Using only 1-ingredient, this Homemade Baby Rice Cereal is a simple and easy recipe to make baby! Plus, it is completely freezer-friendly and a perfect cereal to add to your freezer stash of baby purees. Great for 4 months and up – Stage 1 baby food.
Medically reviewed by Jamie Johnson, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN)
Homemade Baby Rice Cereal
Homemade brown rice baby cereal is packed with manganese, magnesium, and selenium, and is a good source of fiber, protein and a ton of other essential vitamins and minerals for a growing baby 💪.
It makes for a great first food for baby, or it can easily be mixed into other fruit or veggie purees for a wholesome and delicious meal 😋!
Bonus – making homemade baby cereal is one of the easiest purees you can make for your baby! All you need is 1-ingredient and less than an hour of your time 🕐.
For this recipe, we are going to cook the brown rice, blend it up and then pop it into the freezer for easy-to-grab cubes of baby rice cereal. I have found that this cooking method makes the creamiest and smoothest baby cereal you can ever imagine. Plus, there is nothing like having a freezer-stash of healthy baby purees at your fingertips!
TIME-SAVING TIP – you can use quick-cook brown rice (I like the organic brown basmati rice from Trader-Joes) that only takes 20 minutes to cook if you are in a rush!
Reasons to Love this Homemade Baby Cereal
- easy to make
- 1-ingredient puree
- simple and wholesome ingredients
- freezer-friendly – great to have stashed in the freezer
- free from allergens – gluten, dairy, soy, corn
- ffull of essential nutrients for growing baby – fiber, manganese, protein, selenium as well as magnesium
- works great stirred into other combination purees
- 4 months and up – stage 1 puree
- mild taste
- creamy and smooth
- Rice: I recommend using organic short grain brown rice in this recipe. Brown rice has health benefits a ton of nutrients in it, as opposed to white rice, which has had all of the key nutrients stripped from it. I would strongly recommend using organic brown rice as the cost difference ounce-per-ounce is very small, and the organic variety has not been soaked in pesticides and has significantly less arsenic in it. You can use either short or long-grain organic brown rice for this recipe.
- Water: will be added with the rice to cook. You can also use sodium-free bone broth or sodium-free veggie broth for more nutrients and flavor, or do a mixture of half broth and half water.
- Liquid for Blending: while blending the rice, more liquid will need to be added to thin out the rice into a puree. You can use water, bone broth, veggie broth, fresh breast milk, or formula.
Soaking the Rice
Soaking brown rice (or any grains) helps remove some of the naturally occurring phytic acids, which are some of the hard-to-digest components of the grain. By removing these acids, the rice becomes easier to digest and speeds up cooking times.
If you are introducing grains as a first food, soaking the grains would be helpful as baby would have an easier time digesting the puree.
But, if thinking 2-8 hours ahead of time is holding you back from making your own cereal, then feel free to skip this step.
How to Soak Rice: place 1 cup of rice in a medium bowl and add in 2-3 cups of hot water (enough to cover the rice) and leave at room temperature for at least 2 hours but can go overnight. Drain the rice and rinse well. Follow the recipe below on cooking and pureeing instructions, but note that the rice will cook faster, so check rice at 20 minutes.
How to Make Baby Rice Cereal
- Rinse Rice: place the rice in a fine-mesh colander and rinse with cold water until the water runs clear. This will help remove any excess starch from the rice grains and will make the rice more fluffy and easier to blend. DO NOT skip this step or your puree will be starchy.
- Add to Saucepan: add the water and the rice to a medium saucepan, cover and bring to a boil over high heat.
- Cook: once at a boil, turn down the heat and let simmer on low for 35-45 minutes or until the water is gone and the rice is tender. Rice cooking times vary, so taste test the rice after 35 minutes to see if it is tender.
- Sit: remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes.
- Blend: transfer the cooked rice to a blender or food processor and blend for 1-2 minutes, adding in liquid to thin out the rice puree.
- Store: I would recommend storing a small quantity of the rice puree in the fridge to use that week and then freeze the rest for future meals.
How to Freeze and Re-heat Baby Rice Cereal
This baby rice cereal is super easy to freeze and reheat, which makes it amazing to have on hand so you can have easy-to-grab meals whenever it’s time to eat.
How to Freeze
- After you blend the rice into a puree – you can pour the rice cereal into freezer-safe trays (such as this and this one).
- Place the tray into the freezer for 3-4 hours or until completely frozen.
- Transfer the cubes of frozen rice cereal into a Stasher Bag or Zip-lock baggie.
How to Re-Heat
- Take the amount of frozen cubes you want to feed baby that meal and place them in a microwave-safe container.
- Heat in the microwave for 30-second intervals until warm, stirring after every session.
- You can also take the frozen cubes and place them in a small saucepan on the stove, heating on low and stirring continuously.
- NOTE: the puree will be thick when you reheat it. You can thin it back out by adding in other purees (see list below of some of my favorite options), fresh or frozen breastmilk, formula or water. Add in a little at a time, stirring in-between.
Purees to Pair with this rice Baby Cereal
For Stage 1 Purees
For Stage 2 Combination Purees
- Superpower Green Baby Food Puree
- Apple, Spinach + Broccoli Baby Food Puree
- Sweet Potato, Carrot, Cauliflower Baby Food Puree with Chia Seeds
- Banana, Cherry + Beet Baby Food Puree
- Roasted Root Veggies + Thyme Puree
- Broccoli + Asparagus Baby Food Puree with Tarragon
- Mango + Kale Baby Food Puree with Ginger
DID YOU MAKE THIS BABY RICE CEREAL RECIPE? I’D LOVE TO KNOW HOW IT TURNED OUT! LEAVE A COMMENT AND A ⭐️ RATING BELOW 👇
Homemade Baby Rice Cereal
- 1 cup brown rice (I prefer organic short grain)
- 2 cups water
- 1-2 cups liquid for blending (water, fresh breast milk or formula)
- Rinse Rice – IMPORTANT STEP: Place the rice in a fine-mesh colander and rinse with water until the water runs clear.
- Cook: Transfer the rice to a medium saucepan and add 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to low, cover with a lid and simmer for 35-45 minutes or until the rice is tender and the water is evaporated. Each batch of rice cooks a little differently, so taste at 35 minutes to see if the rice is tender.
- Let Rest: Remove the saucepan from the heat and let rest for 10 minutes, covered. If using fresh breast milk or formula for blending, I would remove the lid and let the rice cool for 15 minutes.
- Blend: Place the rice into a blender or food processor and add 1/2 cup of liquid of choice. Blend for 1-2 minutes on medium-high speed until completely smooth and creamy, adding in the additional liquid in 1/4 cup increments, if needed, until you have your desired consistency.
- Eat: Serve to baby or freeze for later.