How to Properly Warm a Baby Bottle: The Safe and Reliable Way

Making sure it's not too hot and not too cold.

Bottle feeding is a convenient way to feed either breast milk or formula, but if it’s not warmed up, baby is probably not going to like it.

It’s true that babies are fussy little people! If you’re wondering how to warm a baby bottle, never fear: it’s actually very simple, and you can do it in about 10 minutes without anything special.

 How To Warm a Baby Bottle With Water

The simplest way to warm a baby bottle is with warm water. All you need is a bowl deep enough to fully submerge the bottle, and somewhere to get warm water.

  1. Take the bowl and fill it with warm water. The water should be warm, but not too hot to put your hand in it.
  2. Put the bottle (with milk or formula) and submerge it in the water, without the cap on it. The bottle should be fully submerged for best results.
  3. Leave the bottle in the water, but don’t leave it any longer than 15 minutes, as this can promote bacterial growth.
  4. Put the cap and nipple on tight while the bottle is still submerged in water.
  5. Once the bottle has warmed up, shake it to evenly warm the milk.

You should test the warmth of the milk before you feed it to your baby. You might have to experiment with different temperatures to see which your baby takes to the easiest.

Alternatively, Use a Bottle Warmer

A convenient way to warm up baby bottles is with a bottle warmer. There are several different ones on the market, but the one I’d personally recommend is the Phillips Avent Food & Bottle Warmer (check price on Amazon) which should work with just about any baby bottle. It evenly warms food within 5 minutes and keeps it warm.

It’s small, so it should fit easily on your kitchen countertop, or on a nightstand or changing table for late-night feedings.

What I really like about using a bottle warmer is that it’s simple: you just add water, stick the bottle in, and hit a switch. In about 4-5 minutes, you have a perfectly-warmed, ready-to-feed bottle.

If you can afford to shell out the money (they’re not expensive) for a bottle warmer, I’d definitely recommend one.

How To Test The Temperature of the Bottle

It’s easy to test the temperature after you’ve warmed the bottle up.

Just squirt a little bit onto your inner wrist, making sure it doesn’t feel too hot. The inner wrist is more sensitive than the other areas of the arm, and should give you an accurate method of testing the temperature.

Some Things To Avoid!

Here are a few things you should remember to never do when heating up baby bottles:

Don’t Use The Microwave

It might seem like throwing the bottle in the microwave is an easy way to warm it, but I’d definitely not recommend this at all.

Microwaves don’t warm bottles evenly, and you can end up with scalding hot pockets of milk in an otherwise warm bottle.

What’s worse is that the bottle will continue to warm up the milk even after you take it out of the microwave. Just don’t use the microwave: it’s never a good idea.

Don’t Warm Up a Bottle Twice

If you warm up a bottle and let it sit until it’s cold again, don’t warm it up a second time. If you heat it up once and let it cool off again, it’s not safe anymore and you should throw it away. Warming up and cooling down a bottle is a recipe for bacterial growth!

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