Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Cooking with young kids

Cooking with your kids is a fabulous way to bond with them. It can be fun, but also a little bit stressful. Cooking with little ones most definitely tends to take longer and usually involves more clean up, but I try to involve my three and a half year old in the kitchen as much as possible! 

Today, I am writing about the wonderful benefits of getting your young kids involved in cooking, as well as sharing some ideas for what they can (safely) do! 


Guide for cooking with young kids under 5 by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #practicallife, #cookingwithkids

Why cook with your young kids? 


  • Bonding moments to focus on your child
  • Quality time spent together 
  • Develop/reinforce math skills (measuring and counting) 
  • Develop motor skills and practical life skills (pouring, scooping, spooning) 
  • Encourage healthy eating
  • Encourages kids to try meals (perhaps if they participate in meal preparation, they will be more likely to try new foods or foods they otherwise would not be interested in).
  • Builds self confidence 
  • Is generally fun 
  • And so much more 

What can kids under 5 do? 


The short answer: so much! There are so many activities that young kids can engage in with your guidance! Here is a list of simple tasks your child can likely do to help you prepare meals: 

  • Wash things
  • Pour water
  • Create a spice mix
  • Add spices
  • Chop (soft) produce, such as: bananas and mushrooms 
  • Stir flour
  • Mix things 
  • Juice produce (lemons, limes, oranges, etc) 
  • Snap or break things (peas, green beans) 
  • Measure ingredients 
  • Peel produce using a vegetable peeler
  • Crack raw eggs 
  • Peel cooked eggs

Tips for success 


  • Take into account that cooking with kids will without a doubt take longer than doing it alone. Take this into account when deciding to cook together. Otherwise, if you are rushing through the process, you will both likely get stressed. 
  • Break up difficult tasks into smaller tasks that your child can achieve independently. For example, if you want your child to slice a banana, but they cannot peel it, you will want to peel the banana beforehand. 
  • Choose simple recipes in which you can easily divide up tasks for your child or children
  • Make sure that the tasks you allow your child to do can be done safely with your supervision.
  • Be sure the tools you give your children are child sized and can be handled well by your little one. 
  • Do not try to do something else while your child is cooking. Make sure you are involved in the process and are alert for possible accidents.

Bonus: here's my son in action



Note: In the video, you see my son stirring a wok on the stove top. The heat was not on and there was no danger of him getting burned. Some kids at this age (he is three and a half years old) do handle tasks such as cooking eggs independently, but we are not there at the moment. Use your own discretion when it comes to such tasks with your children.

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Today, I am linking up at:  A little bird told me, Preschool and kindergarten community, Tot school Gathering PlaceThe Thoughtful SpotLove to Learn LinkyThe Mommy Club Resources and SolutionsLink and Learn, TGIFHip Homeschool Moms,