How to mix formula

While breastfeeding is optimal, there are times when supplementing with formula may be given by choice or necessity. Formula feeding your breast fed baby is a GOOD choice when needed and you should feel supported in how you are feeding your baby, especially if breastfeeding is still the end goal. If you are offering your baby formula, safe preparation, handling, and storage are important to know about.

  • Wash first: Use hot, soapy water to clean all bottle parts (and your hands!!!) before mixing formula
  • Follow the directions: Formula makers have different mixing guidelines, so check the instructions if and when you change formulas. Most manufacturers use the same recipe: 1 level scoop of powder for every 2 fluid oz of water. ALWAYS add the water first to the bottle. If you add the powder first and then try to fill with water to the ounce line, you’ll be using less water than directed as the powder displaces that space.
  • Measure accurately: Too much powder might cause an upset tummy for baby. DO NOT ADD EXTRA SCOOPS to increase calorie count. You’ll also be increasing every nutrient in the formula which can cause baby to get too much protein or other nutrients. It also decreases the amount of water baby is getting which can lead to hydration. Calorie fortifying should only be done under the direction of a pediatrician or pediatric nutritionist. Adding more water than directed can make baby sick
  • Check for clumps: Look at the formula after mixing to make sure there are no clumps. They can get stuck in the bottle nipple. Use a fork to separate clumps and shake again
  • Time it: Mixed formula stays good for 2 hours at room temperature. You can mix up one bottle at a time, or mix a full day’s worth in a pitcher and refrigerate it for up to 24 hours, pouring individual bottles to feed from one large batch
  • The right temperature is anywhere from cool to lukewarm. If your water is safe, it’s OK to mix powder with room temperature water right from your tap. NEVER put a bottle of formula or breast milk in the microwave. This can create hot spots that would burn baby’s mouth

To warm formula:
🥵Use boiled or hot water while mixing the formula, no additional heating needed
🚿 Run the bottle under very warm or hot water for a few minutes
🔥Fill a pan with hot water. Remove it from the heat. Place the bottle in the pan for a few minutes
🍼Use a bottle warmer
💧After warming the bottle, shake it vigorously to make sure there are no hot spots in the formula. Test it by squirting a drop on the inside of your wrist. If it’s hotter than lukewarm, let it cool down before feeding it