Get your kids busy in the kitchen with these 20 easy recipes for kids. And these are great tips for teaching kids to cook, too!
My friend Katie at Kitchen Stewardship has developed a phenomenal cooking class for kids called Kids Cook Real Food! She opens enrollment every few months, and she also offers a FREE Knife Skills Class before each new class starts! Katie starts out with easy recipes, and my girls have really enjoyed the classes they have taken through this program!
If you want to teach your kids to cook, I highly recommend checking out the knife skills class and Kids Cook Real Food (the curriculum map in particular will help you know if this class is a good fit for your family)!
By Sarah Mueller, Contributing Writer
Do your kids like to work in the kitchen? Since we spend so much time preparing healthy food, it only made sense for me to train my 4 boys early on to help out. Part of their training has involved learning lots of easy recipes for kids.
Teaching kids to be independent in the kitchen has multiple benefits:
- First of all, it’s a big help for you. If a child can get himself a snack, that’s one less thing for mom or dad to do.
- In addition, cooking is fun for kids. It makes them feel important and grown up.
- Also, cooking teaches important life skills.
- Cooking (and cleaning up) increases their self-confidence because cooking may be somewhat of a mystery to kids until they start doing it themselves. Something as simple as making their own scrambled eggs can be a big deal!
- It’s very satisfying for kids to be able to cook something and serve it to others since not all children can do so.
- Being involved in the cooking encourages kids to try new foods, which is most noteworthy!
- Cooking together with your kids is fun, and, as a result, it’s a great way to spend quality time together!
Tips for teaching kids to cook
Start with simple dishes. Even making toast is a big deal to a 3-year-old.
Always supervise, especially with knives, the oven or stove, but encourage the child to be as independent as possible. Remind them of the rules frequently.
Expect a mess. Your calm reaction to a mess or a spill will help your child to know that messes are part of life. Plus, then you get a chance to help your child clean up that mess–yet another invaluable lesson in pitching in around the house.
Make it a habit to have your child help prepare dinner or other family meals on a regular basis.
Make sure they help clean up, too. Here’s a free printable kitchen cleaning checklist for kids. One day, you’ll be grateful that they know how to clean the kitchen.
Here are 20 easy recipes for kids to make all by themselves
- Toast and scrambled eggs
- Easy cinnamon coffeecake muffins
- Grilled cheese sandwiches
- English muffin pizzas
- Oven-roasted potatoes
- Stove-popped popcorn (a weekly staple in our home, made by my 14-year-old)
- Chocolate chip cookies
- Walking tacos (especially if you have the ground beef already cooked)
- Homemade applesauce (made extra exciting if you use a spiral peeler!)
- Tomato soup
- 2-ingredient banana pudding
- Hot cocoa
- Easy herbal tea
- Easy homemade wheat bread (a little advanced, but such an accomplishment!)
- Hummus (let your kids customize with their favorite spices)
- Veggie plate with homemade ranch dressing for dipping
- Fruit with creamy lemon dip
- Homemade whipped cream (so fancy!)
When your kids start cooking, it will take longer and be messier.
You might have to endure some inedible creations! But it’s an investment in their future (and yours as they become more independent and can cook for you!). The earlier kids learn to be active and independent in the kitchen, the better.