In the Old Testament, Psalm 16 contains the following beautiful lines; “The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot. The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; Indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.”
As a father and husband staggering under the weight of God’s kindness, I often reflect on how truly the lines have fallen for me in pleasant places. My wife Elizabeth and I have been blessed with 5 little joy-filled souls to care for and as a result we feel a real sense of responsibility in how we care and love them, especially in the what we feed them.
Since our middle child Liesl was around 5 months, we have used a homemade goat milk formula I created to supplement natural feedings. Almost as an aside, I decided to share the recipe here on our blog in hopes of encouraging other parents and caregivers in their quest to give their little one what I considered to be the best food available next to mother’s milk.
The positive response to this formula has been overwhelming! We have literally had thousands of parents flock to the formula. Some use the formula exactly as I wrote but many have adjusted the formula to fit the needs of their own little one. Nearly every parent who has tried some version of the formula with a goat milk powder base has experienced amazing results.
When breast feeding isn’t an option or supplementation to breast feeding is needed, parents now have the choice to make their own formula and avoid some of the nasty ingredients found in commercial formulas. Most commercial formulas amazingly come loaded with junk like corn syrup, GMO soy and vegetable oils, preservatives and other artificial ingredients.
My goal in creating this formula was to make the recipe resemble mother’s milk as closely as possible. However, mimicking breast milk is like trying to mimic the weather; it is constantly changing.
There is no standardized nutritional profile for breast milk.
I know, I know, we want a nice little nutrition facts panel that clearly details exactly the amounts of fat, carbohydrates, protein, vitamins, minerals, probiotics, bio-active components like nucleotides, cytokines, and growth factors in mother’s milk.
However this is never going to happen.
There are literally huge changes in the composition of breast milk that make it impossible to give an exact nutritional profile.
The best we can do is analyze thousands of samples of breast milk for hundreds of different women at different times during their lactation taking into account such variables as time post-partum, minutes into feeding (foremilk vs hindmilk), ethnicity, region, age, diet, health status, etc. The list of variables needed to determine the nutritional profile of breast milk is mind boggling.
However, we are not completely in the dark, we do have some detailed analysis that shows in each 8 ounces of milk on average breast milk contains the following nutrient profile.
|Per 8 ounces||Goat Milk Formula||Breast milk|
So even though the nutritional composition of breast milk might vary (some estimate by as much as a factor of 3 during feeding) we can get a general ballpark for where an infant formula should be nutritionally speaking. You can also see that the recipe I am about to share with you is very close in overall nutrient composition.
When I first shared my original formula recipe, I only had access to skim goat milk powder. As a result of this, the recipe I created took into account the limiting factor of fat in the nonfat goat milk powder.
All that is now changing.
Due to overwhelming demand, we are now offering a whole goat milk powder that will result in an even better homemade infant formula.
The original goat milk recipe utilizing non fat goat milk powder is still a wonderful alternative to soy/cow milk based commercial formula and I completely stand by it but moving forward I will be suggesting parents and caregivers use the following recipe.
Recipe for Homemade Goat Milk Formula
(Note: The proportions listed are for making an 8 oz. bottle.)
Full Fat Goat Milk Powder – 1 level scoop* (14 grams)
This is really where all the magic begins. Goat milk is a remarkable food in that it more closely resembles the protein, fat, and carbohydrate structure of breast milk than literally any other ingredient available. The benefits range from the nucleotide (DNA) structure of goat milk being as similar to breast milk to the presence of taurine in goat milk amounting to 20 times that of cow’s milk which is, not surprisingly, the same ratio found in breast milk. *As of January 2016 we began including a scoop in every bottle of CapraMilk. If your bottle does not have a scoop just know that it is approximately 1 heaping tablespoon.
Goat Milk Lactose – 1 tbsp. (12 grams)
Carbohydrates are the main source of energy for baby and there is a fair amount of flexibility here. I prefer to use lactose as it is true “milk sugar”. Lactose is a combination of glucose and galactose which is perfect for an infants diet. Babies naturally produce excessive amounts of lactase, an enzyme used to digest lactose so the fit is natural. Also, lactose is really helpful in establishing Lactobacillus acidophilus (good bacteria) in the newly formed GI tract of your little one. Other good options for your carbohydrate sources are organic, raw turbinado sugar, organic maple syrup, brown rice syrup, and even cow milk lactose. Honey is not a good option as it is not recommend for babies less than 12 months old.
Goat Milk Ghee – ½ tsp.
This is one of nature’s greatest fat sources. Ghee is the clarified “butter oil” from goat milk cream and does not contain any of the allergens found in cow milk. Mt. Capra is currently the only company in the world producing this unique food. Saturated fat is extremely important for the brain development and overall health of your growing little one. The saturated fat in goat milk ghee is high in medium chain triglycerides (MCT’s) and because our goats are grass-fed, our ghee contains Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) as well as important fatty acids such as lauric acid which is found in high amounts in breast milk. EDIT: Coconut oil is still a great option for the saturated fat category of the formula and can be used in the same amount as the goat milk ghee. Coconut oil was the most requested ingredient replacement question as it is unfortunately somewhat common as an allergen. We created our goat milk ghee to address this need and because this formula is meant to be a low-allergy option, the Goat Milk Ghee is a great tool for those little ones who are especially sensitive to the allergens found in coconut oil.
Sunflower oil delivers more healthy fats, this time in the form of poly and monounsaturated fats and especially the essential fatty acid linoleic acid which is vital in infant nutrition. Sunflower oil is also a great source of Vitamin E but make sure you buy organic or at least non-GMO varieties of this oil.
This thick black syrup is high in B vitamins, minerals, and is a natural source of iron. It also can help keep baby from getting constipated so be careful not to give too much! Make sure you get the unsulphured variety as it is far less processed.
Infant probiotic strain – ⅛ tsp.
Probiotics are naturally present in breast milk and there are several different strains that are perfectly designed for infants. Bifidobacterium infantis, Bifidobacterium breve, Bifidobacterium longum, and Saccaromyces boulardii all have clinical research that shows safety in infants as well as many beneficial effects. I recommend the Garden of Life brand Primal Defense Kids but there are many high quality infant probiotics available. Since most probably will only recommend them for kids 3 and up, I suggest only using half a dose but probiotics are amazingly safe and I would have no problem using the regular strength or even double the strength if the situation needed it. Remember, this ingredient only needs to be added only once per day and should be kept in cold storage until right before you add it to the bottle.
Natural source of vitamins/minerals – ¼ tsp.
I am updating my recommended source of natural vitamins to NutriStart Multivitamin Powder created by Rainbow Light®. There are a lot of possible vitamin/mineral combinations to use but this one contains no added preservative, colors, or artificial flavors. Remember, this one you only need to add to one bottle per day as it will contain all the vitamins/minerals needed for that day. Please don’t add this to every bottle.
I get many questions from responsible parents inquiring why I don’t include this or that ingredient. The top two most requested ingredients are DHA and colostrum. Interestingly enough, Mt Capra offers the only commercially available goat milk colostrum so it might seem odd for me to leave it out of the formula.
I should explain that my goal is to make this formula simple enough that I would still make it regularly and to keep it far less expensive than store bought formula. However, DHA and colostrum are awesome additions to your formula which will make a great formula that much better. Here are my recommendations.
Goat Milk Colostrum – 1 scoop (1,450 mg)
Colostrum is the thick yellow fluid which is produced as a precursor to mother’s milk. It is found in humans, goats, and other mammals where it is produced by the mother for two days following birth. Colostrum can be described as a brilliantly designed transfer system which effectively “jump starts” a newborn’s undeveloped immune system. Colostrum adds many beneficial bioactive ingredients such as lactoferrin, cytokines, growth factors, and immunoglobulins. It only needs to be added once per day. Make sure to get the powdered version for easy mixing.
DHA – Based on weight
DHA also known as Docosahexaenoic acid is found in fish, algae and most importantly here, breast milk. It is not found in goat milk and I would highly recommend adding it to your formula if you don’t mind the slightly fishy taste it might give the milk. This is another ingredient that only needs to be added once per day based on the the weight of baby.
I have spent many hours researching and refining this goat milk infant formula recipe. I have formatted it into a convenient recipe card size that is easily printable and comes with step by step instructions. It also has a conversions table so that you can mix 1 pint, 1 quart, and 1 gallon of the formula without doing a single calculation in your head. How’s that for convenience! Now that there are two recipes I will always include both recipe cards for the whole milk version and the older nonfat version.
I will send this free recipe to you instantly. All you have to do is join the Mt. Capra family ‘Inner Circle’ by putting your email in the form below and confirming your subscription.
I will send this free recipe to you instantly. All you have to do is join the Mt. Capra family ‘Inner Circle’ by putting your email in the form above and don’t forget that you must confirm your subscription before the recipe will come.
Our famous homemade infant formula recipe can now be purchased as a kit. Total retail value of kit is over $200! Kit contains all wholesome ingredients necessary to make the homemade goat milk formula at home.
This has been a formula that has worked wonders for our daughter and I think it can work wonders for your children too! Please be sure to talk over the formula with your doctor so he or she is aware of your choice.
I would love to hear your feedback in the comment section.
Here’s to your health!
Joe Stout, M.S – Father of 6
Joe holds both a M.S. and B.Sc. degrees in Human Nutrition and Food Science from the University of Bridgeport and Washington State University. Joe has been married to his wonderful wife Elizabeth for eight years and has 6 beautiful children. He is the President of Mt. Capra and lives on and manages the family goat dairy.