Stocking the kitchen for post-delivery days with baby

Now that I’m in the last few weeks of my pregnancy, I’m double-checking to make sure we have everything we need. This is our second baby, so we have a better idea of what to expect for those intense days and weeks after birth.

High on the list of priorities? Making sure there is a well-stocked kitchen to take care of our eating needs.

Whether you’re on your first baby or your fourth, chances are cooking is the last thing you’ll want to do in the days after delivery. Making sure you’re well-nourished, however (especially if you’re breastfeeding), is critical for getting through the tough first weeks.


Freezer-Friendly Fare

Prepared meals that you can heat up in a flash are the savior of any busy family, baby or not! Avoid the family-size meals in the freezer aisle (usually full of sodium and saturated fats) and set aside some time to load your freezer with items that work for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Lasagnas and casseroles are a natural fit, as are soups (packed into single-serve containers) and muffins.

Snack Attack

Taking care of a baby makes you hungry, and my first child absolutely hated being put down. Not exactly the easiest way to eat a hot bowl of soup!  Snacks that are portable and don’t require utensils are essential when you don’t have a moment to yourself.

Homemade crackers and granola bars are easy to make and perfect for when you just need a little nibble, and most last a long time if stored properly in airtight containers (and can also be popped into the freezer for long-term storage). If you’re breastfeeding, snacks with oatmeal are purported to help with milk supply, as well as provide lasting fuel.


Beverages and Hydration

I have a hard time remembering to get enough water throughout the day, and adding a newborn to the mix won’t help! We have a filtered water pitcher, and I’ve also taken to keeping filled reusable bottles in the fridge so I can just grab and go.  Add some cut fruit or bruised mint to the pitcher if you just can’t stand another glass of plain water.

Coconut water is also great to have on hand, as it contains natural electrolytes that will help keep your energy up. Pitchers of citrus drinks will help keep you refreshed as well. We like making “smoothie packs” of frozen yogurt cubes and chopped fruit measured and packed into single serving containers.

Tips for Easy Stocking

  • Enlist some friends to help you with food prep in lieu of gifts of more baby clothes.
  • Make the most of your slow cooker and cut up meats and veggies ahead of time, then place in single-meal packs along with sauces for “dump and go” dinners.
  • Baked goods such as muffins and scones can be frozen before or after baking. Unbaked items can go straight into the oven, while baked ones only need a quick reheat in the microwave.
  • Waffles freeze well too, and can be heated in a standard toaster.
  • Have salad fixings pre-chopped for an easy-to-assemble meal. Pasta salads like this Garden Vegetable Pasta Salad store well in the fridge and are designed to be eaten cold.
  • For items that are frozen, be sure to wrap them well and add instructions for reheating on a notecard or Post-it.
  • Cook double! In the weeks leading up to delivery, make double batches of dinner: one for tonight, one for the freezer. The extra prep work will take no time at all, and you’ll be rewarded with a home-cooked meal down the road.


What is your go-to food for stocking up?

About Megan

Megan Myers is a copyeditor and spatula-wielding mom seeking out the simpler life in Texas. Her blog, Stetted, focuses on her family’s journey from junk food addiction to a diet of local, organic, and whole foods, while exploring the many options farmers provide.

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  1. Great ideas, Megan! When friends and family have a new babe I always bring them a meal. Not as cute as baby clothes, but way more valuable. It’s an old practice that really needs to make a comeback! How did we lose this thoughtful, practical idea?

    • Thanks Robin! I’m part of a local moms’ group that often does meal delivery for new moms – it was so wonderful with my first child! I hope more people bring the practice back.

    • For visits in the first three months, I like to bring a fully prepped meal that just needs to be cooked (like a fully assembled stew or casarole) and leave long before meal time. The new parents can then keep it in the fridge or freezer until needed (just write the final directions on the foil/packaging).

      After 3 months, I’ll bring food for the grill or that may need a bit extra prep and cook for us (so they can spend time with the kid(s)) and then I’ll watch the kid(s) during dinner so the parents can actually both eat at the same time.

      I find inviting parents with kids over for dinner puts too much work on them; it is much easier to bring the meal to them!

  2. I already had everything I needed when I had Graeme my son so instead of gifts at the baby shower I asked for frozen meals. It was great.

  3. Thanks for this post! I have three friends who just had babies and one just about to deliver any day. I will forward this link to them. I’ve already bookmarked this for future reference!

  4. Great post – I was very glad for a few extra meals from my mom when my kids were born. A couple suggestions on the hydration issue – which is so critical!

    – I recommend distilled water. Filters are very unreliable – they only filter out the chemicals they are designed to filter. When you consider the average water supply has 1200 chemicals in it – many unidentified by standard water tests – this is critical. We found out we had high levels of arsenic in our well water after getting additional testing. Filters do not take this out. Distilled water is pure water – and don’t believe the hype, it’s the safest and best water for your body. Your body is better able to use minerals found in food.

    I wrote extensively about distilled water here (and my favorite home distiller):

    Also, another favorite way to flavor water – toss a couple Celestial Seasons Berry Zinger tea bags into a gallon of water and let them sit for most of the day on the counter or in the sun. Raspberry flavored water with no sweet!

  5. Great post!

  6. Awesome post!

  7. I LOVE the websites ( or that let you quickly set up meal deliveries for new parents or someone recovering from an illness. That way, you can space out meals to arrive 1-2 times/week, so that new mom has help coming in the weeks after the initial baby excitement has slowed down.

    Another tip when you are stocking up is to post a list – on the freezer or somewhere in your kitchen. I write down the meals that are in the freezer AND the items that are needed to complete the meal. It might say, “Ground Turkey Wraps: need tortillas and green onion” or “Lasagna (2): need bread and salad” – really helps with the exhausted baby brain!

    My go-to meals for stocking up are ground turkey lettuce wraps (can be eaten hot or cold, wrapped in lettuce, tortillas, or on a salad, and freezes well), pulled pork sandwiches, and SOUPS of all varieties!

  8. Wonderful ideas 🙂 I hope the transition goes smoothly!

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