Since our daughter just turned 6 months old, we've started offering her a few pureed foods here and there. Though canned baby food doesn't cost that much at first, when babies have just a couple of tablespoons of food a day, it can add up later on. For a budget-friendly and fun alternative, try making your own. Though there are all-in-one gizmos on the market that steam and puree fresh fruits and vegetables, all you really need is a basket steamer, a food processor, an ice cube tray, and Ziploc bags. Once you've got everything pureed, simply spoon into ice cube trays, freeze, and bag for later. I started with carrots and pears and plan to branch out into other fruits and vegetables as we go along.
For some great tips on making your own baby food and advice on when to introduce what, check out these helpful resources: