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How To Prepare Powdered Baby Formula


Close up of mother preparing baby formula
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Powdered baby formula is a popular choice for feeding infants under one year of age. Baby formula can meet your baby's nutritional needs, but it must be prepared properly in order to be safe and keep your baby healthy. Be sure you're preparing powdered baby formula correctly by following a few easy steps.
Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: Varies

Here's How:

  1. Wash your hands before preparing baby formula.
  2. Read the directions on the powdered baby formula can. Formula concentrations can vary by brand, so always check to be sure you're adding the right amount of formula powder to the water.
  3. If you're opening a new can of baby formula, wipe the lid with a wet cloth to remove dust and dirt before opening. Be careful of sharp edges on the metal lid and can.
  4. Turn on cold water at the sink and let it run for 30 seconds to one minute before preparing baby formula. This is said to reduce the possibility for lead or other contaminants in the water.
  5. If you have been instructed to boil water before preparing formula, be sure to bring the water to a rolling boil for 5 minutes. You should not boil the water more than once, as this can change the concentration of minerals in the water.
  6. Fill the baby bottle with cold water. If you have boiled the water, let it cool before pouring it into the baby bottle. Measure the water carefully before adding any formula powder. Do not add formula powder first, as the powder in the bottom of the bottle will skew the measurement of the water.
  7. Add the proper measurement of powdered formula to the bottle of water. Generally, one level scoop of powdered formula should be mixed per two ounces of water. However, this can vary by brand, so double check the directions on the formula can. Remember to replace the lid on the can of powdered formula.
  8. Put the lid on the baby bottle and shake it gently until the powder formula clumps are well mixed into the water.
  9. It's not necessary to warm the bottle of formula. If your baby prefers warm formula, heat the bottle by placing it in a pan of hot, but not boiling, water for a few minutes, or hold the bottle under the hot water tap for a few minutes. Never heat baby formula in the microwave. Microwaving can result in hot spots that can severely burn a baby's mouth.
  10. Shake the bottle after heating it, then turn the bottle upside down and let a few drops fall out on your forearm. The baby formula should feel warm on your arm, but not hot.
  11. When you are done feeding your baby, immediately throw away leftover formula from the bottle. Bacteria from the baby's mouth is mixed with the formula during feeding. It's not safe to re-use leftover formula, even if it is refrigerated and reheated.

What You Need

  • Can of powdered baby formula with scoop.
  • Can opener, if necessary.
  • Baby bottle, cap and nipple.
  • Sink or other water source.
  • Supplies to boil water, if necessary.
  • Hot water tap or pan of hot water, if heating the bottle is necessary.
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