range of nutritional needs and we still provide educational materials to midwives and health visitors
Cow & Gate have a range of baby foods that are suitable for age 4 months plus called Smoothy stage 1. I had been given a free sample of the Baby Balance Fruity Breakfast. As breakfast is the most important meal of the day I thought this would be a good food to start with.
I read the information on the packet first as I must admit I was a bit nervous of the whole weaning thing. You wonder whether you are doing the right thing, you can only do what you feel is right for your own baby.
The packet states that Baby Balance Breakfast is "the best breakfast to start your babys day" Their is no added sugar or salt, no artificial flavourings or preservatives, it's gluten free and there is no added egg. It contains fortified milk with mixed fruit and cereals. The breakfast comes in other flavours like sunshine banana and apricot sunshine so your baby can learn to enjoy different tastes at the first stage of weaning.
** Ingredients **
Baby grade fruit (apple,banana,orange)*
Milled cereals (corn,rice)*
Demineralised whey powder
Skimmed milk powder
Vegetable fat (contains emulsifier soya lecithin)
Vitamins (C,Niacin,E,Pantothenic acid,B1,B6,A,Folic acid,Biotin,D3)
* Prepared with 82g fruit, 45g fortified milkand 28g cereals per 100g dried product.
Contains milk soya.
** Mixing guide **
Use a clean bowl and spoon, Mix 1 spooon of cereal with 3 spoon of water. This is to be used as a guide, as your baby grows just use a larger spoon to make a bigger serving. You can also alter the consistency by adding more or less liquid as required.
Once opened you need to use within 28 days and store in a cool dry place.
** The first spoonful **
I was quite confident in using the spoon it was more my little ones reaction to a strange plastic thing in her mouth that I wasn't sure about, least alone a spoonful of something that wasn't milk ! The mixed breakfast appeared smooth so it would be easy to swallow.
I was pleasently surprised after a few slaps and licks she appeared to like it. She pulled a few faces at first as if to say "urgh Mam what the hell is this ?" but then I could see her playing with it in her mouth until eventually swallowing it. A few more spoonfuls followed until it was all gone, only a tablespoonful of mixed cereal at first though.
The packet was 25g and stated that was one portion.
I have since tried the other two flavours mentioned above and rotate the flavours daily. She loves them all and she really appears to enjoy them all. She is now opening her mouth ready for the next spoonful!
Cow & Gate is a well known baby food brand and I don't think I need to recommend them - but I will !!
Full breakfast range :
Pure baby rice
Apple & pear breakfast
Apple & banana wake up
Cost - less than £2.00 for 125g.
Fortified milk with mixed fruit & cereals.