Can You Put Something in Baby Formula to Make it Taste Better?

Can You Put Something in Baby Formula to Make it Taste Better?

Can You Put Something in Baby Formula to Make it Taste Better?

Your baby's taste buds are still developing, but some infants do not seem to like the taste of their formula.  Can you add flavor to it?


Everything about your little one is developing, including their sense of taste.  However, you may find that your baby may start showing signs of being a picky eater.  The problem is that babies need breast milk or infant formula during the first year of their lives. 


From Breast Milk to Baby Formula


Some babies will reject the bottle because they are accustomed to the sweetness of breast milk.  Whether you are stopping for physical or personal reasons, this can be frustrating since you don't want them to go hungry.  If you are making the switch from breast to bottle, you may want to recruit someone else to help with feeding.  Babies can smell breast milk when they are near their mothers.  By removing the smell, they may feed better with the bottle.


If you still have breast milk, you can express the milk and put it into a bottle or combine it with the baby formula.  Just make sure that you are preparing the formula according to the directions.  Your baby may just need a little help in the transition.


From Baby Formula to Baby Formula


While baby formula brands are similar, you will find that the differences in ingredients make a difference in the flavor.  Some parents found that changing their brand of baby formula led to better feedings.  If you are changing from one cow's milk formula to another, there should be little issue in the transition.  Talk with your pediatrician if you are changing types of formula and not just brand. 


Hydrolyzed baby formula often has the worst smell, but it is prescribed by pediatricians for babies with milk protein sensitivities.  Its odor is strong compared to standard cow's milk formula and difficult to mask.  Enfamil's Nutramigen already contains corn syrup solids to sweeten its product.  However, some parents are concerned about the addition of corn syrup in their baby's food.  At the same time, there is already a sweetener in the formula and the addition of another sweetener can affect your baby's balanced diet.


Avoid Adding Extra Sweetness to Your Baby's Formula


Baby formula manufacturers work hard to find the right balance of nutrition and sweetness.  Their model is breast milk, which has yet to be successfully reproduced.  It is difficult to maintain that balance when you start to add your own flavorings and sweetness to the formula.  Do not introduce anything that your baby has not tried on its own.  This includes 100% fruit juice, fruit puree, or even straight sugar.


Sweetness in Organic Baby Formula


Many of the parents who provide their baby with organic formula find that it has a natural sweetness that their little ones enjoy.  However, not all formula is sweetened equally.  Some formulas use organic products, but sweeteners such as sucrose have already been banned by the European Union in 2009 out of concern for childhood obesity and overfeeding.  Brown rice syrup has been recommended throughout the years, but a study in 2012 raised concern about the arsenic levels in the sweetener.  Cane sugar is also an organic product, but your baby's developing digestive system cannot digest so much sugar at once.


The closest sweetener to that found in breast milk is lactose.  Lactose is used in HiPP organic baby formula.  Maltodextrin is the sweetener of choice by Holle.  While it is derived from rice, corn, and potatoes like corn syrup, Holle is Demeter certified and follows the highest organic standards in biodynamic farming.  This includes ingredients such as sweeteners.




The best thing that you can do for your baby who does not like the flavor of their baby formula is stay patient.  Sometimes it is a phase and they will go back to the bottle when they are hungry.  Consider switching brands if that is an option.  But most importantly, do not add any sweetener that can offset the balance of your baby's nutrition.  Chances are that the amount you add is not healthy for your baby.