Tips on Freezing Breast Milk
- March 15, 2016
- by Melissa Lawrence
Melissa here, sharing some tried-and-true tips on two my favorite topics: breast milk and pumping! The questions came from a new mommy all the way in Singapore (Thanks, Nim!) and I couldn’t be happier to answer them. Breast pumping and keeping up a good supply were areas that I particularly struggled with when my five kiddies were breastfeeding, so I love sharing my tricks with other moms. Thanks again for the wonderful questions and I hope that this video on tips on freezing breast milk and pumping help you and other new moms out there, too!
Breast Milk Storage
When my five babies were breastfeeding, I got myself into the habit of pumping after every feeding. Don’t be discouraged if there isn’t a lot of milk at first. I sometimes only came up with an ounce or even a half an ounce! However, when you pump after each feeding, these ounces do add up to a nice bottle of milk by the end of the day.
Pump into bags or bottles (I went with Medela Breast Milk Bottles) and keep these stored in the refrigerator during the day. It’s only after the day is over that I would recommend freezing the milk. (Don’t forget to label the bottle or bag with the date!). If your baby is still tiny and eating very small bits, you also can freeze smaller amounts of fresh breast milk, since it is a good idea to freeze milk when it is fresh.
With very young babies, I would suggest freezing no more than 2 ounces at a time because babies that small just don’t drink that much. As your baby grows and starts eating more and more, feel free to increase the amount that you are freezing at a time.
And an important note on freshness! Breast milk, like any other milk, will go bad, and there are certain strict limits to how long you can keep it in your freezer and fridge. For more information, check out my list of breast pumping and freezing guidelines on my site!
Thanks so much for watching, and I hope these breast milk storage tips help you and your little one!
Wow these are great tips! Thanks – do you have any suggestions on what breast pumps that you would recommend for first time mums to be?
Hi Annabelle! If you search “breast pump” on the site I have a few reviews and how-to videos on some of the most popular breast pumps. Here is another post you might be interested in – https://cloudmom.com/baby-basics/mommy-gear-should-i-rent-or-buy-a-breast-pump/
Thanks so much for reading!
Flash heat your milk before freezing it. It will stop the lipase enzyme from digesting the fats in the milk which causes the milk to taste either “soapy” or “metallic “.
hi Melissa, I have a question, I hope you can help me understand. So let’s say for the first pump I had 1 oz. I placed it in a bottle and into the refrigerator. Next, 3 pumps (1 oz each), I placed them into separate clean containers and into the refrigerator too. Total of 4 containers containing 1 oz each. My question is, if at the end of the day the total amount would be 4 oz, could I combine 2 oz from 2 separate bottles into 1 container and put them in the freezer? ie. Total outcome/ stash would be two containers containing 2 oz each into the freezer? Thank you so much!