Concentrated Liquid Formula: How to Prepare and Store

When you buy concentrated liquid formula, it is sterile and free from bacteria. However, you still need to take care when preparing the formula.

Preparing concentrated liquid formula

  • Always follow the manufacturer’s directions on the label.
  • Sterilized water may be used to make formula once it has cooled to 20-37°C  (68-98°F).  This is between room and body temperature.
  • Mix the right amount of water to the formula.  Adding extra water to make it thinner or less water to make it thicker is dangerous for your baby.
  • Never mix any other kind of food, drink or type of formula in your baby’s bottle. Adding cereal to your baby’s bottle won’t help him sleep and can cause choking.


How to prepare concentrated formula

Picture updated and reproduced with permission from the Government of Manitoba

Storing and Using

  • You can store sterilized water in a covered sterilized container at room temperature for 24 hours or in the fridge for 2-3 days.
  • Once opened, a container of concentrated liquid formula can be kept covered in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours.
  • You can prepare bottles with concentrated liquid formula ahead of time and store them in the refrigerator. Never store the bottles of prepared formula at room temperature.
  • Use any unused prepared bottles within 24 hours.
  • Do not use prepared formula if it is unrefrigerated for more than two hours.
  • Your baby should start a new bottle at each feeding. After each feeding, throw away any formula your baby doesn’t finish. Never reuse, reheat or put it in the fridge for later use.
  • After feeding begins, use formula within two hours or discard.
  • If you are going out and need to take formula with you:
    • prepare the bottle ahead of time,
    • cool it to fridge temperature (about 4°C), and
    • store it in a cooler with ice packs.
    • Some parents find ready-to-use formula easier for trips.

Warming the bottle before feeding

  • Most babies like to drink their formula at room temperature.
  • You can warm the bottle by placing it in a bowl of warm water.
  • Never warm bottles in a microwave oven as it causes hot spots and can burn your baby’s mouth.
  • Check the temperature of the formula by placing some drops on the inside of your wrist.