Having Fun Cooking With Kids
Its important having fun cooking with kids and its important to make it more like playtime than work. The best times are when you let yourself go, enjoy yourself and don’t worry about the mess.
Having Fun Cooking
Cooking is one of those things people recall with fond memories. Even if you don’t like cooking, food can evoke pleasant feelings and memories. When trying to make cooking with kids fun and engaging remember the goal; make the experience a memorable one and not a perfect one. Often the fun parts and the parts that go wrong.
Cooking can be a stressful experience without children. There are a lot of different things to coordinate and get right. Making sure you prepare in advance is key to making it stress free and relaxed. And remember children are messy by nature.
Depending on the child’s age, there are different tasks each child can do. If you are managing a few children, then divide out the tasks and prepare in advance. Children also love variety so give them a choice in how they can help. Reaffirm how they’re helping you and how you appreciate it. Kind words, go a long way.
With preschoolers, you can talk about which foods are healthy, where they come from. Texture and color are other ways to make cooking with kids fun and engaging, let them try little bits and describe how it feels. Let them express what colors they like and help them understand why food is colorful.
A Child’s Ability
3 – 7 Year Olds
- Wash fruit and vegetables in a large bow of water.
- Mix simple ingredients.
- Use a plastic knife or safety scissors to cut fruit, herbs and vegetables. For children four and over.
- Use biscuit cutter shapes.
- Help clean up and wipe down the counter-tops.
- Crack eggs into a bowl, whisk and beat eggs.
- Use a pastry brush to spread butter, egg or oils on food.
- Use a vegetable peeler. For children four and over.
- Prepare simple salads and snacks.
7 – 10 Year Olds
- Use a can opener.
- Measure, weigh and mix ingredients together.
- Discuss meal ideas, tastes and textures.
- Rinse, clean and prepare vegetables.
- Roll and mix dough together.
- Chop ingredients with a regular knife.
11 Years +
- Use kitchen tools and appliances.
- Bake microwave foods.
- Follow simple step-by-step recipe.
- Seasoning foods and tenderizing meats.
- Be responsible for part of a meal.
- Boil pasta, rice or vegetables.
- Simmer and add ingredients to a pan.
Allow pre-teens the responsibility of working on their own but supervise using sharp tools and working with heat. At all times remember the kitchen can be a dangerous place, even for adults. It can be intimidating to get started but children appreciate even the smallest effort, start by making something small together and remember its all about having fun cooking!
Where To Next
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