New parents, especially breastfeeding moms, need to fuel themselves. No sleep plus no nutrition is a recipe for disaster. You have to take care of yourself, before you can take care of a baby. And since feeding and caring for a newborn is a full-time job, the last thing a new parent needs to worry about is what they’re going to eat throughout the day. That’s where freezer meals for after baby come in
When should I start prepping meals?
Expecting parents can start prepping 3-4 weeks before baby’s due date. Give yourself plenty of time so you aren’t feeling rushed as the due date approaches. Decide on the meals you’re making in advance and break up the plan to cook them into a few different days. You could also make these meals as your dinners for your third trimester and just cook extra to freeze for later!
If you’re making healthy freezer meals for expectant parents, you can drop them off shortly before baby is born or right after. Ask mom which she prefers. (Looking for more gifts for expecting parents? We’ve got a list!)
If you’re pregnant, by this point you are most likely experiencing the nesting phenomenon. So prepping these meals will feel extremely satisfying as well and scratch the itch to get everything ready for the little one on it’s way.
Feeling overwhelmed by your urge to prep and clean? We have a few tips for nesting safely here.
What types of foods do postpartum moms need?
Postpartum diets are something that’s often overlooked in the United States. We spend a lot of time getting educated on what we can and can’t eat during pregnancy to support a healthy amount of weight gain as well as our baby’s development. But then the baby is born, and many mothers are left to fend for themselves, with little support.
First 40 Days, by Heng Ou is one of my favorite books for getting information about life postpartum. The book includes 60 simple recipes for healing soups, replenishing meals and snacks, and calming and lactation-boosting teas, all formulated to support the unique needs of the new mother for breastfeeding and nutrition. In addition to the recipes, this warm and encouraging guide offers advice on arranging a system of help during the postpartum period, navigating relationship challenges, and honoring the significance of pregnancy and birth.
Another great resource is The Postnatal Depletion Cure by Dr. Oscar Serrallach which is a guide to help any mother restore her energy and replenish her body.
How you nourish your body during the fourth trimester is equally as important as how you nourished it during the first three. Good postpartum nutrition is important for your mental and physical health, as well as for the health and growth of your baby if you’re breastfeeding. Eating a healthy postpartum diet can help you properly recover from childbirth, as well as help boost your energy (you’re going to need it as a new mom), mood and overall wellbeing.
Generally, here are a few recommendations for a healthy postpartum diet. (Always consult with your healthcare provider if you have questions, concerns, or require special nutritional needs.)
A healthy, balanced postpartum diet should include:
- Whole grains
- High-iron foods
- Lean proteins/meats
- Healthy fats
- Complex carbohydrates
- Fruits and vegetables
Foods to avoid if mom is breastfeeding:
- Things that can give baby gas, such as broccoli, cabbage and spicy foods
- Foods mom is allergic to or baby’s pediatrician has advised mom to avoid, like if baby has a cows’ milk allergy
18 Freezer Meals for New Parents
From soups to casseroles to muffins, here are some easy and delicious freezer meals recipes for after baby
- Quiche Supreme
- Bacon Cheese Frittata
- Whole Wheat Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
- Easy Veggie Muffins
- Banana Breakfast Cookies
- Fast-and-Fabulous Egg and Cottage Cheese Casserole
- Freezer Asian Peanut Chicken
- Chickpea Wild Rice Soup
- Pesto Tortellini Bake
- Black Bean and Quinoa Freezer Burritos
- Garlic Pork Stir-Fry
- White Chicken Lasagna Soup
- Chicken Pot Pie
- Salmon and Leek Slice
- Healthy Mushroom Stroganoff
- Easy Baked Ziti
- Chicken Tortellini Soup
- Frozen Smoothie Packs
With these easy and nourishing freezer meals for new moms and dads, any parent will be as ready as you can be for 3 a.m. feedings, 3 p.m. tummy time and all the diaper changes and snuggles in between.
Cooking with a Newborn or Toddlers
One thing we love about babywearing is that it’s a hands-free solution to keeping our babies safe and cozy. However, when it comes to cooking, it’s important to have an abundance of caution!
If you’re prepping these meals with a soon-to-be big sibling in tow, we recommend the Evolve 3-in-1 High Chair. The Kitchen Helper add-on lets your helper stand safely up at the counter with you while you prep your meals!
Once your bundle of joy has made their arrival, you’ll be so glad you prepped these meals and just need to reheat. If you’re not leaning over a hot stove or oven, you can safely wear your newborn while reheating your meals. Our favorite way to carry newborns? In the Embrace! This is the coziest way to stay connected in that fourth trimester as you get to know each other better.
If your prepping meals where it’s better to not be holding your little one, the Evolve Bouncer is another safe place for them. Whether you’re reheating a meal, your lukewarm coffee, or you want to eat your meal and get a little “touch break”, you can safely place your newborn in the Evolve 3-in-1 Bouncer. The innovative newborn insert supports your baby from head to hips so they are cozy and you have no need to worry!
More resources for expectant parents: