**The blog posts I write might contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy for more information.**
Once babies start eating solid foods, it doesn’t take long before you notice a change in their dirty diapers. In our house, the dirty poop diapers got smellier and more gross. The frequency of dirty diapers also dramatically changed. Raleigh was typically having at least one dirty diaper a day, and once he started eating solid foods, it abruptly changed to once every four or five days!
He wasn’t constipated by definition because when he would go, it was soft. But it was obvious that his bowels were trying to get used to processing the new foods he was eating, and his system wasn’t moving as fast as when he was strictly breastfed.
When I asked our pediatrician about it, he recommended that we offer Raleigh some foods that help fight constipation. A lot of the common solid foods that babies eat can be constipating, so he recommended we help counteract them with foods like pears and plums or prunes.
It’s not always easy to find cheap and ripe plums in the store, so I decided to try using prunes.
Prunes have a bad reputation; even just the word used to make me cringe. It’s funny though because they are simply dried plums. Just like how raisins are dried grapes; prunes are dried plums.
Apparently the people in charge of marketing prunes are familiar with the bad reputation because now, prunes are often being labeled in stores as “dried plums.” It’s accurate, but it makes me laugh. Same thing, different name. And I am sure calling them “dried plums” has helped sell a lot more of them.
Either way, it’s quick and easy to buy a bag of prunes aka dried plums, and whip up a batch of homemade prune puree for babies. Here’s how I did it.
How to Make Prune Puree:
Step 1. Put prunes in a bowl.
Step 2. Cover with warm water and soak until they plump up; maybe 15-30 mins.
Step 3. Drain them, saving the water they soaked in.
When you pureed prunes, they are THICK.
They need a lot of liquid to thin them out, so the water you soaked them in works great. That way, I feel like I’m catching any nutrients that leeched out into the water while they soaked.
Breastmilk can be used too, of course. And if you forget to save the water and don’t have breastmilk, adding tap water to thin it out works fine too.
Step 4. Puree prunes in food processor or blender. Add water or breastmilk to thin the puree out.
You’ll quickly see that you need a lot of liquid to thin the prunes out. They will be sticky and thick.
Pureed prunes won’t freeze solid like other foods do. I am not certain why; some sites said maybe it has to do with the sugar content? Even when left in the freezer for a long time, the prune puree will have a fudge-like consistency.
However, I have found that the more liquid I add to the puree, the firmer it will freeze.
Step 5. Freeze puree in scoops on a baking sheet, lined with parchment paper.
At first, I tried to freeze my prune puree in a silicone ice cube mold, shown below in the photo on the left.
As you can see in the photo below on the right, the puree didn’t come close to freezing solid, and resembled soft fudge even after a night in the freezer. The cubes were mangled by the time I forced them out of the tray, and a lot of the puree was left in the bottom.
The more liquid you add to your puree, the more firmly it will freeze. In this batch, I didn’t add enough liquid, obviously.
However, even with a ton of liquid added, it will never freeze completely solid like other foods do.
Since prunes don’t freeze solid, my preferred method of freezing is to put scoops of the puree on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper like I show in option #5 of the post 6 ways to freeze homemade baby food.
Once the mounds of puree harden in the freezer awhile, they can be popped off the paper and stored in freezer bags.
I have tried several methods of freezing and storing prune puree, and the baking sheet method is by far the easiest for me.
– – – – –
Prune puree is a wonderful, easy option to make if you are trying to make your own homemade baby food.
It requires almost no preparation because you are buying dried prunes, aside from soaking them in water to plump them up before pureeing.
And besides being sweet and generally well liked by babies, it has the added benefit of fighting constipation and keeping babies regular.