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Mixing liquid concentrate infant formula


Below are guidelines for mixing liquid concentrate infant formula (20 calories per ounce) and for feeding your baby.

Mixing the formula

Things you will need

  • Liquid concentrate formula (Check date and throw out any expired formula)
  • Water (tap water is OK)
  • Pitcher or large container with cover

Getting ready

  • Wash your hands well with soap and warm water. For guidelines, see “Do you know… Clean hands.”
  • Gather together a sterile bottle and nipple on a clean work surface
  • Read carefully all the instructions on the liquid concentrate formula can.

Mix the formula

  1. Pour one (1) 13-ounce can of formula into a clean pitcher (or other large container).
  2. Add 13 ounces of water. (13 oz can of concentrate formula + 13 oz water)
  3. Mix the formula well.
  4. Cover and refrigerate the prepared formula.
  5. If refrigerated formula not used within 48 hours, throw it out.

Feeding your baby

  • Clean your hands well with soap and water or an alcohol-based cleaner.
  • Shake or stir the formula mixture well.
  • Pour desired amount of formula into baby bottle.
  • Warm the formula by placing the bottle (with sealed lid) in a pan of warm water.
  • Test the temperature of the formula on your wrist. Let the formula cool if the liquid is warmer than room temperature.
  • Always hold your baby while feeding. Maintain eye contact with your baby as you feed, this is an important step in bonding with your baby. Never “prop” the bottle to feed your baby.
  • Throw away any formula left in the bottle when your baby is finished drinking or within an hour after feeding your baby.

Safety precautions

  • Use prepared formula within 48 hours (2 days) of mixing.
  • Formula does not need to be heated. If you choose to heat it, do not use a microwave because this can cause hot spots in the formula that can burn your baby.
  • Mix formula only as directed. Do not add extra water to formula. Adding too much water can cause these problems:
    • Too few calories for proper growth
    • Seizures because your baby does not get enough salt in the blood
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Diarrhea
    • Restless or fussy baby

Not enough water in the formula can cause:

  • Thirst,
  • Weight gain because baby gets too many calories, and
  • Kidney problems because baby gets too much protein.


If you have questions or concerns about mixing infant formula or feeding your baby, please call Clinical Nutrition at 901-595-3318.


This document is not intended to take the place of the care and attention of your personal physician or other professional medical services. Our aim is to promote active participation in your care and treatment by providing information and education. Questions about individual health concerns or specific treatment options should be discussed with your physician.

St. Jude complies with health care-related federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex.

ATTENTION: If you speak another language, assistance services, free of charge, are available to you. Call 1-866-278-5833 (TTY: 1-901-595-1040).

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