10 Best Baby Formula Brands Made in the U.S. (2021 Guide)This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure.
This in-depth and easily understandable parent guide will help you find and buy the best baby formula brands made in the U.S. You will learn the differences between U.S. vs. European baby formulas, the top 10 recommended baby formulas, what ingredients to avoid, what brands and types to avoid, and where you can purchase the best baby formulas in U.S.
If you want to know our pick for the best baby formula made in the US, it’s Bobbie Organic Infant Formula. Why is Bobbie the best? In short, it’s USDA Organic certified, Non-GMO, has the highest quality ingredients formulated to be as close to breastmilk as possible, and is designed specifically for babies 0-12 months of age. See below for more details about Bobbie!
Since not every parent is looking to buy an organic formula, there are some high quality non-organic options available too. If you’re looking for a non-organic formula for your baby, we would recommend Kabrita USA for its high quality, non-GMO ingredients.
The Best Baby Formula in the US As of January 2021
As of January 2021, there is a brand new, US based, safe and healthy infant formula on the market! Bobbie Organic Infant Formula is by far, the best baby formula made in the US today.
Here’s Why Bobbie Organic Infant Formula Is The Best
- Formulated for Infants: Intended for use in infants from 0-12 months of age as a sole source feeding or as a supplement to breastfeeding.
- FDA Vetted and Approved: Only FDA approved formula that also meets EU nutritional standards
- Organic: USDA Organic Certified
- Pasture-raised Dairy: Organic milk from Organic Valley. Organic Valley’s pasture-raised organic milk comes from cows that spend an average of 42% more time on pasture than USDA organic requirements.
- European Recipe: Simple recipe that starts with high quality ingredients
- No Palm Oil: Fat Blend is made with organic Safflower/Sunflower, Soybean and Coconut Oils
- 100% Lactose: No syrup solids, matches the predominant carbohydrate in human breast milk
- Increased DHA: At 20mg/100kcal, highest in the US market and meets EU standards
- Iron: meets EU standards
- Whey-to-Casein: 60:40 ratio that matches that of breast milk for easy digestibility
- High Quality Manufacturing: The formula is manufactured in a U.S. FDA vetted facility with more than 30 years of infant formula manufacturing experience.
- No Nonsense: No Palm oil, No Corn syrup, No Cane sugar, No Maltodextrin, Non GMO, Gluten Free, No natural or artificial flavors or colors, Pasture-Raised, Organic Dairy
- The only Mom founded and led infant formula company
There are other formulas made in the US that are also great options for your baby. See below for our picks for the best baby formulas in manufactured in America.
Some of the items below were given to me to review by the manufacturer or as part of an affiliate program. I may receive commissions if you make a purchase through the links provided. I only recommend products I’ve actually evaluated, I believe are the highest quality, and can do the most to help you and your family. By purchasing any of these products from the links below, you help keep this blog running, so thanks for your support!
Keep in mind that every person & situation is different, especially yours, so make sure to talk to your doctor and see how these guidelines and tips can help you. These tips are not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Never disregard or delay in seeking professional medical advice because of something you read here!
My recommendations are based on the manufacturer’s claims and ingredients list, and what I feel best giving to my own family. Your individual results may be different based on your overall diet, exercise, age, weight, family history, or pre-existing conditions.
Top 10 Best Baby Formula Brands Made in the U.S.
The formulas listed below are considerably better than most US formulas on the shelves. In this top 10 list you’ll find more details for each formula, outlining why it might be a good fit for your baby, along with pros, cons, and additional considerations for each.
The only mom founded and led infant formula company in the U.S. Bobbie is the first Organic, European-Style Infant Formula that meets FDA requirements. Bobbie’s recipe is modeled after breast milk and designed to meet the most recent EU nutritional standards for critical ingredients like DHA and iron, while also meeting all FDA nutritional standards for infant formula. No palm oil, USDA Organic, Milk sourced from Organic Valley pasture raised cows, No Corn syrup, No Cane sugar, No Maltodextrin, Non GMO, Gluten Free, No natural or artificial flavors or colors. Costs $24 per 400g (about 14oz) can.
Baby’s Only with Whey is also a lactose formula, but made with organic skimmed cow’s milk, and organic whey. It has no added sugars, and is free of synthetic ingredients, but lacks pre and probiotics. The DHA in this formula is derived from eggs, so it’s naturally extracted. Lastly, this is marketed as a toddler formula but similar to Kabrita, it meets the nutritional requirements for an infant formula. As with all formula, consult your pediatrician before using this for your baby. Costs $20 for a 12.7oz can.
The best goat milk formula. The ingredients are non-GMO, with added prebiotics and a whey-to-casein ratio that closely resembles that in breast milk. This option contains no glucose syrup solids, no maltodextrin, no taurine or l-carnitine, and no palm oil. It is marketed as a toddler formula, but meets the nutritional requirements for infant formula. As with all formula, consult your pediatrician before using this for your baby.
This formula doesn’t have gluten or corn syrup. It’s Non-GMO, and is designed for easy digestion. Contains 4X more prebiotics than most other infant formulas. This formula delivers two prebiotics, GOS & FOS, fibers that mimic the function of prebiotics found naturally in breast milk. It contains palm oil and soy oil, but has naturally derived DHA. It’s also a bit thin, so takes baby some time to get used to. Costs $26.75 per 20oz can.
Baby’s Only with Brown Rice Syrup is also a lactose formula, but uses brown rice syrup as one of the primary carbohydrates. It is free of synthetic ingredients, but lacks pre and probiotics. The DHA in this formula is derived from eggs, so it’s naturally extracted. Lastly, this is marketed as a toddler formula but similar to Kabrita, it meets the nutritional requirements for an infant formula. As with all formula, consult your pediatrician before using this for your baby. Costs $12 for a 12.7oz can.
Similac Organic has recently reformulated their infant formula, and now their formula has no sugar or syrup solids as the primary carbohydrate! They use organic nonfat milk and organic lactose only. They include prebiotics as well. Similac Organic does have soy oil and a few synthetic ingredients. Costs $28 for a 23oz container.
Earth’s Best is USDA Organic Certified, and formulated for babies 0-12 months of age. Contains no sugar or syrup solids, contains DHA & ARA and prebiotics for healthy digestion. Contains palm oil, soy oil and a few synthetic ingredients. Costs $26 for a 23oz can.
Earth’s Best Gentle formula is USDA Organic and designed for babies aged 0-12 months with sensitive stomachs or tolerance issues. Made from easy to digest proteins, including partially hydrolyzed whey, for fussiness, gas, and crying. Includes DHA and ARA. Non GMO. Costs $28 for a 23oz can.
Created especially for sensitive tummies for babies 0-12 months of age. This formula has lactose reduced by 75% to ease occasional fussiness & gas in lactose-sensitive babies. Includes prebiotics (GOS & FOS) to mimic the prebiotics found in breastmilk. Non-GMO, Gluten-Free. Costs $29.75 for a 21oz can
USDA Organic formula designed especially for sensitive tummies. No hormones, antibiotics-treated dairy cows; no harmful pesticides or fertilizer. Rated “Best in Class” by CleanLabelProject.org for Superior Nutrition and Purity. No palm oil, non-GMO, no hexane processed DHA and ARA. Costs $14.50 for a 12.7oz can.
Best Baby Formula: What to Look For
- USDA Organic: When buying formula for your baby look for one that is certified USDA organic. This means that it was produced without pesticides, GMOs, hormones, and should have no artificial or synthetic ingredients.
- Whey:Casein Ratio: You want to find a formula that has a whey: casein ratio of 60:40, which most closely mimics breast milk.
- Grass Fed: Since organic formulas use cow or goat milk look for ones that are grass fed.
- No Added Sugars or Synthetic Ingredients: See the list of ingredients to avoid below!
Best Baby Formula in the US: What to Avoid
- Added Sugars: Look for a formula that doesn’t contain added sugars in the form of syrups or syrup solids. Some to look out for are corn syrup, maltodextrin, sugar, or brown rice syrup, corn sugars, and syrup solids.
- Synthetic DHA and ARA: DHA and ARA are naturally found in breastmilk, but the DHA and ARA added to formula are extracted from algae and fungus, often using hexane (a neurotoxic petroleum-based solvent). While hexane is undetectable in the formula after processing and I don’t consider this to be a huge concern, if you can find DHA extracted using a different process, or DHA from egg yolk, that can be a more ideal option.
- Synthetic Preservatives or Stabilizers: Look out for ascorbic palmitate and beta carotene.
- GMOs: Buy formulas that are certified Non-GMO. GMOs are genetically engineered crops that are made to be resistant to Round-Up (glyphosate) and produce their own insecticide. The challenge is that glyphosate is likely carcinogenic to humans. In addition, the cows producing the milk are hormone free if Non-GMO. If you end up buying an organic baby formula, it will automatically be Non-GMO.
- Soy or Soy based products: Too much soy in infancy has been linked to early menstruation and other health issues.
- Carrageenan: While carrageenan has been banned from formulas in Europe it is still allowed in U.S. formulas even though numerous studies have found that it causes inflammation in the intestines.
- Maltodextrin: is another name for sugar. It is a high-glycemic stabilizer.
- Synthetic Nutrients: Lutein, lycopene, nucleotides, taurine, l-carnitine and l-methionine are allowed in the US which are processed with neurotoxic solvents and are not allowed in European Organic Infant Formulas.
- Note about Palm Oil: Palm Oil is in most formulas US formulas. It is not environmentally-friendly, and it can form “soaps” in the baby’s intestines – which can cause digestive issues. What I’ve seen is that Palm Oil doesn’t cause issues for most babies and is relatively harmless as compared to other oils added to baby formulas. If you have to choose an added oil, I’d choose palm over soy because of this study about soy (among many others) that makes it even more problematic than palm oil.
Baby Formula FAQs
What Types Of Baby Formulas Are On The Market?
- Cow’s Milk Lactose Based: Most formulas fall into this category. Cow’s milk is altered to resemble breast milk so that it has the right balance of nutrients and is more easily digestible.
- Hypoallergenic: Are for those babies that have an allergy and severe problem digesting cow’s milk formula. There are several types of hypoallergenic formulas including, partially hydrolyzed, extensively hydrolyzed, and free amino acid based.
- Goat Milk: This can be a good option if your baby has a cow’s milk sensitivity vs. a diagnosed cow’s milk protein allergy.
- Soy Based: These formulas should be avoided due to studies that demonstrate their problems with digestive issues and other side effects.
What is the difference between U.S. and European formula brands?
Most baby formulas made in the US are full of unhealthy ingredients for your baby. Some of these ingredients include added sugars/syrup solids, preservatives, GMOs, and synthetic ingredients. European Baby Formulas (especially organic European baby formulas) are more similar to breast milk than most of their U.S. counterparts in the make-up of carbohydrates and fat, and European formulas are held to higher organic standards. This post focuses on the best baby formulas for parents who are looking for a US-made formula that meets the high standards set by European baby formula companies.
What is the closest formula to breast milk?
Baby formulas are intended to be a substitute or a supplement for breast milk, you might assume most formulas would then be designed to closely resemble breast milk in their ingredients. However, many formulas on the market contain synthetic ingredients. Lactose is the main carbohydrate source in breast milk. The other main components of breast milk are proteins and fats. Finding a formula that features lactose as the main carbohydrate, and whey as the protein and fat is the way to go when looking for a formula that most resembles breast milk.
What is the best formula for a colic baby?
While most colicky babies will do fine on the above mentioned formulas. If your baby is particularly sensitive they may benefit from a formula that is strictly whey based. Whey proteins are more easily digestible then the standard synthetic proteins. A lactose based formula with a combination of milk powder and whey protein such as Kabrita or Baby’s Only Organic with Whey are a good choice.
How do I know if my baby’s formula is upsetting their tummy?
- Your baby is unusually fussy.
- Resists sleeping and eating.
- Cries more often than usual
- Has diarrhea
- Wiggles and squirms or tenses muscles
- Makes uncomfortable faces such is squeezing eyes closed or frowns.
If your baby shows any of these signs consult your pediatrician.
Top 10 Best Baby Formula Brands, Ranked From Best to Worst
Below is a detailed chart ranking all of the best baby formula brands. At the top of the chart, I’ve included a hypothetical line for the “ideal” formula – so you have something to measure all of the other formulas against.
Not every baby likes every formula. Some formulas constipate or irritate some babies, yet keep other babies’ tummies perfectly happy. If you try the formulas I recommend and they don’t work for your baby – that is ok!
There is no perfect formula, but some are still much better than others. If you can afford it, and your pediatrician approves your formula choice, I’d recommend going with one of the top 3 formulas on my list (Bobbie, Baby’s Only with Whey, Kabrita USA). But in general, just do the best you can for your baby. No judgments here.
[For more information on the best European organic baby formulas, including my recommendations on where to buy, click here] And if you have any questions about European or U.S. baby formulas, don’t hesitate to leave me a comment or send me an email, I respond to every single message I get!
Note: I am not a doctor, so while I would personally use the top formulas on this list for my children, please consult with your pediatrician before using any formula for your baby.