Having Fun with Kids in the Kitchen

Spending the day baking with the kids has a lot of benefits. They’ll never forget the time you spend with them doing something fun. You’ll also be teaching them life-long skills they’ll need when they are an adult.

One of my most fond memories is baking cookies with my grandma. We made them nearly every time I stayed the night; she’d get out the ingredients, help me measure, and let me dump everything in the bowl. She made sure we followed directions exactly, which is another useful skill for kids.

When cooking with kids, it’s not important what you cook, but rather how involved they are. You can make cookies, brownies, and other treats they prefer, but also get them involved in making “real” food. Homemade pizza, mashed potatoes, roasts, and other dishes are easy to make with kids.

Here are some tips on how to involve your kids in the kitchen:

  1. Give them specific tasks
    Ask them to get out specific ingredients, or show them how to do specific tasks, such as melt butter in the microwave. If you’re making pizza, let them put the toppings on.
  2. Read instruction out loud
    Don’t jump from one direction to the next. Read each direction and ingredient out loud and clearly. Tell them specifically what you are doing, and why.
  3. Teach measurements
    All your cups and measuring spoons should have measurements printed on them. Show your kids what’s in the book, and which one you use. Take some extra time for tablespoons and teaspoons; those can be the most confusing.
  4. Let them stir and pour
    This is the fun part for the kids. You might have to give it an extra stir when they’re finished, or clean up a bit of a mess, but this is the best part of cooking with mom and dad. Practice makes perfect!

The most important part is getting them involved. You aren’t just teaching an important skill, but building memories as well.

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