how to store your breast milk
Pumping and building up their reserves of liquid gold is on many new parents to-do list. Storing breast milk correctly is an important step on that journey. Below you will find our best tips and guidelines for milk storage from our founder Jada, a lactation counselor with over 20 years of experience.
According to the CDC, freshly expressed breast milk can stay:
- At room temperature for 4 hours.
- In the fridge for 4 days.
- In a normal freezer for 6-12 months
- Thawed (previously frozen) milk is good on the counter for 1-2 hours, or 1 day in the fridge. It should not be refrozen.
Remember, breast milk in a bottle cannot be reused if your baby doesn’t take it all. Be sure to put small amounts in bottles so you don’t have to waste precious milk.
How to store pumped breast milk:
- Wash your hands before expressing and storing milk
- Pump into bottles or milk storage bags.
- Always use BPA-free bottles
- Label pumped breast milk with time and date.
- Fasten bottle lid or bag.
- Store milk in small amounts that your baby is likely to consume, so you don’t have to throw out milk.
Tip: If you use storage bags, lay the bag on its side when you freeze it so that milk is stored in a very thin layer. This will allow it to freeze (and eventually thaw) more quickly.
How to properly thaw your breast milk:
Stored milk doesn’t require warming.
- You can thaw your milk slowly in the fridge.
- You can take your frozen milk bag or bottle and run it under a warm water tap.
- Do not microwave breast milk.
Breastmilk storage is easy once you got the basics covered. Now, let’s get pumping! If you need more help, don’t hesitate to reach out to a lactation consultant to guide you on your pumping journey.