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Food safety is an essential priority for all parents, or it should be. Proper food categories support your baby’s development and boost their immunity. I was appalled when I discovered that baby food sold at grocery stores is made to resist on the shelves for around two years. That’s incredible, and I’m wondering what types of ingredients they contain to make them so long-lasting.
In my opinion, fresh and healthy foods such as carrots, apples, and broccoli cannot last without getting spoiled for a very long time, especially if the meal including them is natural. So, when it comes to my two nieces, I always keep my distance from store-bought baby food whenever they’re visiting.
But, for busy and stressed-out parents, cooking all the time might not be a convenient solution, which is why, today, I’ve decided to talk about one of the most popular baby food delivery services out there, known as Once Upon a Farm. Below, you’ll read about the company’s meals and pricing, the pros and cons of their services, and more.
Jump to a specific section
- Once Upon a Farm Review – What It Is
- Once Upon a Farm Review – How It Works
- Once Upon a Farm Review – Meals & Recipes
- a. For Babies
- b. For Toddlers
- c. For Older Kids
- d. Applesauce for All Ages
- Once Upon a Farm Review – Pros and Cons
- Once Upon a Farm Review – Pricing Options
- Once Upon a Farm Review – Main Alternatives
- Tiny Organics
- Little Spoon
- Nurture Life
- Once Upon a Farm Review – Bottom Line
Once Upon a Farm Review – What It Is
Once Upon a Farm is one of the best meal delivery companies in the US. The primary purpose of the company is to deliver healthy and organic foods for babies and children, products that arrive at your doorstep. With the things you receive as a client, you can whip up healthy meals and snacks that your toddler or baby will love.
All the meals offered by Once Upon a Farm consists of organic ingredients, and they’re prepared in such a way that maintains the food’s optimal freshness and nutritiousness. These blends are rich in vitamins, minerals, and many other essential nutrients your child needs to grow and develop healthily.
It’s funny, and I like how the brand’s founders call their products: from farm to fridge.
The company was founded in 2015 in California and focused on organic baby food right from the start. They provide healthy organic foods made, most of them being fruit and veggie blends. One of the four co-founders is the well-known movie star, Jennifer Garner.
The other three co-founders are her friends: Ari Raz, a marketing expert, John Foraker, who has a lot of experience with organic food, and Cassandra Curtis, who’s excellent at product innovation and has three lovely girls.
Once Upon a Farm Review – How It Works
The purchasing experience is a straightforward one. Before you place an order, you must first select the appropriate section for your kid. There are three main sections of food dedicated to infants, toddlers, and older children. Each category is conveniently organized. For instance, if you click on the baby category, you’ll discover blends that suit each development stage that your little one goes through.
Due to the company’s well-organized online platform, it will be so easy for you to choose precisely those blends that your kid needs. Then, once you’ve decided what you want to purchase, you can continue your shopping process with or without becoming a subscriber.
Those of you who want to make a one-time purchase can buy as many items as they wish, including an eight-pack individual flavor, or opt for the variety pack. If you decide to become a subscriber, you will receive no less than 24 different baby meals that, based on your needs and preferences, will be shipped once per week, every two weeks, or less often than that.
You will also be able to choose your favorite flavors for each delivery. The blends are then added to your membership account in increments of three. In other words, you can opt for eight different flavors or choose multiple packages of the same flavor. As you can see, there’s a lot of freedom and flexibility regarding the creation of your subscription box, but you must follow two rules:
- Your subscription cannot contain more or less than two dozen items at a time;
- You must always add a three-pack selection at a time.
However, besides the subscription items, you can also include foods from the a la carte menu in your order. You’re also free to change your selection and/or delivery frequency anytime you want. Canceling the subscription can also be done whenever you feel like it. Still, to be applied to your next order, you should make these changes and cancelations in between subscription cycles.
Once Upon a Farm Review – Meals & Recipes
There are dozens of delicious blends that you can find on the Once Upon a Farm website. You can choose from pouches, bowls, and cups. This brand offers two main types of subscriptions, based on the products you want to receive:
- Cold-pressed blends: Individual packages or variety packs;
- Organic meals: The same offers as in the previous product category (individual or variety packs).
The offer even has meals that focus on special dietary needs: vegetarian, vegan, and organic. Based on your child’s age and growth stage, you can opt for various flavors and products. Both pouches and cups contain veggies, fruits, and healthy fats such as chia, while the bowls have fresh produce only.
a. For Babies
- Infants who’re at least five months old – this is the first development stage; you can choose from eight different flavors;
- 7+ months old babies – the second development stage offers clients ten available flavors;
- Stage 3 of your infant’s growth comes with six available flavors (these are suitable for babies who’re at least nine months old).
I love how sweet the names of the flavors are. The team made an effort and came up with creative and fun descriptions.
- I Carrot a Lot;
- Magic Velvet Mango;
- Prince of Prunes;
- So Sweet Potato cups;
- Baby Bear Butternut pouches;
- The Fairest of Pears; etc.
- Pineapple of My Eye;
- Wild Rumpus Avocado;
- Banana Strawberry Beat;
- Mama Bear Blueberry; etc.
- Beauty and the Beet;
- Sun-Shiny Strawberry Patch;
- Squash Bucklin’ Sage;
- Just Right Oats, etc.
b. For Toddlers
Toddlers represent the fourth development stage of a child which occurs after 12 months old. By this time, your little one can enjoy a wider variety of ingredients, among which I should mention mild spices. However, Once Upon a Farm offers fewer flavors in this category:
- Peter Banana Pumpkin
- Rasp-Pear-Y Vanilla
- Blueberry Pear-Fection
c. For Older Kids
For kids older than 12 months, you could order the Once Upon a Farm delicious smoothies. These products are cold-pressed, and they’re free of added sugar and dairy. The available flavors are:
- Strawberry Banana Swirl
- Appley Eating Greens
- Berry Berry Quite Contrary
- Coco For Mangoes
Each section also includes the variety pack option.
d. Applesauce for All Ages
Regardless of their age or stage, children can safely enjoy consuming applesauce. The company provides the following applesauce variations:
- Apple Blueberry
- Cinnamon Apple
- Apples Straight from the Tree
Refrigeration and Heating Tips
First, it’s essential to check the expiration date mentioned on the label. If you’re not opening the package and you’re planning to consume the product later, you can keep it in the fridge for a more extended period, as per the item’s expiry date. Otherwise, after opening the product, you must refrigerate it and consume it in three days.
When they’re kept out of the fridge, the Once Upon a Farm baby foods will last for about four hours or so. It’s best to use ice packs or iceboxes if you want to take these meals with you when you’re traveling.
Regarding the heating process, you’ll have to use warm water and a bowl. All you have to do is place the container, before opening it, inside the bowl, where there’s warm water. Then, it would be best if you waited for a couple of minutes before opening and consuming the meal. Avoid heating them in the microwave because the containers aren’t resistant to that kind of heat.
Here’s the list of potentially-allergenic compounds that some of these meals contain:
- Tree nuts
All these compounds and more are listed on the company’s website. In addition, you should know that the facility cleans all the tools before preparing any meal to avoid cross-contamination.
Once Upon a Farm Review – Pros and Cons
Let’s find out some of the pros and cons of the Once Upon a Farm delivery service. It’s essential to know these facts to decide if this service suits your needs or not.
- There’s no added sugar in these blends;
- They are cold-pressed to preserve all the nutrients of the ingredients;
- There are a lot of perks if you choose to become a client: free delivery, significant discounts, auto-shipping, and amazing customizability;
- All the cold-pressed blends are delicious and nutritious;
- The ingredients are organic and non-GMO certified;
- Both the meals and their packaging are sustainable;
- The Once Upon a Farm products are free of artificial colors, sugar, preservatives, additives, and concentrates;
- These meals are created under the supervision of a nutritionist and experienced dietitian;
- Pediatricians recommend these products;
- All Once Upon a Farm kid-friendly meals are hypoallergenic and eco-friendly;
- Their prices and the cost of the subscription are reasonable.
- You can order from them only if live on the mainland US;
- The bowls aren’t available for online purchase;
- When it comes to toddlers, there aren’t many flavors to choose from.
Once Upon a Farm Review – Pricing Options
These baby foods are budget-friendly. The three pillars of the brand are the product’s convenience, its freshness and nutritiousness, and its affordable cost. The price of a blend is different, based on your option to buy as a guest or become a subscriber. Subscribers receive more perks and higher discounts.
For guest clients, one blend costs $2.99, while subscribers receive a 10% discount. So, in that case, the price per blend becomes $2.69. One delivery that contains the 24-pack subscription will have a cost of $64.56. On their online shop, clients can buy either cups, or pouches, or both. You can view bowls online, but you cannot purchase them. They’re physically available at grocery stores. Two packs of bowls cost approximately $2.58.
Regardless of the value of your order, shipping is always free for subscribers who order the 24-pack option. One-time clients must cover the shipping fee which is $4.95. Depending on your order and client status, the maximum delivery fee can reach up to $25.
The company delivers its products all over the continental states of the US. International delivery isn’t available right now. Also, if you live in Hawaii or Alaska, you cannot receive these meals. If you place your order on Mondays, Tuesdays, or Wednesdays, until 1 PM, you will receive the products on Thursdays to locations within California, and on Fridays, to all other locations.
If you place an order in the second part of Wednesday, on Thursday, or Friday, you will get the meals on either a Tuesday or a Wednesday, depending on where you live. Orders can also be placed during weekend days, and they will be shipped the following week.
All the brand’s products can be bought at many grocery stores across the country and in Canada. To find the nearest shop that has these products, all you have to do is use the company’s website store locator function.
Once Upon a Farm Review – Main Alternatives
Once Upon a Farm is great and provides healthy and delicious children-friendly meals, but let’s see some of its main competitors and most viable alternatives that you could or should consider.
If you want to feed your child with organic and healthy foods, you should consider Tiny Organics. The company had gained even more popularity when it collaborated with Michelle Obama for her Let’s Move Program dedicated to kids and youngsters. The focus was to lower the rate of obesity in the country, and the initiative was known as Veggies Early and Often.
- Tiny Organics is a reputable company that delivers numerous lunch and dinner alternatives
- It provides a complete and well-balanced diet for your little one
- The products are hypoallergenic, gluten-free, non-GMO, and plant-based
- In terms of breakfast, the options are limited
- You must be a subscriber to place an order.
Little Spoon is a brand that many parents love due to its numerous baby food options. All the products made and marketed by Little Spoon are both organic and non-GMO certified. This company works similarly to Blue Apron and Hello Fresh. Clients must cover the fee of membership to receive weekly baby food that they have previously chosen from the website.
- There are so many options to choose from, and they’re all organic;
- The ingredients are fresh and free of preservatives;
- The food has a great texture with a mix of chunky and smooth consistency.
- You cannot order as a guest client. You must subscribe to their service.
Nurture Life is a very popular baby meal delivery service that has many loyal customers. The company might be a small one, but it caters to the needs of all people, regardless of their age, from infants to toddlers, teenagers, and even adults. It delivers affordable weekly menus for the entire family. Nurture Life has numerous meals made entirely with organic ingredients.
- The meals are full of essential nutrients, minerals, and vitamins due to their veggie and fruit content;
- They are a great protein source;
- The meals are fresh and organic.
- Compared to other meal delivery subscriptions, this one is a bit on the pricey side.
Answer: Several things help Once Upon a Farm stand out from its competitors. These traits are:
• The people: Everything has started from Garner’s idea to offer children all over the US fresh and healthy foods. She got inspired by her grandparents, who own a farm located in Oklahoma. Being a mother of three, Jennifer has constantly fed her kids with fresh homemade recipes, but not all parents have the time and energy to cook every single day. So, the company’s items are a viable and healthy alternative. According to the movie star, she is very proud of her family, and she initiated this business for the people in the US;
• The farms: The company collaborates with local farms that offer certified fresh organic produce that is sustainably grown. Most farms are located where the business’ headquarters are, in California, but some of them are in other US states or countries such as Chile (for the strawberries), Mexico (for avocados), and Washington state (for apples);
Ingredients: These baby products are full of organic, healthy, safe, sustainable, fresh, and non-GMO ingredients: fruits, healthy fats, and vegetables. That’s all there is! You won’t find any added artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives; not even sugar;
• Education: Besides the brand’s official website, you can also access its blog, where you’ll find numerous articles regarding healthy nutrition practices for babies. The blog’s name is The Fresh Life and can be found in the Once Upon a Blog section. The articles address several topics, including babies, education, toddlers and older kids, recipes, motherhood, and lifestyle;
The production process: The ingredients included in the Once Upon a Farm recipe are never modified or heated. They’re all cold-pressed to ensure the freshness of the ingredients and to preserve their natural nutritional values;
• Gifts: The company provides gift certificates that you can offer to someone you love or someone who might need these products. The value of a gift certificate ranges between $20 and $100. You can purchase how many gift certificates you want in one single order;
• Supporting those in need: The first significant perk of the Once Upon a Time product is represented by their affordability. Most parents can afford to buy these items. Secondly, the company has significantly invested in social causes by creating healthy foods for less fortunate parents. The company is part of two important programs for special supplemental nutrition initiatives.
Answer: No, they’re not. The company tests all the ingredients they use to look for potential traces of certain contaminants such as lead, arsenic, antibiotics, pesticides, cadmium, and more. Therefore, these products are a lot cleaner and safer compared to the regular baby food that you find on the shelves of your local grocery stores.
Answer: It’s easy! Just wash the bowl or the container you received your meals in, and then throw it in the designated recycling bin that’s placed near your house. Moreover, all the materials and boxes used to ship the products are also sustainable, so you can simply toss them in the curbside recycling bin or take these containers to the nearest recycling facility.
Once Upon a Farm Review – Bottom Line
Based on my research, and on all the facts I’ve stated above, you probably know by now that Once Upon a Farm is an excellent option for a meal delivery service that focuses on baby and kid-friendly foods. There aren’t any serious complaints about them, nor negative reviews. The ordering process is easy, and the fees are more than reasonable.
The platform allows clients to purchase with or without becoming a subscriber. One downside could be the inability to purchase bowls on the online shop, but that could soon change.