After a day of talking to my sister-in-law who is walking me through how to prepare for breastfeeding, she mentioned that she liked to have muffins on hand and some special treats she cooked up. While I will eventually get around to testing those out, my latest experiment is how to super charge some lactation brownies.
Now in her case due to different hospital factors and being unable to feed and pump properly, she had to call in professional help as her milk supply wasn’t sufficient. She also had allergies to a couple of different things that boosted milk. I’m only mentioning such things to advise you to proceed with care and if your milk production isn’t where you want it then get a lactation consultant so you can get the best possible outcome. If you end up using formula in the end, that is okay as well. Things don’t always work how we expect.
The talk did inspire me a bit though. I’m wanting to have some nice treats on hand so I can feed myself while feeding the little one. The key to brownies that help boost milk production is throwing in some extra ingredients. The result is something delicious and satisfying. The recipes themselves haven’t been scientifically proven to help with supply though there are some studies floating around that concern specific ingredients. Some of these ingredients are found in things sold at the hospital with the intent of a supply boost for women trying to breastfeed.
In any case you get a healthier sort of brownie snack. They are an easy to make desert and I’m a big fan of chocolate cake as well as brownies so it is the obvious first thing I wanted to figure out.
What is a Lactation Brownie?
One of the first terms you will see when going through some of the breastfeeding materials they give you from the hospital is something called a galactagogue. This is a fancy term that means something that helps stimulate the body to create more milk. There might also be a book on things to avoid that dampen milk production such as certain herbs or medicines.
When Do I Eat Them:
The general consensus from most mothers is they have some sort of snack nearly every time they are nursing or pumping. For a lot of women with the goal of exclusively using breastmilk or pumped milk that can be a lot of snacking.
For the women who exclusively pump their goal is to generate an oversupply to build up a freezer stash according to their various goals. A lot of a mom’s life will seem to revolve around all the pump and pump supplies for a while so some will try to speed rush to build a measured out stash and they can plan exactly when they want to wean and try to reduce the necessity of the pumping after having her supply.
My plan is a bit of both. I want a freezer stash more as a backup so it is there and always available for dad to use, as well as some formula on hand for preparation sake. I’m very fortunate there as he plans to take as long of paternity leave as he can manage and is very interested in having his own resource stash to do feedings. I think since he mostly has had to sit by during the pregnancy that he is eager to feel more a part of things.
We even discussed where part of the time he might bottle feed her breastmilk while I’m pumping as we were theorizing different ways to maximize our time awake so we can hopefully get back to sleep faster and avoid the common sleep deprivation problems in the early weeks. Seems as though if we both get up and do our duties we both end up with more sleep per night. Though that is to be determined when theory is tested.
I plan to nurse as well for as long as it seems appropriate for me and my child. Even then I might switch it over where she is getting pumped milk that she can eat along with her other food introductions.
How Do I Make Lactation Brownies
I have a couple of different brownie recipes in my stash, both from scratch and with a box mix. I figure I won’t feel like dealing with the full from scratch variety so I’m going to use a box mix as my base. The plan is to start off with the box mix then use olive oil that is needed and 1 egg so it is more brownie consistency as well as a dash of vanilla. I usually like to add in either chopped nuts like pecan or chocolate chips. I’ll either mix those into the batter or work them into a top layer.
Then you want to pull out your milk boosters.
Oat milk is a helpful milk substitute that helps with milk production.
Oatmeal is a common recommendation from lactation consultants. My plan is to either eat it as a breakfast whole or to process the oatmeal down with my grinder so it is more like a flour additive.
Brewer’s Yeast is another common recommend on pretty much every lactation page and aside from help with milk it gives a good nutrition boost.
Moringa powder is an herb my sister-in-law ended up allergic too though she did confirm in her case that there was a great supply boost while she used it as was recommended to her via her natural birth, delivery, baby care team. Moringa powder can be added into snacks, some like to work it into smoothies or lattes, others prefer to take a capsule.
For many you will notice supply changes within a day, some people it takes a couple of days.
Do I Have to Bake Lactation Brownies all the Time?
One of the nice things about brownies is they are pretty easy to double in terms of the recipe and the extra portion can be frozen and heated up when desired. My plan is probably starting next week I’m going to be doing a lot of cooking and starting freezing half of whatever I cook. I’m lucky as currently there is a lot of freezer space open for storage and might have enough room to cover a few months of meals and snacks if I start now.
My sister-in-law bought a huge supply of muffins she kept in her freezer and would always have a pack thawing once she was done with one pack. For her routine, she would usually nurse her baby and send the dad off to heat her muffins and get her water.
Brownies can also be used in this way as they freeze, thaw, and reheat very well. The recommended storage time is around 3-4 months in the freezer though they probably won’t last that long. My plan is to have a good stockpile before the baby is out of a couple of different sorts of foods and have them frozen ahead of time.
Though with a box recipe it is so easy that I don’t think I’d be too put off making them in a pinch. Breastfeeding burns a lot of calories as well so I figure I will capitalize by eating all the foods I usually have to control.
- 1 box Brownie Mix
- 1/2 cup olive oil or according to box directions
- 1/2 cup oat milk
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup processed old fashioned oatmeal
- 1/4 cup brewer’s yeast
- 1-2 tablespoons moringa powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup chocolate chips*
- Preheat oven according to package directions
- Get a large mixing bowl and mix all ingredients until fully combined and smooth.
- Pour brownie batter into a 9×9-inch baking dish and bake to completion.
- Allow to cool. Slice into squares. Then eat or freeze your brownies in some form of wrap or freezer bag.
- Boxed brownie mix doesn't seem to matter, get a similar outcome from each box
- Adding an extra egg makes it more like a cake consistency
- Chocolate chips or chopped nuts are optional.