We recently talked about ways to save money on formula. All of these were savings on actually purchasing the formula, but what about when you get it home and are ready to use it? Can you refrigerate formula? Can formula be reheated? These are great questions that new moms should be asking! Let’s start with the basics.
Formula should be mixed with water according to the instructions located on your formula container. Too much or too little water can be a bad thing, so make sure you are following the instructions. If you are off by a small amount you’ll be ok! Make sure you test the water before filling the bottle as well, our water can go from lukewarm to burning in a second so keep checking as you fill the bottle. If you’re worried about mixing the formula you could always splurge on a Baby Brezza Formula Maker, it’s like the Keurig of the baby world. Otherwise, you can simply shake the bottle to mix the formula. Keep in mind these recommendations are ONLY for formula, and they are just that recommendations.
Do I have to sterilize my bottles and how do I sterilize them?
Yes, you should sterilize your bottles before you use them for the first time. If this is your first baby then nesting time is the perfect time to do this! You can use a store bought sterilizer that goes in the microwave, or if you’re wanting to save money you can just boil a pot of water and place them in the boiling water for 5 minutes.
Can you store formula in the refrigerator?
Yes! You can store mixed formula in the fridge. You can premix a few bottles and store them in the fridge. Mixed formula can be refrigerated for up to 24 hours and ready to feed formula can be refrigerated for up to 48 hours. If you have leftover formula from feeding your baby it should be discarded within one hour. Powdered formula does not need to be and should not be stored in the fridge.
Do I have to warm the formula?
Some babies prefer or become accustomed to drinking cold formula. However, if your baby does not like cold formula you can warm the bottle. You can purchase a bottle warmer that sits on your counter top, do not microwave a bottle. You can also run warm water over the bottle to heat it, we always filled a mason jar with warm water and let the bottle sit in that, it fit perfectly so most of the bottle was in the jar and didn’t bob out like when using the sink. Make sure to shake the bottle before feeding.
Can I make bottles ahead of time?
If you want to premix the formula it will need to be kept in the fridge. If you are looking for a way to make a bottle ahead of time without mixing the formula you can purchase a bottle that keeps them separate until you are ready to use. We liked to use the Mixie bottles at night, you just press the bottom and it will push the formula into the water, shake and you’re ready to feed. Keep in mind that these can add more air to your bottle so if you’re having issues with colic you may want to avoid these bottles.
How do I clean baby bottles?
Hot water and soap! You can wash bottles by hand or some bottles are able to be placed in the dishwasher. We always washed them by hand with a Playtex SmartSpace Bottle Brush, we tried quite a few different brushes and most fell apart, this one was my favorite! You can purchase bottle specific soaps like Dapple’s Baby Bottle and Dish Liquid which many say help to remove the milk “film” that some formulas seem to leave behind. You can also use regular dish soap, we use Seventh Generation.
If you’re looking for brand specific formula questions you can always check out their sites:
This and other formula information can be found KidsHealth.org. This information is purely for educational purposes, please consult a doctor for any medical advice.
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