Frequently Asked Questions
What makes lil’gourmets so unique?
lil’gourmets makes fresh, flavorful veggie-first meals that lil’ones love and that parents feel great about feeding their kids. All our recipes feature veggies & beans as their first and primary ingredients, delivering more than 1 serving of vegetables or beans per cup. There’s no added salt or sugar in our deliciously authentic global recipes, and our minimal processing and refrigeration allow us to deliver the taste, texture, and nutrition of a homemade meal.
Our brand is based on the latest in infant nutrition research. We not only provide essential nutrients today but also strive to help kids fall in love with vegetables and flavorful foods for life. We’ve won the Purity Award from the Clean Label Project and are the only brand in retail to have all our products endorsed by Michele Obama’s Partnership for A Healthier America for their meaningful delivery of vegetables.
What does your ‘veggie-first promise’ mean?
We pledge that all of our recipes will always feature veggies & beans as the first and primary ingredients. Our chef-crafted recipes pair fresh, organic veggies and tasty protein-rich beans with nourishing fats, such as coconut milk and extra virgin olive oil, finished with unique spice blends that bring the flavors of global cuisines to your home.
Can lil'gourmets be my baby’s first food?
Absolutely! lil'gourmets is based on the latest research in infant nutrition and designed to provide essential nutrients today, while setting lil’ones up with healthy eating habits as they grow older.
Our Pediatrician Advisor, Dr. Rupa Mahadevan, endorses lil’gourmets as an ideal first food for babies, as she recommends, “To create adventurous global eaters who enjoy other cuisines and to mitigate picky eaters, the early introduction of new flavors, spices, and tastes is key.” Read more about the research here.
Can my baby really eat spices?
YES! There are many benefits to feeding your babies spices early on. Spices allow you to add flavor to any food, without the use of sugar or salt. Babies who are introduced to different flavors early on often eat a wider variety of foods as they grow. And the spices themselves provide a host of health benefits.
What benefits do spices provide?
Take a look at some of our favorite articles on the benefits of spices:
• Baby food revolution: New rules for feeding your baby
• Experts Seek to Debunk Baby Food Myths
• Adding Spice for a Healthier Life
• Healthy spices nutrition facts
Is lil’gourmets refrigerated?
Yes, all of our products are perishable and must be refrigerated.
Why does lil’gourmets need to be refrigerated?
At lil’gourmets, we use a cold-pressure process (HPP) that provides food safety without the use of intense heat processing — which is widely used by shelf-stable products. The nutritional and taste degradation that occurs with heat processing drove our decision to create the first fresh veggie meal. Our choice to use a cold-pressure process allows us to deliver 3 key benefits vs traditional shelf-stable baby food:
1) more nutrients inherent in our veggies and spices
2) fresh, chef-crafted meals that taste closest to homemade
3) vegetables that taste like mother nature intended
What is cold-pressure (HPP)?
High pressure processing, or HPP, is a cold-pressure processing technique that uses pressure instead of heat to kill harmful bacteria. HPP locks in flavor and nutrients from vegetables, which gives our meals a homemade taste. It also helps avoid the degradation of vitamins and taste that occur with shelf-stable processing.
How long will lil’gourmets stay fresh?
Our meals are fresh, stored in the fridge, until the expiration date stamped on the back of your product. We guarantee a minimum of 30 days of shelf-life so you can feel confident ordering a month’s worth at a time.
Why is lil’gourmets only available in a cup and not a pouch?
There are several important benefits tofeeding with a cup for lil’ones:
• Learn to eat independently with a spoon
• Develop important fine-motor skills
• Recognize when the tummy is full and help savor flavors
• Bond with parent/caretaker at an important developmental time
• Recyclability – all of our packaging is 100% recyclable!
• Our minimally processed veggies are just too thick to squeeze through a pouch
Is your packaging BPA-Free?
Yes, all of our packaging is BPA-Free, phthalate-free, PVC-free, and 100% recyclable.
Can I recycle your cups?
Yes! All of our packaging (cups, lids, seals, and sleeves) is 100% recyclable. If we ship fresh to your door, all of our shipping materials are recyclable and/or biodegradable.
Who are the advisors for lil'gourmets?
Dr. Rupa Mahadevan, MD FAAP, General Pediatrics, Northwestern Medicine. Dr. Mahadevan completed a specialized fellowship in Integrative Medicine through the University of Arizona after her pediatric training which sparked her passion to educate and promote wellness in children. Prior to medical school, Rupa worked as a nutrition counselor, and she is passionate about educating parents how to cook healthy meals for their children. She has her own blog promoting wellness in kids which you can find at www.kidchendoc.com or you can follow her on instagram at @kidchendoc
“I believe ‘Food is Medicine’ and I try to incorporate nutrition-based counseling during all of my pediatric clinic visits. I am also one of the ‘Cooking up Health’ facilitators offered at a Chicago based medical school. My research interests include mindfulness-based therapies for children exposed to toxic stress, culinary medicine, as well as reducing physician burn out through wellness. In my free time, I enjoy yoga, cooking, and traveling.
I became involved with lil’gourmets because when I first met Shibani her enthusiasm was contagious. As a mother and an entrepreneur, she had a passion for building a brand that was healthy and trust worthy.
There are so many baby food companies on the market but after I tried all her products, I was sold at the first taste! The purees are rich with nutrients and burst with flavor at every bite. I really like the HPP preservation process as well as her strong desire to make sure every product tastes fresh and like real vegetables and fruits. The spices work to enhance the flavors instead of masking them. As a pediatrician, I always promote homemade blends and her products taste like they were made in your kitchen!”
Dr. Jane V. Leland, Ph.D., Food / Flavor / Taste Science Consultant. Dr. Leland is an international food industry leader with over thirty years of taste, flavor, and food research and development experience. She formed Leland Global Enterprises LLC after retiring in 2015 from Kraft Foods, where she rose to the position of Technology Fellow in recognition of her technical and organizational leadership, pioneering R&D partnerships to address challenging food/public health concerns such as sodium and sugar reduction, and track record of building strong results and relationships across cultures and geographies.
She is a Fellow of the American Chemical Society, the world’s largest scientific society, and past chair and current executive committee member for their Agricultural & Food Chemistry Division. She has also served as a U.S.D.A. research panel reviewer and Advisor to the Cornell Institute of Food Systems.
Leland holds a B.S. in Food Science from Cornell University, and a Ph.D. in Flavor Chemistry from University of Minnesota. She currently consults primarily with small to medium for-profit and non-profit organizations. In her free time, Jane loves to travel and is a Chamber & Orchestral string musician.
“I’m excited about being involved with lil’gourmets so we can bring uniquely spiced fresh vegetable-based nutrition to babies. And excited for the opportunity to help bring an entrepreneur’s dream to life.”
Suzanne Florek, Executive Chef, Product Developer & Recipe Innovator. Suzanne Florek’s professional life has been influenced by her passion for good food and its power to create moments of personal connection. This passion is both the inspiration and driving force behind her distinguished culinary career as a 5-star executive chef. After earning degrees in both business (from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business) and culinary arts (from The Culinary Institute of America), Suzanne’s career launched at the famed Chicago restaurant, Spiaggia, where she worked her way up to the position of Executive Chef.
Since then, Suzanne has developed her own culinary consultancy and has researched and developed new food products for both independent food companies and Fortune 500 clients. From 2016-2018, Suzanne ran her own restaurant and retail location, Salty Fig, in Western Springs, Illinois. As owner, chef, and operator of Salty Fig, Suzanne developed incredible menus and led a diverse culinary team of 30. Suzanne joined lil’gourmets in 2019 as our product development expert and recipe innovator. She is the creative mind behind the development of our latest global flavors, which are as healthy as they are delicious.
When she’s not whipping up new taste combinations for lil’gourmets, Suzanne lives in Western Springs, Illinois with her husband Anthony, enjoying spending time with him and their three sons, who live nearby.
“I joined lil’gourmets because children are happier, healthier and more confident when they are exposed to the world. Spices, flavors and organic vegetables are an important part of opening their eyes. Aside from being smart, amazing women, Shibani and Becky have a fabulous vision that I enjoy being part of, pushing the boundaries of prepared vegetables into a world of flavor!”
Is lil’gourmets organic and non-GMO?
Yes, each of our recipes uses USDA-certified organic and non-GMO ingredients.
Is lil’gourmets gluten-free?
Yes, all of our flavors are gluten free.
Is lil’gourmets vegan?
Yes, all of our flavors are vegan and 100% plant-based.
Is salt or sugar added to lil’gourmets?
No, we will never add salt or sugar to any of our recipes.
Does lil’gourmets contain preservatives?
No, our cold-pressure process ensures food safety without the use of preservatives.
Does lil’gourmets have allergens?
Two of our flavors contain coconut: Cauliflower Mash and Sweet Potato Curry. Otherwise, all the remaining flavors are allergen-free.
Are there allergens produced in your manufacturing facility on the shared equipment?
Tree nuts (almonds, coconut), sesame (tahini, sesame seeds), sunflower (oil), soy (sauce), egg white powder, and milk products (yogurt, cheese) are produced on equipment shared with our products. The equipment is all sanitized prior to producing our products.
Where do lil’gourmets ingredients come from?
Our produce all comes from the U.S., mostly farms in Pacific Northwest. Our spices, oils, and fats all come from U.S. companies, mostly in the Midwest. Even our packaging is all made at local companies in the Midwest!
subscriptions & ordering
What’s the status of my order?
Please check your email (or spam folder) for emails with your order confirmation and tracking details. If you have further questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
How does lil’gourmets subscription program work?
It’s simple and you save 10% on every meal, plus free shipping! Choose 2 or more cases to be delivered to your home monthly. We will send you a reminder prior to shipping, and you can change or cancel your subscription at any time with us via email@example.com.
How do I change or cancel my subscription?
Make changes to your subscription any time by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
When will I get billed for my subscription?
You will be billed monthly (saving 10% and including free shipping) coinciding with your order shipment.
When will my order ship?
You will receive an email from us with confirmation of shipment and the tracking information. We follow this general schedule:
• Orders placed over the weekend are shipped Monday or Tuesday and arrive 1-2 days later.
• Orders placed Monday through Wednesday at 10 am CT are shipped same or next day and arrive 1-2 days later.
• Orders placed Thursday or Friday may ship same or next day for arrival 1-2 days later, but, depending on location, may not ship until Monday.
Can I rush my order?
We rush all orders! Orders are generally shipped within 1-2 business days and in transitfor a maximum of 2 days. See question above for shipping guidelines or reach out to us at email@example.com.
How will my order ship?
Your order will be shipped in insulated packaging with reusable ice packs and will arrive cold. Be sure to immediately put your lil’gourmets in the fridge. If your meals are not cold when you open the box, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Is lil’gourmets available internationally?
At this time, we are not able to ship outside of the lower 48 states of the U.S.
where to buy
Where can I buy lil’gourmets?
You can buy lil’gourmets on our website, Amazon, or at any of our participating retailers – click here for our store locator.
Where in the store can I find lil’gourmets?
Our store locator lists the store location and where you’ll find us in that specific store. Always refrigerated, you can most often find us in the dairy case next to other yogurt and kid’s products. At Meijer, find us in the baby aisle cooler.
Does lil’gourmets have any coupons available?
Of course! Click here for a $1.00 off coupon for use at a participating retailer or subscribe to our newsletter at the bottom of this page to get access to special offers, free giveaways, and a sneak peek of all our biggest news!