frequently asked questions

Which of your foods contain allergens?

We list the top eight food allergens (wheat, soy, milk, egg, fish, shellfish, tree nuts & peanuts) on our labels in accordance with FDA requirements.  Several of our products do contain wheat, milk or egg. This information is printed clearly on the labels of those products. See a full list here to see which products contain common allergens (so you can be sure to avoid them if needed) and also which products are currently certified Kosher. Or, try our search filter tool to find exactly the right product for your little one’s age and dietary needs.

Is your baby food certified organic?

Our entire Beech-Nut Organics line of baby food is certified USDA organic. Browse all of our organic products here.

What's in the broth in Beech-Nut Stage 1 meat jars?

The broth in our Stage 1 meat jars (Beef & Beef Broth jar, Chicken & Chicken Broth jar, and Turkey & Turkey Broth jar) is just meat and water. There is no onion, garlic, or other spices in these jars.

Do Beech-Nut baby food products contain lead?

Even the highest quality, organic and non-GMO fruits and vegetables contain very tiny levels, or trace amounts, of lead and other elements because they commonly occur in nature, especially root vegetables, because lead occurs naturally in soil. The FDA states that: “Because lead may be present in environments where food crops are grown and animals used for food are raised, various foods may contain unavoidable but small amounts of lead that do not pose a significant risk to human health.”

Beech-Nut’s real food for babies have strict standards – we believe among the strictest in the industry. Read about our Food Quality and Safety standards here.

I love your food! How can I connect with other moms who love real food and help spread the word?

Follow us on Facebook and join the conversation. Seriously! You’ll find everything from real-food recipes to real talk from real moms. You inspired us with homemade food, so we’ll do our best to return the favor.

What measures do you take to make sure your foods are the best quality?

We have an entire department dedicated to ingredient sourcing. Lots of research goes into finding the phenomenal food that goes into our jars. We build relationships with farms we can trust, and look for opportunities to buy locally whenever we can. We do what it takes to make sure we are using only the best, including turning food away when it isn’t up to our standards.

I’m concerned about arsenic in rice.

Baby’s health is our top priority, and it’s part of our core values. This is why our Beech-Nut foods are and have been below the proposed FDA arsenic limit for rice cereals. Rice is an important staple for many people. All consumers, including pregnant women, infants and children, are encouraged to eat a well-balanced diet for good nutrition – without an excess of any one food. The American Academy of Pediatrics currently recommends feeding infants and toddlers a variety of grains, including rice, as part of a well-balanced diet.

How should I store Beech-Nut foods?

All products are designed to be stored at room temperature before opening. Freezing before use is not recommended. After opening, please refer to the label on each individual product for proper handling and storage information.

Are your foods Kosher?

Currently, some of our products are certified Kosher. See a full list here.

Are your foods gluten-free?

Many are. Any of our products that do not contain wheat or oat are gluten-free. All allergen information is clearly listed on each product’s label. See a full list of allergen-free and kosher products.

Do your foods contain the soy allergen?

None of our baby foods contain the soy allergen. See a full list of allergen-free and kosher products.

Are Beech-Nut foods WIC authorized?

We believe in real food for all. That’s why we’re proud to offer our delicious baby foods, made simply with just real ingredients to families in the WIC™ program. Find eligible products in your area as well as other information about the program here.

What does “100% natural” mean?

At Beech-Nut we make foods for babies using simple, all-natural ingredients from places that nurture their fruits and vegetables and care about their quality. We never use artificial preservatives—nobody really needs modified starch, salt or harsh spices, especially babies. But everybody deserves great-tasting, real food with all the vitamins and minerals a baby needs. We’re not fans of pesticides; our internal standards are significantly stricter than federal requirements.

Unrefrigerated fruits and vegetables go bad without added preservatives. How can your food keep in jars and still be 100% natural?

To make sure our fruits and vegetables are as close to what you might make in your own kitchen, we use a method of creating our real food for babies that doesn’t add any excess water or preservatives and won’t cook the nutrients away. We call it just gentle cooking™—two steps within it allow our food to be 100% natural: deaeration and gentle heating. In deaeration we remove air from the puree so the food isn’t exposed to oxygen, which would cause browning and decomposition. The food is then gently cooked with indirect heat, similar to that in a double boiler. This deactivates enzymes and bacteria that could further break down the food and allows the product to be shelf stable, similarly to what you’d do when canning at home.

Does Beech-Nut contain GMOs?

We are taking steps to eliminate any sources of genetically modified material from all our products. We understand that the practice of genetically modifying certain foods is a concern for many parents. And we believe that we owe you full transparency about what does and does not go into our foods. That’s why we’re working with the Non-GMO Project to verify all of our products. We believe that the Non-GMO Project’s seal is a good fit for our products because it is trustworthy, defensible and transparent and (most important) requires on going testing. Right now, over 100 of our products are Non-GMO Project verified, and we’re pursuing all of the rest! Look for the butterfly on our packaging in stores. You can learn more and check on the status of our approvals on the Non-GMO Project’s website: livingnongmo.org

Which stores near me carry Beech-Nut baby foods?

All stores and online retailers that carry Beech-Nut foods can be found via our store locator.

Do you have any coupon offers?

We have a one-time coupon offer for all new parents, so you can try out our real foods! Please send us a message using our “contact us” form. Be sure to select “I’d like some coupons” as the reason for contacting.

Do you have a multiples program?

We do not have a formal multiples program, but we do have a one-time coupon offer for all new parents. Please send us a message.

When should I start my baby on solid foods?

Every baby is different! Talk to your pediatrician to understand when your baby is ready to try solid foods in conjunction with formula or breast milk. A good rule of thumb is to start trying solids around 4-6 months. These are signs your doctor looks for to determine that your baby is ready:

  • When your baby can sit with your support.
  • When your baby can hold her head up and turn her head away when she’s full.
  • When your baby can take food from a spoon and has learned to swallow.

Your doctor can help you decide when to start and what to try first with a feeding plan. For more information, check out tips from our pediatric nutrition specialist Nicole Silber here on our blog!

What do the different stages mean?
  • Stage 1® from about 4 months – a delicious introduction to single-ingredient solid food.
  • Stage 2® from about 6 months – introduces perfect pairings of two or more of our favorite foods.
  • Stage 3® from about 8 months – provides new tastes, new textures and new colors that a few new teeth can enjoy.
  • Stage 4® from about 12 months – introduces more complex ingredients for supporting healthy growth and development.

These ages are only suggested ranges since every baby develops differently. Do not begin to introduce Stage 3® foods until you are sure your baby has the teeth needed to enjoy these foods. To filter all of our products by the age of your baby, try our search tool here!

How can I feed my baby safely to prevent foodborne illness?

Take extra care when handling and preparing any baby food, since infants and young children can be more vulnerable to foodborne illnesses (caused by bacteria or viruses, for example salmonella). The most important rule: always wash your hands before feeding time, since your hands can pick up harmful bacteria from pets, raw food, soil, or diapers. Here are some other tips for safe feeding:

  • Inspect the baby food’s packaging before you serve it, ensuring that the safety button on the lid of the jar is down and that pouches aren’t swelling or leaking.
  • Always use a clean spoon for serving, and don’t put the spoon in your mouth or anyone else’s mouth.
  • Never leave opened baby food out at room temperature for more than two hours.
  • Store opened baby food in the refrigerator, but only for a maximum of three days. “When in doubt, throw it out!”

See the FDA’s safe feeding and handling tips here. This page includes information about how to microwave baby food, how to store unused baby food, and when to call the doctor if you think your baby has a foodborne illness.

How should the food be served?

We recommend serving at room temperature or slightly warmed. If using a microwave, be sure to stir thoroughly, and always test the temperature before serving it to your baby, as uneven heating may occur (note: Do not microwave Beech-Nut® Classics that contain meat). Also, it’s best that you don’t feed directly from the jar, to prevent bacteria growth.

What does an allergic reaction look like?

Always check with your doctor if your baby shows any sign of an allergic reaction. Food allergy reactions vary greatly. Symptoms can include difficulty in breathing, constipation, diarrhea, vomiting, skin rash, coughing, runny nose and watery eyes. A good rule to follow is to introduce just one new food every 3 to 5 days to help identify any possible allergies. With this in mind, our Beech-Nut® Stage 1® foods are “single-ingredient” foods, and all our cereals are soy-free, to provide you a convenient and healthful way to check for food allergies in your little one. Remember to always consult a pediatrician regarding your baby’s individual needs.

What should I know before adding mixed-ingredient foods, like Stage 2®?

Once you’ve tried Stage 1® single-ingredient foods and learned which ones agree with your baby, you can serve mixtures of those foods. Unless your doctor says otherwise, a good rule of thumb is to start mixed-ingredient foods at about six months.

There are a few things to keep in mind:

  • If your baby was sensitive to any single food, don’t feed a combination food that contains it.
  • It’s okay to keep single-ingredient foods in your baby’s diet.
  • Breast milk or formula is the critical foundation of your baby’s diet for the first 12 months, so keep feeding at every meal.
Why did you choose jars over plastic?

Homemade was our inspiration, so we wanted our food to come in something that looked and felt like homemade. We like it that our glass jars make it easy to see what’s inside our new line: the beautiful colors and natural textures of nothing but real fruits and vegetables.

A few more reasons to love our jars:

  • they’re BPA-free
  • the shape is great for easy scooping
  • there are a million fun ways to reuse them.

We also offer pouches made with natural ingredients for a convenient on-the-go meal.

Where can I find the best by date?
  • For cereals—the best by date can be found on the bottom of the canister.
  • For jars—the best by date can be found on the top or side of the lid.
  • For pouches—the best by date can be found on the bottom of the pouch near the barcode.
  • For melties—the best by date can be found on the bottom of the pouch near the barcode.
  • For cereal puffs—the best by date can be found on the bottom of the canister
  • For quinoa crispies and oatie bars—the best by date can be found on the bottom of the carton and on each individual bar.
Does any of your packaging contain BPAs?

No BPA is used in the formulation of our packaging materials.

Who should I contact if I have an issue with one of your products?

We take quality complaints very seriously.  If you have an issue with one of our products, please call our Consumer Help Line: 800-233-2468 (open Monday-Friday 8am-5pm EST) or send us a message.

This product looks/tastes different than the last time I bought it.

Each year’s crop can be slightly different, as you’d expect in your own home garden from season to season. This can result in a product that is slightly thicker or thinner, or a product that may also taste slightly different from each other because of crop variety.

How can I tell if my jar wasn't stored properly?

The texture and color of our purees will change if the jars are stored improperly. This is because ingredients like bananas are a temperature-sensitive. For example, when bananas are exposed to extreme temperatures, they can become clumpy. They can also turn pink or develop a thick film that may look like the skin you would find on pudding.

If your jar is showing any of these characteristics, then the jar was most likely not stored according to our guidelines. While there are no health or food safety risks associated with the affected jars, they are not up to the quality of the food we strive to produce. Please call our Consumer Help Line: 800-233-2468 and we will happily replace the damaged jars.

Why is the food clumped in the jar? Why is there sediment at the bottom of the jar?

Instead of removing all of the good fibers in fruits and veggies, we keep them in. This gives you the nutritional value you’d expect of your homemade foods. Separation or clumping is natural and you may see some of these fibers settle to the bottom of the jar or clump together. Simply stir or shake the jar to mix these fibers in before feeding.

What should I do if the jar lid didn’t pop?

Every jar of Beech-Nut food should pop when you open it. If your jar didn’t pop, don’t use the food. We will happily replace your damaged jar if you call our Consumer Help Line: 800-233-2468 and let us know.

I think there’s mold in my jar. What should I do?
  • Separation or clumping is natural and you may see some of these fibers settle to the bottom of the jar or clump together. This is not mold.
  • Our products are kept fresh by removing the air and using a vacuum seal. If a product is mishandled during shipping or shelf stocking, the packaging can become damaged and allow air in. Mold is a living organism and needs air to grow.
  • We take quality complaints very seriously. If you suspect there’s mold in your product, please call our Consumer Help Line: 800-233-2468 and we will happily replace it.
Why are there black specks in the cereal I purchased?

Beech-Nut cereal is iron fortified.  Iron is a vital dietary supplement for infants and we enhance our cereal to meet your baby’s nutrition needs.  Iron appears as black specks in the cereal and is completely safe for your baby to consume.