How Much Does Baby Formula Cost

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When breastfeeding is not an option, parents are looking for a suitable replacement for their babies – and they find it in using baby powder formulas. Baby formulas are supposed to mimic the ingredients that can be found in breastmilk, thus providing the baby with enough nutrients they need. 

Baby formula will cost you anywhere from $60 to $80 per month, on average. The exact amount depends on several factors – the brand of formula you are using, and the amount of formula you are using per month (which depends on the age of the baby and how much food it needs). 

There are several ways you can save up some money on the formula, and all of them are described in the article below. Although it is a considerable cost you need to plan for your monthly budget, it is not always a solution to go for the cheapest formula, and the reasons why are explained in detail below. 

How Much Baby Formula Is Used?

The two biggest factors that will influence the final amount of money you will spend are the frequency of use (the quantities your baby will require) and the price of the brand you have chosen to use. 

Newborns and smaller babies require to be fed more often than the older ones, but still, they need smaller amounts than older babies. In the table below it is explained how much is the average minimum and maximum of formula your baby will need. 

Babies can use the formula from the newborn stage, and most of them stop using it when they are around one year old. That is the time the baby is already transferring to solid food. 

Below is a breakdown of averages in minimum and maximum of how much baby milk is consumed at different ages per week on average.

Baby’s ageDaily minimum amount of formula (*average)Daily maximum amount of formula (*average)
0-2 months14-21oz28-32oz
2-6 months24oz40oz
6-9 months24oz32oz
9-12 months18oz32oz

Below is a breakdown of averages in minimum and maximum of how much baby milk is consumed at different ages within one month (average as some babies will have less and some more)

Baby’s ageMonthly minimum amount of formula (*average)Monthly maximum amount of formula (*average)
0-2 months630oz960oz
2-6 months720oz1200oz
6-9 months720oz960oz
9-12 months540oz960oz

Based on this, and the average formula price on the market, the monthly cost will be somewhere between $60 and $80. Of course, the exact amount you will spend on the formula is highly individual and depends on several other factors, not only the aforementioned ones. 

How To Save On Baby’s Formula?

Since baby formula can be a considerable cost, there are several ways on how you can save on it. One of the most obvious ways is to go for a more affordable brand. However, this is not always a solution, since some babies don’t accept certain brands per se. 

The best thing to do is to do your research online. There are numerous websites where you can compare the price for several different brands at once, so you can narrow down your choices and try out the few that fit your budget. 

Another good tip is to buy the food in bulk since many stores offer good discounts when you buy several packages at once. Sometimes you may even get a free package extra, depending on the type of the ongoing promotion. 

If you have some spare time, try to find coupons online. There are numerous websites dedicated just to coupons, so you may find some for the baby formula. Often you can find those in your local newspapers as well. 

When you are limited with the budget, it is always best to go for powdered formulas. Besides those, there are also baby formulas in a liquid state (although they are very rare). Because they still haven’t experienced the expansion like the powder formula, they are expensive compared to the standard powder formula.

Why You Shouldn’t Go for the Cheapest Formula

The cheapest baby formulas on the market are usually generic ones. This means that the cost of making such a formula is considerably less than the branded ones, which also reflects on the price of the formula on the shelf. 

The thing is that with the cheapest formulas there are high chances that the ingredients that were used are not of the best quality. This means that those formulas use plain sugar, fructose corn syrup, or solid glucose syrups as a base for the carbohydrate. All three ingredients are associated with obesity and diabetes. 

The main goal with the baby formula is to copy the breast milk formula as much as possible so that the baby on formula gets almost the same benefits as the breastfed baby. Some more expensive brands are using lactose as a carbohydrate since lactose can be found in breastmilk.

This means that those more expensive formulas avoid using sugar. By doing this, these formulas are better for the baby but are also a bigger expense for the parents’ pocket. 

Always make sure to check the exact ingredients that were used with that specific formula, especially if the manufacturer is from the US. Manufacturers from European Union are more “safe” since this matter is highly regulated there (when compared to the US).